Thread: Freecad

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  1. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by routerdriver View Post
    I have used Freecad to generate toolpaths for my homebrew machine as it has an inbuilt postprocessor for LinuxCNC.It works very well for that purpose.It isn't the most intuitive piece of software,but the capabilities are impressive and the price can't be beaten.With just a little more improvement it could knock several expensive software suites into oblivion as they would offer nothing more for the considerable purchase price.
    I have been using Freecad for almost two years now and I think it is an excellent software, once you get over the top of the steep learning curve. As you say, it isn't the most intuitive software, but I find the parametrized way of handling design extremely useful, especially when changes are needed to be made, or want to have high accuracy.

    However, I use it exclusively for my 3D printer model designs, but never really managed to create anything for CNC. I guess that's my own fault for not spending enough time to learn how to do it, but I never managed to create any g-code for milling. 3D printing works fine, as a two step g-code generation, first to stl and then to g-code via slic3r. I can of course generate 2D dxf file and them manually, using DXF to G-code (another freeware) generate the g-code, but it is complicated and pocketing is not working for me, so I find that I might as well use other software tools for milling. I wish I could do it in Freecad, but I just can't seem to get it how to do it.

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  3. #12
    I found this video very helpful https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c4JUnB1AHdY .The more recent series on Path topics from sliptonic was also very useful.It also helps that there is a post processor for my controller bundled with Freecad.I am increasingly impressed by the most recent developments in 3D surfacing and pocketing and hope to try using them in the next few days.There are some clever people donating their work to the project and I am thankful that they do so.

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  5. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by routerdriver View Post
    I found this video very helpful https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c4JUnB1AHdY .The more recent series on Path topics from sliptonic was also very useful.It also helps that there is a post processor for my controller bundled with Freecad.I am increasingly impressed by the most recent developments in 3D surfacing and pocketing and hope to try using them in the next few days.There are some clever people donating their work to the project and I am thankful that they do so.
    Thanks for the link. It seems that my version is crashing for circular pockets. Tried to find some solution, but nothing seems to work. There also seems to be quite a few "dialects", even if 0.17 is the latest version. Mine is still 0.16 and I will see if updating to the last version helps, but a some googling says that there is still a bug.

    Edit:
    0.17 seems to work well at least on the computer I have tested.
    Last edited by A_Camera; 13-03-2019 at 07:02 PM.

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  7. #14
    Unfortunately, even FreeCAD 0.17 has some serious limitations regarding the use for CNC designs.

    https://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/62431594

    https://forum.freecadweb.org/viewtopic.php?f=15&t=34953

    Those are just a few bugs or shortcomings I have detected during the one day I tested it. Unfortunately, those render FreeCAD useless for milling, except for some simple work. It is however excellent (in my opinion) for 3D modelling items which are 3D printed.

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  9. #15
    The post on the Freecad forum was a clue.The windows version is a bit behind the latest Linux release.I added the daily update ppa for version 0.18 and by enabling the experimental features,I quickly approximated your sloping surface and generated the toolpath that hopefully shows in the attached screenshot.

    Click image for larger version. 

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  11. #16
    It's like the 1990s with apple updating Mac versions first :D
    You think that's too expensive? You're not a Model Engineer are you? :D

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  13. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by routerdriver View Post
    I found this video very helpful https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c4JUnB1AHdY .The more recent series on Path topics from sliptonic was also very useful.It also helps that there is a post processor for my controller bundled with Freecad.
    Which controller is that may I ask please?

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  15. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by Voicecoil View Post
    Which controller is that may I ask please?
    LinuxCNC in my case.There are also post processors for a number of others including GRBL and smoothie.

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  17. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by routerdriver View Post
    The post on the Freecad forum was a clue.The windows version is a bit behind the latest Linux release.I added the daily update ppa for version 0.18 and by enabling the experimental features,I quickly approximated your sloping surface and generated the toolpath that hopefully shows in the attached screenshot.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Thank you. So you mean that it works under Linux and/or 0.18 plus the experimental features enabled?

    Anyway, my opinion on the 0.17 is that it is made far too complicated compared to 0.16. Simple objects are suddenly complicated to create because the "new thinking". In 0.16 I could basically do everything simply from the Part design, with the 0.17 that is not possible. So personally, I don't like the 0.17 at all.

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  19. #20
    I'm using 0.18 Daily build under Linux and with the experimental feature enabled.I do agree that the whole program is in need of tidying,but it is so useful for generating toolpaths that I forgive that minor matter.If you have your object saved it doesn't seem to matter which version you use as the backward compatability seems to be very good.

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