Hi all this is my first post I hope I have put it in the right place! I am brand knew to CNC'ing and having a fairly hard time getting to grips with the software that I have acquired (Rhino, Lazycam and DraftSight) I have mach 3 to control if needed but I feel so overwhelmed by everything and just want to start off with Techsoft 2d Design. I am aware of how horrific it is to everyone but its the only software I have ever used and right now the only one I understand I need to use it as a confidence builder. My issue is I have no idea how to get it to control the cnc... I have the cnc setup with a zero point and soft limits via mach 3 but after that pretty much a dead end. Anyways I would at present rather just have Techsoft controlling until I get my head around how to get it into mach 3 ect. I have tried to setup the cnc with Techsoft but it requires a printer driver ? The machine I have has a serial input no driver or anything. What I am after really is a school setup until I have taught myself a little more !
Techsoft 2d Design seems not to be able to control your machine directly. It just creates the design and according to their homepage may also be able to create the CNC program. But the machine itself however needs to be controlled by something like Mach3.
So the first step would be to check whether 2d Design can actually create CNC Programs for Mach3 or not (it seems to be mainly aimed at plotters and laser machines but not CNC mills):
- If yes you basically just need to save your project as cnc program with this software and then open the cnc program with Mach3.
- If not you'll have to export your design as .dxf drawing and use a different CAM Program to create the CNC files for your machine.
The CNC milling process is generally very different from what you may be used from printing and usually involves 3 steps:
- Design (CAD Program)
- Creating the CNC program (CAM Program)
- Controlling the machine (Control Software)
Each step is usually done by a different program.
However: there is a good reason why you should prefer CAD programs over software that is mainly used for print or desktop artwork. The latter are often very lax when it comes to open or intersecting shapes - and this will cause a lot of problems in the following CAM process.
Christian2D / 3D CAM Software and CNC controller: http://www.estlcam.com
LUKE sent you PM. (Offering phone help to all you nosey buggers.)
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