This section controls the physical characteristics of the machine such as the plotter units, machine origin and how each line of output code is terminated.
Machine Attributes - Machine Options
The number of decimal places used to output coordinates (in plotter units). For HPGL devices, this value is usually zero. For other devices, see the manufacturer's documentation.
This is a scale factor used to convert your drawing units into plotter units. For HPGL devices this value is usually 0.01 (1/100), but for most other devices it is usually 1.0.
Bottom left or centre; the physical location of the plotter's start (origin) point - this setting is used when converting from drawing coordinates to plotter coordinates.
Specify whether each output line is to be terminated with Linefeed, Carriage Return & Linefeed, Carriage Return or Linefeed & Carriage Return.
For HPGL devices this value is usually <CR><LF>. For other machines, refer to the machine documentation for the type of line terminator.
Terminating character(s) for NC commands. (Normally, this must be left empty.) The terminator will not be added to text that comes from Before Output, After Output, Start Main and Start of Subroutine.
A separator for NC words. (Normally, this must be left empty.)
Minimum Rapid Distance
This setting allows you to avoid rapid tool-up (beam off) movements over short distances. If the movement is less than the specified distance, then the move is achieved at the current feed rate. This option can be viewed in the system units (mm or inches) or in points by toggling the button next to this field.
Minimum Tool Off Distance
This setting allows you to avoid switching to tool up (beam off) unnecessarily for very small gaps. If the movement is less than the specified distance, then the move is achieved with the tool down (beam on). This option can be viewed in the system units (mm or inches) or in points by toggling the button next to this field.
Maximum Arc Radius
Some machines (such as some models of the Wild sample maker) cannot output arcs of a certain radius or greater. These arcs need to be expanded into shorter lines. This setting sets the maximum arc radius before Impact will explode the arcs to lines. The tolerance used is 0.1mm. That is the maximum distance between the new line and the exploded arc.
Time Delay %<t> (secs)
The %<t> substitution code can be entered anywhere in the plotter machine form where you can enter NC codes. During output, after encountering a %<t> code, the system pauses for the time specified before continuing to send the rest of the output.
Suppress Trailing Zeros
This setting removes any trailing zeros from the end of the output geometry. For instance 5.2500mm will be truncated to 5.25mm. Some machines require all decimal places to be output regardless of any trailing zeros they may have. In this case, this option should not be used. Using this option may reduce the size of the program output file.
Force decimal point
This setting forces a trailing decimal point to be included for all real numbers.
Output in Inches
This option should be set if the machine is not operating in millimetres.
Use character mapping
Some controllers do not allow certain special characters. There is a section in the Environment Options where you can set up mappings to replace one string of characters with another. Select this option to enable these mappings.
If selected, the Feedrates sub-page will be available for adding feedrate tables.
Specify whether interpolated feedrates should be displayed, the number of decimal places to be output for feedrates and the number of decimal places to be output for tool on and tool off delays.
Line Numbering Required
Some machines require each line of output code to have a unique line number prefixing it. If you wish to have line numbers included in the output data, select this option. The Line Numbering sub-page will then be available for configuration.
Line numbering will not be output to Before Output and Main Programme Header Format sections in the plotter machine configuration. The first line number will commence at Main Programme Message if used or the Start Main section of the Machine Initialisation if messages are not used. Line numbering will not be output to the After Output section of the Machine Initialisation, either.
Machines capable of supporting line numbering are as follows. For all other machines, line numbering is ignored.
- Bosch CC100 Laser
- Boxplan Pinsetter
- Compumotor Water Jet
- Custom Driver
- General Counter
- General Laser
- Heidenhain Engraver
- IBH Laser
- IBH Plotter
If selected, the coordinates are output in terms of X,A rather than X,Y. The values used to convert Y to A are set on the Rotary page of the post processor settings.
Use Sheet Feeder
Select this option to specify that a sheet feeder system is being used on the plotter. This is only available for HPGL Plotter drivers.
Use Roll Feeder
Select this option to specify that a roll feeder system is being used on the plotter. This is also only available for HPGL Plotter drivers.
End of Job String
This is an optional string that will be output at the end when using a roll feeder system.
Grain/Flute Direction Strings
These strings are used to replace the Plotter Substitution Code %<G> (See section on Plotter Substitution Codes).
Enter the string to be output for layers whose flute/grain is left to right.
Enter the string to be output for layers whose flute/grain is top to bottom.
Zund Sheet Detection Sensor
Select this option if this machine is to use the Zund sheet edge detection sensor. The following values define the wave pattern that will be traced when the sensor is detecting the edge of the sheet.
Number of waves
Enter the number of waves to output.
Enter the required wavelength
Enter the required wave amplitude.
Use Linear Interpolation on Feedrates
If this option is selected entities will be split into three sections before being output. The start and end sections will be output with a reduced feedrate compared to the middle section.
This is the length of the start section, expressed as a percentage of the material thickness.
This is the length of the end section, expressed as a percentage of the material thickness.
Reduction for lines
This is the percentage feedrate reduction to be applied to the start and end sections of lines.
Reduction for arcs
This is the percentage feedrate reduction to be applied to the start and end sections of arcs.
Arcs whose radius is less than the critical radius will not have interpolation applied to them, but the whole arc will be output with the reduced feedrate.
This is the corner tolerance. If two entities come together at an angle that is less than this tolerance, then they do not need splitting.
Abrasive reduction on
This is the modal command that is output along with an interpolated line or arc.
Abrasive reduction off
This is the modal command that is output along with a normal line or arc, immediately following an interpolated line or arc.
This command is output along with every interpolated line or arc.