Mach 3 on a Long Mill

Is anyone here using Mach 3 instead of UGS to send Gcode to the Mill?

I exchanged email with a tech at Mach. I wrote because the documentation that I read said that the interface between Mach3 and the controller is a parallel port. Not only have I not seen a PC with a parallel port in years, but our controller does not seem to have those inputs. The tech told me “Mach3 can use either parallel port or USB. You will just need a compatible plugin for the USB motion controller you have.” I asked him if Mach had plugins and he told me that they did not, and that I would need to look at third party suppliers. On the Mach site, they have a list of third party suppliers, but all of the links are broken. I raised that with the tech. No reply.

Is anyone here using Mach 3 successfully on the Long Mill, replacing UGS? If so, can you post details on how you did it, please? UGS does not like me, so I’m looking at alternatives.


Fusion does not talk to the machine its simply a program to design your project in. You still need UGS. The longmil is not capable of these inputs anyway. So…

Tks, Greg. My mistake. I meant to ask about Mach3.

I’ve changed the subject line and the question.

I’ve not delved really deep into this, but to my understanding it’s not a matter of switching over to another g code sender, it’s a matter of compatibility. Since the Longboard is built with GRBL firmware in mind, this sets the communication protocol that the board expects to see from the sender in order to operate the machine properly. This is why our list of supported/tested interface software/senders is all GRBL compatible (either built specifically for GRBL boards, or built with a handful of communication protocols, one option being GRBL). On the other hand, Mach3 has a different firmware and communication which is why the firmware on the board has to be installed with Mach3 in mind.

@andy maybe you could chime in further on this?

Has anyone investigated the use of Mach 3 any further? Mach 3 would be my preference.

@crd Claude: I have not pursued it any further. The little bit of research that I did seemed to indicate that I would need to get a new controller for the Mill, one that would run firmware compatible with Mach 3. As Chris said back in Feb, our controllers are using grbl to set the communication protocol. Mach 3 will not run on a grbl-based controller.

Thanks for the quick reply.