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First Experience - Telesis TMP1700/420 PINSTAMP Marking System

Article ID: 51
Last updated: 13 Oct, 2010

For those of you that aren't familiar with my writing style, this article is what I call my first experiences. This does not mean this product is brand new on the market, but rather the first time I've personally had an integration application using this product. I will also share my learning curve ratings at the end of my first experience articles.


Sometimes as engineers we are customer spec driven. In this case, the customer specified the use of a TMP1700/420 PINSTAMP Marking System by Telesis. Our application was to dot-pin a Julian date code, mark the last digit of the year, and mark the shift number on a part in an automated system. Being a Controls Engineer, my first interest is always, "How am I going to control this unit with a PLC?"


Julian Date "124", Year Ending "4", Shift "2" hmmm I was working late that day.






Before the unit arrived for integration I was looking for information on the Telesis website to help me integrate this unit. To no avail, I did not find any manuals to help me understand the I/O signals on the TMP1700 nor the 420 controller for download on the Telesis website. So I had to contact our local rep and have him e-mail me PDFs on the 420 controller so I would know how to create my electrical drawings ahead of time for our assembly team. Luckily the 420 controller manual shows some pretty good drawings for integration.


The I/O signals are pretty simple.


INPUTS to 420 Controller:


  1. Start Print
  2. Abort
  3. SEL 0 (binary selection for which pattern to load)
  4. SEL 1 (binary selection for which pattern to load)
  5. SEL 3 (binary selection for which pattern to load)
  6. SEL 4 (binary selection for which pattern to load)

OUTPUTS from 420 Controller


  1. Done
  2. Ready

The inputs have an Input Common connection that you can supply your own 24 volts, as well as the outputs have an Output Common connection which can be used to decide whether or not you want to use NPN or PNP output interfacing.


The "start print" signal starts the print cycle. "Abort" can be used as an e-stop, but one thing I found out is that this errors the 420 Controller so that you have to acknowledge the error with a press of a button on the 420 Controller. This is not very good for automation as I found no way of resetting the error remotely with my PLC other than walking to the 420 Controller and pressing the button myself. I'd advise not to use the "Abort" signal unless absolutely necessary.


One thing to remember here is that if you're doing an automated system you'll need to remember to SAVE your text pattern into a file in the 420 controller. There is a "startup" option in the 420 controller menus that you can configure on power up to load your pattern and place your marker online. You will need to do this to get a "Ready" signal from the marker when the pattern is loaded and the marker has put itself online ready to take a "Start Print" command from your PLC. Of course you'll get a "Done" signal when the marker has finished printing.






You can pre-load "patterns" into the 420 controller and recall them remotely from PLC if you connect the SEL 0 through SEL 4 input lines to your PLC. In my case, I went ahead and connected all these pattern selection inputs to my PLC "just in case" the application suddenly changes; I have maximum flexibility to accommodate customer changes. My application was a single pattern that was dynamically changing based on four variables.


  1. Julian Date
  2. Last digit of the current year
  3. Shift number 1,2 or 3
  4. Fourth unknown character "W" was chosen as widest character to print for space reasons.



The variables are easily handled in the 420 Controller as special formatted characters. Telesis calls these message flags. There are several flags to choose from when setting up your pattern to print. Since I could get all my data to change within the flag variables, I only needed one pattern for my application.




Upon powering up the unit for the first time, I had a problem with air leaking from the TMP 1700 print head. When we turned the air regulator up to pressure all we could hear was air leaking from inside the marking head. I was very nervous about this and really didn't know if that was normal or not. I can tell you now that this was not normal to hear any kind of air leaking from the marker head. I gave my blessing to my technical crew to take the cover off the unit and see what was leaking inside. We found two blue colored coiled air lines were not connected to the outside air connection. At this point we wasn't sure which air lines went to which air connector. We had a 50/50 chance of getting it right, but I didn't want to damage anything if we guessed wrong and risk losing our warranty. I stopped my technical crew and went ahead and called Telesis support. That day I never talked to anyone at Telesis support, however I was forwarded to voice mail. I left an extremely long, nice, detailed message about my air leaking problem. I also told them about the air lines not connected to anything and wasn't sure which one was which and hung up the phone expecting a phone call in return later that day. A couple of hours went by and I never got my phone call. So I started to look at the unit again with the cover off. I noticed that there was a "D" stamped next to the air line connector on the actuator that drives the pin up and down. Common sense told me that this was the "drive" air line connection. Also the "drive" air line was black in color going to the outside world. So we followed the air lines back to the connectors and matched them, put the cover back on and were back in business.




I found out that my I/O connection homework paid off. I was able to setup the 420 controller to print my pattern as programmed above. I had to mess around with the start print position because my part wasn't located at 0,0 (X,Y) in the printing window. Once I figured out my start point and rotation, I assigned those numbers to my pattern and every time I closed a dry contact in my PLC to input "Start Print", the Telesis responded by printing a mark one at a time.


During the initial running cycle of the print head I was having some problems with the print head drifting out of position, or losing its home location. It would not return back to the pre-programmed start position that I so meticulously calculated for my application. I started questioning the repeatability of the marker to myself in my automated environment. This prompted my second phone call to Telesis support. I was able to talk to someone in support the second time. I never mentioned the first phone call since we had it resolved, but I began explaining the problem to the technician at Telesis. He was just as baffled as I was but then I mentioned our print head was mounted on an air cylinder that went up and down to present the pin to the printing surface. We both kind of figured out that maybe the jostling of the air cylinder going up and down was knocking the marker head out of whack, so I began to slowly turn down the flow control on the lift air cylinder to make the transition in and out of the print zone softer and softer. At this time on the phone the technician pointed out a feature on the Telesis 420 controller to "HOME" the head after each print. I acknowledge the tip and ended the phone call. I found out that the print head could not be jostled much for our application; an abrupt banging up and down caused the marker head to lose its position and not return home after each automated cycle. So I went ahead and enabled the "HOME" after each print cycle feature in the 420 controller. The made the cycle time of the print head about 0.4 seconds longer, but in our applications we had enough time to allow the marker to home after each cycle. This ending up fixing the problem of repeatability back to our print application, but I wasn't really too happy about the fix. I think maybe next time I'll ask the Mechanical Engineer to provide a shock on each end of the stroke the marker head is mounted.


In summary, from an integration stand point the Telesis unit should be very simply to tie in some signals from your PLC. Once again though, I could not find the manuals for download on the Telesis website so make sure you contact your Telesis sales representative and have him e-mail you some electrical drawings.


I wasn't too thrilled about "Homing" after each print cycle, but I can't blame the marker head totally for this problem. Our application could be improved to eliminate this small inconvenience.


If you power and air up your unit and hear air leaking, this is NOT normal, remove the cover and check the curly blue air lines and make sure they are connected to the inside air connectors.


Other than these points, I think you'll find it pretty easy to get this unit installed in an automation fashion. I did have to read in the manual for a little bit about how to setup the print variables, but once I spent about five minutes poking around in the 420 controller menus, everything made common sense to me. The print size to me was fully relational to the JIC standard for print text height. For example out of the box my print text height was set to 0.125 inches, which just so happens to be the same minimum JIC text height you should be drawing your electrical drawing text and descriptions.


Learning curve rating:

Curve 0 = Walk in the park.

Curve 10 = Get out the scholastic cap and crash in the classroom.





I gave this device a "4" curve because you really need to read the manual to understand all the options the controller can give you. Integration was easy however.

Article ID: 51
Last updated: 13 Oct, 2010
Revision: 1
Views: 10576
Comments: 6
This article was:   Helpful | Not helpful
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How to Convert a BridgePort CNC Video Screen to a SVGA LCD     How to Keep Your PLC Programming Cables Organized

Stephen Hannon | 23 Sep, 2004 12:00 AM
If you can you should look at a CN212Sp pinstamper by Technifor and compare out of the box use.
Posted: 13 years 8 months ago   | Permalink
Gabriel Angel Ordaz | 19 Jan, 2006 12:00 AM
I need to buy a telesis pinstampTMP 1700 Component specific is a pencil, i would like to contact the people tha can help me in this issue.
Thank you very much.
Posted: 12 years 4 months ago   | Permalink
Leng K. Pheng | 05 Jun, 2006 12:00 AM
If any of you have read the article and looking for a marking system. You should take a look at the SIC Marking too. All our system are electromagnetic driven and you won't have this lousy noise from the marking head. SIC Marking sales offices are located in 40 countries.

If you need a similar system to the TMP1700 check out for the e6-I 51.

Follow this website to download brochures and drawings:
Posted: 12 years ago   | Permalink
Mark Wadsworth | 17 Jan, 2007 12:00 AM
Pryor Marking is a specialist manufacturer of marking tools and equipment.

Please look at our website to see our current range of products.
Posted: 11 years 4 months ago   | Permalink
Alexander Van der Spiegel | 04 Feb, 2007 12:00 AM
The difference with SIC machines is that they use a solenoid to drive the pin ...this means that with a lot of production they get very hot and break down...
Posted: 11 years 4 months ago   | Permalink
Anonymous | 14 May, 2007 12:00 AM
This unit utilizes a stepper motor and a belt drive to minimize cost. Many applications are requiring 2D codes which when dot peened require accuracy to be read with an inexpensive scanner/imager to be read throughout the process and sometimes the supply chain. The most robust designed units are lead screw driven with servo drives. The better design is
1. Richter - Germany
2. Couth - Spain
3. Pryor - England
4. Technifor - France
5. Mathews - American
Posted: 11 years 1 month ago   | Permalink

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How to Convert a BridgePort CNC Video Screen to a SVGA LCD     How to Keep Your PLC Programming Cables Organized