Tube Bender Control Mach4

__Use__MachMotion_Logo_HiRes_TransBG-update-01-450.png


 Note: This is a user’s manual, not a teacher’s manual! This manual assumes you know the basics of tube benders and their functions.

Emergency Stop
In case of an emergency, press the large red E-Stop button located on the operator’s panel. All motion will stop immediately

1.0 Getting Started

To operate your machine, begin by turning on the computer. Rotate and release the key on the back right hand side of the control. When the computer has completed its startup procedure, double click on the Tube Bender icon on your desktop (Figure 1). 
Figure-1-Tube-Bender-Icon.JPG

Figure 1 Tube Bender Icon
The MachMotion Tube Bender Control will open.

Warning
Severe damage may be caused to the control by turning off the power of the tube bender without first shutting down the control properly. See “Shutting Down the Control” for proper instruction.

 

Figure-2-Tube-Bender-Control-Screen.JPG 

Figure 2 Mach Motion Tube Bender Control

This control has three modes: Run Mode, Manual Mode, and Program Mode. Before you should proceed to any of the modes, the tube bender should be homed. To home, pull out the E- Stop button on the operator’s panel.  Then push the Pump On button to start the hydraulic pump.

Then click the Enable button as shown below: 

 Figure-3-Reset-Button.JPG

Figure 3 Reset Button

Now while holding in the System Enable button click on the Home All button (Figure 2). The tooling will be commanded to its open position, the bend arm will move and the carriage will travel toward the rear of the machine. When the tube bender has stopped moving, the homing routine has completed. Now you can proceed to the other modes. During normal operation you can use the three buttons at the right of the screen to switch modes.
Figure-4-Different-Modes.JPG

Figure 4 Different Modes

2.0 Manual Mode

In Manual Mode you have control of each moving part of your tube bender. Each function, such as the pipe clamp and pressure die, can be operated in this mode. You can also do manual bends. This is a good place to start when learning the control.

 Figure-5-Manual-Mode.JPG

Figure 5 Manual Mode

DANGER:
Stand clear of the C arm or serious injury may be incurred. During each C bend the pipe clamp, pressure die, mandrel and mandrel lubricator can all function. Keep your hands and all other objects clear.

You can be killed or seriously injured if you get behind the bend arm when it is closing. Stay far away from the machine when the C axis is returning.

2.1 Axes
The carriage (Y Axis), rotational (B Axis), and bend arm (C Axis) can be moved in two ways: Jog and latch.

 Jog-or-Latch.JPG

2.2 Jog
To manually jog an axis, click the button next to the axis you would like to move. Then, while holding the enable button (green pushbutton switch to the left side of the control console), press + or – push buttons (black pushbuttons on the operator’s panel). The selected axis will move as long as you hold the buttons.  Adjust the Feed Rate knob to control the speed of motion.

2.3 Latch
The first input field on the left of the screen is the + or - distance for the axis to move. All moves are incremental, meaning that the axis will move the distance from the current position
Figure-6-Input-Fields.JPG

Figure 6 Input Fields
To move any axis, click the Select.JPG  button next to the axis you would like to move, enter your distance into the input field for that axes, click outside of the axis field. Then, while holding the enable button (green pushbutton to the left side of the control console), press + or – push buttons (black pushbuttons on the operator’s panel) to move the selected axes in the positive or negative direction.

DANGER:
You can be killed or seriously injured if you get behind the bend arm when it is closing. Stay far away from the machine when the C axis is returning.

The  Bend.JPG  button can be used to make semi-automatic bends. It will operate the bend arm to the degrees entered in the input field for the C axis, as well as sequencing the pressure die and clamp to allow for making a single bend. Select the latch function, the bend button, and then press the + button on the operator panel to sequence the clamps and make a single bend. Press the – button to open the clamps and return the bend arm to 0 degrees.

If the carriage is in the pressure die interference zone (i.e. the pressure die will collide with the carriage if the die closes). The clamp will close, the collet will open and the carriage will back out of the interference zone. The pressure die will then close and the C axis will move to the commanded position. If the carriage is in the pressure die interference zone (i.e. the pressure die will collide with the carriage if the die closes). The clamp will close, the collet will open and the carriage will back out of the interference zone.  The pressure die will then close and the C axis will move to the commanded position.

2.4 Bender Functions
This section explains how to operate each individual function that can be controlled in Manual Mode.
Bender-Functions.JPG

Jog: In jog mode when a function is selected you may move it incrementally by holding the Enable (green) button on the left side of the console and selecting the direction with the + or – (black push- buttons on the console).  The function will be commanded to move as long as you hold both buttons.

Latch: In latch mode you can command the full motion of a function. Select the function you would like to command then while holding the Enable (green) button on the left side of the console press the the + or – (black push-buttons on the console) to select the direction for the function to latch.

Note: For any function pressing the + push button will move the function towards the pipe or towards the bend die. I.E. for mandrel + will extend the mandrel toward the bend die. For clamp + will clamp towards the pipe. For follower + will extend towards the bend die.

2.5 Mandrel Lube
To manually activate the mandrel lubrication pump, click the Mandrel Lube button. Each click of the button toggles the mandrel lube pump.

2.6 Settings
Clicking on the Settings button will open the following screen which allows setting the parameters for several machine constants as well as selecting options for various functions included on your particular machine.

Figure-7-Settings.JPG
 
 

Figure 7 Settings

Table length: This is the distance from the tangent point on the bend die to the front of the collet when the carriage is at its rear limit of travel (at the Y home limit switch). To set up: Home the machine, Jog the collet as far back as it can go, measure between the points shown below, input that value into the Table Length table.

C Homing Speed: is the command sent to the bend arm to move it slowly to its home position when the home all command is issued.

Hydraulics Timeout: After this time the high and low pressure will turn off. Position After Homing: This is the position that the Y axis will go to after homing Y Min Default:

Pressure Die Interference Zone Default: This is the value that will be used if there isn’t a program opened

Wiper Die Interference Zone Default: This is the value that will be used if there isn’t a program opened

Retractable Die Interference Zone Default: This is the value that will be used if there isn’t a program opened

Machine Lube Rate: This is a time delay that will command the machine lube pump.

Tube Support Interference: This is the distance from the tangent point of the bend die to the farthest interference point of the tube support. If the Y axis ever gets in this range the tube support will be commanded down.

Reverse Torque: Changes the direction of the Y axis command during the bending action.

Reverse C Home: Changes the direction C axis will home. If active the C axis will home in the + or bending direction.

2.7 Functions Settings:
On the right tab there is selection of the functions present on your particular machine. This must be setup to match your machine.

3.0 Program Mode

The Program Mode is where you will create or edit your programs.

3.1 Create a new part file
To create a new part file:

  1. Click the Program Mode button (Figure 4).
  2. Click New File.
  3. This will load a default file that you can now
  4. Click Save.
  5. This will open a dialog allowing you to give your new file a name.

Save-File.JPG

  1. Figure 8 Enter New Program Name
  2. Enter your new program name.
    As shown above, the program name is “NewProgram.”

  3. Press If another program with the same name exists, it will ask you if you want to overwrite the existing file.

Figure-9-Erase-Existing-File.JPG

Figure 9 Erase Existing File

3.2 Part Configuration
The part configuration screen is where all the settings for the part program are entered. This will be saved in the code so that when you load your file months later all the settings will be loaded with it.  

Figure-10-Program-Mode.JPG

 Figure 10 Program Mode

3.3 Operator Safety Distance
This is the distance that the operator should stand away from the machine to be safe. This is configured manually and is only for your reference.

3.4 Enable Options
Clicking the buttons will enable that function. If a button is green, that corresponding function will be enabled for that program.

 Enable-Options.JPG

3.5 Pipe Characteristics
Under Pipe Characteristics you can enter the diameter and thickness of your pipe (Figure 11). These values are for your reference only; they are not used for calculations in the program.

Figure-11-Pipe-Characteristics.JPG

Figure 11 Pipe Characteristics

3.6 Part Information

3.7 Load Position
Load position is the distance from the tangent of the bend die to the face of the collet. The collet can be any distance from tangent as long as the carriage is within the limits of the machine. When the Load button is pressed before running a program, the carriage moves to this position so the tube can be loaded.

3.8 X Axis Shift
To be available in the future

3.9 Y Min
The distance from the tangent of the bend die to the face of the collet

Figure-12-Pipe-Characteristics.JPG  

Figure 12 Pipe Characteristics

3.10 Part Settings

3.11 Early Mandrel Extraction
The early mandrel extraction is an angle that allows you to have the mandrel pulled out of the pipe before completing a bend. This is measured from the home position of the bend arm. If you set the early mandrel extraction to 45 degrees and then make a 60 degree bend the control will extract the mandrel at 45 degrees and continue bending to 60 degrees without the mandrel

3.12 Follower Delay Angle
The follower delay angle is an angle that allows you to have the follower wait until the bend arm reaches a given point before advancing. This is measured from the home position of the bend arm. If you set follower delay angle to 20 degrees and then make a 60 degree bend the control will wait until the bend arm gets to 20 degrees and then send the follower out.

3.13 Mandrel Lube Angle
With mandrel lube enabled the machine will cycle the mandrel lube pump every time the bend arm moves this distance. If you set the mandrel lube angle to 10 degrees then make a 60 degree bend the mandrel lube pump will run every 10 degrees during your bend and will lube 5 times.

3.14 Open Pressure Die Time
This allows the control to just bump the pressure die off the bend die before advancing the carriage. This should be set to a small time value in milliseconds such as 200ms

Open-Pressure-Die-Time.JPG
3.15 Spring Back

 Spring-Back.JPG

Spring Back compensation is used to calculate how much over bend a pipe needs so that when the clamp releases, the pipe springs back to the correct angle. This will have to be set up for each different kind of pipe. To calculate your spring back compensation, use the following procedure:

  1. Return to manual mode and enter a small bend angle such as 20 into the C Axis bend
  2. Load a tube in the bender

Step-2.JPG

  1. Click the bend arrow.
  2. After the bend is complete click the return arrow and measure the actual bend angle of the tube.
  3. Enter a new bend with a larger angle such as 120.
  4. Load a new tube
  5. After the bend is complete click the return arrow and measure the actual bend angle of the tube.
  6. Return to program
  7. Click the Calculate button in the Spring Back
  8. Enter the commanded angle of the small bend you made in step 1 and the actual angle measured in step 4 under the Bend 1 field
  9. Enter the commanded angle of the large bend you made in step 5 and the actual angle measured in step 7 under the Bend 2 field


Step-11-Spring-Back.JPG
   

12. Click Calculate

3.16 Proportional
The proportional value is the difference in spring back constant depending on the size of the bend

3.17 Fixed
The fixed value is always added to the bend.

Note: To disable spring back compensation, set proportional to 1 and fixed to 0.

3.18 Interference Zones

3.19 Pressure Die Interference Zone
Normally equal to the pressure die length. This makes sure that the pressure die never closes without moving the carriage out of the way. The bending sequence is modified so that the clamp closes to hold the part, the collet opens, and the carriage moves out of the interference zone before the pressure die closes.

3.20 Retractable Die Interference Zone
Normally equal to the pressure die length plus the retractable die length. This makes sure that the carriage never moves into the retractable die interference zone without the retractable die open.

3.21 Wiper Die Interference Zone
Normally equal to the retractable die interference zone plus the wiper die length. This makes sure that the carriage never moves into the wiper die interference zone without the wiper die open.

Interference-Zones.JPG

3.22 Tool Info

3.23 Die Radius
The die radius is the radius of the main die on the bend arm. It must be correct for the pipe length calculation. If die radius is changed after creating bends in a part, all bends must be resaved in order to recalculate the tube length and Y axis moves.

3.24 Collet Depth
The Collet Depth is the distance that the tube will be inserted into the collet
Tool-Info.JPG

3.25 Create Bending Sequence
After you have all the settings adjusted correctly in the part configuration, you are ready to begin actually programming the different bends. Click the LRA tab at the top of the screen.

Figure-13-Save-Configuration.JPG
 
Figure 13 Save Configuration

A new screen for setting up your bends is displayed. Down the left side of the screen you will see the bend numbers. All of your bends can be seen and edited from this one page.
Figure-14-Bends.JPG

Figure 14 Bends

3.26 Length
Length is the distance for the Y axis to move forward or backwards in inches. Positive is forward and negative is backwards. It is the distance between the bends.

3.27 Rotation
Rotation is the number of degrees for the B axis to rotate. Viewing the B axis from the front of the tube bender, positive is counter-clockwise and negative is clockwise.

3.28 Angle
This is the angle that you want your pipe to be bent to.

3.29 Y Clearance Feed
The Y clearance feed is an automatic function used to keep the tube from getting caught in the machine during the C arm’s return. The clearance is the distance that the carriage moves forward before returning the C axis. If returning the C axis would cause the pipe to jam, entering a number here causes the machine to always move that distance forward before returning the bending arm. The next move will be the Y axis move minus the clearance feed length.

For an example, let’s assume that the Y clearance value is 5 inches. After the first bend, the carriage will move forward 5 inches and then return the C axis. If the next commanded length was 8 inches, the carriage would move forward 3 inches (length – Y clearance feed).

3.30 Bend Options
Figure-15-Speeds.JPG

Figure 15 Speeds

3.31 Axis Sequence
The axis sequence drop down gives you more control of the order of motion between bends.

Y&B&C: All axes will make a simultaneous motion together and will all complete at the same time. (This mode will always be the fastest to complete)

Y&B+C: The Y and B axes will both feed together and once complete the C axis will return

Y&C+B: The Y and C axes will both feed together and once complete the B axis will rotate to position

Y+B+C: All axes will move independently one after the other in the following order: Y will feed forward, B will rotate to position, and then C will return

Y+C+B: All axes will move independently one after the other in the following order: Y will feed forward, C will return, and then B will rotate to position.

3.32 Speeds
You have complete control of each axis’s speed. On the right of the screen there are four feed rate sliders. See Figure 15 below. You can move the sliders to control the speed of each axis move. These values can be different for each bend.

Manual Stops: Using the Stop buttons under the speed sliders allows you to set a stop point after that axis completes its motion for that bend. The operator can continue that part by pressing Cycle Start. The stop button will be grayed out for all but the last axis if you have the axis sequence running multiple axes at once.

Torque: is the torque commanded for the Y axis during bending to allow the carriage to follow the tube as it is being drawn into the arc of the bend.

3.33 Carriage Safety Check
After you save a bend you can check to see if the carriage will be in the pressure die interference zone by pressing the Carriage Safety Check button. If a window appears stating that the check passed then the carriage will still be behind the pressure die.
Figure-16-Check-Passed.JPG

Figure 16 Check Passed

Otherwise the carriage is in the pressure die interference (PDI) zone. If the tube bender did a C bend the carriage would have to move back so that the pressure die could close. The message gives both the bend number and the distance that the carriage will have to move back. If more than one bend will enter the PDI zone then the carriage will lose the pipe on the first bend.

Figure-17-Check-In-PDI-Zone.JPG

Figure 17 Check In PDI Zone

For example, the program in Figure 17 will enter the PDI zone by 2.233 in/mm on bend 3. You will not be able to run a part that enters the PDI zone on any bend except the last bend. You will have to modify your part or your tooling before you can run this part.

3.34 End of Program
After you have all of your bends set up move to the End Program tab

Figure-18-End-Program.JPG

Figure 18 End Program

Return C: Press the Return C button if you want the C axis to return when each part is done. (NEVER RETURN C WITHOUT ALSO OPENING CLAMP)

Open Collet: Press the Open Collet button if you want the collet to release when each part is done.

Open Clamp: Press the Open Clamp button if you want the clamp to release when each part is done.

Last Y: Enter the last Y length from the end of the last bend to the end of the part. This value is used to calculate the required tube length.

WARNING: Your program is not saved yet. Click save your program. (if you close the program mode at any time without saving all unsaved work will be lost.)

All the programs are automatically stored in C:\Macp\GCodeFiles. You can manually copy the files to where ever you want for backup or file organization purposes. The file type is “.tap”

4.0 Automatic Mode

In Automatic Mode you can execute your programs and bend tubing. This is where you will spend most of your time. Almost everything is automatic in this mode. You can also test your programs by running only one bend at a time.

In this section you are going to learn how to open a program, step through a program, start and stop a program, and much more. To begin, click on the Automatic Mode button (Figure 2). You will see the following screen:

Figure-19-Automatic-Mode.JPG

Figure 19 Automatic Mode

4.1 Open a Program

4.2 Old Program

To open an old program press Load.
Figure-20-Load-Program.JPG

Figure 20 Load Program

An open dialog will open (Figure 21). To open a specific file, navigate to its folder. All programs are automatically stored in C:\Macp\GCodeFiles. Now you should see all your bend programs. See Figure 21 below.
  
Figure-21-Open-a-File.JPG

Figure 21 Open a File

Click on the correct program and press Open.

4.3 Run a Program
Now with your program loaded, how do you start it? After starting a program you may need to pause or restart it. Also, if this is the first time this file has been run you might want the program to stop after every bend. If there is an emergency condition, you need to know how to stop the machine. In this section you will learn how to do each of these things.

4.4 Emergency Stop

Emergency Stop
In case of an emergency, press the large red E-Stop button located on the operator’s panel.

DO NOT PRESS FEED HOLD OR CYCLE STOP! The E-Stop button shuts down power to everything but the control. All motion will stop immediately.


Figure-22-Emergency-Stop.JPG  

Figure 22

4.5 Start a Program

To start a program, follow this procedure:

DANGER
Before pressing Cycle Start, move far away from the machine. Stay clear as long as the machine is running. Every function of the machine may operate.

  1. Press the Enable button located on the left of the control console and at the same time press the Cycle Start button on the operator’s panel. The control will open the clamp and pressure die, move the carriage to load position and return the bend arm to
  2. Place a pipe in the machine.
  3. Press the Enable button located on the left of the control console and at the same time press the Cycle Start button on the operator’s panel. The file will begin to run

4.6 Pause a Program
If for some reason you want to pause the machine, you can press the red Feed Hold button underneath the Cycle Start button on the operator’s panel. This allows the machine to slowly come to stop. If there is not an emergency condition, use the pause buttons. Pressing Cycle Start will continue the program from right where it left off.

If you want to start the program from the beginning of a part, press Rewind.

4.7 Cancel a Program
To cancel the program, click the Reset button on the screen. All motion including the hydraulics will stop on the machine. Any script or macro will be terminated. However, you cannot begin at the same place in the program. The program must be rewound before the program can be restarted.

4.8 Restart a Program
To restart the program press the Rewind button (Figure 23). The program will return to the very start.  

 Figure-23-Rewind.JPG

 Figure 23 Rewind

4.9 Run One Bend at a Time
When you are running a program for the first time, you may want to run one bend at a time and then pause. To run only one bend at a time, click on Stop After Bend (Figure 24).

 Figure-24-Stop-After-Bend.JPG

 Figure 24 Stop After Bend

4.10 Close a Program
To close a program click Close. See Figure 25 below.

Figure-25-Close-Program.JPG  

Figure 25 Close Program

4.11 Run Functions
Other functions available in Run Mode are detailed below.

Cycle Start, Cycle Enable and Cycle Stop LED’s provide a visual feedback for the switches on the operator’s console.

Cycle-Start,-Cycle-Enable,-Cycle-Hold.JPG

Parts Needed: This is a user set field that will give the control a number of parts to make. Once the control reaches this number of parts it will stop and tell the user that the part quota has been reached

Parts Made: This value can be set at any time by the user but will increment up by one at the completion of each part.

Elapsed Time: Shows how long it has been on the current part (Figure 26). This can give you an estimate of how long it will take to do a certain number of parts.


Figure-26-Program-Time.JPG 

Figure 26 Program Time

Feedrate Override: Is used to control the overall speed of the axis motions. Y, B and C axes are all controlled by the feedrate override knob.
Figure-27-Feedrate-Override.JPG

Figure 27 Feedrate Override 

5.0 Shutting Down the Control

To power down your control, follow the steps outlined below.

  1. Save your current program
  2. Shut down the tube bender control software by clicking File then Exit at the top left of the control.

Shut-Down-Control-Step-2.JPG

  1. Then click on the Start menu and then press Shut Down. The MachMotion Tube Bender Control will turn

Shut-Down-Control-Step-3.JPG

Note: Do not remove the power of the machine until the tube bender control is completely off.

Back to top