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SmartCAM v2016 Miscellaneous Improvements

A number of miscellaneous improvements are delivered with SmartCAM Version 2016 which are of benefit across the entire product suite.

Rendered Model data can now be Viewed in Section

In previous releases the task of viewing and selecting Process Model elements that were inside or behind rendered elements of the model involved a number of SmartCAM interactions.

A graphics clipping method using the new View Section command can be used to expose ‘hidden’ elements, meaning that it is now far easier to view and select them. The technique is particularly beneficial, for example, when creating internal bore toolpath processes in SmartCAM Turning and MillTurn applications.

Before and After Enabling Section Enabled on ZX Planes
Before and After Enabling Section Enabled on ZX Planes
View Section reveals bore details in SmartCAM Turning applications
View Section reveals bore details in SmartCAM Turning applications

New Customization functions requested by popular demand

SmartCAM has always delivered very strong customization capabilities. Every license that is supplied includes the SmartCAM Customization ToolKit, or CTK.

The CTK is an extremely open and powerful toolkit which enables customizers to add commands and user interface dialogs and panels that are beneficial to their particular and unique daily use of SmartCAM. Customization and automation can be created for large scale projects or small repetitive tasks that are appropriate to the CNC manufacturing requirements of the facility.

This release adds further macro commands and functions, a summary of the scope of which is:

  • Load Tools & Tool Groups, Steps & Step Groups from the KBM Library
  • New Profile- and Range Element Deletion
  • New Profile- and Range Element Show / Hide
  • Return the Masked Status of a CAD Layer, CAM STEP or a Workplane

The number of Workplanes supported has been increased

SmartCAM Workplanes are used to define primary, standard co-ordinate systems and local multi-axis positional datums & orientations including those defined by the user.

The number of workplanes that can be created has been increased to 30,000, virtually eliminating the limit for custom applications, and is also a component of increased support for multi-axis toolpath architecture in SmartCAM in the future.

A more convenient method of formatting specific Code Generation Variables

Here is a small improvement that the Code-Generator writers amongst the SmartCAM Community will appreciate.

The output format for a specified variable need only be defined once in a Code Generator Template file, versus having to format the output upon every use as was previously the case. Examples are:


Not only does this small enhancement make the formatting of CNC code just a little easier, it also means that if a change is required in format during code generator development then it only needs to be changed in one place.

SmartCAM has been updated to use ACIS 2016.

SmartCAM has been updated to use the Spatial ACIS Modeling Kernel 2016. This change also updates several of the CAD file formats supported by the SmartCAM data translation tools.

The optional data translators are updated to import:

  • Imports SOLIDWORKS® files through v2015. (Note: SOLIDWORKS support is only available after installing the 64-bit data translation update.)
  • Imports Autodesk®Inventor® files through v2016
  • Imports Solid Edge® files through ST8
  • Imports ProE®/Creo® files through Creo 3.0
  • The standard, delivered in all SmartCAM base applications, DXF & DWG translators have been updated to support the 2014 versions of these formats

The Learning SmartCAM documentation website has been updated

The Learning SmartCAM website has been updated and redesigned to make it easier to find the information you are looking for, and to help users learning the applications.

Additionally, the Learning SmartCAM documentation website has been updated to use the current HTML5 interface.