Do I have to ZERO out after every time I change the bit?

Are these the proper steps? Do I have to ZERO out after every time I change the bit?

  1. Turn on computer and Shapeoko, open CM app
  2. Initialize, insert new cutter, goes to the bitsetter
  3. Move cutter to starting position. Do paper strip test to ZERO out X, Y and Z.
  4. RUN job
  5. Stop, turn off spindle. install new V bit.
  6. Goes to the bitsetter to confirm.
  7. Do I have to do paper strip test to ZERO out X, Y and Z again?
    I’m asking bc after each bit change, the bit is not at the proper cutting height.
    Thanks, Gary

No, the whole point of the bitsetter is zero once.

The key is usually DON’T CHANGE THE BIT, unless you click the button in Carbide Motion FIRST.

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Yes, I only change the bit after CM asks for a “Change bit”.
But, it seems I need to re-zero the new bit, bc it’s not cutting at the right height. Yes?

Well, that’s certainly not what should be happening, and it sounds like you are going through the right steps.

I think I’ll have to step aside, sounds like a problem for Support at this point.

Are you sure your bits are tight. As Michael said the point of the BitSetter is not to have to rezero after every bit change.

Above in your order of operation might be your issue. The BitSetter remembers the last time you set zero. The BitSetter does not set zero it only remembers the last time you set zero with either the paper method or with the BitZero. So when you turn on, connect, install a cutter the BitSetter is setting the new bit to the last time you set zero on Z.

So do this:

  1. initialize.
  2. Insert bit when prompted.
  3. Let bit and router come to rest.
  4. Jog to your zero area and set your zero. After this any new bit that is prompted in the CM program will set zero to this setting. Remember the BitSetter does not zero the bit it only compares the current bit to the last time you physically set zero.
  5. Never manually change a bit without being prompted and/or using the change bit button in the CM interface.

Sorry, maybe I didn’t explain it clearly enough.
My project requires two different bits. A straight bit and then a V bit. Straight bit finishes, it prompts me to change the bit. I change the bit out to a V bit. The BitSetter does its thing.
At this point, do I have to re-ZERO the V bit?

No, after the bitsetter does it’s thing you do not need to re-zero anything.

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Oh, OK.
But, why do you think the V bit didn’t cut deep enough?
I ran the same file twice and the second time, it’s was obvious the V bit didn’t cut deep enough.

Are you sure your surface is flat. V carving is more sensative to surface flatness.

Good thinking, but my surface is very flat and sturdy.

Does this only happen with v-carve bits? Does this also happen when switching between endmills? There may be other variables causing the unexpected behavior, such as issues with the file.

If it were me having these issues, I would run a few test cuts to check the performance of the bitsetter…

I would do this by using a few different sizes of various end mills (not the v-carve bit) all cut to the same depth. Do a short contour or pocket path with each, somewhere close together to eliminate any possibility of variance from material thickness. Let the bitsetter do it’s thing between the bit changes. When done, check the depth of those cuts with a caliper. If they’re all identical, the bitsetter is working correctly, and the problem is likely something to do with way the file is set.
If they’re all different depths, then there may be something inherently wrong with the bitsetter, or the way you are currently handling bit changes.

This is not absolutely correct. The bitsetter is a fixed zero point, and only keeps track of differences between its own measurements. This is tracked continuously during the time the machine is turned on.

Setting zero has no effect on this measurement.

Whenever a tool is properly changed, whatever the current zero is (no matter when or how it was set) is altered by the difference between the current bitsetter zero and the last bitsetter zero.

Pedantic difference perhaps, but one worth reinforcing to ensure people don’t think that setting their zero “resets” the bitsetter :slight_smile:

The OP seems to be doing everything correctly, if there’s no swapping out bits without a prompt.

Is the V endmill shorter than the tool previously used?

Is the machine able to move low enough to allow it to cut as deeply as it needs to?

Yes, the 60º V endmill is much shorter than the #102 bit.
So, I SHOULD re-zero after installing the second bit, which will be the V endmill.

Re-zeroing shouldn’t be necessary — the concern is that you are setting zero high enough up that the shorter tool can’t reach as low as it needs to.

If I don’t re-zero how will the SP know I installed a shorter bit?
I assume that’s the BitSetter’s job?

Correct, the bitsetter figures out the difference

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@designer_daddy As has been said, you do not need to rezero when using the BitSetter. That’s why you bought it.

So, something else is going on. Can you tell us more about the symptoms you see? Can you upload a couple of pictures showing your result? Gcode? Create files?

Should be a return to the bitsetter after setting your xyz workheight zero.
The issue is that the bitsetter is setting the zero, but you are then rezeroing the height of the work. I’ve had mine go to the bitsetter a second time before running the job.