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gbritnell

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Well I have officially had it with Igaging and their products. For many years I had a unit on my 11 inch lathe and although it had a few glitches it seemed to work ok. Then it started resetting itself. By that I mean I would set -0- and part way through the job it would just set itself to some odd number. I continued to use it but got more frustrated with it. Thinking that it's age might have something to do with it I bought the latest version, complete with scale and new reader head. I installed it and started using it. Not long after it started doing the same thing as the old one. I have contacted Igaging repeatedly with no response whatsoever. When purchased it wasn't a matter of cost but rather I didn't need a large electronic readout box and two scales like the sets that are offered out there.
Has anyone else had similar problems with Igaging products?
gbritnell
 
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ShopShoe

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I've posted before about my similar experience with one of their units a few years ago. And it ate batteries so much that I pretty much had to use new batteries every session. I am presently trying to save up for a "real" DRO system for my mill. The handwheel scales and dial indicators when I need them will get the job done until then.

--ShopShoe
 

BaronJ

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Well I have officially had it with Igaging and their products. For many years I had a unit on my 11 inch lathe and although it had a few glitches it seemed to work ok. Then it started resetting itself. By that I mean I would set -0- and part way through the job it would just set itself to some odd number. I continued to use it but got more frustrated with it. Thinking that it's age might have something to do with it I bought the latest version, complete with scale and new reader head. I installed it and started using it. Not long after it started doing the same thing as the old one. I have contacted Igaging repeatedly with no response whatsoever. When purchased it wasn't a matter of cost but rather I didn't need a large electronic readout box and two scales like the sets that are offered out there.
Has anyone else had similar problems with Igaging products?
gbritnell
I've found that their electronics are very susceptible to electrical interference, particularly brush motors and florescent lights.
Dare I suggest that you might replace any electrolytic capacitors or even fit one across the power connections inside the unit.

the interference is usually picked up on the cable between the read head and the readout, especially if they are not shielded.
 

Peter Twissell

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I have had three Igaging scales and heads on my mill for six years now. All worked well until about a year ago, when one started giving false readings - skipping ahead of or behind the table motion in 5mm steps. Sometimes the display would count up when the machine was staionary and the power to the machine was switched off. Then the head unit on another simply went off and won't come back on, despite new batteries, cleaned contacts etc. Presumed dead.
Some investigation proved that the misreading unit could be improved by adjustment of the alignment between the scale and the reader. It is now useable, but I still zero the handwheel dial and keep an eye on the digital head as it still has an occasional glitch.
I've just ordered a replacement for the dead unit.
These are relatively cheap devices and at my 'rate of consumption' I think they represent reasonable overall value for hobby purposes.

3 axis complete DRO kits can now be had for under £200, so if I get more persistant issues with the Igaging products, that is the way I wil be going.
 
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davidyat

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Yes, I've had the same problems. Although the problem hasn't resulted in a ruined part, I have to watch out when traversing a machine. Usually, my problem has been a +0.200 or 0.400 jump in the measurements. I will be interested in how this problem has been solved by anyone.
Grasshopper
 

SailplaneDriver

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I had similar problems with one axis on my old mini-mill, since sold. I converted the mill to a DRO using Yuri's Touch DRO and stopped having problems leading me to believe that the issue was the electronics and not the scale. I again had the problem with the scale I added to the mini-lathe, since sold. I had lefover electronic readouts from the mill Touch DRO upgrade and replaced the erratic one on the lathe with one from the mill which fixed the problem. I have three of the Igaging readouts left if anyone wants to try replacing theirs. One is the defective one from the lathe and I'm not sure which one it is so I will need to send all of them.

BTW, the Touch DRO with the Igaging scales worked well for me.
 

gbritnell

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Thanks everyone. Glad to know I'm not the only one that's had problems. The real kicker is that I've contacted Igaging multiple times with no response whatsoever.
gbritnell
 

peter2uat

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I had three of them on my mill, worked fine for a few years on the original batteries, then after having to change those (to quality ones) the electronics on all three started to empty the batteries in a few days. neither a new set nor other producers nor cheapos remedied the situation, so I ordered a glass scale set in 2016 and am happy as can be. Expensive? - yes! For my mini hobby shop the sum of $ 250 was high. But troublefree operation, no batteries to rely on if working or not, BIG good readable numbers and a lot of functions the iGagings didn't have.
 

werowance

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i bought the igauging dro set for my combo lathe mill. I had the same issues of jumping by .400 frequently. I even have a handheld caliper that does the same thing. I have read on I think it was reddit.com about the spray on coating on the back of the circuit board that insulated the board would flake off causing this. the trick to repair was a piece of scotch tape over the back of the board and put it back together. I never tried it though. then on the batteries. they would drain in no time at all. finally after not using them for about 6 months or better I put new batteries in them and they wouldn't even turn on or only part of the display would show up like the lcd was bad so I just gave up on them. more trouble than they were worth.
 

Richard Hed

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Thanks everyone. Glad to know I'm not the only one that's had problems. The real kicker is that I've contacted Igaging multiple times with no response whatsoever.
gbritnell
Companies like this go out of business. Thing is, they could be a player if they would improve their stuff and talk to their customers. Otherwise, tits-down!
 

H0$$

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I had similar problems with one axis on my old mini-mill, since sold. I converted the mill to a DRO using Yuri's Touch DRO and stopped having problems leading me to believe that the issue was the electronics and not the scale. I again had the problem with the scale I added to the mini-lathe, since sold. I had lefover electronic readouts from the mill Touch DRO upgrade and replaced the erratic one on the lathe with one from the mill which fixed the problem. I have three of the Igaging readouts left if anyone wants to try replacing theirs. One is the defective one from the lathe and I'm not sure which one it is so I will need to send all of them.

BTW, the Touch DRO with the Igaging scales worked well for me.
I would really appreciate them if your offer is still available. Like the others I have been having fits with two of mine. I have considered purchasing the blu dro head, but am only sure it will cure the problem, and being a hobbyists, money is tight. I have to be careful not to throw good money after bad. Just like Everyone else. As others have stated trying to contact IGaging is Impossible!!! Anyway please respond and thanks for your time. Hoss
 

SailplaneDriver

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I had lost the locking screw on an iGaging digital caliper. I contacted them and purchased a replacement without any problem but that was roughly 5 years ago.
 

ycroosh

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iGaging is a small distributor of Chinese scales based in California. Last time I talked to them they had a dozen or so employees. They simply don't have the manpower to handle any support calls.
That said, I've handled hundreds of these scales and had one that was terminally dead. In most cases the .400" jumping can be caused by a few different issues: most commonly, the reading head is installed backward and needs to be flipped by 180 degrees. less commonly, it's too close to the encoder strip. This can be usually fixed with some shims (A.K.A. a piece of tape, etc.
Obviously I full endorse switching to TouchDRO (sorry for the shameless plug :) )
Also, if you're in the states, I have a bucket of iGaging displays with Mini-USB ports that need a better home.

Regards
Yuriy
 

dsage

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Interesting thread. I built my own DRO readout electronics and used cheap calipers for the axis' of my lathe. I had problems with the readout glitching when the motor was turned on. I got rid of the problem by electrically insulating the calipers from the lathe. I had them clamped to the lathe with aluminum brackets. Plastic replacements were made. Problem solved.
Recently a friend contacted me for advice saying he had a similar issue. He was using the igaging encoders and the Touch DRO electronics he had built. Just a shot in the dark really but I suggested what I found that worked and that he could try electrically insulating his encoders from the machine. I was surprised when he reported back that he had immediate success.
I suspect for me it has something to do with the current surge on motor start raising the potential on the lathe bed. Even though it's technically grounded it's only a relatively thin wire connection. That voltage / current pulse looks for some place to go and travels through the electronics to dissipate. Being that the encoders run on only 1.5 volts it doesn't take much to glitch them.
Others above are reporting readout issues while the machine is running. Not what I or my friend were experiencing but the insulation modification is pretty easy to try.
Of course everyone has a different situation so your results may vary.
 

H0$$

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iGaging is a small distributor of Chinese scales based in California. Last time I talked to them they had a dozen or so employees. They simply don't have the manpower to handle any support calls.
That said, I've handled hundreds of these scales and had one that was terminally dead. In most cases the .400" jumping can be caused by a few different issues: most commonly, the reading head is installed backward and needs to be flipped by 180 degrees. less commonly, it's too close to the encoder strip. This can be usually fixed with some shims (A.K.A. a piece of tape, etc.
Obviously I full endorse switching to TouchDRO (sorry for the shameless plug :) )
Also, if you're in the states, I have a bucket of iGaging displays with Mini-USB ports that need a better home.

Regards
Yuriy
Can you contact me. I have been trying to contact touch dro but with no response from them. Thanks Hoss
 

ycroosh

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Can you contact me. I have been trying to contact touch dro but with no response from them. Thanks Hoss
Hoss,
How were you trying to contact me? (there is no "them", TouchDRO is my side project, so it's just me).
Please email me at yuriy at touchdro dot com. I pretty religiously respond to the emails.
Thank you
Yuriy
 

ycroosh

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Interesting thread. I built my own DRO readout electronics and used cheap calipers for the axis' of my lathe. I had problems with the readout glitching when the motor was turned on. I got rid of the problem by electrically insulating the calipers from the lathe. I had them clamped to the lathe with aluminum brackets. Plastic replacements were made. Problem solved.
Recently a friend contacted me for advice saying he had a similar issue. He was using the igaging encoders and the Touch DRO electronics he had built. Just a shot in the dark really but I suggested what I found that worked and that he could try electrically insulating his encoders from the machine. I was surprised when he reported back that he had immediate success.
I suspect for me it has something to do with the current surge on motor start raising the potential on the lathe bed. Even though it's technically grounded it's only a relatively thin wire connection. That voltage / current pulse looks for some place to go and travels through the electronics to dissipate. Being that the encoders run on only 1.5 volts it doesn't take much to glitch them.
Others above are reporting readout issues while the machine is running. Not what I or my friend were experiencing but the insulation modification is pretty easy to try.
Of course everyone has a different situation so your results may vary.
iGaging scales are designed to be used with battery power and single display, so they don't have any power supply conditioning circuitry in the reading head. When they are used in pairs or triplets on a machine, the cables form ground loops that act as antennas. I was helping a local guy to troubleshoot TouchDRO issues and we measured over 5V spike on the ground line on one of the sales. The result was a momentary reversal of power supply (Ground = 5V, Vcc = 3.3V).
Thre are really two common ways to fix it: use a mains-isolating power supply (a wall wart with a transformer) or, as you suggested, isolate the scales from the machine's frame. More intermittent issues can be usually fixed by adding 0.1uf or 0.01uf bypass capacitors between Vcc and Ground, either on the board or in the scale.

For future reference, here are a few resources for dealing with scale stability issues in a TouchDRO (or similar) setup:
Avoiding Common DRO Scale Problems
Reliability Issues with iGaging Digital Scales
Three Ways to Improve iGaging DRO Scales Reliability

Regards
Yuriy
 

H0$$

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Hoss,
How were you trying to contact me? (there is no "them", TouchDRO is my side project, so it's just me).
Please email me at yuriy at touchdro dot com. I pretty religiously respond to the emails.
Thank you
Yuriy
My apologies for I have apparently confused you and the blu dro people. Are your boards the same? It’s the blu touch dro company that has listed stock to be on back order with no information of when available and not returning my email request for information. I have 3 igaging absolute Dro on my mini mill and as so many others two of them jump in readings. I have used battery, separate power supplies and also a hard wired 120-12&1.5 converter. My light is 12 volt ring light around the spindle. I wanted to continue not having to have four separate wall warts hanging off the back of my mill. I have been curious about the touch dro hoping that it would cure my problem. Can you provide me with some information on the product you offer and the cost please. Thanks for your time
 

H0$$

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My apologies for I have apparently confused you and the blu dro people. Are your boards the same? It’s the blu touch dro company that has listed stock to be on back order with no information of when available and not returning my email request for information. I have 3 igaging absolute Dro on my mini mill and as so many others two of them jump in readings. I have used battery, separate power supplies and also a hard wired 120-12&1.5 converter. My light is 12 volt ring light around the spindle. I wanted to continue not having to have four separate wall warts hanging off the back of my mill. I have been curious about the touch dro hoping that it would cure my problem. Can you provide me with some information on the product you offer and the cost please. Thanks for your time
Would it help to send pics or talk w you on the phone? If so please pm me your phone number and an acceptable time for me to call. Thanks
 

L98fiero

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i bought the igauging dro set for my combo lathe mill. I had the same issues of jumping by .400 frequently. I even have a handheld caliper that does the same thing. I have read on I think it was reddit.com about the spray on coating on the back of the circuit board that insulated the board would flake off causing this. the trick to repair was a piece of scotch tape over the back of the board and put it back together. I never tried it though. then on the batteries. they would drain in no time at all. finally after not using them for about 6 months or better I put new batteries in them and they wouldn't even turn on or only part of the display would show up like the lcd was bad so I just gave up on them. more trouble than they were worth.
Have to try this, I've got a set of Mitutoyo calipers that have been at the bottom of a drawer for a decade+ that had the same issue.
 

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