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Thread: Help with HAAS VF

  1. #1
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    Smile Help with HAAS VF

    Hello everyone,

    Hope you had a good New Years!

    My dad and I have a simple back yard shop with a conventional lathe and mill, and have wanted to learn and do some CNC. My dad is the machinist and I am an ex-programmer. I have the knowledge to derive the NC file for a CNC machine, and my dad has the skills. Now we just need the machine.

    We have been looking at a HAAS VF mill with plastic sides on it. I think it is a VF-2 because it has a 30” table. (See attached pictures)

    Mill information on the rear tag
    Model: VF Serial number: 1878 Date: 12-92

    This one has been run hard with little maintenance, the right way cover is broken along with the Z cover.
    It looks like it has been used as a roughing machine for cast iron.

    The owner said everything seemed to be working before it was moved to its current location.

    We powered it up with no coolant, (the coolant system is outside on a pallet) and the owner could not get the spindle to function. All 3 axis seem to move okay, who knows what shape the ball screws are in.

    We were able to have the machine change tools, but the manual tool release button on the spindle housing is not working.

    Questions:

    Could the spindle problem be because of no coolant? If so, is there a way to bypass the coolant sensor for testing of the spindle?

    What is the procedure to determine the backlash or wear of the ball screws on a HAAS CNC?

    Is there a test /procedure to determine repeatability / accuracy of the machine?

    How much memory does this controller have?

    Will it support DNC (drip feed)?

    Does this controller support a 4th axis? How do I determine this?

    What am I forgetting?

    Approximately what should I be paying for a machine in this condition?

    Thanks for your help!
    Bryan
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails DSC_9342a (Medium).jpg   DSC_9345 (Medium).jpg   DSC_9346 (Medium).jpg   DSC_9351 (Medium).jpg   DSC_9359 (Medium).jpg   DSC_9365 (Medium).jpg   DSC_9367 (Medium).jpg  

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Help with HAAS VF

    I used to work for a distriutor for Haas machines. They're a good machine. However... With the used maching market what it is, I would walk away from this machine. This is a buyers market, and you can get quite a bit more "freshness" for good prices. It sounds like it will need a lot of work. That era machine probably has DC drives and motors. The Y axis drags the X axis motor cable and it tend to wear through, and at times take out the drive but always need replaced. Fun job ... NOT! The DC motors are probably full of brush dust and the motors can be in bad shape. Check the chain on the counter balence for the Z axis. They stretch and at some point will break dropping the weight down inside the casting and allowing the Z axis to drop. Check the sprokets that the chain rides and that will tell you alot based on the wear. It will have a 4th axis card and can easily be set up for a fourth axis. The spindle problem could be caused by a number of things. From the drive down to starter relays power supplies etc. But not due to low coolant. They used to use lubed air passing through the spindle for the bearings. I can go on and on with a lot of things to consider.. encoders on any or all the axis... my fingers are tired. If you wish, email me and I can fill you in about some other things. If you care to let me know where the machine is coming from I could probably get you some background information.
    Good luck!

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    Default Re: Help with HAAS VF

    Hello Strat,

    “I can go on and on with a lot of things to consider..” Please do!

    I talked to my dad and found out some good news. The machine worked cast iron early in its life and the way covers were broken at the end while working steal. Also he said the previous owner of the machine had changed some cables and boards in the machine. I will try to spot the new ones.

    We are going revisit the machine later this week if the owner has time, so anything else you can have me look for would be greatly appreciated. J

    The machine was in the Caldwell, Idaho I think.

    HP laid me off a few year back and my dad is retired so we have time to work on a machine if all it need is TLC.

    Thanks,
    Bryan

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    Default Re: Help with HAAS VF

    Cast iron is one of the most damaging materials to a machine. When it's run wet it develops a thick black jello with very high wear properties. When it's machined dry the dust generated is very fine. Both have high wear properties. Haas uses linear guide ways (no gibs or keepers) and each bearing has lube oil injected into the bearing which prevents the "dirt" from getting inside the slide bearings. A lot of people think linear guides aren't as good as box ways, however, I disagree as they are available in manay sizes and are engineered for the loads of the machine. (typically builders use oversized guides as customers tend to overload the machines). If a lube line breaks on a Haas the machine will go into E-stop as the pressure is monitored at the lube pump with a pressure switch and a parameter timer. Normally (unless a policy change has happended) they will generally give a 50% trade in discound on drive boards. (mother board, drive and spindle drive) The current monitoring pcb and a few others aren't but the main ones are. The spindles are a cartridge type for a quick change to keep the machine down time to a minimum. All of the parts are always in stock as the machies are built and assembled in the USA. One of the quirks with a haas machine is the ball screws will grow a certain amount and then maintain that accuracy untill cooled off. You can prove that with an indicator on a cold machine and a program to move off and on to a zero point set up on the indicator. After a period of time you will see the indicator begin to move. It will move only so far (depending on the mechanics of the particular machine) and then main that position untill turned off alloing the screws to cool down. You can also check for any backlash with an indicator. Move the slide to a surface to a zero point on the indicator. Note the position on the readout on the control. Reverse the direction of motion with the handicater and compare the readout to the indicator. The difference is the backlash. Repeat this several times to verify the readings. Repeat the oppisite direction as well. Generally there are parameters that can adjust for lost motion. Normally after .003" (my opinion and the limit on some controlers) the ball screw should be reground or replaced. As for the covers the are stailess steel and are designed to keep the coolant and chips from getting inside the machine (that's the reason for never cleaning a machine with compressed air). Things happen and they get bent. That happens on every machine on the market. (my fingers are tired. any more questions and I'll try to anser them next time LOL)
    Good luck!
    (I'm not even going to proof read this so ignore any spelling and grammer mistakes)
    Last edited by Strat; 01-04-11 at 09:25 AM.

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    Default Re: Help with HAAS VF

    cast iron + broken /missing way covers + the obvious lack of maintenance= KEEP LOOKING , what you save buying this unit you will spend replacing bearings and ball screws. like stated above with the economy being the way it is its a buyers market, personally id walk away and look for something in better shape.

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    Default Re: Help with HAAS VF

    You should have gotten paid to go look at it.
    I would spend my greenbacks on something better.
    There are so many shops in every state going out of business or downsizing on eguipment.

    M

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    Default Re: Help with HAAS VF

    i work on cast iron machines everyday. think i would keep looking. they can be fixed but......they are a pain!!!! good luck!!!

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    Default Re: Help with HAAS VF

    I was just able to see the photos you posted. This has the older style dc drive boards and the old spindle drive. (no hp at low rpm) That's why they went to an AC vector drive. Much higher hp at slow rpm.

    With regard to this machine? RUN and don't look back. If they gave it to you free with you only paying the riggers, you'd be cheated. This thing is in really rough shape.
    Good luck!

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    Default Re: Help with HAAS VF

    Ditto to all that said "Run"!
    That machine is tired and mistreated, it will cost you more in the long run than it's worth.

    Look at it this way, I have a '93 VF0 that was a creampuff, paid 17,500 for it in 2004, the Magnatek drive failed, $4500.00 to replace it, the yasnac is so nice it's pathetic, like a different machine, but,,,,,,,
    The rest of the machine has been beautiful, still holding +/-.001 all day long.
    Keep looking, there are better finds.

    Darrell

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    Default Re: Help with HAAS VF

    Hi Brian... the machine does look like its had a hard life. I dont know how much you know the haas m/c so Im sorry if I state something you may already know.

    When you switch on the machine You have to to press E/stop and release it again and press reset twice. It will then ask you to cycle door (open and close). You can then go to zero return and select all axis.

    I have a VF2 but its a 96 version. The spindle will not rotate in hand jog until you set a speed in MDI. So if you go to mdi and type S200 M03 and press insert and press cycle start, if alls well with the the spindle should start to rotate. Press reset and go into hand jog and press spinle fw and it should rotate in hand jog.

    As with the 4th axis go into settings (setting button) and type 30 and the curser button. The machine should search for setting 30. This is from memory but im sure this setting deals with the 4th. If there is no 4th axis this setting should read OFF. If you press curser side ways it should display a list of available 4th axis your machine can handle. There should be "HRT160" "HRT210" "5C" ect ect. If this is all there then your m/c should take an older brushed 4th axis.

    I think the Parrameter for the 4th axis are on the parrameter 43. Maybe worth calling haas and just asking?

    I hope the macine works out well for you

    Keith

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    Default Re: Help with HAAS VF

    why I cannot post?

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    Default Re: Help with HAAS VF

    Hi Harvey!

    Can you test Haas electronic boards, or know of somebody who can do it?
    (our fanuc boards are serviced at San Diego by cnc-electronics)

    We have a 1990 VF-1 that freezes with no alarm. A lot of people, including haas reps, had been poking with it, a bunch of boards have been replaced.

    Now it's my turn to poke with it. But I am not sure where to start.
    I would like to have all the boards checked.

    The actual symptoms are:
    1) The control hangs out completely. No alarms. The RUN led on the processor board goes off, the rest (except HALT) keeps on.
    This happens at random. Some times 5 seconds after turning the machine ON, sometimes it runs for an hour.

    2) The screen looks "weird", some characters are missing in the upper left corner.

    3) If I press the Alarm button twice, the screen shows a bunch of garbage.

    Any help you can provide will be gladly apprecciated:

    Thank you:
    Everardo Rascón
    Auto-Tec


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    Default Re: Help with HAAS VF

    Everardo,
    It will probably help if you start a "New Thread" related to your problem with a title related to our problem so others may help. This thread is almost a year old.

    Stevo
    (The opinions in this post are my own and not those of machinetoolhelp.com and its management)

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    Default Re: Help with HAAS VF

    Thank you Stevo.
    Let's try it.

    Everardo

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