How to Handle Situations When a Complicated Carving Process may Run for More Than 8 Hours For CNC Router
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    How to Handle Situations When a Complicated Carving Process may Run for More Than 8 Hours For CNC Router

    Complicated Long Time Carving Never Let The CNC Engraver Run Overnight

    How to Handle Situations When a Complicated Carving Process may Run for More Than 8 Hours

    For the CNC Engraving Machine, what is the general practice for carvings that take eight plus hours? Do you pause the program and leave everything on overnight and resume in the morning, or do you just make sure there is nothing that can go wrong and let it go overnight?

    If it were me and I knew it would take eight hours to run then I would start it first thing in the morning and let it run through lunch and breaks. Although I have heard of others leaving it run, I have too much invested in equipment, building, and materials that time saved wouldn't be worth the risk. If a malfunction occurs and a fire starts in the dust collector or a tool breaks etc. someone really needs to babysit the machine. A broken tool could ruin your part or you may have to start over with a fresh tool, so no time would be saved. Also, if something messes up you won't know where the error is in your program. You could pause like you said but the power is still to the machine. I can't pause and turn off the air compressor because the machine will fault for lack of air and need to be reset. I can't pause and turn off the vacuum because matter can get under the part when it relaxes and not stay put when turned back on. I'd say it's not a good practice to do.

    Leaving the CNC router to run overnight by itself should be illegal. Sure, CNC machines especially in the automation industry are designed to be left alone overnight because they have systems that work out scenarios and fixes for anything that could happen. Most commercial machines aren't designed that way. While they have faults and sensors and proxy switches things can still happen that are otherwise totally expected.

    The fact that you would risk losing everything in your shop for a carving is ridiculous. I mean seriously, if you can't comfortably run the situation by your insurance company you shouldn't be doing it. Run the program, if it goes beyond business and even reasonable overtime hours then stop the program at whatever line it is at and restart it the next day from that line at your safe z.

    I just don't see the advantage to letting your CNC router machine run all night, you may get the job done a day or two earlier but is that profit enough to justify risking what you may have spent your life building? I rarely walk away from the CNC router, and if I do I'm within a distance that I could stop it fast enough before something bad happens. I've seen fires started and they are usually because someone isn't watching and listening to the machine. One in particular because the CNC operator decided to let the program run while he unloaded units of plywood from a delivery truck reckless leaving it alone for almost a half hour. The program was wrong (z in the wrong location) and the collet bottomed out on the MDF and started a fire that got sucked into the dust collection system.

    Did he really save that much time doing what he did? No. Would have been better to even pause the program with the spindle still on and lock the software than leaving it unattended. Be smart guys. The machine is only as good as the operator/programmer and even that is saying a lot it seems.

    To pause the CNC machine or let it run overnight, from this article, I believe you will know to how do with the CNC router engraving machine now.

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