Spring Loaded Diamond Drag Bit

Hello Everyone,
New to shapeoko. I have a Shapeoko Pro with Bitsetter, Biteunner and Bitzero. Great running multiple bits with one toolpath. Highly recommend. First time using a spring loaded pin and did not watch the machine set the tool length for the spring pin. I used bitzero to set my zero for material along with the height. Hit run and drag the diamond across the acrylic to the center of the work piece. Went back and sure enough spring compressed all the way when using the bitsetter for the length of the tool. 2nd run at it i manually adjuated the Z height to 1/2" above the work surface and running no issue. Is there a better way to do this?

Ideally one would disable the BitSetter when using a spring loaded tool — alternately, an option some folks use is to set the spring to a higher tension than the one in the BitSetter.

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Thanks for the note Will. New to the machine etc…disabling the bitsetter and manually setting the tool length and Z? I manually adjust the Z by the 1/2" and worked well until I used the end mill and was 1/2" off the surface. By changing the spring tension will that lead to a less consistent drag on cast acrylic? I have a nice consistent drag with the low spring setting.

If it’s cutting well, I wouldn’t change the spring tension — just disable the BitSetter, then initialize the machine, and set Z normally.

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What about something that temporarily holds the etcher in place where you want it while setting the TLO (Tool Length Offset)? A spring clamp, small dowel…

Or if you’re feeling nerdy, create a macro that issues a G43.1 Z0.5 (Or the exact addition to the offset) after the toolchange.

Curious, do you want the zero set to the tip in it’s resting state? Or do you want a little bit of compression on the spring?

I am really looking for the tool length with no spring compression. I have my toolpaths set to 0.030" for the depth on the drag bit. Not really a depth but more of pressure/compression of the drag bit and it also helps with any variation in the cast acrylic thickness. I am going to play around with the spring compression and see if I can set it to not compress on the bitsetter and this will provide seamless operation with the bitrunner when I go to use my endmills to cut holes and periphery cut. You can see the nice drag scratch from my first test piece. Learning the hard way…It will be mounted to a board to hide all the wires.

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