Good reference surface for touch probe?

Hi Folks,

What is a good, known reference surface to determine tool length for a touch probe?
The tool setter button is quite stiff so it won’t register accurately since the probe has give too.

I would guess that B table surface should work, assuming I have access to it (no fixtures). Any alternatives? Easiest way to determine the delta between the tool setter trip point and the surface?


Did you test it? My touch probe works perfect with the button. In Z direction it is little more stiff.

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To be honest I haven’t, but now I’m curious how would I even verify that, as I’d need the same reference to check. I guess I could use the toolsetter with the probe, then touch of on the workpiece, toolsetter on cutter, cut the workpiece then touch off again with the probe on the cut surface and see if there’s a difference.
Or… I touch off on a fixed reference surface with the probe.
Am I overthinking this?

I would be very surprised if you could get an accurate probe measurement off the tool setter. I think cutting a surface with a tool of known length, then probing that surface will be your best bet for calculating the probe’s offset. If you want to double check what probing the tool setter would do, then I think your plan would work.

If you can reach the table of the machine at A90 with the probe, then you can use the machine’s B table offset to verify the offset. You could also use a gage block or other precisely dimensioned reference against the table.

So, if I touch the B table, then my probe tool length will be the Z actual position at the point - the B table offset, right?

I believe it’s + the B table offset. The tool length offset is the actual Z position when the tip of the tool is at the center of rotation.

Yeah, I’ll figure that out when I’m in front of the machine, but it’s the same concept. Thank you, John!

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Let us know how it goes!