[chiplotle-discuss] Temperamental Plotter.

Ryan Gallagher clickykbd at gmail.com
Thu Mar 8 03:02:54 EST 2012

When I posted previously about attempting AutoCAD over serial
(Prolific USB-to-Serial) with my Roland DXY-1100, it was exhibiting
strangely similar sounding spikey line behavior.  I haven't seen that
via chiplotle yet though.

If i resolve it from AutoCAD though I'll be sure to mention what
seemed to be the issue in case it's related.

On Wed, Mar 7, 2012 at 10:13 PM, Carl Lostritto <clostrit at mit.edu> wrote:
> Diogo- I'm no expert but your issue reminds me of a funny story that might prove helpful:
> In the beginning my plotter would seem to be plotting fine... As long as I was supervising it. And then I would leave the room and it would seem to misbehave. I was well on the path to anthropomorphizing the thing already and so this behavior was quite startling. It was as if it was getting sudden pen down commands to random points. Horrible huge "spikes" as it would draw to a point way off the commands i was sending and then draw a line back again to the next correct point. I believe in my case it was the serial-USB adapter. It installed a network profile that caused Mac os to "look for Internet" on it. Whatever pinging it would do only occurred (I guess, or maybe it was just more likely to manifest) when my Internet was idle (when I stopped browsing and left the room).
> Long story short is I found a different driver (for a keyspan I believe) and that eliminated the spooky behavior.
> Obviously victor offers a systematic way to narrow down the problem... I just couldn't help but chime as my experience seems so similar.
> Best
> Carl
> On Mar 7, 2012, at 9:49 PM, "V!ctor Adan" <vctradn at gmail.com> wrote:
>> Diogo,
>> answering inline...
>> On Wed, Mar 07, 2012 at 01:51:57AM +0000, Diogo Tudela wrote:
>>> I am talking about one single shape, containing a lot of information,
>>> and the thing
>>> is that my plotter is getting MORE & MORE TEMPERAMENTAL!
>>> Sometimes, while drawing/printing, she seems to collapse, and she starts to
>>> scribble
>>> around, always in straight lines, and then she gets back to the drawing and
>>> it proceeds
>>> normally, usually, leaving a gap on the image outline.
>>> a) At first, I thought that this behavior was related to the amount of
>>> data/complexity of the
>>> image that I was sending to the plotter. But, this has happened with
>>> extremely simple
>>> drawings and, on the other hand, this plotter has already printed images
>>> composed of
>>> thousands of points.
>> Yes, if you're using Chiplotle to send the data to the plotter this is almost certainly not the case. Chiplotle manages the feed to the plotter so that the plotter's buffer never gets filled.
>>> b) Then, I thought that there could be a relation between the
>>> frequency/rate of printings
>>> that I was doing consecutively. But I was wrong.
>> Not sure what you mean here.
>>> c) At this point, I am considering the possibility of dividing my spiral
>>> into a series of arcs
>>> or bezier curves, so that, instead of considering one massive shape, the
>>> plotter will draw
>>> the same amount of data divided in different bodies. I will try this
>>> tomorrow.
>> Probably better to find the root problem. Could be your hardware... do you have another plotter? I would try plotting in another machine to see how it behaves.
>> Could also be the hpgl file itself, that is somehow not getting converted correctly from illustrator to HPGL. More unlikely, but possible.
>> Have you tried visualizing it with io.view()? Is the shape well formed?
>>> Finally, just to make things clear. My work flow is this:
>>> Processing/Illustrator > PDF > PStoEdit > HPGL > Chiplotle;
>>> So, if you have experienced some similar problems, if you've found a way to
>>> make your
>>> plotter's behavior stable, or if you know something about HPGL's DO's and
>>> DON'T's, please,
>>> drop me a line. I would be much appreciated.
>> Douglas has the same plotter and his would sometimes do weird things too, like stop suddenly and the like. I believe he opened it up, cleaned it, and got it to behave well.
>> Victor.
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clickykbd at gmail.com

"The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is
the source of all true art and science."
---Albert Einstein

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