PA Logo
Power Automation America, Inc.
 The new generation of CNCs - PC Based and Open Architecture
 

Power Automation America

CNC Part Program Conversion

 

The Power Automation America part program conversion utility is available for download here.

 

All CNC controls have slight differences in their part program formats even though many use the RS274 standard. Power Automation also has slight differences in its part program format compared to that of other vendor controls. Power Automation America has developed a simple utility for converting part programs that had been written for other CNC controls. This utility does not do a complete G/M code conversion (which can be difficult as some vendors do not have consistent G/M codes across their control models and some codes might be specific to a particular machine). The utility just makes sure that the NC statements follow the basic rules of syntax.

 

If the NC part programs for the Power Automation America control are new (for example, a CAM package will generate the programs) then no conversion utility is usually required. However, especially with retrofits, existing part programs might be run on the Power Automation America control so a conversion might be needed. Either the part program is manually reviewed and edited if necessary or a utility can detect and make repetitive changes.

 

To read the overview of this utility, click on the utility user guide (in pdf, 20KB; also available as just text: text user guide). This brief user guide describes the utility, its rules for a conversion, and also lists the various controls whose part program format can be converted by the utility. Among the control types that can be converted to Power Automation America syntax: AB7300, AB8200, AB8400, AB9, AB9/260 (Allen Bradley or Rockwell), Acramatic, AMCB, Anilam, Bendix (5), Boss, CT (Cincinnati-Lamb Arrow control from Control Techniques), Dynapath (S5), Fadal, Fagor, Fanuc (mill or turn), GE1050, GL8000 (Giddings & Lewis), Haas, Hurco, Mazak, Meldas, Osp, Prototrak, Siemens (7T), Teammate (Pratt & Whitney control), Yasnac.

 

The utility has several versions. All versions of the utility use the identical conversion algorithm so the difference between them is just the operator interface (menus, windows, etc.). If the Power Automation America operator will require the use of the conversion utility, or perhaps a more polished operator interface is desired, a version of this utility is available using the F1-F8 soft key approach like the CNC. The simple version uses Windows menus, dialogs and top menu bar whereas the alternate version has a layout with the F1-F8 soft keys and no top menu bar. Also, the simple version above can display up to 30KB of each file (but it will convert any size file) whereas this alternate soft key version will display the entire file of any size. The simple version easily fits on a single floppy when zipped. The alternate soft key version requires four floppy disks for its installation.

There are three versions of the utility. The selection of which version of the utility to run is based on the operatorís needs.

  •      The simple DOS version runs in a command line mode so it is the only version compatible with .bat files. This version just does a file conversion based on the command line. No display of the input or output files is provided as another command line can do that, like type or edit.

  •      The simple Windows 3.1-compatible version is used most effectively with a mouse. This compact .exe (with one .dll) should run on any version of Windows. Its file display capability is somewhat limited though it can convert a file of any size. The version also has a simple built-in editor allowing changes of small programs; the editor also allows printing of the files. The window of this version is flexible to adapt to any PC screen resolution.

  •       The later Windows version (95, NT or later) runs similar to the CNC software. This is the best choice if it is run on the same computer as the CNC. It is the easiest version to use since it presents the entire input and output files and its operator interface makes full use of the F1-F8 keys (like the CNC) as well as any pointing device like a mouse. Also it keeps the conversion option selections between sessions so often the operator can make the typical option settings once and just do later file conversions without dealing with those settings again. This version does not allow editing or printing of the files (to be done with Windows Explorer).

The following zip contains both the DOS command line version and the Windows 3.1 version

  • Basic Utility download (in .zip, about 600KB). This package includes the utility programs, a readme.txt describing its use, and the user guide. Several control model targets have additional supporting files; those are included in zip files within this zip file. There are actually two versions of this utility included; one is a command line version enabling conversions to be done in a batch mode (via .bat files) while the other is a Windows interactive version with menus having checkboxes and selection dialogs to define each conversion. There is no real installation procedure for this version other than to copy all the files to the same disk folder; it does not use the Windows registry or any .ini files (so it behaves like an early Windows 3.1 program).

If your web browser will accept it, this download is also available in a self-extracting zip file format (.exe, about 700KB). Copy it to the desired folder, run it and it will extract its files to its folder. This format is convenient when an unzip utility is not available.

 

This utility was updated on October 31, 2005.

The following files contain the distribution package for the alternate version of the utility. If the Power Automation America operator will require the use of the conversion utility, or perhaps a more polished operator interface is desired, the following version of this utility uses the F1-F8 soft key approach like the CNC.

 

Note that some web browsers are configured to prevent a .cab file to be downloaded, due to virus concerns. If your browser cannot download a .cab file, please contact us and we can provide the same files with a different extension. 

  • disk1.zip (1400KB) (this is a zip; after the download, unzip it to a folder, to be copied for installation, perhaps a floppy disk)

  • Conver2.CAB (1400KB) (this is NOT a zip but hopefully your browser will download a .cab file)

  • Conver3.CAB (1400KB) (this is NOT a zip but hopefully your browser will download a .cab file)

  • disk4.zip (600KB) (this is a zip; after the download, unzip it to a folder, to be copied for installation, perhaps a floppy disk). This utility was updated on October 31, 2005.

All the files (including those obtained after their extraction from a .zip) will fit on four floppies. Disk1 files take one floppy (three files), disk4 files go on another floppy (three files) and the two remaining cab files (2, 3) each take a floppy (one cab file each).

On the Power Automation, the simplest approach is to copy all the files to a single folder (perhaps c:\install\convert). An alternate approach is to create four subfolders (disk1 to disk4) and put each file(s) in its subfolder. This alternate approach is sometimes used with a CD or USB memory stick where the files are already organized for copying them to floppies at a later date.

The installation consists of double-clicking on the setup.exe that comes from disk1. It runs the installation procedure. As this is a Power Automation product, its installation defaults to the MM program group (where the CNC shortcuts are). If there are any problems please consult the readme.txt file that is also provided with the distribution (on disk4).

After the installation, a convert readme.txt file is provided with general instructions (in the installation directory path; default is c:\program files\program convert).

If you have any questions, please contact us at:

 

Power Automation America, Inc.
8601 Jameel Road Ste 140
Houston, Texas 77040

Phone: 713-263-9400

Fax: 713-686-9301

Email: sales.america@powerautomation.com

 

 

Back to Home

 

 

All rights reserved by Power Automation America, Inc.
copyright 2009