FLX.IDE Getting Started

Please refer to the FLX.IDE Installation Guide to install FLX.IDE and launch the server.

Open Google Chrome and navigate to http://localhost:8384/resources/flxide/workspace.html.  This will launch the FLX.IDE Workbench. 

Add Workspace

Enter the new workspace name.

Select the workspace template and press OK.

Load Workspace

You may need to disable the pop-up blocker for your browser for the localhost domain.

Add Robot Configuration

Each robot requires a configuration file.  This file contains parameters specific to the robot.  This file needs to be imported into the workspace before it can be selected.

Click on the FLX logo and navigate to the ALLY workspace resources.

Navigate to ALLY/Machine/configuration.

Click "Add Resource".  Enter the name of the configuration file.  This should be the configuration file name without the ".xml".

Choose the configuration file type as "XML Data".

Import the configuration file.

Press OK to add the configuration file.

Select Configuration

The default workspace template includes an operation to add the robot to the workspace.  This operation defaults to a generic robot configuration.  You must select the robot configuration for your robot.

Press OK to save the configuration to the operation.

Setup Connection

Select Connect from the "Add Operation" menu.

Select the robot machine.

Enter the IP Address of the robot.  Default is 192.168.1.46.

Press OK to complete the connect operation.  Run the setup connection operation by pressing the play button.  The workspace is now configured and ready to connect to the robot.

Connect to the Robot

The workspace has a global connect button to connect all machines loaded into the workspace.  To connect to the robot press the "Connect" button.

FLX.IDE will check the firmware version of the robot on connect.  If the firmware is not at the latest version a firmware update will be performed.  Do not power off the robot or close the FLX.IDE server while the firmware update is running.  

The update should take < 1 min and will show an informational message line when complete.  Once updated power off the robot for at least 10 seconds and close the current workspace session.  Reconnect to the workspace and robot.

Z Homing

The robot will home the Z axis on the first connect after power up.  Make sure there are no obstructions to keep the robot from reaching its maximum Z position.

Robot Ready

After Z homing the robot will update the joint positions.  The robot is now ready.

Add Thread

A thread is a process.  A thread is comprised of operations.

Move Workspace

The robot can move in linear workspace moves.  The points are global to the workspace.

Choose the robot.

Select the workspace point.  Defaults to the current workspace point.

Linear velocity in workspace units.

Move Joint Space

In addition to linear moves the robot can perform joint space moves.

Choose the robot.

Enter the joint positions.  Each joint requires a position and velocity.  FLX.IDE will determine the slowest joint and interpolate the move accordingly.

Run Thread

Each thread has a control panel.  You can run all operations on the thread or step over each operation.  Once a thread has been run it must be reset with the stop button to re-enable it.

FLX.IDE Windows Install

This tutorial covers the FLX.IDE installation for Windows.

To begin, download the software archive from the download link provided to you.  If you have not received a download link email support@fluxintegration.com.

To download the software you must accept the license agreement.

Unzip the archive.

Double-click the exe installer.

The application will start after installation.  When the application launches you will see the FLX logo.  Once the logo has disappeared the application is ready for use.

You may re-launch the application from the Windows start menu.

Please continue to the FLX.IDE getting started tutorial.

Please continue to the network setup tutorial for Windows before connecting the robot arm to the network.

FLX.IDE Mac OSX Install

This tutorial covers the FLX.IDE installation for Mac OSX.

To begin, download the software archive from the download link provided to you.  If you have not received a download link email support@fluxintegration.com.

To download the software you must accept the license agreement.

Unzip the archive.

Double-click the dmg installer.

Drag the FLX.IDE.app to the install location of your choice and double-click to launch the application.

When the application launches you will see the FLX logo.  Once the logo has disappeared the application is ready for use.

Please continue to the FLX.IDE getting started tutorial.

Safety

ALLY - FLX.ARM.S16.Z10 is a general purpose motion platform or partially completed machinery.  It is the responsibility of the installer or integrator to ensure that it meets all applicable safety laws and regulations prior to operation.

Robotic arms can be potentially dangerous.  ALLY - FLX.ARM.S16.Z10 can be configured to limit joint torques and to stop when a collision is detected.  These features require configuration.  The installer or integrator should perform these tasks, if required, to reduce the hazards this robot arm may present.  

Following safety information presented in this document is not a warranty that this robot arm will not cause injury or damage.

Warnings

  • Install the robot arm securely to a base or table weighing at least 100 lbs.
  • Install the E-Stop in an easily accessible location outside of the robot arms workspace.
  • It is the installer or integrators responsibility to determine if guarding is required for a specific application.
  • Guarding should always be used when a potentially hazardous tool is installed as the end-effector.
  • Extreme caution is advised when an operator enters the workspace of this robot arm.
  • Be aware of potential pinch points.  Including the Z-axis.
  • Service is required if a fault or unintended motion occurs.  Discontinue use immediately.
  • Wear eye protection.
  • Do not wear loose clothing or accessories.

Electrical Warnings

  • This robot arm is powered from AC voltages greater than 110 VAC.  Always remove the AC power cord before servicing.
  • Earth ground is required for operation.
  • Stored energy may be present even after power is removed.
  • Do not allow liquids to enter the electrical enclosure.

FLX.IDE Windows Network Ethernet Connection Setup

This tutorial covers setting up the network for Microsoft Windows.

We recommend connecting to the arm using a dedicated ethernet connection to start.  This requires configuring your network adapter to use a specific IP address.  To begin, open the Windows Control Panel and navigate to the "Network and Internet" panel.

Click the "View network and status tasks".

Click "Ethernet".

Click the "Properties" button.

Select "Internet Protocol Version 4" and click the "Properties" button.

Click the "Use the following IP address" radio button and enter in the information below and press "OK".

Plug an ethernet cable between the ethernet port on your server to the ethernet port on the arm.  You do not need a cross-over cable.

ALLY - FLX.ARM.S16.Z10 Unboxing

ALLY is shipped in a 16" [406.4 mm] x 16" [406.4 mm] x 20" [508.0"] cardboard box.  The box weighs 35 lbs [15.88 kg].  The arm is mounted to a plywood sheet with foam footings.  It is wrapped in a foam sheet and bubble wrap.

To remove the arm we recommend you open the box from the bottom.  To start flip the box on its side.

Cut open the bottom of the box along the box tape seam.  Be careful as you will want to keep the box and all packing materials.

Open the flaps and rotate the box 90 degrees so that the flap on the bottom is now located on the table under the box.

Flip the box upright and remove.  Save the box.

Remove the bubble wrap and save.

Remove the foam sheet and save.

Carefully tip the arm on its side to expose the nuts on the bottom of the plywood base.  With another person remove the bolts and save.  Place the arm upright.

Remove the power cord from the plywood base.  Save the plywood base.

Cut the cable ties and remove the foam sheeting from the toolhead connector and e-stop.  Save the foam sheeting.

Cut the cable ties and remove the foam sheeting from the leadscrew.  Save the foam sheeting.

remove_leadscrew_foam_sheet.jpg

Cut the cable tie and remove the foam sheeting from the toolhead mount.  Save the foam sheeting.

Mount the arm to a base weighing a minimum of 100 lbs [45 kg]. 

Manually raise the Z-axis by turning the leadscrew clockwise and remove the Z-axis foam blocks.

Mount the e-stop in an easily accessible location.  Make sure it is not pushed in.

Ensure the AC power switch is in the off position.  "O" or left-side pushed in.  Plug in the AC power cord and ethernet cable.

Push in the power switch to turn on the arm.  The LED will appear orange.  Launch FLX.IDE and connect to the arm.  Once connected the LED will appear blue.