Remo. (MultiCNC Server)
In many cases the CNC machine may be located a distance away from the DNC computer or maybe you’ve got a number of machines connected to a central computer. In either case the last thing you want is machine operators running or shouting across the shop or crowding around the DNC computer.
If your CNC machines were based on a modern operating system then they might be connected to your company's ethernet networks and be able to browse through a remote server’s files. In most cases though the NC control just doesn’t have any networking capability so can’t do anything like that.
One thing most CNCs can do though is send and receive files via RS232. They can’t request files from computers but they can send files to computers. So, if we created a small file on the CNC and wrote our request into that file and sent that file to the computer. As long as the DNC computer, in this case ‘RemoDnc’, was expecting such a file it would be able to open the file, read the request, and complete whatever action was contained within. The good news is this version of RemoDnc has been programmed to expect such simple file requests from pretty much any CNC as long as the CNC is capable of punching a CNC program.
Before you can use the server mode within RemoDnc you need to enable it and set it up. We'll explain that in a moment. First we'll give an example of what you can do with it. In our examples we'll describe usage with a machine like a Fanuc because there’s lots of other makes and models of CNC which adhere to the same ISO data standards. But on following pages we’ll also show a couple of alternatives so you can adjust this method to suit other machines.
Once RemoDNC is running (listening) in Remo mode you can leave the computer and do all of your work at the CNC console.
In the CNC control create a small program which isn’t used by the machine. We call this program ‘The Runner’ (because we send it, just like a runner, back to the computer with our message) Lets use program number 9999 as our runner (O9999). You can of course use any program number you want. In our example we want Remo to send program 1234 into the machine. On a Fanuc we’d create a small ‘runner’ program like this:-
That's it. Just those 4 lines. When you're ready, send (Punch) the Runner to the computer and quickly switch the CNC into 'Input/Read' mode. When Remo receives the runner the DNC Software opens the file, sees the text (1234) and knows that the CNC is waiting for program 1234. The DNC Software pulls the file from the machine's default folder, loads it up and sends it to the CNC.
Store the runner program on your CNC so you can use it again. Next time you use it just edit the text between the braces to request any other program.
This page gave a quick example of what can be acheived with Remo. On the next pages we'll explain how to enable and set it up.