SmartCAMcnc recently released its SmartCAM version 2018, which includes adaptive rough milling technology, new to the software. The SmartCAM CAM is comprised of applications for computer-numerical control (CNC) milling, turning, fabrication and wire EDM.
The adaptive rough milling technology is available in the advanced milling, freeform machining and advanced turning applications; Also new is verification modules within the advanced fabrication and advanced wire EDM modules as well as improved feed rate control and numerous other useful core additions found in all products.
The adaptive roughing toolpath results in consistent cutting condition, elimination of full-width slotting cuts and automatically-created adaptive feedrates. This provides end-user benefits of increased tool life, reduced cycle time and reduced shock on their machine, according to said Doug Oliver, senior product manager at SmartCAMcnc.
“Traditional offset toolpaths present several problems such as sharp corners, sudden changes in cutting tool load and shock on the machine tool, all of which can lead to shortened tool and machine life, even breakage,” Oliver said.
“With the new SmartCAM adaptive roughing toolpath processes, the engagement volume of the cutter with stock is constantly monitored and maintained using in-process-stock algorithms,” he added. “These algorithms handle the changing volume conditions encountered when creating toolpath for the infinite geometric possibilities.”
Features of the adaptive roughing processes also include:
- Sharp corners never generated
- Independent, user-controlled width of cut and feed rates for climb- and conventional-cut toolpath
- Auto-start position with smooth entry allows entry from open boundaries at full cut depth where possible
- Cuts that can be linked with smooth connections that lift the tool off the floor and return to the start of the next cut at fast-feed rate
- User controls for unidirectional with fast-feed returns or bi-directional adaptive passes
- Plunge, ramp or helical entry types that can be specified under user control
- Options for rest-mill uncut regions creation
The May 2017 update includes the new verify module in the milling and turning applications. With this most recent update, the module is now included in the advanced fabrication and advanced wire EDM applications. The module uses the industry-leading ModuleWorks simulation technology, providing accurate material-removal verification and collision-checking capabilities.
“In our previous release, we began a new and productive relationship with ModuleWorks. By adding adaptive roughing in SmartCAM version 2018, we extend that partnership,” Oliver said.
Additional verification improvements include:
- The creation of revolved stock in all applications using open or closed-wireframe profiles. Previously this ability was only found in turning applications. With this change, the stock profile will be revolved around the X-axis of the workplane assigned to the profile geometry.
- The capability to hide small pieces during verification. Verification can now automatically remove separated stock pieces, or “chunks”, such as when there is material remaining from inside a closed profile. This verification option allows the user to remove waste material during the simulation to better see the final results of the toolpath.
- Two new “pause at” conditions for tool changes and/or collisions. These can be used to pause the simulation to allow closer examination of toolpath process verification.
Overall SmartCAM improvements include:
- Feed overrides and feed entity type. Feed rate capability and flexibility have been expanded with several changes that provide better and more complete control of toolpath feed rates
- New CAD/process plan list view. This feature visually separates the CAD geometry from the CAM toolpath geometry
- Updated solid modeling kernel. This version includes the most-current ACIS 2018 Solid Modeling kernel
- Updated data translators. The update also includes updated CAD data translators for Pro-E/Creo 4.0 and ACIS SAT/SAB R2018 data files
Customers who have purchased any of these optional modules have been notified to the availability to download the new updates.