User Interface Improvements
SmartCAM v2014 Milling Improvements
Improvements to the milling processes increase toolpath reliability and efficiency, and reduce the number of steps required to re-machine remaining material and generate wireframe profiling toolpath. New arc connections in Facing and Region Rough processes allow high speed machining techniques to be used without subjecting equipment to abrupt direction changes.
Watch the "SmartCAM v2014 Rest Milling Improvements" Video (3 minutes)
Rest Mill Region Output from Roughing Processes
The Pocket, Group Pocket, Open Profile, Face, Profile, and Region Rough processes have all been updated to include the ability to create rest mill regions in addition to toolpath. The new Rest Output option replaces the Areas of Uncut Material (AUM) option previously available.
When the Rest Option is enabled, rest mill regions are created on a specified layer for all areas the active tool does not fit. Rest region output also can optionally consider the tool corner radius, when applicable. The rest mill regions can then be machined with the Region Rough process using a Part Offset path type with a smaller tool.
The new rest mill region output creates a more accurate boundary of the remaining material than the previous AUM method. Additionally, since the rest mill areas are created as region elements, the Region Rough process knows which segments of the rest region profile represent the part profile and which represent stock, so the Part Offset path type creates an efficient cutting strategy that begins from the open stock edge and finishes along the part profile.
This feature saves time by eliminating the steps that would otherwise be necessary to create the rest mill regions using the Rest Mill region function. Additionally, when the toolpath is created as a process container the rest regions are associative to the process, so changes to the roughing process such as roughing tool selection or finish allowance automatically update the rest regions output from the process.
Create Rest Mill Regions from Region Elements
The Rest Mill region creation tool can now create rest mill regions from other regions elements. In previous versions only wireframe elements were supported, so in order to create rest mill regions for smaller tools it was necessary to retain the original profile geometry, or make a copy of the first rest mill region and then explode it into wireframe geometry and use that to create the next rest mill region.
Face Milling Improvements
The Face Mill and Region Rough processes have been improved to increase cut efficiency and better support high speed machining strategies. Pass placement has been optimized to eliminate air cuts for the first and last pass of Linear and Zigzag patterns, and around the outer boundary for Spiral patterns. Lead-in lines are now used for Spiral-In patterns to ensure the tool starts clear of stock. New Connection options are available for Zigzag patterns, including Follow the boundary, Linear, and Arc. A new Gap Closure parameter minimizes retracts and re-entries by allowing gaps in Linear and Zigzag passes to be automatically bridged with linear connections.
Wireframe Profile Process Improvements
The SmartCAM Wireframe Profile process benefits from improved and additional input panel options, providing increased control and flexibility. Input options are now Whole or Partial profile, or profile Group. Previously, the process had to be applied separately to each profile when creating profile toolpaths for multiple wireframe boundaries.
The improved control panel includes a new offset 'None' option that makes it easier to create on-center engraving toolpaths, and new input options to simplify toolpath creation from whole- or partial-geometry profiles.
Surface Projection Edge Roll Option
The Surface Machining - Projected and Project Pattern processes have been enhanced to include the Roll Around Edges option found in the Straight and Roughing processes. This option is useful in certain projection situations where it is desirable to drive the tool beyond the surface edge in order to ensure complete surface clean-up, or to maintain continuous toolpath by allowing the tool to ride an outer surface edge rather than retracting and re-entering.
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