View Full Version : Parametric cad/cam software

10-04-2016, 12:06 PM
HI All,

I am currently looking for a quality parametric cad/cam software and hoping someone could give me some advice as there are so many options.

i am a self employed joinery of 10 years and in the past year have started to get into cnc and bought a scm router with xilog plus, i am still fairly new but mostly manifacture cabinets so i am looking at the following softwares

xcab...... seems limited to square boxes but has good cam/hardware inventory

Poly board ..... less expensive than xcab but seems to do alot more but noone seems to use it

cabinet parts pro ...... i have looked at the least as seemed very american and mostly aimed at inframe designs

if anyone has experience with parametric softwares and know any others available or which is best i would be over the moon with any advise

many thanks


10-04-2016, 01:52 PM
Assuming you spent some decent money on the SCM, I recommend that you also spend some money on a GOOD cabinet package.
The software makes all the difference in the world regarding your productivity. I see way too many people not utilizing their machines because they don't have the right software. Mainly because they don't know what software can do for them.

I'm not familiar with XCAB, as it seems to be aimed at you market. Looks like your interested in doing much more than square boxes though?
If that's the case, you won't really find much out there that automates the process of building custom furniture items.
The one that comes to mind is Top Solid, but it can be very expensive.
If you're a one man shop, then look at something like Fusion 360.

10-04-2016, 02:03 PM
Thanks for the reply Ger21 , yes i am a one man with 1 employee shop, but would like a good software to speed things up and like the look of parametric stuff as im working in 2d at the moment which is slow and alot of customers dont get 2d drawings where parametric softwares seem to have 3d visuals

im liking the look of polyboard from wooddesigner.org but i cant seem to see anyone using it and wondering if there is a reason for this ??

xcab with nesting and 3 days minimum training works out at 5,500 ish , and im wondering will i get moneys worth from switching from 2d

10-04-2016, 02:12 PM
If you need 3D for customers, than it's going to be costly for a high end package.

I use a custom AutoCAD macro to export my parts, and nest them in AlphaCAM. I just enter cabinet sizes, and a few minutes later I'm cutting.
I have no experience with any of the programs used outside of the US.
Cabinet Vision is big here. I've never been a fan after a bad experience with them many years ago.
I'd recommend getting hold of trial versions, even if you need to "Rent" them for a while before purchasing. If they won't give you that option, I'd look elsewhere.
And be leery of demos from salesmen.

10-04-2016, 02:22 PM
I would as above look at Fusion360 easy to convert 2d to 3d something to show the customers free trial period, free for hobby use and good price on licencing if you decide its OK for your business, its something thats developing fast and will grow where I suspect many packages are stagnant and offer less for more. It costs nothing to take a look, with no cad cam experience I was producing basic work within a weekend and continue to learn with each use as an ex bricklayer/ general builder with lots of joinery experience it would be my choice if I were to design bespoke cabinets now, and easy to change dimensions as required or parametric as people say.