MechMonk

Good Experience with Mastercam Mill-Turn and New Integrex?

Recommended Posts

We’ve just completed an order for a new Mazak Integrex i200SW 1500U with Mazatrol SmoothX and a programable steady rest.  Has anyone had a good experience programing a newer Integrex with the Mastercam mill-turn environment? This will be our first mill-turn type machine so we are expecting a bit of a learning curve.

We’ve been told by our reseller that it won’t be any problem, but after reading a thread from Bob W. about his issues getting good code for a new DMG-Mori NTX I’m curious if Mastercam really has its act together regarding mill-tun programing. It’s going to cost us a decent amount to upgrade to the Mastercam mill-turn environment and I really don’t want to have to fight post problems on this level of machine.

We've attended a couple of seminars from our reseller demonstrating the mill-turn environment and understand that the work flow is different from how Mastercam normally operates. But what has your experience been? Have you been able to get good code from day one? Are you able to use Mastercam to take advantage of all the function of your machine?

I’m specifically looking for feedback on the newer Integrex machines, but experience with other late model mill-turn machines would be welcome as well.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, MechMonk said:

We’ve just completed an order for a new Mazak Integrex i200SW 1500U with Mazatrol SmoothX and a programable steady rest.  Has anyone had a good experience programing a newer Integrex with the Mastercam mill-turn environment? This will be our first mill-turn type machine so we are expecting a bit of a learning curve.

We’ve been told by our reseller that it won’t be any problem, but after reading a thread from Bob W. about his issues getting good code for a new DMG-Mori NTX I’m curious if Mastercam really has its act together regarding mill-tun programing. It’s going to cost us a decent amount to upgrade to the Mastercam mill-turn environment and I really don’t want to have to fight post problems on this level of machine.

We've attended a couple of seminars from our reseller demonstrating the mill-turn environment and understand that the work flow is different from how Mastercam normally operates. But what has your experience been? Have you been able to get good code from day one? Are you able to use Mastercam to take advantage of all the function of your machine?

I’m specifically looking for feedback on the newer Integrex machines, but experience with other late model mill-turn machines would be welcome as well.

Helping A customer right now with a Similar Model and Control. Their machine is about 18 months old. We have got the parts programmed and running with very little hassle. We had to have the dealer add a Strategy for Milling the parts while holding it between the chucks for the end customer and had to work them since they purchase the KM4X63 Spindle with their machine. Kennametal is only company in the world makes holders for that Spindle and that has proved to be some work getting everything we needed. Like Sandvik and the CAPTO Days when they were the only ones making CAPTO and never had enough.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 4/2/2021 at 3:05 PM, crazy^millman said:

Helping A customer right now with a Similar Model and Control. Their machine is about 18 months old. We have got the parts programmed and running with very little hassle. We had to have the dealer add a Strategy for Milling the parts while holding it between the chucks for the end customer and had to work them since they purchase the KM4X63 Spindle with their machine. Kennametal is only company in the world makes holders for that Spindle and that has proved to be some work getting everything we needed. Like Sandvik and the CAPTO Days when they were the only ones making CAPTO and never had enough.

Thanks for the feed back millman.

We will want to mill while parts are held between both chucks as well. The main project that's going on this machine is crankshaft castings where we will rough the rod journals by mill-turning.

We're also working with our Mazak distributor to get some programing done before our machine shows up. They use Esprit and say they have had good luck using it to program Integrex machines. I've been using Mastercam for the past 10 years and would prefer to stay with it since it's familiar, but I'm not opposed to trying different software if it will perform better for this application.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hello,

We have two Mazak J400 machines with the smooth G control.

https://www.mazakcanada.com/machines/integrex-j-400/

It's not a full 5 axis machine it's more a 4+1, no matter it has certainly increased out productivity, C6 holders and a 72 tool changer.

Very happy with it's turning capabilities we can easily take a .22 radial doc at .018/rev in 4140.

For that machine there was no reason to purchase the Mill-Turn Environment, for me it's a lathe when I need a lathe and a 4+1 mill when I need a mill.

It took a little time to iron out the post, we use plane shift G68 not TCPC because it's not a true 5 axis machine. There was some minor axis substitution issues as well. I had Inhouse add a switch to move in the Z before the X and Y after a tool change for longer parts where the Z home/tool change position was in the Z- position.

Some of the machines conversational features are not useable because the machine is running EIA programs not Mazatrol programs.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Running a I-100 ST (milling head, lower turret, and subspindle) all programmed in the mill turn environment, been using it for about 2 yrs.  Making complicated prototypes with more milling than turning.

My reseller support has been great and the support from Mastercam has been ok.  They are actively developing the software and it has gotten better over that time.

My biggest gripe is that stock models and verify do not work very well in millturn, making it difficult to see where stock is remaining.  The simulator works well but it can take 5-10 minutes to launch and finish simulating  which can be frustrating if your trying to vet small changes.

The normal user can only make small changes to the posts and outputs.  Don't be afraid to ask your reseller for post changes, some can be done at their level and the rest are handled by mastercam.  The mazak post i got from them is now working very well.  

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

No longer have the integrex , very cool but it was a troublesome machine had many issues . Some were operator enhanced, had a boss that thought he knew it all , crashed the thing , "catastrophic" crashes three times in the 2 years he was here .

Getting a good post from esprit proved impossible , we didn't have mastercam at the time , wish we did I would have probably gotten better faster results.

Ended up hand programming most of the time in mazatrol, which I call the liars software , because I always had to lie to it to get it to do what I wanted to do .

On the  OD and ID I would get about .013" change throughout the day other axis a bit less. Had to set a timer to change comps every hour or so to hold print tolerances.

Had some huge runs of large parts , helicopter rotor housings , constant fight to hold tolerances on all features due to thermal movement of the machine.

Mazak support was the worst I've ever encountered , one day shortly after warranty time they came in and basically said we don't support these machines anymore , at all .

Now its a generic cnc service company which has proven to do a better job then Mazak did back when anyway. 

We still rock mazak horizontal and vertical machines which I think are great machines .

I was pretty glad the day it "the integrex" got sold  though , took a huge load off my plate .

I wish you the best of luck on the new Machine , they are really cool and very capable of making good parts with the right programmer/machinist running them . I would just leave the whole "operator" scenario off \away from it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
23 minutes ago, DUM1 said:

On the  OD and ID I would get about .013" change throughout the day other axis a bit less. Had to set a timer to change comps every hour or so to hold print tolerances.

Machines that behave like this are a blight on any machine tool builder.  All it takes is one to ruin a reputation with that customer and surrounding local customers the owner drinks coffee with, or any place the employees eventually migrate to.  Poof nobody will buy and Integrex again, regardless of their actual merits.  I have heard of issues with multi-function machines not holding tolerances throughout the day, but IMHO usually it was due to unreasonable expectations, or very heavy production with lots of roughing and once again having very a unreasonable expectation of small thermal growth issues, with wild swings of temperature in the machine.  I'm guessing, that machine on a bad day should hold .002" without any comp changes to account for thermal drift.

Many times, the average techs out in the field are not properly equipped or trained to diagnose or correct the underlying issue causing these problems, and won't call into Mazak service to get some additional help due to pride, or previous lack of help on simpler issues.  I would find it very hard to believe the machine was moving that much mechanically, unless it was a large machine without influence from the thermal comp software.  If it was moving that much without thermal comp helping, it likely had lack of ball screw tension on that axis, or less likely either a lack of preload in the milling spindle, or a partially broken casting somewhere in the stack up above the z axis that causes asymmetric thermal growth.  Either way, very likely it was due to the major crashes the old boss had.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We've already paid Mazak so we are committed at this point. Luckily for us only myself and one other guy will be running this machine. Not that we can't make mistakes but it should limit the shenanigans.

Since Greg_J mentioned it above, I have wondered if we really needed the mill-turn environment since I don't think we will be running multi-stream paths. Our machine will have no lower turret so we won't be running parts on both spindles at the same time or doing any pinch turning, etc. These type of machines are new to us, so we don't know what we can really accomplish with them.

It is encouraging to hear that Mastercam sounds like they are improving the mill-turn functionality.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 minutes ago, MechMonk said:

Since Greg_J mentioned it above, I have wondered if we really needed the mill-turn environment since I don't think we will be running multi-stream paths. Our machine will have no lower turret so we won't be running parts on both spindles at the same time or doing any pinch turning, etc. These type of machines are new to us, so we don't know what we can really accomplish with them.

It is encouraging to hear that Mastercam sounds like they are improving the mill-turn functionality.

I find it extremely useful to have an environment for our Mazaks...

We have a couple versions of i100's, none have a 2nd turret but as an offline programmer, being able to simulate what I am programming is huge....

We have 2 i150W's that Mastercam cannot simulate, and could not provide an environment, so I use a Postability post processor....the gcode is good but flying without that simulation, suffice to say I made it clear I would do everything I could to avoid things that go "bump" but I wouldn't guarantee that an issue couldn't sneak past me... 

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, DUM1 said:

No longer have the integrex , very cool but it was a troublesome machine had many issues . Some were operator enhanced, had a boss that thought he knew it all , crashed the thing , "catastrophic" crashes three times in the 2 years he was here .

Getting a good post from esprit proved impossible , we didn't have mastercam at the time , wish we did I would have probably gotten better faster results.

Ended up hand programming most of the time in mazatrol, which I call the liars software , because I always had to lie to it to get it to do what I wanted to do .

On the  OD and ID I would get about .013" change throughout the day other axis a bit less. Had to set a timer to change comps every hour or so to hold print tolerances.

Had some huge runs of large parts , helicopter rotor housings , constant fight to hold tolerances on all features due to thermal movement of the machine.

Mazak support was the worst I've ever encountered , one day shortly after warranty time they came in and basically said we don't support these machines anymore , at all .

Now its a generic cnc service company which has proven to do a better job then Mazak did back when anyway. 

We still rock mazak horizontal and vertical machines which I think are great machines .

I was pretty glad the day it "the integrex" got sold  though , took a huge load off my plate .

I wish you the best of luck on the new Machine , they are really cool and very capable of making good parts with the right programmer/machinist running them . I would just leave the whole "operator" scenario off \away from it.

I've had the same problem. I fixed it by getting a better job.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
40 minutes ago, bd41612 said:

I've had the same problem. I fixed it by getting a better job.

After the crash o matic boss that opted for esprit was let go I finally talked them into mastercam  been all rosy since ...

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, bd41612 said:

I've had the same problem. I fixed it by getting a better job.

1 hour ago, DUM1 said:

After the crash o matic boss that opted for esprit was let go I finally talked them into mastercam  been all rosy since ...

Hmm.... Well that doesn't make me feel great about Esprit. Since I'm not hearing absolute horror stories with Mastercam I think I would rather stay with the software I know.

 

2 hours ago, JParis said:

I find it extremely useful to have an environment for our Mazaks...

We have a couple versions of i100's, none have a 2nd turret but as an offline programmer, being able to simulate what I am programming is huge....

We have 2 i150W's that Mastercam cannot simulate, and could not provide an environment, so I use a Postability post processor....the gcode is good but flying without that simulation, suffice to say I made it clear I would do everything I could to avoid things that go "bump" but I wouldn't guarantee that an issue couldn't sneak past me... 

 

Yes I can see where having the simulation environment would make things less hair raising.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Another good feature that the Mazak Smooth Control has that I wish every machine would have is that it has mode selection button that changed between 2d (Just code) and the code displayed in 3D. You then can touch any part of the 3D code and it will take you to that place in the program, you can also do the reverse touch the line of code and the motion will be highlighted in the 3D viewer. It's just like having Cimco back plot built into the control.

The control is touch screen so you can use gestures to view the 3D program, you can pan by sliding two fingers on the screen, zoom in by pinching in ward on the place you want to zoom to or pinch outward to zoom out. 

I use this feature all the time but it's not perfect, for instance rotary moves do not display correctly and the odd time there may be too much to see on the screen. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

Join us!

eMastercam - your online source for all things Mastercam.

Together, we are the strongest Mastercam community on the web with over 56,000 members, and our online store offers a wide selection of training materials for all applications and skill levels.

Follow us