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Old October 6th, 2007, 01:46 PM   #1
Duwop
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Automation Direct PLC's Opinions

Hey,
I was wondering what some opinions were on Automation Direct PLC's? I haven't used them, therefore I don't know alot about them. The reason I'm asking is because I have some projects coming up but my boss has put his thumb down hard on the budget spending & these plc's seem to be priced somewhat better than the Allen Bradley's I've been using.
The other thing is the addressing structure in the Automation Direct plc's. I'd seen in some threads on this forum that the addressing is similar to old TI 505's (which I started on). Aside from X,Y,C,V does the Automation Direct PLC's have drums, sfpgm, etc like the TI's?

Thanks to all!
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Old October 6th, 2007, 02:00 PM   #2
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Heres a good place to start.

http://learn.automationdirect.com/So...eProducts.html

http://www.plcs.net/reviews/
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Old October 6th, 2007, 02:38 PM   #3
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This may also help

http://www.theplcguy.com/ABtoAD/Introduction.htm

After you get your plc and making the transistion to AD read this...
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Old October 6th, 2007, 04:22 PM   #4
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Thanks for the links!
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Old October 6th, 2007, 05:59 PM   #5
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If you worked with TI 305s and older GE, they are the same units. Koyo has made them for years but others brand labeled them.

AD also offers a free version of DirectSoft good for 100 words, get one of the $99 DL05 or $199 DL06 and take a spin with it, the DL06 offers some bang for the buck.
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Old October 6th, 2007, 06:22 PM   #6
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I'll second Ron's accolades for the DL06.
1. A full instruction set, that only comes with the top of the line 205 and 405 CPU's
2. Second comm port built in with rs232,rs422 and rs485 ability that speaks ascii, modbus and Kseq (koyo speak). With a little imagination this brick PLC can be used like remote I/O. By taking advantage of rs485 and modbus between units.
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Old October 6th, 2007, 06:59 PM   #7
Duwop
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rsdoran
If you worked with TI 305s and older GE, they are the same units.
I Haven't worked with the TI 305's, I've worked with the 505's
specifically the 545 CPU's.
The only GE's I've worked with has been the 90-30's.
I've also worked alot with AB's Micro 1000's, 1200's, & SLC's (especially recently). Worked a little with PLC 5's & Micro 1500's.

I figure if I can half way write programs for them, maybe I can figure out how to do the Automation Direct PLC's.
(Kinda how I did the 90-30's).

Thank again for the help.
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Old October 6th, 2007, 07:45 PM   #8
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I agree with RSDoran... the Koyo (in paticular the DL06) offers some decent grunt for the $$.
For lower end applications Koyo is as good as anything around.

The programming environment is a bit 'Fred Flintstone' compared to the A-B, but you'll have your head around it no time flat.

The Koyo PLCs work well with Terminator IO - an awesome and very well priced product that will help keep your budget under control (we're actually using the Terminator product a fair bit now on other brands of PLC as well, and not only where we need to keep an eye on the $$).

Give the Koyo a run, you'll be pleasantly surprised.

Muzza
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Old October 6th, 2007, 08:22 PM   #9
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Thumbs up DL06. Nice.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rsdoran
get one of the $99 DL05 or $199 DL06 and take a spin with it, the DL06 offers some bang for the buck.
I looked at some of the online manuals for the DL06, & these
little plc's look cool. I reconize alot of the instructions & they have drums! (Haven't seen that in a while. I used to drive one my instructors crazy with these.)
Some of the instuctions look somewhat different, but it looks like I could do it. I checked out the i/o modules also, very nicely priced.

I'm going to talk to my boss about getting some of these plc's. As opposed to the alternative, I think he'll say O.K..

I'm glad I asked you guys, Thanks!
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Old October 6th, 2007, 08:49 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Duwop
Hey,
I was wondering what some opinions were on Automation Direct PLC's? I haven't used them, therefore I don't know alot about them. The reason I'm asking is because I have some projects coming up but my boss has put his thumb down hard on the budget spending & these plc's seem to be priced somewhat better than the Allen Bradley's I've been using.
The other thing is the addressing structure in the Automation Direct plc's. I'd seen in some threads on this forum that the addressing is similar to old TI 505's (which I started on). Aside from X,Y,C,V does the Automation Direct PLC's have drums, sfpgm, etc like the TI's?

Thanks to all!
Duwop.

You'll be just fine. I mostly work with multi-pump controls and have always used IDEC from the Micro 1 thru the MicroSmart in the "brick" style and also the IDEC FA3 series multi-slot. I started out programming them with the "CLIP" application and shortly after "CUBIQ" both of which run directly in DOS. The Windows application "Winldr" was a giant leap forward. But enough of memory lane. I just wanted to emphasize how deeply rooted I am/was in IDEC.
ANYWAY......I have a DIFFERENT customer, this one with a tomato packing plant. I arrived late in the game because their other IDEC guy was getting unmanageable. The plant is PACKED with IDEC PLCs. I'm in heaven.

Problem is... the box fillers (there are almost 100 of them all together) are all set up with MICRO1's. They are obsolete. They are starting to wear out.

Ssssooooo..... the search began for an inexpensive replacement, readily available, and well supported. I started this week switching them out to the DL 05.

So far I am pleasantly surprised. The programming is similar enough, the tech support is better than expected, and the conversion is going swell.

I had one little disappointment though... the 120v powered, 24vdc input model requires an EXTERNAL 24v power supply (the IDEC comes with one built in), so I had to rush in a batch of EXTRA power supplies (egg-on-face). Also the DL 05 has an expansion slot into which I plugged a "4 output relay out" expansion card and I was a little surprised that it didn't have indicator lights to tell you when an output is active.

All in all though, the experience has been a good one. The product works as advertised. It is smaller, the connector comes off for change out (unlike the IDEC), and shipping is free (at least to my zone) if I order more than $300.00 at a time.

Let me say though... these box fillers are pretty simple machines. The program is only about 20 rungs. Inputs, outputs, relays, and timers only.

I have not used DL in any of my more complicated pump station controllers yet. And since my pump station program was developed and has evolved in IDEC ladder, and is quite large, I don't anticipate switching platforms for that application.

Stationmaster
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Old October 6th, 2007, 09:06 PM   #11
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Quote:
I had one little disappointment though... the 120v powered, 24vdc input model requires an EXTERNAL 24v power supply
You could go with the DL105. Its about the same thing as the DL05 and it has a 24V power supply built in. However it does not have the exp. slot.

If you have 24 volts then the DL05 is great. I have even put a Devicenet card in the slot and used them just for I/O. The terminator i/o is good as well but I can buy Siemens ET200S cheaper than the terminator i/o.

Overall I like just about everything AD has PLC wise. I did get some push buttons that I didn't like one time but what do you expect for the $.
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Old October 6th, 2007, 09:10 PM   #12
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I've just started supporting these units, and I have to say what you get for the price, compared to an AB, is well worth it. These units can handle the vast majority of what you need to do.

There are some minor differences between the AB programming (no .TT bit, stage programming), but easy to adapt to.
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Old October 6th, 2007, 09:11 PM   #13
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I expected this thread to open up a can of worms. Surprisingly, conversation has been on topic about technical details and possible alternatives. There are many similar posts that also provide good information, just do a search. This is one of those threads that has been discussed time and time again. The last one I remember digressed from useful information and got into a branding flame war.
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Old October 6th, 2007, 09:37 PM   #14
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Take the time to learn stage programming. If your doing a sequence type program it is very nice.
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Old October 6th, 2007, 09:48 PM   #15
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AD PLC's

The cost of the programming software is a good bargin compared to AB. The latest version supports all of the AD PLC line.
It is not as fancy as , say the AB RSLogix, but saves the bucks.
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