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charlieuk
20-02-2015, 11:48 AM
I have been searching online and reading the threads on here but so many names come up I get a bit lost.

Basically I have just got a little rc drone and I want to cut a few small parts on my cnc I built for cutting my surfboards. It is pretty much going to be a one off job so don't really want to go spending a lot on fancy programs. I am looking for something that can literally just cut these 2d parts out of flat sheet. I do have access to a old copy of auto cad so would be potable to draw it on there but if there was a simple program that did booth then I would prefer that. the surfboard program I use is really nice and simple and does it all in one basically but I cant used it do do anything else.

any recommendations would be great if any one of the free ones out there?

below is basically the 3 parts I need to cut

EddyCurrent
20-02-2015, 12:38 PM
CamBam can do both the CAD and CAM for this job and it has a free trial period. http://www.cambam.info/downloads/ get this version - Version 0.9.8N
I think you get 40 free uses with the trial period.

charlieuk
20-02-2015, 12:49 PM
Cool cheers 40 trial sessions will be plenty

charlieuk
20-02-2015, 09:21 PM
so I ended up drawing it in auto cad as I have used that a bit and I started to follow a you tube vid on how to load the dxf file but as soon as I try it freezes cam bam up and says invalid arc multiple times in the task bar at the bottom? any ideas?

Clive S
20-02-2015, 10:50 PM
so I ended up drawing it in auto cad as I have used that a bit and I started to follow a you tube vid on how to load the dxf file but as soon as I try it freezes cam bam up and says invalid arc multiple times in the task bar at the bottom? any ideas?
I don't use CamBam But there are open vectors in the dxf I have closed them with Aspire see if this works. ..Clive

charlieuk
20-02-2015, 11:23 PM
cheers clive many thanks yes that has worked I will have to try and figure how to do that in auto cad like I say I only have very basic skills. I will now try and carry on with the tutorial.

GEOFFREY
20-02-2015, 11:53 PM
I use alphacam and that uses "join", but I believe the same thing in autocad is "unite". Most other peoples DXF files that I use need to be cleaned up a bit AND JOINED to arrive at complete geometries. G.

charlieuk
21-02-2015, 12:33 AM
I think im slowly figuring it out! I think I have managed to get the g code in to mach 3 however it seams that the z axis is going the wrong way ie when it should be cutting it raising up and when its not its going down towards the table? I assume there is machine setting some were that need to be changed? I cant see anything along the top at the moment but will have another look with a fresh head tomorrow. thanks


edit just realized I needed to say - depth of cut.

Clive S
21-02-2015, 08:37 AM
I think im slowly figuring it out! I think I have managed to get the g code in to mach 3 however it seams that the z axis is going the wrong way ie when it should be cutting it raising up and when its not its going down towards the table? I assume there is machine setting some were that need to be changed? I cant see anything along the top at the moment but will have another look with a fresh head tomorrow. thanks


edit just realized I needed to say - depth of cut.Your Z home zero should be at the top and all Gcode Z moves going -ve Clive

Clive S
21-02-2015, 08:53 AM
I use alphacam and that uses "join", but I believe the same thing in autocad is "unite". Most other peoples DXF files that I use need to be cleaned up a bit AND JOINED to arrive at complete geometries. G.Geoffrey (We met at the model show last year) Thanks. Join does work in autocad I don't think unite does. When I use autocad using join it appears to be able to join only one arc at a time (I must investigate further) but in Aspire you can just select all objects and join the lot at once. Clive

EddyCurrent
21-02-2015, 09:47 AM
Charlie, CamBam has a 'join' feature too, also set your depth of cut to a negative value for Z to go down.
Juist tried loading the your dxf and you are correct, it's in too bad a shape for CamBam to open, you could easily have drawn those in CamBam.

GEOFFREY
21-02-2015, 10:23 AM
Hi Clive, yes it was nice to put a face to a name after meeting you last year. Alphacam also allows you to put a box around a drawing to join and form a closed geometry, but if the break is too large it will not join them and lines/arcs need to be extended/trimmed before the join can be completed. That is what I meant when I said "cleaned up". I have never used Autocad, but suspect that most of these programs are basically very similar. For me tha advantage with Alphacam is that when a drawing is completed, the cutter paths can be put on in the same program and the G code is then automatically output and post processed to suit the machine. I like it nice and simple - I suppose that suits my mind!!! G.

EddyCurrent
21-02-2015, 11:25 AM
Charlie, I've attached the cb file, you need to set the depth of cut, spindle speed, feed rates, etc. The biggest tool that would do all of it was 3mm diameter so that's what I used.
Also you're drawing was way out in no-man's-land, it's best to make drawings around the X0, Y0 position.

charlieuk
21-02-2015, 02:02 PM
Hi guys many thanks for all the help, I used auto cad to draw it as it was what I was most familiar with and I was struggling a little with drawing in cambam. I found the problem in auto cad it was some if the chamfers are not linking up for some reason but some are ( it's the ones that go from a circle to a straight line) I have generated what I think is the correct code so will try running it in some foam first and see what it does and allso compare it against what you have given me eddy ( many thanks for that much apresiated)

Ger21
21-02-2015, 03:49 PM
Use PEDIT in AutoCAD To join lines and arcs into a continuous closed polyline.

Clive S
21-02-2015, 04:13 PM
Use PEDIT in AutoCAD To join lines and arcs into a continuous closed polyline.Thanks Gerry That's what I was looking for. ..Clive

charlieuk
21-02-2015, 06:35 PM
cool will try that many thanks

I just had it cutting and all looks good however I noticed that the 3mm holes I had it does not want to do with the 3mm cutter is that because you cant go straight down only? ( this is using my file)

many thanks

GEOFFREY
21-02-2015, 07:28 PM
Try making the holes 3.1mm and rout them out. ( might even work with 3.01mm). G.

EddyCurrent
21-02-2015, 07:35 PM
Try making the holes 3.1mm and rout them out. ( might even work with 3.01mm). G.

3mm works fine if using a drill mop

Clive S
21-02-2015, 11:41 PM
I agree with Geoff make the holes 3.1mm and do them with the same endmil spiral down. ..Clive

charlieuk
22-02-2015, 07:59 PM
i still seam to be having the same problem? i made the holes 3.2mm but it is not till i reduce the cutter to 2.6 that it seams to want to include them? any ideas is there another setting i have got wrong? I have attached the file hopefully it shows the setting. many thanks

Clive S
22-02-2015, 08:12 PM
Sorry I can't open a cb file. ..Clive

EddyCurrent
22-02-2015, 10:02 PM
i still seam to be having the same problem? i made the holes 3.2mm but it is not till i reduce the cutter to 2.6 that it seams to want to include them? any ideas is there another setting i have got wrong? I have attached the file hopefully it shows the setting. many thanks

Because you need to use a drill operation for the holes.

Clive S
22-02-2015, 10:18 PM
Because you need to use a drill operation for the holes.Ok I have just tried this with Aspire and a 3.01 circle and a 3mm end mill with an inside profile and in simulation it's fine ..Clive

GEOFFREY
23-02-2015, 12:14 AM
I have been routing all my holes this way for years. I wonder if Charlie is putting his cutter paths on the circle centre with no offset to the inside of circle? To my mind the problem will be in that direction. G.

JAZZCNC
23-02-2015, 12:34 AM
USE A PECK DRILL like Eddy suggested. Can't interpolate 3mm hole with a 3mm cutter simple as that.!

GEOFFREY
23-02-2015, 11:48 AM
USE A PECK DRILL like Eddy suggested. Can't interpolate 3mm hole with a 3mm cutter simple as that.!
That is why I suggested making the hole diameter slightly bigger and routing it out - this has worked for me for years!!! Of course if you have a drill cycle option that works fine as well. G.

EddyCurrent
23-02-2015, 12:07 PM
That is why I suggested making the hole diameter slightly bigger and routing it out - this has worked for me for years!!! Of course if you have a drill cycle option that works fine as well. G.

This is the bit I don't understand, why make the hole bigger if a 3mm hole is required ? Sometimes this will be fine but I'm sure there are more instances where the measurement has to be right.

Clive S
23-02-2015, 01:31 PM
This is the bit I don't understand, why make the hole bigger if a 3mm hole is required ? Sometimes this will be fine but I'm sure there are more instances where the measurement has to be right.
The way I see it is If you want the hole to be 3mm and you also want to profile it out then you have to use a smaller end mill say 2.5mm BUT if you have a job like Charlie is doing and he is wanting to use a 3mm end mill to do the total job and the 3mm hole size does not have to be 3mm then make it say 3.01 and use the same cutter to save changing bits (his holes are only for mounting holes anyway).
I did a very similar job for a quadcoptor all with one size bit and did the same just made the 3mm holes to 3.01.
.
Or like has already been suggested peck drill it

JAZZCNC
23-02-2015, 01:49 PM
That is why I suggested making the hole diameter slightly bigger and routing it out - this has worked for me for years!!! Of course if you have a drill cycle option that works fine as well. G.

So what if there are say 166 holes.? Do you change ever piece of geometry.? how longs that going to take.! (Answer In this case would actually be to tell Cam tool is 2.99mm but hole will still be wrong size)
What if the holes are for dowl pins and need to be exactly 3mm.? In this case a 3mm endmill won't work so again more time wasted swapping out endmills.

Maybe I'm being a bit Pedantic here but Better to get into a habbit of using the easiest and less disruptive option which in this case would have been a Peck drill than changing geometry or using fudges like under sizing tools in Cam.

charlieuk
23-02-2015, 02:51 PM
i guess then i should probably ether get some smaller cutter or go for the drill method. I have been looking at videos on cam bam and how to do the drilling and it mentions something about adding points list centers, im guessing this is just telling the drill were to go rather than to find the center of the hole one its own? Im assuming buy dreating the drill tool path and g code i then run this file with a 3mm drill bit instead after the profile code that does the rest of the cutting with the same start point?
I have found the peck setting but there is also a drilling method option with canned, spiral and custom im assuming i want canned as i wouldn't want spiral but cant find out what that means?

EddyCurrent
23-02-2015, 03:36 PM
watch this
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2QpYclg6Ah0

read this;
http://www.cambam.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=4620.0
http://www.cambam.info/doc/plus/tutorials/Drilling.htm
http://www.cambam.info/doc/plus/cam/Drill.htm