Cam software recommendations for Centroid

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Toysrfun
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Cam software recommendations for Centroid

Post by Toysrfun »

Unsure if this post should be here but I currently have fusion and it seems that the cam protocols don’t develop the most ideal tool paths and requires extensive time intervening with its protocol. Are there any cheap, yes in poor, lol, Cam programs that can develop tool paths strategically and logically so all to have to do is load the cad file and it can do it automatically without intervention. Most of my parts are probably simple in respect to what many use their machines for so I imagine something exists without having to try 10 different programs. I am also acquiring a bed mill with a Centeoid T400 so whatever works best with acorn and the industrial controls. If this is posted in the incorrect place could you please move it.
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Re: Cam software recommendations for Centroid

Post by cnckeith »

All CAD/CAM systems require operator work to get good tool path. There is no such thing as "all i have to do is load the cad file and it can do it automatically"
some CAD/CAM system do have the ability to run macros ( a series of commands that you build up) on a geometry file that is about as close as automatic tool path as you are going to get..(usually these are only useful if you are doing the same thing over and over again (same tool, same depth cut, same step over etc) with slightly different paths..) but not sure if you are going to find that in a inexpensive system.

First question would be what kind of parts are you wanting to make? post photo and or screen shots of parts and cad files and we can directly you to a CAD/CAM system that would be suited for that type of work.

I use Intercon for making holes and basic stuff
I use Vcarve Pro for making signs and wood work and engraving
I use Mastercam for 3D machining of complex surfaces
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Re: Cam software recommendations for Centroid

Post by Dave_C »

Are there any cheap, yes in poor, lol, Cam programs that can develop tool paths strategically and logically so all to have to do is load the cad file and it can do it automatically without intervention.
Uh, cheap and good? Those two things rarely go together!

I too have used Fusion and yes, it takes some intervention to make good tool paths but if you spend the time to learn it, Fusion can make great tool paths! The problem is the learning curve is usually pretty steep for any GOOD cad/cam program.

I've also used and still own BobCad/Cam and I find it a bit easier to create good CNC mill tool paths, but the learning curve was pretty steep for it as well. BobCad is harder to use for the drawing part, at least for me, compared to Fusion 360.

Cheap and free programs usually lack the sophistication to make advanced tool paths that are efficient!

My two cents worth,

Dave C.
Grizzly G0678 Mill ,CNC conversion with Acorn. G4004G Lathe, Mach 3 conversion to Acorn.
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Re: Cam software recommendations for Centroid

Post by mick41zxr »

As Dave said the two rarely go together.
I started using Vetric Cut 2d. This was suitable for basic profile cutting & 2 1/2D. Some 3d tool-paths possible with a few cheats & certainly reasonable value. Learning curve on this was pretty easy.
Moved on to Visual Mill embedded in Alibre Cam which has been able to produce some decent 3d tool-paths.
A lot of the learning curve has been in establishing tool libraries & optimizing speeds & feeds (never stops).
The cost was a bit steeper but has paid for itself in usability & speed in controlling tool-paths.
If you can look to find a CAD & CAM system that can be integrated. That way when you modify & evolve designs you can generally just regenerate your tool-paths & not have to remodel the whole part.
Regards,
Michael
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Re: Cam software recommendations for Centeoid

Post by Chaz »

Invest some time into Fusion360. Loads of good videos, its certainly now got momentum, you cant go wrong.
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Re: Cam software recommendations for Centroid

Post by Dave_C »

Invest some time into Fusion360. Loads of good videos, its certainly now got momentum, you cant go wrong.
I certainly agree, it just takes a little time! I used it until my "free" licenses expired and I'm well past retirement years. So if I can do it...

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Re: Cam software recommendations for Centroid

Post by Beechdrvr »

You can renew with a hobby/educator license and continue using it for free. If your interested.
Good luck,
Doug
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Re: Cam software recommendations for Centroid

Post by cbb1962 »

I've been using Fusion 360 for a couple of years. It isn't perfect. Does it make the most efficient tool paths, not automagically. But it is from a world-class company with world-class developers that are constantly improving it. It keeps getting better. I use Fusion for everything except inlays; I use f-engrave by scorchworks.com for that.
Clint in NW Arkansas

The more I learn, the more I realize I don't know...
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Re: Cam software recommendations for Centroid

Post by Dave_C »

you can renew with a hobby/educator license and continue using it for free. If your interested.
Good luck,
Doug
You know, I tried to do that and I could not get it to let me have that option. I must have missed something for sure.

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Re: Cam software recommendations for Centroid

Post by LSGreen »

Dave_C
If you are still interested in using Fusion 360, go to the Autodesk website, download and install Fusion 360. When you run the program it will ask you to register. The options will be presented of buying, student\teacher, hobby or business startup along with an outline of conditions for use. Hobby or business startup is free as long as you income is less than $100000 per year. At the end of the one year term as long as the income ceiling is not exceeded Autodesk will extend the license on a yearly basis for as long as you desire. I believe this process is correct. Autodesk is second to none in generosity and their various softwares are industry standards
Regards
Lou
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