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Any Flow waterjet techs in Florida?

Airboat Stuff

Plastic
Joined
Nov 14, 2023
I got conned into trading for a 2012 Flow Mach 2 2031b and I'm looking for a tech to finish the install. A guy from GA did the rough in of the machine and was supposed to come back after the electrician was finished. The electrician finished up 3 weeks ago and still no tech, not even a call back. I need to get this thing going. I found a couple places in TX but there has to be someone closer?? Any help would be greatly appreciated!
Thanks
 
My advice is get in there and learn what you need to get it finished up yourself. If you plan on owning a used waterjet, you will be doing maintenance constantly so best to start learning now. What is the level of work needed to finish?
 
I just finished up replacing all the air lines and garnet line. I've been all over the machine and as far as I can tell these things are what's left..

1. Finial level the machine and bed.
2. There are 6-8 small wires that need to be hooked up inside the main power box.
3. The rotation of the pump needs to be checked
4. The on switch needs to be installed. The old one was broke and I have the new one.
5. The 30 weight non detergent oil need to be added.

I've figured out everything else. Number 2 and 3 are where my issues are. I think I can handle the other ones. My problem with 2 is I can see where the wires go but I can't tell which ones go where. As far as 3 goes. I'm not sure how to check that but I do know if the rotation is wrong some power wires need to be switched around. That's about all I know.

I really think if I had a operators manual and a installation manual I could do it but getting either of those seams to be impossible. Flow won't answer ANY questions about ANYTHING until you have a account with them. When I asked about a manual the lady told me she would let me talk to a tech AFTER my account was approved. It's the craziest thing I've ever seen!

Definitely should have done more research before I got the machine. Hard lesson learned!!
 
2. If you can post a picture and/or a description of what the wires connect to, someone here may be able to help.

3. For any 3-phase motor, it it spins the wrong direction, you can swap any two power wires and it will reverse. Is this a Hyplex pump? If so you can message me your email address and I will send you the manual for it. It will not generate pressure if it's spinning in reverse.

5. Make sure you check the oil level regularly (Flow says to check it daily). You may have no oil loss for a while then suddenly it starts and if you are not keeping an eye on it, it can be catastrophic. We switched to using a full synthetic oil.

For the most accurate cutting you will want to get a technician out that can do a ballbar test. They can make adjustments to compensate for the backlash in the ballscrews.
 
2. If you can post a picture and/or a description of what the wires connect to, someone here may be able to help.

3. For any 3-phase motor, it it spins the wrong direction, you can swap any two power wires and it will reverse. Is this a Hyplex pump? If so you can message me your email address and I will send you the manual for it. It will not generate pressure if it's spinning in reverse.

5. Make sure you check the oil level regularly (Flow says to check it daily). You may have no oil loss for a while then suddenly it starts and if you are not keeping an eye on it, it can be catastrophic. We switched to using a full synthetic oil.

For the most accurate cutting you will want to get a technician out that can do a ballbar test. They can make adjustments to compensate for the backlash in the ballscrews.
Thanks so much for the input! I’m not sure if it’s a hyplex pump but I’m gonna look. I attached a couple pics of the wires. They are labeled but I don’t see anything in the box that has the same labels.
I don’t have a problem getting a tech to come from TX but it sure would be nice to be able to turn it on before he comes to make sure it actually turns on. It would be my luck that the tech comes out and says some part is bad and has to be shipped in. It’s $8k for 3 days. I can’t afford any more than 3 days lol.
Thanks for the help!!
 

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I would assume that TB is for terminal block and you hook up the corresponding numbers. It is odd that everything in that cabinet looks very clean except those wires though. There may be a small electrical box on the pump as well.

I also see the wire coming in the front at the bottom is not hooked up to anything.
 
The TB wires come from the machine itself. I will look at the pump but I thought for sure they went in that box.
The wire coming out of the front of the box is the emergency stop coming from the pump. There are another 2 wires inside that box coming from the machine. I'm 99% sure those wires get connected together color wise. I guess I forgot to list that in my problem list. lol
It's so crazy... You can find anything you can think of on the internet EXCEPT a Flow manual of any kind.
 
Airboat, I sent you a PM with a tech I used last year. Guy was pretty good and got me up and running after Flow told me to FOAD because I bought a '08 used machine.

Flow pissed me off so bad with their bullshit that when I buy 2 new machines next year they will NOT be flow machines.

I've been using accustream for most of my parts and have been really happy with them.

You can tell what kind of pump it is by looking at some pics online. Either a Hyplex (piston pump) or an intensifier. The intensifier pump has what looks like a big 2 ended hydraulic cylinder. The Hyplex will have three small cylinders coming off of a gearbox (mine is green)

Ill take a look at your pics and see if I can help

Chris
 
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Airboat,

Looks like you have a nearly the same panel is mine. I will take a look today and let you know where those wires go. Shoot me a PM with your email and I'll send you a manual. I have the whose set I got from the tech I PM'd you about.

Chris
 
I sent you a PM with my email address. It would be awesome to get a copy of your manual. Thanks!! Mine is definitely a intensifier pump. I really appreciate all the help I've received. Thanks!!
 
Hey there @Airboat Stuff, my name is Alex and the sculpture studio I work at in St Pete runs a 2012 5axis mach 4 6x13 dual intensifier 100hp WJ. We have also been looking for a tech and had one come out a few weeks ago for electrical issues and he was based out of Sarasota. He just got promoted and we talked with him the other day and he says there is now only 1 tech for the Southeast based out of St Augustine and his lead time is through the roof. We got our machine second hand about 4 years ago and had a tech install it that we flew out from Texas that was very good. So far we've found no reliable tech in the area and going through Flow has not been fun or cheap. Anyways happy to share resources for other people in FL and helping out as best I can.
 
Well I'm still looking for a tech... I paid the guys in Texas to come out and get it going. They got here Jan 3 and they fired it up the 5th. For the training we cut 11 example parts then they showed me some basic Flowpath. Then they headed back to TX. I came out on the 6th to cut some parts I need and it cut about 12 parts then put the nozzle into the sheet clogging the nozzle. I cleaned it and it continued to do this. I would reset z axis home, hit play and it would burry the nozzle every time. I called the tech and he said that my sheet must be bowed or I don't have it clamped down well enough. He said run the nozzle across the sheet and set the Z when the sheet is the closest. I did this and it cut 3-4 more then buried the nozzle. This time when I reset everything for another try, I hit the play button and NO water. I check every thing and narrowed it down to.. When I hit the water, both green lights on the computer go out and no air to the valve for the head. I click abrasive and it comes on. Click water and the lights go out until I turn off the water then both green lights come back on. If I leave the water clicked on for 10 min or so, it trips the power breaker in the machine. I call the tech again and says he doesn't know why it would be doing that. It could be a bad a ground or power supply. He sent a new power supply, I swapped it out and no difference. I double checked all the grounds and nothing.. I've looked and wiggled every wire in the machine and I do not see anything obvious. I haven't heard from the tech since I told him the power supply didn't fix it. I called Flow themselves and in about 2 seconds the tech says I have a short. Neither the tech or Flow seems to think the Z has anything to do with it. Both say the Z can't crash. I've spend the last few days going over every wire for the hundredth time and I can't find anything obvious. I am really at my wits end.. So I'm still looking for a tech...
 
I have figured out my loss of power when I hit the water. Wire 8430 had a short somewhere in the harness. I inspected every inch of the harness and couldn't find anything wrong but it damn sure has a short. I ran a new wire and was able to cut some stuff this afternoon. However I'm still having a Z axis issue. If I cut 1 part at a time everything works perfect but I have to set the home every time. If I try cutting more it will cut the first one perfect than sometimes on part 2 or 3 it will stick the nozzle in the sheet and clog the nozzle. It's like it forgets where the Z is set to?? I've check the table and arm for level, checked for bows in the sheets, clamped the sheets, adjusted the water in the table and it will still bury the nozzle if I try to cut consecutive parts. Does anyone have any ideas?
 
Well it sounds like whether you wanted to or not you're getting in there and learning how to be your own water jet tech. That's good, even if it sucks haha. btdt
Can you share the specs your cutting at? What material? thickness, cut speed, and Z height from material surface. How are you setting z height before you start cutting?

My experience is with OMAX so not familiar with the flow software, but I would be looking over the path options carefully to make sure there's not something set to automatically change the z height at a certain point?

If this was happening on my waterjet though, it would almost 100% be a stuck keyboard key, or something equally simple and easy to overlook. If you don't already have them, do yourself a huge favor and buy a waterproof mouse and keyboard.
 
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I would look into your machine settings on pierce/cut/retract heights. Some of the older plasma torch height controls used time and not distance, even if listed as a distance on the setting. If it is crashing then set cut height slightly higher (distance, lower time) value.

Mechanically it could be backlash at the z encoder to machine. Never hurts to replace encoder cable now that you are practicing cable replacing.
 
I found the problem.. I checked the table and bridge for level and they were within .1 degrees however I never checked them against each other. I put a nice strait/flat sheet on the table, set the Z height then moved it around the sheet and adjusted the table to make the Z height the same all over the sheet. It seems to be working good now. What a pain in the ass this thing has been! I guess the positive side is that I know a lot about the machine now and that will help me in the future. Thanks for all the suggestions and help.
 








 
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