Adrian wrote:Curious what the advantages of a lasers and microscopes are over an automated XYZ setup? You've still got to manually jog and "eyeball" with the former which isn't going to be 100% repeatable or does the microscope feed back into the control software and automatically line up on a mark?
It sort of depends on what you are doing. I use two vises quite often on my machine. An automated xyz would only locate a corner and the surface for me. I need to tram the back jaw of both vises so that they are in line when I set them up. It is soooo tedious that what I have been doing is using a sacrificial back jaw on the vises and just mill them in place. That has gotten old too.
When I am not using the vises I have a method for setting locator buttons using the t track slots on the table. That works really well
As to the accuracy part of your question: Eyeballing something with a magnification factor can be extremely accurate, think optical comparator. Mine should arrive sometime today so I will get a better feel for how much magnification I can reasonably use. The one I ordered is 0 to 1000x. I highly doubt I will use anything above 50X. Right now I am staring at my machine trying to figure out the mounting. I do not want it mounted on the Z axis. Doing so will make for a very fussy setup due to parallax issues as the Z goes up and down. It is also going to be fussy mounted on the bridge axis, same issue it looks like. So I am thinking of building a mount more or less like is used on laser mirrors for adjustment.
I use Ger21's (Gerry) screenset 2010 which has a very handy button and macro that automatically does the math for the offset of the laser pointer or microscope mounting.
I totally agree with you on "eyeballing" a laser spot. For quite a bit of what I do it is not accurate enough, the dot is just too big not to mention it is not round but oblong in shape.
One of the interesting things is that mounting something like this on a cnc machine effectively creates a poor man's CMM. I highly doubt I will ever use it that way, but who knows?
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