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Highly Intuitive 2D Drawing Tool For CNC Cutting Machines

Highly Intuitive 2D Drawing Tool For CNC Cutting Machines

Known as NUMcad, the new drawing software runs directly from the machine’s operator panel and also under Windows on any standard PC. Its user interface mimics that of many popular CAD packages and is highly intuitive, making it ideal for people with minimal design experience.


CNC specialist NUM has launched a unique 2D drawing tool that simplifies the design and creation of executable G-code files for CNC cutting machines. NUMcad is suitable for both design origination and design modification.

Simple drawing tools are provided for functions such as Line, Polyline, Arc 2P and Arc Center-Radius; and they are backed by a suite of editing tools such as Meet Two Lines, Shrink or Extend – and even Insert Micro-joint – which enables users to very easily customize and modify shapes. If a user already has a CAD file and wishes to modify it, NUMcad allows AutoCad DXF files to be imported. And in the event that the user does not have a DXF file, but has created the shape on the CNC cutting machine itself, NUMcad also allows this shape to be imported from their customizable parametric shapes library.

The NUMcad software package includes a post processor; shapes or patterns that have been drawn or imported can be automatically converted into an executable G-code file for the CNC cutting machine.

Using NUMcad, each segment of a cut can be set to rapid, marking, rough, medium or fine cut qualities, to achieve the user’s desired finish; the properties associated with the cut type are pulled from a Technology Table. Both standard shape and custom fly cutting functionalities are available, and associated functions include the ability to control the cut-side placement (kerf compensation) and tilt angle of the machine’s cutting nozzle. Nesting gives the user the option to create complex paths containing the same pattern. With settings like nesting type, number of pieces, sheet size, and scaling, the user can create a path that is sized and optimized to their liking. The added alignment settings allows the shapes to be rotated and offset for the minimization and optimization of uncut space–that could turn into scrap.

Much of the application development work behind NUMcad was carried out by the North American branch of NUM, which is based in Naperville, Illinois. According to Steven Schilling, General Manager of NUM Corporation, “We serve a large number of customers in the machine cutting industry, and wanted to create a software tool that would benefit as many people as possible. NUMcad meets this objective–it provides an exceptionally easy way to design or modify G-code files for 2D cutting applications.

Go to NUM CNC Solutions – North America website

References of Content:
[1] Press Release of NUM at FABTECH 2021
[2]
Windows® is a registered trademark of Microsoft Corporation.
[3]
AutoCAD is a registered trademark or trademark of Autodesk, Inc.

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How To Make Sure That Tools And Moulds Build Perfect Parts

How to Make Sure That Tools and Moulds Build Perfect Parts

This article discusses how to guarantee that manufactured parts correspond to the production requirements. Article by Creaform.

At the beginning of a manufacturing process, a mould, die, or jig is engineered according to the theoretical CAD model. The aim of this tooling, made precisely from the nominal model, is to produce parts that correspond to the technical requirements. It turns out, however, that there are often differences between the theoretical model and the reality of an industrial environment. Different phenomena interfere with the tooling, causing problems and imperfections on the parts. Adjustments and iterations, therefore, are required to ensure that the tools and moulds, even if they correspond exactly to their nominal models, produce good parts that meet quality controls and customer demands.

Challenges: Non-Predictable Phenomena

The reality of an industrial environment differs from the theory illustrated in CAD models. During the manufacturing process, several phenomena that are difficult to predict can occur. Spring backs when stamping a die, shrinkage when building a mould made of composite material, or thermal forces when welding two elements together are all good examples of phenomena that impact tooling precision. Nevertheless, modelling the removal of a composite resin, the spring back of a die, the impact of a weld remains difficult, complex, and expensive.

Initially, the tooling is built according to the theoretical model, which is developed to create manufactured parts that meet the production requirements. But, in the reality of the industry, the aforementioned phenomena interfere with the moulded or stamped parts. As a result, the parts do not meet the technical demands and must be adjusted, corrected, and altered in order to pass the quality controls.

Starting with nominal models is, of course, a good first step, but let’s not forget that what manufacturers want is not so much a perfect tooling, but good parts that meet technical requirements and customer needs.

Solution: Iterative Process

When unpredictable phenomena alter manufactured parts, an iterative process of quality control starts. The most commonly used method is to work on the part before adjusting the tooling. More precisely, this method involves producing a part, measuring it, and analysing deviations between the part and the CAD model. Hence, if we notice that there are some missing (or extra) mms in one place, we will go to the corresponding surface on the mould, die, or jig in order to grind or add material. Thus, the iteration is performed on the tooling after measuring the manufactured part.

Once this operation completed, we restart the manufacturing process in order to produce a new part that will be measured to verify if there are any remaining deviations. This iterative process will continue on a loop until we obtain the desired part (i.e., when the manufactured part corresponds to its CAD model).

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ANCA ToolDraft –The Ultimate Drafting Package For Cutting Tools

ANCA ToolDraft –The Ultimate Drafting Package For Cutting Tools

Like all manufactured parts, cutting tools require technical drawings to make a design a reality. Best practice for cutting tool manufacturers emphasises the importance of a tool drawing that is detailed, clear and precise. Tool drawings are essential for many reasons – besides serving as a reference for operators to produce tools accurately and consistently, they also provide a record of the tool and enable revision control. Drawings are also predominantly used when recommending designs to customers for quoting purposes.

ANCA CNC Machines considered all the above when creating ToolDraft, which has allowed cutting tool manufacturers to achieve outstanding results. As a dedicated software package for producing 2D cutting tool drawings, ToolDraft helps users to reduce hours of workflow into a few clicks. Once a tool is created using ToolRoom (version 2016 or later) or CIM3D (version 8.1 or later), it can be sent to ToolDraft in a matter of seconds, with a click of the icon. Cutting tool manufacturers who have a backlog of tools not yet drawn will benefit greatly from ToolDraft and its ability to produce detailed 2D cutting tool drawings in minutes rather than hours.

Simon Richardson, ANCA Product Manager, said, “ToolDraft is quick, easy to use and saves time as it allows complex geometries that are difficult to draw to be simply created and dimensioned. As the software is specifically designed for cutting tools, it offers features that 2D CAD software may not have. Time saved using ToolDraft will provide a quick return on investment for any company looking to find efficiency in their production.”

ToolDraft follows Geometric Dimension and Tolerancing (GD&T) and ISO standards. Included in the software is a library of drafting symbols, feature control frames and annotations for GD&T purposes. Dimensions can be applied to a range of various tool views and customised, if required. Leader lines with text can be placed on to a drawing to describe unique features and information. In cases when a small section of geometry needs to be highlighted, multiple detailed tool section views can be added to the drawing. ToolDraft also has the capability to add cross section views chosen by the user anywhere along the axial position of the tool.

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Faster Robot Programming With Hypertherm Robotmaster Version 7.2

Faster Robot Programming With Hypertherm Robotmaster Version 7.2

Hypertherm, a U.S. based manufacturer of industrial cutting systems and software, has announced a new version update to Robotmaster V7, its CAD/CAM based offline robot programming software. This new release contains targeted features and enhancements designed to make customers more efficient and profitable. New features include:

  • Path Transform

Path Transform allows users to copy, move, array, or mirror the path(s) in different or multiple locations on the part. This new feature eliminates redundant work and expedites the programming.

  • The All-New Intelligent Cell and Tooling Creator

Integrators, partners, and end-users can now set up their robotic cell inside of Robotmaster themselves. Its intuitive user interface with real-time visual feedback enables users to calibrate, optimise, validate, and commission their robotic cell and tooling up to 10 times faster with unparalleled ease!

  • New Welding Tools

The new welding tools will highlight how easy path creation has gotten in welding. The new welding selection method improves path creation in a visual method which virtually eliminates the need to modify the geometry to select the welding seams while minimising the number of clicks. This method and the new touch sensing grouping not only speeds up the process up to 10 times faster but also simplifies the overall workflow.

  • Geometry Filtering 

New Geometry Filtering feature automatically filters out bad geometry edges to create quality paths, without worrying about bad geometry edges being unusable. The geometry filtering not only allows for cleaner path creation, but also smoother robotic motion.

  • Video Tutorials 

Maximise the full potential of your software and get up to speed faster than ever with a new library of video tutorials—from step-by-step part programming videos to brand new Cell and Tool Editor tutorials.

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Hypertherm Updates ProNest CAD/CAM Nesting Software

Hypertherm Updates ProNest CAD/CAM Nesting Software

Hypertherm has announced a minor version update to ProNest 2019, its advanced CAD/CAM nesting software for automated cutting. This new release contains targeted features and enhancements designed to make customers more efficient and profitable. New features include:

  • PDF import so programmers and operators can directly import vector-based PDF files such as engineering drawings or specification sheets, eliminating the need for separate .dxf and .dwg files to make the importing of parts and job quoting easier and faster.
  • Scribe text additions that make it possible to automatically mark parts during import with unique identifying information such as a part name, customer name, or work order number.
  • Reposition work zones allows parts to span multiple work zones in a single nest as reposition machines can now cut parts in sections, beginning the cut in one work zone before repositioning and completing the cut in another zone.

“These feature additions incorporate feedback directly from our customer base, providing users with the specific tools they need to increase both productivity and profitability,” said Tom Stillwell, Marketing Project Manager for Hypertherm CAD/CAM software products. “At the same time, the software remains easy to use with a highly intuitive user interface that benefits both new and experienced users.”

In addition, Hypertherm is announcing several major improvements to its ProNest LT software, designed for light industrial cutting. New features being added to ProNest LT include:

  • Cutting techniques used to specify how parts should be cut based on sections of a part’s geometry. For example, automatically adjusting cut speeds for corners, leads, and arcs.
  • Automatic height control can be automatically disabled based on certain parameters such as interior profile size, crop cuts, skeleton cuts, or lead-outs.
  • PDF import will also be included at the LT level.

 

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Garant: Solid Carbide Barrel Milling Cutters

Garant: Solid Carbide Barrel Milling Cutters

Garant’s Parabolic Performance Cutting (PPC) represents a further development of ball-nosed slot drilling and is used above all in machine tool building, toolmaking and die making. The particular feature of PPC tools is the main cutting edge in the profile of an arc of a circle. Compared to a ball-nose slot drill this permits significantly larger effective radii. The result is a line skip up to nine times larger, or a surface quality up to 80 times better. To allow finish machining of even more complex geometries, the Hoffmann Group has now extended its range to include a new stub point conical version for machining flat faces at the bottom area of the workpiece. The precondition for PPC is a 5-axis milling machine and CAD/CAM software which allows the tool geometries to be processed as a data model.

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