I haven’t started using the touch plate yet but wondering do you still have to zero Z each time you change bits?
Yes. It does not matter how you find Z0. When you change bits, you need to set it again. The new bit will not be the same length as the one you replaced. Do not reset X0Y0.
Some get around this by putting collars on all their bits so that all their bits stick out from the collet the same distance. You can try that, if you like. FWIW, I looked into it and the overall length of my smaller bits was so much shorter than the overall lengths of my larger bits that the collars would not work. YMMV.
So another question, when the job finishes, my bit goes to its Safe Z. Assuming I’m going to run same bit, can it not return to Z 0 without manually doing it?
@Chaosweaver It will return to safe height so that the bit does not scratch the surface of the material. If your next tool path uses the same bit, you don’t need to manually set Z0. It is still set. You can simply run the next tool path. You can verify this by clicking on “return to Z0” if you like. Just be sure not to click on simply “Z0” as that will set Z0 to the current height of your bit. (It’s easy to confuse the two GUI buttons, I find.) Then you will need to reset it.
Here? the “go to” Z So if its at -1 safe, but zeroed to 0, just run it again and it will return to 0?
@Chaosweaver I’m sorry, but I don’t understand your question. What do you mean when you say “run it again”?.
Also, safe will not be a negative number. If the top of the material is 0, a negative Z number would bury the bit into the material.
I may have confused the issue in my previous post. If you are running 2 toolpaths with the same bit, you do not need to do anything with your 0 settings. Just open the second toolpath and run it. The Mill will return to a safe height between the two toolpaths, but it has not lost Z0.
I only mentioned hitting “return to Z0”, if for some reason you wanted to reassure yourself that all was well. Sorry for the confusion. When I am running two toolpaths using the same bit, as I often do, I do not return the machine to its starting coordinates. There is no need to.