SolidCAM2008 R12

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SolidCAM2008 R12 What’s New

©1995-2008 SolidCAM

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SolidCAM2008 R12 What’s New

©1995-2008 SolidCAM All Rights Reserved.

Document number: SCWNENG08002

Contents

Contents
1. General

1.1 New User Interface for Operations 1.2 Support of the 3D Connexion SpaceNavigator 1.3 Operation summary in SolidCAM Manager 1.4 Summarizing the part data in the tool sheet documentation 1.4.1 Definition of tool sheet parameters 1.4.2 The output PDF file 1.5 Opening of PRT files by double-clicking 1.6 3D geometry selection 1.7 Templates 1.7.1 Operation Template 1.7.2 Process template 1.7.3 Manage Operation/Process Templates 1.7.4 Defaults & Settings 1.8 Defining Transform position by picking on the model 1.9 Automatic synchronization and calculation 1.10 Changing the tool and tool data directly from SolidCAM Manager 1.10.1 Changing tool 1.10.2 Changing tool data 1.11 Support of SolidWorks 64-bit
2. Geometry

12 13 14 15 15 16 18 19 20 20 26 29 32 36 37 39 39 40 41

2.1 Closing geometry chains by extending chain entities 2.2 Geometry modification for specific operation 2.3 Automatic closing of open geometries for Pocket operations 2.4 Synchronization when design model configuration changes 2.5 Changing the sequence of drill positions

44 46 52 53 56

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3. Tools

3.1 End Mill / Bull nose mill / Ball nose mill 3.1.1 End mill 3.1.2 Bull nose mill 3.1.3 Ball nose mill 3.2 Drill tool 3.3 Bore tool 3.4 Center drill tool 3.5 Chamfer drill 3.6 Dove tail mill 3.7 Taper tool 3.8 Engraving tool 3.9 Face Mill tool 3.10 Lollipop mill 3.11 Reamer tool 3.12 Slot tool 3.13 Spot Drill 3.14 Tap tool 3.15 Thread Tool 3.16 Taper Thread Tool 3.17 Choosing the tool type 3.18 Tool Units 3.19 Angular dimensions 3.20 Rough tools 3.21 Link to the Vardex software for thread milling tool selection
4. Milling

59 59 60 60 62 63 64 66 67 68 71 72 73 74 75 76 77 78 79 80 81 83 84 86

4.1 3D Depth type in Profile Milling 4.2 Contour 3D operation
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88 90

Contents

4.3 T-Slot operation 4.3.1 Second offset number 4.3.2 Technological parameters 4.4 Face Milling Operation 4.5 Vertical zigzag passes in Profile operation 4.6 Equal step down in Profile and Pocket operations 4.7 Final cuts machining in Profile and Pocket operations 4.8 Wall Draft angle in Profile and Pocket operations 4.9 Profile floor machining 4.10 Pocket Wall finishing 4.11 Open Pocket machining 4.11.1 Open Pocket Geometry definition 4.11.2 Open pocket machining parameters 4.12 Adjacent tool paths connection in Profile operations 4.13 Complete Z-level in Pocket operations 4.14 Movements between cutting passes 4.15 Minimal machined area in Floor Constant Z machining
5. Automatic Feature Recognition and Machining (AFRM)

93 93 94 96 104 106 108 110 112 114 115 115 116 119 121 122 123

5.1 Drill Recognition operation 5.1.1 Geometry definition 5.1.2 Drill Depth definition 5.1.3 Technological parameters 5.2 Pocket Recognition operation 5.2.1 Geometry definition 5.2.2 Geometry modification 5.2.3 Milling Levels 5.2.4 Technological parameters 5.3 Using color information in AFRM 5.4 Dividing deep holes for machining from both sides

126 127 133 138 139 139 146 148 149 150 152
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6. High Speed Machining (HSM)

6.1 Boundary definition by faces selection 6.2 Helical Machining strategy 6.3 Offset Cutting strategy
7. Sim. 5-Axis Machining

154 156 158

7.1 User interface enhancements and new parameters 7.1.1 Sim. 5-Axis Operations 7.1.2 Geometry 7.1.3 Tools 7.1.4 Levels 7.1.5 Tool path parameters 7.1.6 Link 7.1.7 Default Lead In/Out 7.1.8 Tool axis control 7.1.9 Gouge check 7.1.10 Roughing 7.1.11 Motion limit control 7.1.12 Miscellaneous parameters 7.2 HSS Operation (High Speed Surface machining) 7.3 Sim. 5-Axis Sub-operations 7.3.1 Swarf Milling 7.3.2 Impeller Roughing 7.3.3 Wall finish 7.3.4 Impeller Floor finish - curve control of tilt 7.3.5 Impeller Floor finish - surface control of tilt
8. Turning

162 162 163 165 166 168 170 171 172 174 180 183 184 185 186 187 196 203 208 213

8.1 Partial machining 8.2 Interoperational movements 8.2.1 Interoperational tool movement optimization 8.2.2 SolidCAM Settings
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220 227 227 228

Contents

8.2.3 Part Settings 8.3 Rest Material calculation for Milling Drilling operations 8.4 Generation of the Material boundary solid 8.5 Tool direction and imaginary tool nose 8.6 TX/TZ parameters for Machine Simulation 8.7 Clamp and Material boundary synchronization 8.8 Envelope calculation enhancements 8.9 Turning geometry definition by picking model entities 8.9.1 Associativity and Geometry Synchronization 8.10 Rough turning at angle
9. Mill-Turn

229 230 231 232 235 236 238 239 242 243

9.1 CAM-Part definition 9.1.1 CNC-controller definition 9.1.2 Coordinate System definition 9.1.3 Stock and Machining boundary 9.1.4 Clamp definition 9.1.5 Target definition 9.2 Existing CAM-Parts conversion 9.3 Additional Turning Coordinate Systems 9.4 Pre-processor customization 9.5 Post-processor customization 9.5.1 Milling post-processor adaptation 9.5.2 Turning post-processor adaptation 9.5.3 Turn-Mill post-processor adaptation 9.6 Geometry wrapped around axes for 4-axis machining
10. Wire Cut

247 247 248 251 251 251 252 254 257 258 258 259 261 263

10.1 Improvements of the 4-axis Geometry definition 10.2 Sharp corner machining in Profile and Angle operations

266 271
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11. Simulation

11.1 SolidVerify support in Machine Simulation 11.2 Machine Simulation for Turning, Turn-Mill and Mill-Turn 11.3 Fixtures support within Machine Simulation 11.4 Solving self-intersections and noise problems in solid verification 11.4.1 Checking and fixing self-intersections 11.4.2 Rounding of input data 11.5 Improving the simulation performance in the SolidVerify mode

274 275 276 278 278 279 280

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General

1

1.1 New User Interface for Operations
SolidCAM2008 R12

operations.

offers you a new enhanced interface for milling and turning
Operation name Template

Technology Geometry parameters Tool parameters Machining levels parameters Technological parameters Link parameters Miscellaneous parameters Parameters page Info

Parameter illustration

Operation buttons

In the new interface the single-page dialog box of the previous interface is divided into a number of pages, each handling a specific set of parameters (e.g. Geometry, Tool, Levels, Technology, etc.). The list on the left side of the dialog box enables you to switch between the different parameters pages. You may switch between the new and the previous single-page interface by using the User Interface page of the SolidCAM Settings dialog box. To work with the single-page interface, choose Single-Dialog. To switch to the multi-page interface, choose Multidialog. In this mode, you may also set a keyboard shortcut for switching between pages in the multi-page dialog box; click on the Switch Items Hotkey box and press a required key or a combination of keys you want to use as hotkeys for switching.

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1.General

1.2 Support of the 3D Connexion SpaceNavigator provides you with the support of 3Dconnexion (www.3dconnexion.com).
SolidCAM2008 R12 SpaceNavigator

3D mouse by

This device enables you to rotate, pan and zoom the CAD model during all the stages of the CAM-Part definition. Using the SpaceNavigator enables you to significantly speed up the geometry definition process and simplifies the model and tool path viewing during such simulation modes as: HostCAD, Rest Material, SolidVerify, RapidVerify and Machine Simulation.

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1.3 Operation summary in SolidCAM Manager
SolidCAM2008 R12 provides you with the possibility to

obtain the summary of a specific operation directly from the SolidCAM Manager, without opening of the operation. The Info command located in the right-click menu, available on a specific operation in the SolidCAM Manager, displays the Info dialog box.

This dialog box displays the summary information of the selected operation: Tool corner radius, taper angle and lengths); Operation Tool data (feeds and spin) and Levels (Upper level, Depth and Step down).
information (diameter,

The icon located in the title bar enables you to pin/unpin the dialog box.

Info

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1.General

1.4 Summarizing the part data in the tool sheet documentation provides you with an advanced option to summarize the CAM-Part information by generating a tool sheet documentation in PDF format.
SolidCAM2008 R12

1.4.1 Definition of tool sheet parameters The Tool Sheet command is available for the complete CAM-Part (in the right-click menu available on the CAM-Part header) or for separate operations (in the right-click menu available on the operations). The Tool Sheet Extra Parameters dialog box is displayed. This dialog box enables you to manage the content of the documentation PDF file.

In this dialog box, you can attach a logo file (in BMP format) to your tool sheet, define your own variables and values that will be inserted into the tool sheet, add comments and notes relative to your part, and decide whether you need the full version of the information sheet or only particular sections, such as Operations summary or Tool Table. The Show Last Tool Sheet command enables you to display the last generated tool sheet for the current part, instead of generating it anew. The Tool Sheet Extra Parameters dialog box is displayed so that you can define which sections of the last tool sheet you want to display.

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1.4.2 The output PDF file The output PDF file consists of the following sections: Main page This section summarizes general information about the CAM-Part, including its picture and the comments and notes you have added.
Comment entered in the Parameters field Part name

Company logo

Part definition

Part picture

Part notes

Part properties

Tool table This section displays the list of the tools used for the operations of the current CAM-Part, with their parameters and illustrations.

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1.General

Operations summary This section summarizes the operations defined for the current CAM-Part.

Fixtures This section shows how the part must be fixed on the CNC machine table.

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1.5 Opening of PRT files by double-clicking In the previous versions of SolidCAM, it was only possible to open a PRT file by using the SolidCAM submenu in the main menu of SolidWorks, i.e. to open a CAM-Part file, you needed to load SolidWorks, click SolidCAM, Open, and then choose the required file from the CAM-Parts browser. SolidCAM2008 R12 provides you with a time-saving possibility to open a PRT file by double-clicking on the file name in any location where it is saved.

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1.General

1.6 3D geometry selection In previous SolidCAM versions the Select/Unselect radio button was used in dialog boxes for 3D geometry selection (solids, surfaces and faces). This radio button switches the system between selection and unselection modes.
SolidCAM2008 R12 provides you with an improvement

of the selection/unselection of the 3D geometry. This improvement is based on automatic toggling between modes: a click on the model entity selects it, while the next click on the selected entity clears the selection.

The Select/Unselect radio buttons are therefore removed from the relevant dialog boxes (3D Geometry dialog box, 3D Box dialog box, Select faces dialog box etc.)

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1.7 Templates
SolidCAM2008 R12

provides you with the functionality of templates that is useful for simplifying the repetitive tasks in the CNC programming. SolidCAM enables you to save the operation data as a template and load it into a new operation of the same type. SolidCAM enables you also to specify the default operation template that is used for each newly created operation of the appropriate type.

SolidCAM enables you also to define and use a Process Template, which is a template of a series of operations that executes a specific machining task. 1.7.1 Operation Template SolidCAM enables you to create an operation template by saving an already defined operation. The saved template can be later used for a new operation definition. The saved template data does not include the geometry which must be defined after loading the template. The saved template can optionally include the tool data.

The Template section is added into each SolidCAM Operation dialog box. This section provides you with the following functionality:

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1.General

Save Template The button enables you to save all the data (except the geometry) of the current operation as a template. The Template Manager dialog box is displayed. This dialog box enables you to choose the name for saving the template. The template is saved in the location defined by the SolidCAM Templates Directory parameter in the Part Settings dialog box (see topic 1.7.4). The Operation Templates table displays all the Operation Templates located in the SolidCAM Templates Directory and their types. The Include template.
tool data

check box enables you to include the tool data in the saved

Type the name in the Template edit box and click on the OK button to confirm. If a template with the defined name already exists in the current location, SolidCAM displays the following warning message:

When you confirm this warning by the Yes button, SolidCAM overwrites the existing template with the new one. When you press the No button, the Template Manager dialog box is activated again providing you with the possibility to choose a different name for the template.

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SolidCAM enables you also to save an existing operation as Operation Template from the SolidCAM Manager, using the Create Template command from the right-click menu available on single operations. This command displays the Template Manager dialog box which enables you to save the template data as described earlier.

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1.General

Load Template The button enables you to load a specific template into the current operation. The Template Manager dialog box is displayed. This dialog box offers you the templates located in the SolidCAM Templates Directory determined by Part Settings (see topic 1.7.4). The Template Manager dialog box displays only the templates whose type is suitable for the current operation. Choose the necessary template and click on the OK button to confirm the operation. When the template is loaded, all the current operation data are substituted with the data from the template. When a template is loaded into the operation, its name is displayed in the edit box in the Templates section. A tool tip message is available when you place the mouse cursor over the edit box; the tool tip message displays the full name of the loaded template.

When any of the operation data is modified after a template is loaded, the template name in the edit box is marked by an asterisk sign (*).

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SolidCAM enables you also to create a new operation from an existing template, directly from the SolidCAM Manager using the Add Operation from Template command from the right-click menu available on the operations header or on single operations. This command displays the Template Manager dialog box which enables you to choose an existing template as described earlier. In this case the Template Manager dialog box displays all the templates existing in the SolidCAM Templates Directory regardless of its type. When the dialog box is confirmed by the OK button, SolidCAM inserts the chosen Operation Template into the SolidCAM Manager tree. The inserted operation is incomplete since the operation has no defined geometry and no tool (if the initial Operation Template used for the operation creation had no tool). The incomplete operations are marked with red color. Since the incomplete operation has no geometry, its tool path cannot be generated. In order to completely define the operation, you have to define its machining geometry and tool (if necessary). During the creation of a new operation from an Operation Template, SolidCAM assigns the Machine Coordinate System #1 (Position #1) for the newly created operation. During the operation editing this Coordinate System can be changed.

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1.General Tool search

When an operation template is loaded, SolidCAM checks the existence of the tool data in the template; if the tool data was saved in the operation template, the tool search is performed according to the following rules: • When the operation template uses a tool defined as Permanent, the tool search for this tool is performed using the tool number only. At the first stage, the tool search is performed in the Part Tool table. If the tool with the defined number is not found in the Part Tool Table, SolidCAM performs an additional search in the Current Tool Table. If a tool with the defined tool number is found in the Current Tool Table, it is copied into the Part Tool Table and chosen for the operation. If the tool is not found in the Current Tool Table, SolidCAM displays the following error message:

When you confirm this message with the OK button, SolidCAM returns you to the operation dialog box in order to define a tool. • When the tool in the operation template is not defined as Permanent, SolidCAM performs the tool search using the tool parameters. The tool parameters used for the tool search are defined in the SolidCAM Settings in the Tool search page. The tool search is performed in the Part Tool table. If a tool with the same definition as in template is not found in the Part Tool Table, SolidCAM performs an additional search in the Current Tool Table. If a suitable tool is found in the Current Tool Table, it is copied into the Part Tool Table and chosen for the operation. If a tool is not found in the Current Tool Table, a new tool with the parameters defined in the template is created in the Part Tool Table. SolidCAM automatically assigns the first not used tool number for the new created tool. When you load a template containing tool data into an operation that already has a defined tool, SolidCAM displays the following message:

When you confirm this message, SolidCAM replaces the tool already defined in the operation with the tool defined according to the template.
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1.7.2 Process template of a series of operations that executes a specific machining task. Such capability enables you to store a complete sequence of operations as a Process template and apply it for the machining of similar cases. Define Process Template To create a select in the SolidCAM Manager all the operations intended to be included in the Process Template and choose the Create Template command from the right-click menu available on single operations. This command displays the Template Manager dialog box which enables you to save the chosen operations as a Process Template.
Process Template, SolidCAM2008 R12 enables you to define and use a Process Template, which is a template

This dialog box displays all the existing Process Templates in the SolidCAM Templates Directory; the Process Templates names are listed in the Template Folders section under the Process Templates header. The sequence of operations comprising the template is displayed in the Operation Templates table.

26

1.General

The Include tool data check box enables you to include the tool data into the saved Process Template. To save the selected operations as a new Process Template, type the name in the Process Template edit box and click on the OK button to confirm the operation. If a Process Template with the defined name already exists in the current location, SolidCAM displays the following warning message:

When you confirm this warning by the Yes button, SolidCAM overwrites the existing Process Template with the new one. When you press the No button, the Template Manager dialog box is activated again providing you with the possibility to choose a different name for the Process Template. The Template Manager dialog box provides you with the capability to create an empty Process Template and copy to it a number of Operation Templates from different Process Templates. See topic 1.7.3 for more details. Use Process Templates SolidCAM enables you to insert the Operations Templates contained in a Process Template into a CAM-Part, converting them into regular SolidCAM Operations. To insert a Process Template into the CAM-Part choose the Add Process Template command from the right-click menu available on operations header or single operations in the SolidCAM Manager.

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This command displays the Template Manager dialog box which enables you to choose an existing Process Template to be inserted.

During creation of a new operation from the Process Template, SolidCAM displays the CoordSys selection dialog box, which enables you to choose the Coordinate System to be used in the created operations.

The inserted operations are incomplete; this means that the operations have no defined geometry and no tool (if the initial Operation Template used for the operation creation had no tool). The incomplete operations are marked with red color. Since the incomplete operations have no geometry, their tool path cannot be generated. In order to completely define the operation, you have to define the machining geometry and tool (if necessary) for each operation.

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1.General

1.7.3 Manage Operation/Process Templates The Manage Templates command located in the SolidCAM menu enables you to manage your Operation Templates and Process Templates using the Templates Manager dialog box.

The Templates Folders section contains Templates and Process Templates. header is selected, all the Operation Templates located in the SolidCAM Templates Directory are displayed in the Operation Templates table.
Templates

When the

All the Process Templates located in the SolidCAM Templates Directory are listed under the Process Templates header. When a Process Template is selected, all the Operation Templates included into this process are displayed in the Operation Templates table.

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SolidCAM enables you to manage the Process Templates with the right-click menu which is available on the Process Templates header or single Process Templates. This menu provides you with the following commands:
• New Process Template.

This command enables you to create a new empty Process Template.

• Rename.

This command enables you to rename an existing Process Templates. This command enables you to delete an existing Process Template.

• Delete.

SolidCAM enables you to manage Operation Templates with the right-click menu which is available on the Operation Templates in the Operation Template table. This menu is available for the standalone Operation Templates located in the SolidCAM Templates Directory and for Operation Templates included into Process Templates.

30

1.General

The menu provides you with the following commands:
• Create Process Template.

This command enables you to create a new Process Templates; the current Operation Template is added to this process.
Copy.

• •

This command enables you to copy the current Operation Template into the clipboard.
Paste. This command enables you to paste the Operation Template from the

clipboard. The Operation Template is inserted into the chosen location (either into the active Process Template or as a standalone Operation Template into the SolidCAM Templates Directory). This command enables you to load the chosen Operation Template for editing. When a template is loaded, SolidCAM displays an appropriate operations dialog box with the template data.

Edit.

SolidCAM enables you to edit all the parameters and options of the template, except the geometry and coordinate system. The button enables you to save the template data using the Save template dialog box. •
Delete.

This command enables you to delete the active Operation template.

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1.7.4 Defaults & Settings SolidCAM Settings The Templates and Defaults page is added to the SolidCAM Settings dialog box.

This page enables you define the default location of the Operation Templates/Template Groups and to specify the default templates that are used for each new operation.
SolidCAM Template Directory

The SolidCAM Template Directory section enables you to define the default location for SolidCAM Operation Templates/Template Groups. You can define the path by typing it in the combo-box or by using the Browse button. In case the chosen folder does not exist, SolidCAM displays the following message:

• The Create button enables you to create the folder with the specified location and set it as the SolidCAM Template directory.

32

1.General

• The Browse button displays the browser dialog box that enables you to choose another location for the SolidCAM Templates directory. By default, the Templates directory location is ..\Tables\Metric\Templates for Metric units and ..\Tables\Inch\Templates for Inch units.
Operation default templates

The Operation default templates section enables you to assign default templates for operations. The templates are divided between four tabs: • The 2.5D Milling tab contains the 2.5D milling operations. • The 3D Milling tab contains the 3D milling operations. • The HSM tab contains the HSM operations. • The Sim. 5-Axis tab contains the Sim. 5-Axis operations. Each tab contains a table that enables you to define the default templates of each SolidCAM operation. When the default template use is activated for a specific operation, the Template column enables you to use the suitable template with the combo-box. When the template use is activated for an operation type, each new operation of this type will be started with the data of the specified template.

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Templates activation/deactivation

When user deactivates template use for an operation, the Template column combo-box is disabled. When you activate template use for an operation type, SolidCAM searches in the SolidCAM Template Directory for suitable templates of this type. The combo-box is filled with the names of the found templates; the first of them is automatically chosen. In case of absence of suitable templates, SolidCAM deactivates the use of templates for this operation.
Changing SolidCAM Template Directory

When you change a SolidCAM Template Directory, SolidCAM performs a search for suitable templates for all the operations with the activated default template use. When a template for some operation is not found, SolidCAM deactivates the default template use. Found templates are inserted into the related combo box. The first found template name is displayed. The templates search is not performed for the operations where the templates use is deactivated.
Creating templates sets (working style)

Consider a folder containing a set of templates. This set contains only one template for each specific operation; all the operations are thus covered by templates. This set is customized for a specific application (e.g. Mold machining). Consider an additional folder containing a set of templates for another application. By switching between these folders for SolidCAM Template Directory, SolidCAM switches templates for all the operations. This enables you to quickly choose a templates set for a specific application.

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1.General

Part Settings SolidCAM enables you to customize the default and templates settings for a specific CAM-Part using the Templates and Defaults page of the Part settings dialog box.

During the CAM-Part definition the Part settings for Templates and Defaults are copied from the SolidCAM Settings. The behavior of this page is similar to the behavior of the Templates and Defaults page of the SolidCAM Settings dialog box.

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1.8 Defining Transform position by picking on the model
SolidCAM2008 R12

enables you to define the positions for operations transformation by picking on the model. This functionality is implemented for Move and Translate by List options.

When you choose the Move item from the Transform menu in SolidCAM Manager, the Move Operations dialog box is displayed. This dialog box enables you either to define the move position by entering the offset values along the axes or to define the move position by picking on the model. To define the move position by picking on the model, activate the Move Operations dialog box and click the necessary position on the design model. The coordinates of the picked position are displayed in the offsets edit boxes.

The picked positions are not associative to the solid model. The of the Translation list dialog box is similar; the coordinates of the picked position are displayed in the Offsets value edit box. The Enter button enables you to confirm the picked position and includes it into the positions list. behavior

The picked positions are not associative to the solid model.

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1.General

1.9 Automatic synchronization and calculation In previous versions, SolidCAM provided you with the possibility to automatically perform the synchronization check. During this check the unsynchronized geometries and operations based on them are detected. SolidCAM2008 R12 provides the additional capability to perform the synchronization and tool path calculation automatically for detected unsynchronized operations. The Synchronization page of the SolidCAM Settings dialog box has two new options. The Automatically synchronize geometries and Calculate operations after the synchronization options are added under the Check synchronization always option (this option enables you to perform the synchronization check automatically).

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Automatically synchronize geometries The Automatically synchronize geometries option enables SolidCAM to perform the geometries synchronization automatically. This option is enabled only when the Check synchronization always option is chosen. When the Automatically synchronize geometries option is activated, SolidCAM performs the synchronization check and then automatically synchronizes all the unsynchronized operations and geometries. When the synchronization fails for certain operations or geometries, SolidCAM marks the operations/geometries with an exclamation mark and deletes the operations tool paths; such operations are marked with the asterisk. Calculate operations after the synchronization The Calculate operations after the synchronization option enables you to automatically perform the calculation of the synchronized operations. This options is enabled only when the Automatically synchronize geometries option is activated. When the Calculate operations after the synchronization option is activated, SolidCAM automatically calculates all the synchronized operations; the operations marked with the exclamation mark are not calculated.

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1.General

1.10 Changing the tool and tool data directly from SolidCAM Manager 1.10.1 Changing tool In previous SolidCAM releases, changing the tool for a particular operation could be performed only via the operation dialog box. SolidCAM2008 R12 enables you to change tools directly from SolidCAM Manager. The Change Tool option is added into the right-click menu available on the operation entries in the tree. This option displays the Tool dialog box that contains the parameters of the current tool and enables you to choose another tool for the operation.

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1.10.2 Changing tool data In previous SolidCAM versions, the data of the tool used in a particular operation could be edited only via the operation dialog box. SolidCAM2008 R12 enables you to change the tool data directly from SolidCAM Manager. The Change Tool data option is added into the right-click menu available on the operation entries in the tree. This option displays the Operation Tool Data dialog box that enables you to edit the data related to the current tool. The All checked operations as selected one check box enables you to define the listed tool parameters in all operations identically to the first operation.

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1.General

1.11 Support of SolidWorks 64-bit provides you with complete support of the 64-bit version of SolidWorks working under the Windows XP Professional x64 Edition.
SolidCAM2008 R12

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42

Geometry

2

2.1 Closing geometry chains by extending chain entities The Curve option commonly used for geometry chains selection enables you to select a continuous geometry chain by picking its successive entities. During the geometry definition SolidCAM detects the gaps between selected entities and provides you with the capability to close them, taking into account the Gap Minimum and Gap Maximum parameters defined in the SolidCAM Settings. If the detected gap is smaller than the Gap Minimum tolerance, SolidCAM automatically closes the gap by extending/shortening chosen entities up to their virtual intersection point. If the gap is greater than the Gap Minimum tolerance but less than the Gap Maximum tolerance, SolidCAM displays a prompt message asking you if you want to close the gap. When you confirm, SolidCAM automatically closes the gap by extending/shortening chosen entities up to their virtual intersection point; if you cancel, SolidCAM does not close the gap and unselects the last entity. When the gap is larger than the Gap Maximum tolerance, SolidCAM does not accept the chosen entity and displays a warning message. provides you with the Curve + Close option of the chain geometry selection. This option enables you to close the gaps between successive chain entities irrespective of the Gap Minimum and Gap Maximum values.
SolidCAM2008 R12

Corners

44

2. Geometry

When a gap is detected between two successively selected entities, SolidCAM continues the chain by virtually extending the selected entities, according to the direction of the first entity, up to a virtual intersection point between the two entities.

First selected entity

Next selected entity

In case several possible intersection points exist, the point closest to the last vertex of the first selected entity is chosen. If an intersection point cannot be found by extending either one or both selected entities, the following message is displayed. Splines and arcs are extended by lines tangential to the arc/spline at its end point.

Associativity and synchronization When the model used for the geometry definition is modified, SolidCAM enables you to synchronize the geometry with the updated model. During the synchronization SolidCAM handles the gaps areas (closed using the Curve + Close Corners option) by regenerating the extension of the chain elements so as to close the gaps.

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2.2 Geometry modification for specific operation SolidCAM enables you to share geometries between a number of SolidCAM operations. SolidCAM2008 R12 provides you with the additional capability to modify a shared geometry, specifically for each operation; this includes assigning different values to the geometry Extension, Offset and Define Start. The geometry modification also includes choosing which geometry chains are active in the operation (in case of multiple chain geometry). The modification is relevant only for the current operation and does not affect other operations where the geometry is shared. The geometry modification is supported for the Profile, T-Slot and Translated Surface operations. The Geometry button is added to the operation dialog box.
Modify

section of the

Technology

page of the

This button displays the Modify Geometry dialog box. This dialog box enables you to perform the geometry modification for the current operation.
Tool side

The Tool side option enables you to define the tool position relative to the geometry. For more details about this option, refer to SolidCAM Milling User Guide.
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2. Geometry

Chains

This section displays the list of all the geometry chains participating in the current geometry. The check box, located at the side of the geometry chains in the list, enables you to include/exclude the chain from the geometry of the current operation. A right click menu is available on the elements of the list. This menu enables you to perform the following actions: •
• Check all. This command enables you to check all the chains.

This command enables you to uncheck all the chains. With this command the state of the check boxes of all the chains will be reversed.
Reverse. This command enables you to reverse the direction of Invert check states.

Uncheck all.

• • •

the chain.

Reverse All. This command enables you to reverse the direction

of all the chains.

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Extension

The Extension section enables you to define the extension for the selected chain. The Start and End parameters define the start and end extension lengths. The extension is performed tangentially to the chain entities at the start and end points of the geometry chain. The start and end elements are determined according to the chain direction.
Start extension End extension

Geometry chain

When a negative value is defined, SolidCAM shortens the chain by a distance, measured along the chain elements. SolidCAM enables you to define the Start and End parameters either by typing in the values or by picking on the model (when the focus is placed in the edit box). The Apply to all button enables you to apply the extension, defined for the selected chain, for all the chains of the geometry.

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2. Geometry

Modify offset

The Modify offset section enables you to define the offset for the selected chain. Machining is performed at the specified offset.
Geometry chain Modify offset

Modified chain

SolidCAM enables you to define the Modify offset parameter either by typing in the value or by picking on the model (when the focus is placed in the edit box). The Apply to all button enables you to apply the Modify offset, defined for the selected chain, for all the chains of the geometry. The direction of the Modify Offset for the open contours is defined according to the chain direction. A positive Modify Offset value offsets the chain to the right side (according to the chosen chain direction). A negative value offsets the chain to the left side (according to the chosen chain direction).
Negative Offset Geometry Chain

Positive Offset

49

For closed contours, a positive Modify Offset value offsets the geometry to the outside; a negative Modify Offset value offsets the geometry to the inside.
Positive Offset Geometry Chain

Negative Offset

The Take 1/2 from selected offset option enables you to offset the chain by half of the defined offset value. In the part shown below the central pads should be machined by a single straight cutting pass, located at the middle of the pad. After defining the geometry at the edge of the pad, the geometry is offset using the picked position at the opposite edge and the Take 1/2 from selected offset option.

Modified geometry

Picked offset position

Geometry

50

2. Geometry

Define Start

The Define start section enables you to shift the start position of the closed chains. For open chains, this section is disabled. The shifting of the start point is defined as a percentage of the chain length. SolidCAM enables you to define the start position shifting either by typing in the Shift value or by picking the position on the model. The Apply to all button enables you to apply the Shift value defined for the selected chain for all the closed chains of the current geometry. The Auto next button enables you to define the start points successively, for all the closed chains, by picking the positions on the model. When this mode is activated, the first closed chain is highlighted, enabling you to pick the start position for it. When the position is picked, SolidCAM switches to the next closed chain and so on. The Resume button enables you to finish the Auto next definition of the start positions. The Set default button enables you to return the start position of the current chain to its initial state. When the Apply to all check box is activated, the Set default button returns the start positions of all the chains to their initial state.

51

2.3 Automatic closing of open geometries for Pocket operations
SolidCAM2008 R12

provides you with the possibility to automatically close the open geometry chains for Pocket operations.

When you confirm an open chain definition for a Pocket operation in the Geometry Edit dialog box with the button, SolidCAM displays the Close Chain message box.

When you confirm this dialog box with the OK button, SolidCAM closes the chain with a line connecting the start and the end points of the chain. The Mark line as open edge check box enables you to mark the connecting line as an open edge to perform Open Pocket machining (see topic 4.11).
Selected chain

Connecting line

When you click on the Cancel button, SolidCAM returns to the geometry definition and enables you to close the chain manually, by the model element selection.

52

2. Geometry

2.4 Synchronization when design model configuration changes In previous SolidCAM versions, SolidCAM provided you with a constant link between the geometry and the design model configuration which was used for the geometry definition (parent configuration). With such a link, switching between configurations of the design model does not affect the defined geometry; the geometry can be updated (through synchronization), only in case the parent configuration is modified.
SolidCAM2008 R12

provides you with an additional functionality that enables you to synchronize the geometry, when the configuration changes; SolidCAM discontinues the link between the geometry and its parent configuration and establishes a new link between the geometry and the new current configuration. Such functionality enables you to automatically update SolidCAM geometries according to the current configuration of the design model. This functionality enables you for example to perform, in a single CAM-Part, the machining of a family of similar parts, based on a single design model and managed by configurations. The geometries of this CAM-Part are automatically updated for each current configuration, providing you with an updated tool path. SolidCAM Settings The
design Synchronization when model configuration

section is added to the Synchronization page of the SolidCAM Setting dialog box. This section enables you to define SolidCAM behavior in case when the configuration is changed.
changes

The SolidCAM Settings are used as the default for the Part Settings of each newly defined CAM-Part.

53

Part Settings The Synchronization page is added to the Part Settings dialog box. This page enables you to define SolidCAM behavior in case when the configuration is changed for the current CAM-Part. The Synchronization when design model configuration changes section provides you with the following options:

The Keep the geometry associative with the parent configuration option enables you to keep the link between the geometry and the parent configuration. SolidCAM always keeps the geometry linked to the parent configuration (the configuration used for the geometry definition). When you switch between the model configurations, this does not affect the geometry; synchronization is required only in case when the parent configuration is changed.

54

2. Geometry
Geometry Geometry

Configuration #1

Configuration #2

The Associate the geometry with the current configuration option enables you to establish the link between the geometry and the current configuration and perform the synchronization according to the current configuration.
Geometry Geometry

Configuration #1

Configuration #2

After such synchronization the geometry is linked to the current configuration until you switch to another one.

55

2.5 Changing the sequence of drill positions In previous SolidCAM versions, editing the sequence of drilling positions was possible only in the operation dialog box. SolidCAM2008 R12 enables you to change the order of positions in the sequence by dragging and dropping them in the list section of the XY Drill Geometry Selection dialog box.

56

Tools

3

provides you with a number of new tool types (see the illustration below). Also SolidCAM2008 R12 provides you with a number of improvements to the existing tool types to better describe the real tools (e.g. adding the Arbor diameter parameter).
SolidCAM2008 R12

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Bo re

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N ill Ce m ill Re Ta p er Th re ad M ill am er nt e rd ril l

ill

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Bu ll

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Ba l

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no se

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En d

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58

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ew

3. Tools

3.1 End Mill / Bull nose mill / Ball nose mill The End/Rough Mill tool type, used is previous SolidCAM versions, is reclassified into three separate tool types: End mill, Bull nose mill and Ball nose mill, according to the Corner radius value. 3.1.1 End mill A tool of this type is defined by the parameters shown in the image. Note that the Corner radius parameter, used for the tool definition in previous versions, is not used any more for the End Mill tool definition. The cylindrical tool arbor is added to the tool definition. The arbor diameter and length are defined by: Arbor Diameter and (Total Length - Shoulder Length). The Shoulder Length should be greater than or equal to the Cutting Length, and equal to or less than the Outside Holder Length.
Arbor Diameter

Total length Shoulder Length

Outside Holder Length Cutting Length

Diameter

When a new tool is created, the default value of the Arbor Diameter is equal to the Diameter value. The default value of the Shoulder Length is equal to the Cutting Length.

59

3.1.2 Bull nose mill A tool of this type is defined by the parameters shown in the image. The Corner radius of a tool of the Bull nose mill type should be in the range from 0 to half the Diameter value. The cylindrical tool arbor is added to the tool definition, same as for the End mill tool.

Arbor Diameter

Total Length Shoulder Length Cutting Length

Outside Holder Length

Diameter

Corner Radius

3.1.3 Ball nose mill A tool of this type is defined by the parameters shown in the image.
nose mill type is equal to half

Arbor Diameter

of a tool of the Bull the Diameter value and cannot be changed.
Corner radius

The

The cylindrical tool arbor is added to the tool definition, same as for the End mill tool.

Total Length Shoulder Length Cutting Length

Outside Holder Length

Diameter
60

Corner Radius

3. Tools

Tools conversion SolidCAM automatically converts tools of the End/Rough Mill tool type, created with previous SolidCAM versions, into one of the three tool types described above. The tools conversion is performed according to the Corner radius value: • Tools with zero Corner radius are converted into End mill tool type. • Tools with Corner radius equal to half the nose mill type. • Tools with Corner radius in the range from converted into Bull nose mill type.
Diameter

are converted into
Diameter

Ball

0

to half the

value are

When an existing tool (created in a previous SolidCAM version) is converted into End mill / Bull nose mill / Ball nose mill tool, the value of the Arbor Diameter is defined as equal to the Diameter. The value of the Shoulder Length is defined as equal to the Cutting Length.

61

3.2 Drill tool The cylindrical tool arbor is added to the tool definition. The arbor diameter and length are defined by: Arbor Diameter and (Total Length - Shoulder Length). The Shoulder Length should be greater than or equal to the Cutting Length, and equal to or less than the Outside Holder Length. When a new tool is created, the default value of the Arbor Diameter is equal to the Diameter value. The default value of the Shoulder Length is equal to the Cutting Length.
Arbor Diameter

Total Length Shoulder Length

Outside Cutting Holder Length Length Angle

Diameter

During the conversion of tools defined in previous SolidCAM versions, the tool arbor is added with the following values: • •
Arbor Diameter

is equal to the Diameter value. is equal to the Cutting Length.

Shoulder Length

62

3. Tools

3.3 Bore tool provides this new tool type for boring using the Drill operations.
SolidCAM2008 R12

Arbor Diameter

The image illustrates the parameters used for the Bore tool definition.

Outside Holder Length

Diameter Shoulder Length

Total Length

Corner Radius Cutting Length

Angle

Parameter limitations
• Corner Radius should • Angle

be equal to or less than the Cutting Length.

should be greater than

and less than 90°.
Shoulder Length

• Cutting Length

value. value. value.

value should be equal to or less than the

• Shoulder Length value should be equal to or less than the Outside Holder Length

• Outside Holder Length

value should be equal to or less than the

Total Length

63

3.4 Center drill tool This new tool type is used for center drilling in Drill operations. The image illustrates the parameters used for the Center drill tool definition.

Arbor Diameter

Outside Holder Length

Shoulder Total Angle Length Cutting Length Angle

Tip Diameter

Tip Length

When this tool is used in combination with the Use chamfer option, SolidCAM calculates the drilling depth according to the following formula:
Drilling depth = Tip length + Arbor Diameter /2 + cotan(Shoulder angle / 2)
Arbor diameter

Cutting length Shoulder angle Chamfer Diameter

Drilling depth Tip Diameter Chamfer Diameter Tip length

64

3. Tools

Parameter limitations • • •
Tip diameter Tip Angle

should be less than the Arbor Diameter.

should be greater than

and less than 180°.

Shoulder Angle

should be greater than

and less than 180°.

• The length of the conical part defined by Tip diameter and Tip angle should be equal to or less than the Tip length value. The length of conical part can be calculated with the following formula: Cone Length = Tip diameter / (2*tan(
Tip angle /2))

• • •

Tip length

should be equal to or less than the Cutting Length value. should be equal to or less than the
Outside Holder Length

Cutting Length

value.

Outside holder length should

be equal to or less than the Total Length value.

65

3.5 Chamfer drill This new tool type is used for chamfering. The image illustrates the parameters used for the Chamfer drill tool definition. Parameter limitations • •
Angle should be greater than and less than 180°. Cutting Length 0°
Total Length Outside Holder Length Angle Shoulder Length Cutting Length Arbor Diameter

should be equal to or less than the Shoulder Length value.
Shoulder Length

Diameter

• •

value.

should be equal to or less than the

Outside Holder Length

Outside Holder Length should

be equal to or less than the Total Length value.

66

3. Tools

3.6 Dove tail mill This new tool type is available for dove tail slot machining. The image illustrates the parameters used for the Dove tail tool definition. Parameter limitations • should be greater than and less than 90°.
Angle 0°

Outside Holder Arbor Length Diameter Shoulder Length Total Length Angle Cutting Length

• Corner radius

should be equal to or less than half the Diameter value.

Cutting Length should be equal Corner Radius to or less than the Shoulder Length value. Shoulder Length

Diameter

• •

value.

should be equal to or less than the

Outside Holder Length

Outside Holder Length

should be equal to or less than the Total Length value.

67

3.7 Taper tool The cylindrical tool arbor is added to the tool definition. The arbor diameter and length are defined by: Arbor Diameter and (Total Length - Shoulder Length). The Shoulder Length should be greater than or equal to the Cutting Length, and equal to or less than the Outside Holder Length. The image illustrates the parameters used for the Taper tool definition. Tools conversion During the conversion of existing tools, the tool arbor is added with the following values: • •
Arbor Diameter is equal to the tool Shank Diameter

Arbor Diameter

Outside Holder Length Angle

Total Length Shoulder Length Cone Length

Cutting Length

Diameter Tip Diameter

Corner Radius

Shoulder Length is equal to the Cutting Length + (Outside Holder Length – Cutting Length)/2

Arbor Diameter Shank diameter Total length Outside Holder Length Outside Holder Length Diameter Cutting Shoulder Length Length Cutting Length Corner radius Taper angle Diameter Corner radius Cone length Taper angle Tip Diameter Total Length

Old definition
68

New definition

3. Tools

In previous SolidCAM releases the flutes were considered to be only on the conical face (flutes length and cone length were defined by the Cutting Length value). In SolidCAM2008 R12, the cone length and flutes length are defined by separate parameters. The Cone Length is determined by the Diameter, Taper angle and Tip diameter parameters. The Cutting Length parameter defines the length of flutes. The flutes can be located at the conical and cylindrical faces of the tool.

You choose one of the check boxes, at the side of the Tip Diameter and Cone Length edit boxes, in order to define the taper tool using either the Tip diameter or the Cone Length. When the Tip Diameter check box is selected, the Cone Length check box is unselected and the relevant edit box is disabled; the Cone Length value is thus automatically calculated. When the Cone Length check box is selected, the Tip Diameter check box is unselected and the relevant edit box is disabled; the Tip Diameter value is thus automatically calculated.

69

Note that the Tip Diameter is the diameter of the virtual intersection of the conical shape with the bottom plane.

Tip Diameter

Parameter limitations • • • • • • •
Tip diameter Angle

should be less than the Diameter value.

should be greater than 0° and less than 180°. be equal to or less than half the Tip Diameter value.

Corner Radius should Corner Radius

should be less than the Cone Length value. be equal to or less than the Shoulder Length value.
Outside Holder Length

Cutting Length should Shoulder Length

value.

should be equal to or less than the

Outside Holder Length should

be equal to or less than the Total Length value.

70

3. Tools

3.8 Engraving tool This new tool type is used for engraving. The image illustrates the parameters used for the Engraving tool definition.

Arbor Diameter

Diameter

Outside Holder Shoulder Length Length

Total Length

Cutting Length Tip Diameter

Angle Corner Radius

Parameter limitations • • • •
Tip diameter should Angle should

be less than the Diameter value.

be greater than 0° and less than 90°. should be equal to or less than half the Tip Diameter value.

Corner Radius Corner Radius

should be less than the automatically calculated Cone Length value (the Cone Length is calculated using the Diameter, Tip Diameter and Angle values).
Cutting Length Shoulder

• •

should be equal to or less than the Shoulder Length value.

should be equal to or less than the Outside Holder Length value.
Length Outside Holder Length

should be equal to or less than the Total Length value.

71

3.9 Face Mill tool This new tool type is used for facing. The image illustrates the parameters used for the Face Mill tool definition. Note that the Cutting Length edit box is disabled, this edit box displays the automatically calculated Cutting Length value. Parameter limitations • • • • •
Tip diameter
Shoulder Length Arbor Diameter Total Length

Outside Holder Length

Cutting Length

Angle Tip Diameter Diameter

should be less than the Diameter value. be greater than 0° and less than 90°. be equal to or less than the Cutting Length value.

Angle should

Corner Radius should Corner Radius

should be equal to or less than half the Tip Diameter value.

Shoulder Length

should be equal to or less than the Outside Holder Length value and greater than or equal to the automatically calculated Cutting Length value.
Outside Holder Length should

be equal to or less than the Total Length value.

72

3. Tools

3.10 Lollipop mill The cylindrical tool arbor is added to the tool definition. The arbor diameter and length are defined by: Arbor Diameter and (Total Length - Shoulder Length). The Shoulder Length should be greater than or equal to the Cutting Length, and equal to or less than the Outside Holder Length. The image illustrates the parameters used for the Lollipop mill definition. During the conversion of existing tools, the tool arbor is added with the following values: • •
Arbor Diameter

Arbor Diameter

Total Length Outside Holder Length Cutting Shoulder Length Length

Diameter

the tool Shank Diameter

is equal to

Shoulder Length is equal to the Cutting Length

Parameter limitations •
Cutting Length Diameter^2 ))/2

has to be equal to or less than the following value:

(Diameter+sqrt( Diameter^2-Arbor

• • •

Cutting Length has

to be equal to or less than the Shoulder Length. to be equal to or less than the Outside Holder Length. to be equal to or less than the Total Length value.

Shoulder Length has

Outside Holder Length has

73

3.11 Reamer tool The cylindrical tool arbor is added to the tool definition. The arbor diameter and length are defined by: Arbor Diameter and (Total Length Shoulder Length). The Shoulder Length should be greater than or equal to the Cutting Length, and equal to or Total Outside Length less than the Outside Holder Length. Holder The image illustrates the parameters used for the Reamer tool definition. During the conversion of existing tools, the tool arbor is added with the following value: •
Arbor Diameter

Arbor Diameter

Length

Cutting Length

Diameter

Chamfer Length

the Diameter

is equal to

Parameter limitations • • •
Chamfer Length should Cutting Length should Outside Holder should

be equal to or less than the Cutting Length value.

be equal to or less than the Outside Holder value. be equal to or less than the Total Length value.

74

3. Tools

3.12 Slot tool The Shank Diameter used in previous SolidCAM versions, is renamed into the Arbor Diameter in SolidCAM2008 R12, to be consistent with the other tools. The image illustrates the parameters used for the Slot tool definition.
Arbor Diameter

Total Length

Outside Holder Length

Corner Radius

Diameter

Cutting Length

75

3.13 Spot Drill This new tool type is used for center drilling and chamfering. The image illustrates the parameters used for the Spot Drill definition. The Cutting Length edit box is Length Shoulder disabled. This edit box displays the Length Cutting Length value, automatically calculated by SolidCAM according to the Diameter and Angle values. Parameter limitations • • • •
Angle

Arbor Diameter

Diameter Total Outside Holder Length Angle

should be greater than 0° and less than 180°.

Cutting Length

Shoulder Length should be equal to or greater than the automatically calculated Cutting Length value. Shoulder Length

value.

should be equal to or less than the

Outside Holder Length

Outside Holder Length should

be equal to or less than the Total Length value.

76

3. Tools

3.14 Tap tool The cylindrical tool arbor is added to the tool definition. The arbor diameter and length are defined by: Arbor Diameter and (Total Length Shoulder Length). The Shoulder Length should be greater than or equal to the Cutting Length, and equal to or Total Length Outside less than the Outside Holder Length. During the conversion of existing tools, the tool arbor is added with the following values: • •
Arbor Diameter

Arbor Diameter

Holder Length

Chamfer Cutting Length Length

the tool Thread Diameter
Shoulder Length

is equal to is equal to
Diameter Tip Diameter

the Cutting Length

77

3.15 Thread Tool The Shank Diameter used in previous SolidCAM versions, is renamed into the Arbor Diameter in SolidCAM2008 R12, to be consistent with the other tools. The image illustrates the parameters used for the Thread tool definition.
Arbor Diameter

Outside Holder Length Shoulder Length

Total Length

Thread Diameter

Thread Cutting Length

78

3. Tools

3.16 Taper Thread Tool The Shank Diameter used in previous SolidCAM versions, is renamed into the Arbor Diameter in SolidCAM2008 R12, to be consistent with the other tools. The image illustrates the parameters used for the Taper Thread tool Outside Holder definition.
Arbor Diameter

Angle

Total Length

Length Shoulder Length

Thread Diameter

Thread Cutting Length

79

3.17 Choosing the tool type The process of the tool type definition in SolidCAM2008 R12 is as follows: when you start a new tool definition, SolidCAM displays the Tool Type dialog box in order to choose the tool type.

For an existing tool, the tool type can be changed with the Change Tool type command from the right click menu as shown.

80

3. Tools

3.18 Tool Units In previous SolidCAM versions, the tools in the tool library were saved without the units data. When a tool was loaded into a CAM-Part, its dimensions were interpreted according to the CAM-Part units; therefore it was impossible to use tools with different units than the units of the CAM-Part.
SolidCAM2008 R12 provides

you with the possibility to assign units data for each tool in the tool library. The tool library can store tools of different units. Such functionality enables you to use tools, defined in different units than the units of the CAM-Part, without converting the tool parameters into the CAM-Part units. You can choose the units for the tool diameter values and tool lengths separately.

The Mm/Inch radio buttons are also added to the Default Tool data page. These radio buttons enable you to define the units used for the speed/feed definition. In the Part Tool Table, these radio-buttons are disabled; the units of the CAM-Part are used.

81

When a tool library created in a previous SolidCAM version is loaded in SolidCAM2008 R12, the Assign Units dialog box enables you to assign units for tools.

82

3. Tools

3.19 Angular dimensions In SolidCAM2008 R12, the button is added to each angular dimension edit box.

When the button is clicked, the angle is displayed in the degrees/minutes/seconds format. The edit box becomes disabled. button is clicked again, the edit box becomes enabled, with the angle When the value in decimal format.

83

3.20 Rough tools In previous versions, SolidCAM provided you with a separate tool type to define rough end mill tools. SolidCAM2008 R12 enables you to define rough tools of all the following types: • End mill • Ball nose mill • Taper mill • Drill • Dove tail mill The Rough check box is added to the Tool topology page for the tools of types listed above; this check box enables you to mark the tool as suitable for rough milling. • Bull nose mill • Face mill • Slot mill • Bore

84

3. Tools

and Do not display rough tools options are added to the Range dialog box. These options enable you to handle rough tools during the tools sorting.
Rough tools only

The

The Rough tools only option enables you to display only rough tools in the tools list. When the Do not display rough tools option is activated, the tools marked as Rough are not displayed.

85

3.21 Link to the Carmex and Vardex thread milling tool libraries you with a link to the Carmex (www.carmex.com) and Vardex (www.vardex.com) thread milling tool libraries. This link enables you to choose the appropriate thread milling tool from the Carmex or Vardex library and import it for use inside the SolidCAM Thread Mill Operation. The installations of the Carmex (Carmex_Setup.msi) and Vardex (VardexTMGen11.0.26-Full.exe) tool libraries are located in the /Util folder under the SolidCAM installation directory. To import a tool from the Carmex or Vardex thread milling tools library, choose the Carmex or Vardex item from the standard tables list for Thread Mill and Taper Thread Mill tools.
SolidCAM2008 R12 provides

The Carmex or Vardex tool library wizard is launched. The wizard guides you through the steps to define the parameters of the tool you are looking for, selects a number of tools from the library that fit these parameters and enables you to choose one of these tools. When the tool is chosen, it is imported into the SolidCAM tool library.
86

Milling

4

4.1 3D Depth type in Profile Milling In the previous versions of SolidCAM, you could define the depth for the variable-depth profiles only manually with the Define depth option. SolidCAM2008 R12 provides you with the new 3D option for machining 3D profiles. This option facilitates the depth definition by determining the depthchange points automatically according to the model geometry. To define the profile depth with this option, choose the 3D option in the Depth type area of the Profile Operation dialog box.

option, the Operation Upper Level at each point along the profile, is defined automatically by the 3D Profile varying depth.
3D

With the

Profile Depth

88

4. Milling

The Delta Z parameter enables you to offset the Operation Upper Level in the Z-axis direction.

Delta Z

If you want to edit the depth-change points defined automatically with the Profile 3D option, choose the Define depth option and click on the Pick button.

The depth-change points are displayed on the model. The Define depth dialog box displays the data of these points and enables you to edit the profile depth definition by picking points manually on the model.

89

4.2 Contour 3D operation provides you with the new Contour 3D operation which enables you to utilize the power of the 3D Engraving technology for the 3D contour machining. In this operation SolidCAM enables you to prevent the gouging between the tool and the 3D contour.
SolidCAM2008 R12

The Contour 3D operation performs the machining of the defined 3D contour geometry using the following technology parameters: Tool reference This option enables you to define the point on the tool which is in contact with the machined 3D contour.
• Tip.

With this option, the tool tip is in contact with the 3D contour; SolidCAM prevents the gouging between the tool and the 3D contour. Note that the tool axis always crosses the geometry.

90

4. Milling

With this option, the tool center is in contact with the 3D contour. In this case, SolidCAM does not check the gouging between the tool and the contour.

Center.

Technology

When the Tip option is chosen for the Tool Reference definition, SolidCAM provides you with the following technology parameters:
Type

This option enables you to perform the semi-finish and/or finish of the 3D contour. •
Semi-finish performs the machining of

the 3D contour in several steps along the Z-axis. The vertical distance between two steps is defined by the Step down parameter. machine the 3D contour to its final dimensions in one step

• •

down.
Both

Finish will

is used to machine the 3D contour first with a semi-finish cut and then with a finish cut.

91

Step down

This value defines the vertical distance between two successive steps during the Semi-finish machining of the 3D contour. • With this option, SolidCAM performs a number of horizontal semi-finish passes at each down step, from the Upper Level up to the defined Contour depth.
Upper Level
From Upper level.

3D Contour geometry

Contour depth

From surface. SolidCAM performs a number of

3D semi-finish passes at each step down, from the chosen 3D contour to the defined Contour depth. 3D Contour geometry
Contour depth

92

4. Milling

4.3 T-Slot operation
SolidCAM2008 R12

provides you with a new type of Milling operation that enables you to machine slots in vertical walls with a slot mill tool.

The definition of the T-Slot Operation is mainly similar to the regular Profile operation, except for a number of parameters related to the milling of the ceiling face of the slot. 4.3.1 Second offset number At the stage of the tool data definition, a new parameter related to the tool offset is available. The Second offset number parameter defines the register number of the upper cutting face offset, in the offset table of the CNC machine. This option enables SolidCAM to automatically take into account the minor size differences between the defined tool and the one actually used for cutting the workpiece, if there are any. You may choose not to use this option by clearing the check box.

93

4.3.2 Technological parameters Ceiling offset For rough machining of the slot, you can define the offset for the ceiling as well as for the walls and the floor.

Ceiling offset

You may choose to remove this offset with the finish pass by selecting the Ceiling check box in the Finish section.

Cutting depth overlap This parameter defines the overlap of each two adjacent tool paths, in both the rough and finish machining of the slot.
Cutting depth overlap Cutting depth overlap

94

4. Milling

Cutting direction For both rough and finish cuts, you may define the direction of machining. The slot can be milled from top to bottom or from bottom to top.

95

4.4 Face Milling Operation In previous SolidCAM versions, face milling (the machining of large flat surfaces with face mill tools) was performed by utilizing the Clear strategy of the Pocket Operation. SolidCAM2008 R12 provides you with a new Face Milling Operation which includes the functionality of the Clear strategy and new advanced functionality.

To create a new Face Milling operation, choose the Face command from the Add operation submenu. The Face Milling operation dialog box is displayed.

96

4. Milling

Geometry definition SolidCAM enables you to define the geometry for the Face Milling operation with the Face Milling Geometry dialog box.
Name

This edit box enables you to define the geometry name.
Geometry is based on:

This section enables you to choose the method of the Face Milling geometry definition. •
Model. With this option a rectangle, located at the XY-plane and surrounding the Target model, is generated and chosen for the Face Milling geometry. The rectangle chain is displayed in the Chains List section.

Face Milling Geometry

97

This option enables you to define the Face Milling geometry by face selection. The Define button and related combo-box enable you either to define a new faces geometry with the Select Faces dialog box or to choose an already defined geometry from the list. When the model faces are selected, SolidCAM generates a number of chains surrounding the selected faces. These chains are displayed in the Chains List section.
Face Milling Geometry

Faces.

Selected faces

This option enables you to define the Face Milling geometry by a profile. The Define button and related combo-box enable you either to define a new profile geometry with the Geometry Edit dialog box or to choose an already defined geometry from the list. The defined chains are displayed in the Chains List section.
Face Milling Geometry

Profile.

98

4. Milling

Chain List

This section displays all the chains chosen for the Face Milling geometry.

The Merge button enables you to merge all the Face Milling geometry chains into a single chain. The Separate button enables you to divide a merged chain into its initial separate chains.

Separate chains

Merged chain

Modify

This section enables you to offset the chain currently selected in the Chain List section. The Apply to all button enables you to apply the specified offset value to all the chains.
Offset

99

The definition of the Face Milling Operation is mainly similar to the regular operation, except for a number of parameters related to face milling. The Technology page of the following parameters: Technology
Face Milling Operation

Pocket

dialog box provides you with the

SolidCAM enables you to choose the following technologies for the face milling:

• Hatch

With this strategy the machining is performed in a linear pattern. The Data button displays the Hatch data dialog box which enables you to define the hatch parameters. The Hatch parameters used for the Face milling are similar to the parameters used for the Hatch strategy of the regular Pocket operation.

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4. Milling

During face milling the tool path is extended over the edges of the machined face. The Extension section enables you to define the extension both along the tool path (the Along section) and across the tool path (the Across section). The extension can be defined either by percentage of the tool diameter (the % of tool diameter option) or by value (the Value option).

Extension across the tool path

Extension along the tool path

• Contour

With this strategy the machining is performed in a number of equidistant contours. The Data button displays the Contour data dialog box which enables you to define the contour parameters in the same manner as for the Contour strategy of the Pocket Operation. The Contour parameters used for Face milling are similar to the parameters used for the Contour strategy of the regular Pocket operation.

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Similar to the Hatch strategy, the Contour tool path can also be extended over the machined face edges. The Extension section enables you to define the extension of the tool path, same all around. The extension can be defined either by percentage of the tool diameter (the % of tool diameter option) or by value (the Value option).

Extension

• One Pass

With this option, SolidCAM performs the face milling in one pass. The direction and location of the pass is calculated automatically, taking into account the face geometry, in order to generate an optimal tool movement with the tool covering the whole of the geometry. The Data button displays the One Pass data dialog box which enables you to define the machining parameters.

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4. Milling

The Extension section enables you to define the tool path extension over the face edges. The extension can be defined either by percentage of the tool diameter (the % of tool diameter option) or by value (the Value option).

Extension

The Overlap section enables you define the tool overlapping between two successive passes. This section is enabled for Hatch and Contour strategies only. Offsets

The Offsets section enables you to define the value of the Floor offset, the machining allowance that is left unmachined on the face during the rough machining. The Finish check box enables you to remove the remaining offset with the last cut (if the check box is selected) or leave the offset unmachined for further operations (if the check box is unselected). Sort cut order

The Complete Z-level option enables you to define the order of the machining Z-levels, in case more than one face is machined. The behavior of this option is similar to its behavior in the Pocket Operation.

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4.5 Vertical zigzag passes in Profile operation In previous SolidCAM versions the linking of the profile machining passes, located at successive Z-levels (defined with the Step down parameter), was performed by rapid movement up to, at and down from the Clearance level. At the end of each pass the tool performs a retreat movement to the operation Clearance level, a horizontal movement at rapid feed to the beginning point of the next pass and then descends to the Z-level of the next pass. With this method SolidCAM keeps the same cutting direction (either climb or conventional) along the whole tool path.
SolidCAM2008 R12 provides you with the possibility to connect the passes, located at two successive Z-levels, directly from the end of a pass to the beginning of the next pass. With this connection method the machining is performed in a zigzag manner; the machining changes to the opposite direction from one pass to the next.

The

section is located in the page of the Profile operation dialog box. This section enables you to switch between the One way and Zigzag options.
Depth cutting type Technology

When the One way option is chosen, the cutting passes are oriented in the same direction and connection between them is performed through the operation Clearance level. When the Zigzag option is chosen, the tool path is performed in a zigzag manner, with the tool path direction changing from one pass to the next. The Zigzag option cannot be used together with the technology.
Clear offset

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4. Milling

Lead in and Lead Out When the Lead In/Out strategies are used together with the Zigzag option, SolidCAM calculates the lead in/out movements for all the cuts according to the direction of the first cutting pass, irrespective of the direction of the other cutting passes. During the tool path linking, SolidCAM connects the cuts (containing lead in and lead out movements) in a zigzag manner and changes the direction of all even cuts to the opposite. Therefore only for odd cuts, the Lead in strategy is used for the lead in and the Lead Out strategy is used for the Lead Out. For even cuts the Lead In strategy is used for the Lead Out and the Lead Out strategy is used for the Lead In. Tool side and compensation When the Zigzag option is used, the Tool side combo-box defines the tool location for the first cut. For each successive cutting pass, the tool position, relative to the geometry direction, is changed. When the compensation is used for the tool path linked using the Zigzag option, SolidCAM takes into account the machining direction and the changes in the tool position, relative to the geometry direction, for each successive cut. The different compensation commands are used in the GCode output for even and odd cuts.
Movements defined by Lead in strategy

Movements defined by Lead out strategy

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4.6 Equal step down in Profile and Pocket operations In previous SolidCAM versions, the machining of the Profile and Pocket operations started from the Upper level and continued on a number of successive Z-levels till the operation Depth (modified with the Floor offset and Delta depth parameters). The distance between two successive Z-levels was determined by the Step down parameter. If the machining depth was not divisible exactly by the Step down parameter, the depth of the last cut was less than the Step down parameter.
SolidCAM2008 R12

Step down

Last cut depth

provides you with the Equal step down option that enables you to keep an equal distance between all Z-levels. With this option you have to specify the Max. Step down parameter (instead of the Step down parameter).

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4. Milling

According to the operation Depth (modified with the Floor offset and Delta depth parameters), SolidCAM automatically calculates the actual step down to keep an equal distance between all passes, while making sure not to exceed the specified Max. Step down value.
Max. Step down

Actual step down

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4.7 Final cuts machining in Profile and Pocket operations provides you with the option to divide the depth to be machined into two regions, each with its own Step down, with the second region, close to the depth bottom, having the smaller Down step.
SolidCAM2008 R12

The Final cuts button is added to the dialog box.

Technology

page of the

Profile/Pocket Operation

This button displays the Final cuts dialog box. This dialog box enables you to define the parameters of the Final cuts machining.

When the Final cuts used check box is activated, the option is used. The Number of steps parameter defines the number of Final cuts. The Step down value defines the distance between two successive Final cuts.

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4. Milling

When the Final cuts option is used, the check box on the Final cuts button is activated. When the Final cuts option is activated, SolidCAM performs the machining with the operation Step down from the Upper level till the depth calculated according to the following formula: Depth - Number of cuts * Step down. From this depth, the machining is performed in a number of cuts, determined by the Number of cuts/ Step down parameters in the Final cuts dialog box. The machining in such manner is performed till the full operation depth.
Step down

Step value

Final Cuts

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4.8 Wall Draft angle in Profile and Pocket operations In previous SolidCAM versions, it was possible to perform Profile and Pocket operations on vertical walls only.
SolidCAM2008 R12

enables you to perform the machining of walls inclined with a constant draft angle along all the geometry.

The Wall draft angle button is added to the Technology page of the Profile and Pocket operation dialog boxes. This button displays the Wall draft angle dialog box. When the Wall draft angle check box is activated in the dialog box, the inclined wall machining is performed. The External wall angle parameter defines the draft angle of the wall; the angle is measured from the Z-axis direction as shown. The Islands wall angle parameter defines the draft angle of the island walls. This parameter is relevant only within the Pocket operation; the angle is measured similar to the External wall angle parameter.
110

4. Milling

For the inclined wall machining, each cutting pass located at a specific Z-level is generated according to the specified External/Island wall angle parameter. The External corner type option enables you to define how the cutting passes will be connected during the external corners machining. The following possibilities are available for two possible types of corners in the geometry model: If the geometry model has sharp corner there are two options for creating tool path at the corner:
• Sharp Corner.

With this option the tool path is calculated in such a way so as to perform the machining of a sharp corner.

Geometry

• Conical fillet.

With this option the tool path is calculated in such a way so as to perform the machining of the corner with a conical fillet; the radius of the tool path rounding increases from one pass to the next.

Geometry

If the geometry model has filleted corner there is one option for creating tool path at the corner:
• Cylindrical fillet.

The tool path is calculated in such a way so as to perform the machining of the corner with a cylindrical fillet; the radius of the tool path rounding is the same for all the cutting passes.

Geometry

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4.9 Profile floor machining In previous SolidCAM versions, the Profile operation enabled you to define a machining allowance in XY direction (Wall offset), leaving it unmachined during the profile roughing and removing it during the finishing passes (within the same operation or within another Profile operation).
SolidCAM2008 R12 provides you with the possibility to define a similar allowance in the Z-direction (Floor offset). This Floor offset is left unmachined during the profile roughing and removed during the finishing.

The Floor offset parameter is added to the Offsets section, located on the Technology page of the Profile operation dialog box. The Floor activated.
offset

parameter is available only when the

Rough

section is

When the Floor offset is specified, SolidCAM performs the machining by the Z-levels defined with the Step down parameter. The machining is performed up to the Floor offset from the Profile depth. The Clear offset section enables you to define the parameters of the Clear offset machining for the roughing and finishing passes.

Step Down Profile Depth

Floor offset

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4. Milling

The use of the Clear offset option for the Profile finishing enables you to perform the machining of both the Wall and Floor offsets. In this case, SolidCAM performs first the machining of the floor area and then the walls. The floor area is machined with a single cutting pass at the Profile depth. This cutting pass is calculated using the Clear offset strategy (with the specified Offset and Step over parameters) and taking into account the specified Wall offset.

Wall offset Offset Step Over

The wall finishing is performed from the Upper level till the Profile Depth in a number of steps defined with the Step down parameter.

Step Down

Profile Depth
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4.10 Pocket Wall finishing In previous SolidCAM versions, the pocket walls finishing was performed with a single cut at the whole Pocket depth.
SolidCAM2008 R12 enables you also to perform the finishing of the walls in a number of successive cuts, with the distance between them defined by the Step down parameter.

Single Finish pass

Finish passes

The Depth section is added to the the Pocket operation dialog box.

Finish

section of

This section enables you to choose how the wall finish will be performed: either at the whole depth (Total depth option) or in a number of steps at each step down (Each step down option). The options of the Depth section are available only when the wall finishing is performed in the operation (the Wall or Floor option is used for the Finish). When the Wall draft angle option is used in the operation, the Depth options are disabled and the Each step down option is used for the Wall finishing.
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4. Milling

4.11 Open Pocket machining provides you with the functionality to perform the machining of a pocket with a combination of open edges and closed walls. This functionality generates optimized tool path and lead in movements.
SolidCAM2008 R12

Open Pocket

4.11.1 Open Pocket Geometry definition SolidCAM enables you to define the geometry for the Open Pocket Machining by defining open edges on the conventional Pocket geometry.
Closed edges Pocket geometry

Open edge

The Mark open edges command is added to the right click menu available on chain items in the Chain List section of the Geometry Edit dialog box. This command displays the Mark Open Edges dialog box. This dialog box enables you to mark the open edges on already chosen pocket chains by picking on them. The Mark as section of the dialog box enables you to choose the selection mode. When the Open option is chosen, picking a pocket geometry edge marks it as open. When the Wall option is chosen, picking a pocket geometry edge marks it as closed (wall). With the Toggle option, picking a closed edge marks it as open and vise versa.

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The Select section enables you to choose the selection method. When the Single entity option is chosen, SolidCAM enables you to pick single entities in order to mark them in order to mark them as open/closed. When the From/To entities option is chosen, SolidCAM enables you to mark a segment of the pocket geometry by picking the start and the end entities. The CAD Selection button enables you to perform the selection using the CAD tools. 4.11.2 Open pocket machining parameters The Open Pockets section is added to the Technology page of the Pocket operation dialog box. This section is enabled only when the pocket geometry contains open edges. During the Open pocket machining the tool path is extended beyond the open edges. The Extension section enables you to define the overlapping between the tool and the open edges; the overlapping can be defined either by percentage of the tool diameter (the % of tool diameter option) or by value (the Value option).
Open edge

Extension

The Use profile strategy option enables you to perform the Open pocket machining in a Profile manner. The tool path at a specific Z-level consists of a number of equidistant profiles starting from outside the model (at the distance defined by the Extension parameter). The tool moves in parallel offsets to the pocket geometry.

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4. Milling

The One way/Zigzag options enable you to define the tool path direction and linking. • With the Zigzag option, the tool finishes one profile pass and then directly moves to the next pass. The machining is performed without leaving the material, thus constantly switching between climb and conventional milling.

• With the One way option, the tool finishes one profile pass, then rapidly moves (G0) to the safety distance and then to the start of the next cutting pass. The cutting direction (either climb or conventional) is preserved for each cutting pass.

The Approach from outside option enables the tool to approach from outside of the material in the open pocket areas, if possible. Such an approach enables you to decrease the tool loading when plunging into the material. This option enables SolidCAM to perform the approach movement from an automatically calculated point outside of the material. The tool moves to the necessary depth outside of the material and then plunges into the material. The Descend to cutting level with Rapid option enables you to avoid vertical nonmachining movements outside of the material performed with the working feed by direct rapid movement down to the cutting level.

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When this check box is selected, the tool descends from the Clearance level outside of the material directly to the cutting level (defined with the Step down parameter) using the Rapid feed. Then the horizontal movement into the material is started with the working feed.

Upper level Rapid movement

Cutting level

When this check box is not selected, the tool descends from the Clearance level down to the Safety distance with Rapid movement. From the Safety distance, the tool descends down to the cutting level (defined by the Step down value) with the defined feed and starts the horizontal cutting movements into the material with the working feed.

Upper level Rapid movement Safety distance Feed movement Cutting level

The Descend to cutting level with Rapid check box is available only when the Approach from outside check box is selected.

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4. Milling

4.12 Adjacent tool paths connection in Profile operations provides you with the Adjacent tool paths connection option for the Profile operation. This option enables you to choose the connection method for adjacent cutting passes generated using the Clear offset method with Zigzag option.
SolidCAM2008 R12 operation dialog

The

Adjacent tool paths connection

box.

section is added to the

Links

page of the

Profile

The following options are available to define the passes connection: • With this option, the tool movement from one cutting pass to the next, is a straight line connecting the end point of the first pass to the start point of the next pass.
Linear.

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Rounded.

With this option, the tool movement from one cutting pass to the next is an arc, tangential to the adjacent cuttings passes. The arc connects the end point of the first pass to the start point of the next pass.

120

4. Milling

4.13 Complete Z-level in Pocket operations provides you with a new Complete Z-level option which enables you to define the order of the machining Z-levels during the machining of several pockets within a single Pocket operation. The option is located in the Technology page of the Pocket operation dialog box.
SolidCAM2008 R12

When the Complete Z-Level check box is not selected, SolidCAM machines all the Z-levels of the first pocket and then starts the machining of the next pocket.

1 2 3 4

5 6 7 8

When the Complete Z-Level check box is selected, the machining is performed by the Z-levels; SolidCAM removes material at a specific Z-level in all the pockets and then moves to the next Z-level.

1 3 5 7

2 4 6 8

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4.14 Movements between cutting passes provides you with a new Keep tool down option that enables you to reduce unnecessary rapid tool movements upto, at and down from the Clearance level, during machining with Profile, Pocket, Pocket Recognition and Face Milling operations. This option is added in the Link page of the operation dialog box.
SolidCAM2008 R12

Clearance level

If the Keep tool down check box is not selected, then after the machining of a specific Z-level, the tool retracts up to the Operation Clearance level. At this level the tool horizontally moves to the start position of the next cut and then descends to the next Z-level.

If the Keep tool down check box is selected, then after the machining of a specific Z-level, the tool directly moves to the start position of the next cut (without retreating up to the Clearance level) and then descends to the next Z-level.

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4. Milling

4.15 Minimal machined area in Floor Constant Z machining In the Constant Z floor machining of 3D models, SolidCAM2008 R12 provides you with the possibility to define the minimal tool path segment length that will be machined. The Min. cut area option is added into the Constant Z flat floor machining section of the Constant Z Semi-Finish and Constant Z Finish dialog boxes.

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Automatic Feature Recognition and Machining (AFRM)

5

5.1 Drill Recognition operation
SolidCAM2008 R12 provides you with the new Drill Recognition

operation that combines the power of automatic hole feature recognition and the interactive control by the user of the machining technology. This operation provides you with two significant advantages versus the current Drilling operation: • The Drill Recognition operation performs powerful drill feature recognition and automatic Drill geometry creation using SolidCAM AFRM module functionality. • While the Drilling operation enables you to define only one set of Milling Levels parameters (Upper Level, Drill Depth, Delta Depth) that is common for all the drill positions, the new Drill Recognition operation enables you to handle separate sets of Milling Levels for each drill position. The initial values of the Milling Levels sets are automatically recognized from the model and they can be edited by the user. The Drill Recognition operation dialog box enables you to define the geometry and the technological parameters of the operation.

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5. Automatic Feature Recognition and Machining (AFRM)

5.1.1 Geometry definition
SolidCAM2008 R12 enables you to define the geometry for the Drill Recognition operation

using the AFRM functionality. The geometry used for the Drill Recognition operation is automatically recognized on the Target model. Therefore the Target model should be defined in the CAM-Part before you define the Drill Recognition operation. The geometry definition is performed using the HR Drill dialog box. This dialog box provides you control over the parameters of the drill recognition and enables you to select the specific hole features that you want to machine in the current Drill Recognition operation. The hole recognition is performed on the Target model in a direction parallel to the Z-axis of the Coordinate System chosen for the operation.
Geometry Selection

The major steps of the follows:

HR Drill Geometry

selection are

• Choose the model configuration used for the recognition. • Set the selection filter options (Hole type, diameter, Hole Upper level and Hole Height).
Hole

• Perform the holes recognition and generate the recognized holes tree. • Choose from the holes tree those holes that you want to include in the operation geometry. • See a preview of the machining sequence. Following is a detailed explanation of the all the sections and parameters of the HR Drill Geometry Selection dialog box.

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Name

This edit box enables you to define the geometry name.
Configuration

This section enables you to select the SolidWorks model configuration to be used for the geometry definition.
Hole type

This section sets the recognition filter that filters the hole features according to their type. The Through check box enables you to recognize the through hole features. The Blind check box enables you to recognize the blind hole features. When both of these check boxes are unselected, hole recognition cannot be performed and the Find Holes button is disabled.
Hole Diameter (d)

When this section is activated, SolidCAM enables you to filter the hole features according to the Hole Diameter. With this filter, only the hole features with the Hole Diameter within the specified range are recognized. The From and To values enable you to define the diameter range either by typing in the values or by picking on the solid model. When the cursor is located in the From/To edit box, SolidCAM enables you to specify the diameter value by picking either a specific cylindrical surface or a circular edge in the solid model. When a cylindrical surface / circular edge is picked, its diameter is calculated and inserted into the relevant edit box (the previous value is removed). The edit box becomes pink. When you remove the automatically determined value, the edit box becomes white.

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5. Automatic Feature Recognition and Machining (AFRM)

The Thread only option enables you to recognize only hole features with threads. When this option is checked, the From and To values define the range of the Thread diameter values. When the Thread option is active the From and To values can be defined by picking either a specific cylindrical surface, cosmetic thread or circular edge in the solid model.
Hole Upper level (u)

When this section is activated, SolidCAM enables you to filter the hole features according to the Upper Level. With this filter, only the hole features with the Upper Level within the specified range are recognized. The From and To values enable you to define the Upper Level range either by typing in the values or by picking on the solid model. When the cursor is located in the From/To edit box, SolidCAM enables you to specify the Upper Level value by picking the solid model. When a model point is picked, the Z-value of the picked position is calculated and inserted into the relevant edit box (the previous value is removed). The edit box becomes pink. When you remove the automatically determined value, the edit box becomes white.
Hole height (h)

When this section is activated, SolidCAM enables you to filter the hole features according to the Hole Height. With this filter, only the hole features with the Hole Height within the specified range are recognized. The From and To values enable you to define the Hole Height range either by typing in the values or by picking on the solid model. When the cursor is located in the From/To edit box, SolidCAM enables you to specify the Hole Height value by picking the solid model. When a model point is picked, the Z-value of the picked position is calculated and inserted into the relevant edit box (the previous value is removed). The edit box becomes pink. When you remove the automatically determined value, the edit box becomes white.
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Found holes Undo/Redo

This section provides you with the Undo/Redo buttons that enable you to go back/forward to a specific choice of holes, found with a specific set of filter parameters.
Options

Find Holes

The Find holes button performs the holes recognition and filtering of the recognized holes according to the criteria described above. The hole features matching the specified filter criteria will be displayed in the Holes Tree list. Actually, the holes recognition is not performed each time when you click on the Find Holes button. When the holes recognition is performed the first time for a specific Z-axis direction, the recognized holes data is stored in the database and can be used for further geometry definition. When you click on the Find Holes button, SolidCAM retrieves the data from the database, according to the filter settings, and checks the synchronization between the data and solid model. If the data in the database is not synchronized, a new holes recognition process is performed and filtering is re-applied. •
Preview

The Preview button displays the current drill geometry (based on selected items in the Holes Tree) and the initial machining sequence. Click on the Resume button to return back to the geometry definition.

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5. Automatic Feature Recognition and Machining (AFRM)

Holes Tree

In the Holes Tree list, the hole features are classified into Shapes and Groups. A Shape contains all the hole features with the same topology; within a Shape, the Groups include all the hole features with the same parameters: shape dimensions, upper level and height.

The check box at the side of each item in the Holes Tree list enables you to select/unselect this item to participate in the current drill geometry. When a Group or Shape is selected, all the hole features belonging to them are selected. The selected items are highlighted on the model. The right-click menu is available on the items in the list. The Select All command enables you to select all the recognized hole features to participate in the drill geometry. The Unselect All command enables you to clear the selection from all the hole features in the list. The Show hole command displays the Hole Picture and Hole Parameters dialog boxes. The Hole Picture dialog box provides you with a schematic image of the selected hole feature. The Hole Parameters dialog box displays parameters of the selected hole feature. This dialog box displays the common hole feature data and the specific parameters of the hole feature segments.

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Synchronization
Synchronization in case the model changes

During the synchronization check, SolidCAM checks the correspondence between the holes included in the geometry and the updated solid model. If a mismatch between the holes location is found, SolidCAM marks this geometry as “not synchronized” and enables you to synchronize it. During the synchronization, SolidCAM updates the holes locations. If the location of a hole included in the geometry cannot be updated from the model (the hole is missing), SolidCAM excludes this hole from the geometry. If all the holes are excluded from the geometry, SolidCAM marks this geometry with an exclamation sign; such geometry requires manual editing and redefinition.
Synchronization in case of Coordinate system change

When the Coordinate System used for the geometry definition is changed, SolidCAM tries to recalculate all the hole features included in the geometry, according to the updated Coordinate system position and orientation. When the axis of a hole, included in the geometry, is not parallel to the Z-axis of the updated Coordinate system, SolidCAM excludes this hole from the geometry. If all the holes are excluded from the geometry, SolidCAM marks this geometry with an exclamation sign; such geometry requires manual editing and re-definition. When the parallelism between hole axis and Z-axis of the Coordinate System is preserved after the CoordSys update, SolidCAM recalculates the hole center coordinates according to the updated origin.

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5. Automatic Feature Recognition and Machining (AFRM)

5.1.2 Drill Depth definition enables you to perform the machining of a number of identical drills, with different depths and located at different levels, within a single operation.
SolidCAM2008 R12

After the geometry for the Drill Recognition operation is defined, the Depth Edit dialog box enables you to edit the Milling Levels parameters (Upper Level, Drill Depth, Delta Depth) for the each drill separately.

Holes Tree The Holes Tree section displays the list of all the drill instances chosen for the geometry. All the drills in the list are structured by groups. Each Group has the same Upper level, Drill Depth, Delta Depth and Drill type. Each drill instance in the list is accompanied by the Y- coordinates of the drill positions.
X-

and

133

Each Group in the list is accompanied by the following information enclosed in parentheses: Upper level, Drill Depth, Delta Depth and Drill type.
Target model. The 0 value is used as default for Delta depth. The Cutter tip option is used

The initial values of the

Drill depth

and

Upper level

parameters are recognized on the

by default for all the Drill type definitions.

All the list entries can be selected. When some entry is selected, the relevant parameters are displayed in the Upper Level, Drill Depth, Delta Depth and Drill type sections. The selected group/drill instances are highlighted on the solid model. The right-click menu is available on each item in the list.

This menu provides you with the following commands: • This command enables you to restore and assign to selected item (either group or single drill instance) the Upper Level and Drill Depth recognized on the Target model. The Delta Depth value is restored to 0. The Drill type option is restored to the Cutter tip. When the Restore Data from Model command is applied, SolidCAM checks the Holes tree items and reorganizes them into groups according to the changed parameters.
Restore Data from Model to All. Depth, Delta Depth and Drill type data for all the drill instances in the list. When Restore Data from Model.

This command restores the

Upper Level, Drill

the Restore Data from Model to All command is applied, SolidCAM checks the Holes tree items and reorganizes them into groups according to the changed parameters.

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5. Automatic Feature Recognition and Machining (AFRM)

Upper Level The
Upper Level

Upper level

holes.

section enables you to set the value of the and apply it for a single hole, group or all the

The edit box displays the value of the Upper Level of the selected item (group or hole). The edit box enables you either to type in the value or pick the value directly from the model (when the focus is placed in the edit box). SolidCAM enables you to pick planar faces parallel to the XY-plane of the Coordinate System, model vertices and sketch points. When a model is picked, the Z-value of the picked position is displayed in the edit box. The edit box becomes pink. Such pink background means that the parameter is defined associatively to the solid model. When the edit box value is typed in, it is not associative to the model; in this case a white background is used. The Apply button enables you to apply the defined Upper level value to the selected list item (group or drill instance). When a new Upper Level value is applied, SolidCAM checks the Holes tree items and reorganizes them into groups according to the changed parameters. SolidCAM checks all the groups to find a group with identical Upper Level, Drill Depth, Delta Depth and Drill type parameters. If such a group is found, SolidCAM adds the updated drill to this group. In case of absence of a suitable group, a new group is created; the updated drill instance is added to this group. The Apply button is disabled until you change the value in the edit box. The All check box enables you to apply the updated Upper Level value for all the drill instances. Drill Depth The Drill Depth section enables you to define the value of the Drill depth and apply it for a single hole, group or all the holes. The edit box displays the value of the Drill Depth of the selected item (group or hole). The edit box enables you either to type in the value or pick the value directly from the model (when the focus is placed in the edit box). SolidCAM enables you to pick drill faces or edges. SolidCAM determines the depth of the picked drill according to the defined Upper Level and displays the value in the edit box. The edit box becomes pink. Such pink background means that the parameter is defined associatively to the solid model. When the edit box value is typed in, it is not associative to the model; in this case a white background is used.
135

The Apply button enables you to apply the defined Drill depth value to the selected list item (group or drill instance). When a new Drill depth value is applied, SolidCAM checks the Holes tree items and reorganizes them into groups according to the changed parameters. SolidCAM checks all the groups to find a group with identical Upper Level, Drill Depth, Delta Depth and Drill type parameters. If such a group is found, SolidCAM adds the updated drill to this group. In case of absence of a suitable group, a new group is created; the updated drill instance is added to this group. The Apply button is disabled until you change the value in the edit box. The All check box enables you to apply the updated instances. Delta Depth The
Delta Depth Drill depth

value for all the drill

Delta Depth

holes.

section enables you to set the value of the and apply it to a single hole, group or all the

The edit box displays the value of the Delta Depth of the selected item (group or hole). The default value for the Delta Depth parameter is 0. The Apply button enables you to apply the defined Delta Depth value to the selected list item (group or drill instance). When a new Delta Depth value is applied, SolidCAM checks the Holes tree items and reorganizes them into groups, according to the changed parameters. SolidCAM checks all the groups to find a group with identical Upper Level, Drill Depth, Delta Depth and Drill type parameters. If such a group is found, SolidCAM adds the updated drill to this group. In case of absence of a suitable group, a new group is created; the updated drill instance is added to this group. The Apply button is disabled until you change the value in the edit box. The All check box enables you to apply the updated Delta depth value for all the drill instances.

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5. Automatic Feature Recognition and Machining (AFRM)

Drill type The Drill type section enables you to define the Drill type option that will be chosen for a single hole, group or all the holes. The Drill type option enables you to choose the diameter on the conical part of the drilling tool that will reach the specified drilling depth during the machining. With the Drill type option you can deepen a drilled hole in order to obtain a given diameter at the specified drill depth. The following options are available:
• Cutter tip.

The drill tip reaches the defined Drill depth. The drill reaches the defined Drill depth with the full diameter.

• Full diameter.

The drill reaches the defined Drill depth with the drill cone diameter specified by the Diameter value parameter. For more information about the Drill type options, refer to the SolidCAM Milling User Guide.

Diameter value.

The Apply button enables you to apply the defined Drill type to the selected list item (group or drill instance). When a new Drill type option is applied, SolidCAM checks the Holes tree items and reorganizes them into groups according to the changed parameters. SolidCAM checks all the groups to find a group with identical Upper Level, Drill Depth, Delta Depth and Drill type parameters. If such a group is found, SolidCAM adds the updated drill to this group. In case of absence of a suitable group, a new group is created; the updated drill instance is added to this group. The Apply button is disabled until you change the current Drill type option. The All check box enables you to apply the updated instances.
Drill type

option for all the drill

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5.1.3 Technological parameters

The technological parameters used for the Drill Recognition operation definition are identical to the parameters used for the Drilling operation definition. For more information about drilling technological parameters, refer to SolidCAM Milling User Guide.

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5. Automatic Feature Recognition and Machining (AFRM)

5.2 Pocket Recognition operation provides you with the Pocket Recognition operation which enables you to recognize the pocket features on the solid model and perform their machining.
SolidCAM2008 R12

5.2.1 Geometry definition The automatically recognized geometry for the Pocket Recognition operation consists of planar faces and the loops of the through pocket features.
Through pockets Planar faces

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The Select Faces dialog box enables you to define the parameters of the pocket feature recognition.

The major steps of the Pocket Recognition geometry selection are follows: • Choose the model configuration used for the recognition. • Set the selection filter options for Through Pocket and Circular Pocket. • Set the selection mode (Solid body, Face, Through pocket chain. • Perform the pocket recognition and generate the faces tree. • Choose from the faces tree those faces that you want to include in the operation geometry.
Faces dialog

Following is a detailed explanation of the all the sections and parameters of the Select box.
Name

This edit box enables you to define the geometry name.

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5. Automatic Feature Recognition and Machining (AFRM)

Configuration

This section enables you to select the SolidWorks model configuration to be used for the geometry definition.
Through Pocket

If this section is activated within the Solid body selection modes, SolidCAM performs also the recognition of through pocket features.
Through pockets

Only the through pocket features where the upper loop is similar to the lower loop are recognized. SolidCAM rejects from the selection the through pocket features that cannot be machined with the current Coordinate System position.

Upper loop

Lower loop

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Circular Pocket diameter filter

If the Circular Pocket diameter filter section is activated within the Solid body selection modes, SolidCAM enables you to select circular pocket features according to their diameter. All the circular pocket features with a diameter larger than the specified Min. Diameter value will be selected; circular pocket features, with diameter less than the specified Min. Diameter value, are rejected. Using this option enables you to avoid the machining of drills that will be machined with other operations (Drilling, Drill recognition etc...). The Min. Diameter parameter defines the minimum diameter either by typing in the value or by picking on the solid model. When the cursor is located in the Min. Diameter edit box, SolidCAM enables you to specify the diameter value by picking either a specific cylindrical surface or circular edge in the solid model. When the Circular pocket diameter filter section is not active, all the recognized circular pocket areas (suitable for the current Coordinate System) will be selected.

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Selection mode

The Selection mode section enables you to set the mode of the geometry selection. The following selection modes are available:
• Solid Body.

This mode enables you to perform automatic recognition of the pocket features on the picked solid body. With this mode, SolidCAM recognizes all the planar faces with the surface normal vector oriented parallel to the Z-axis of the current CoordSys. Planar faces that cannot be machined with the current CoordSys position (undercuts) are rejected from the selection. All the through pocket areas are recognized (according to the Through pocket option state).
Z

Selected faces

Undercut face (rejected)

• Face. This

mode enables you to pick single planar faces. When a face is picked, SolidCAM checks the parallelism between the surface normal vector of the picked face and the positive direction of the Z-axis of the current CoordSys. If they are not parallel, the face is not selected. The undercut faces that cannot be machined with the current CoordSys are also rejected. With the Face option, the selection is working in toggle mode: the first click on a face selects it, the next click on the selected face removes it from the selection.

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• Through pocket chain.

This mode enables you to select the through pockets by picking one of the edges of the lower loop of the pocket area. When the edge is picked, SolidCAM automatically chooses the complete geometry of the through pocket. The lower loop is highlighted on the model. With the Through pocket chain option, the selection is working in toggle mode: the first click on an edge selects the loop, the next click on an edge of the already selected loop removes it from the selection.

Model Appearance

The Transparency option enables you to display the selected solid bodies in transparent mode.

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5. Automatic Feature Recognition and Machining (AFRM)

List of recognized elements

This section displays the list of all the recognized model elements that are included in the geometry of the Pocket Recognition operation. Each model element is accompanied by its Z-level value enclosed in parentheses. When an element is selected in the list, it is highlighted on the solid model. The right-click menu is available on the list items. The Unselect command enables you to remove the current item from the selected geometry. The Unselect All command enables you to clear the selection. End of process of the geometry definition When the Select Faces dialog box is confirmed, SolidCAM automatically generates a number of pocket contours to perform the optimal machining of the selected faces and through pockets. For example in the part shown below, SolidCAM generates the contours shown below from the selected planar faces. The machining is performed in the following sequence. At first stage the upper face is machined. At the next stage the pocket is machined up to the height of the central pad. From this height, the pocket with island is machined up to the final pocket depth.

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5.2.2 Geometry modification After the geometry is defined, it can be shared between a number of Pocket Recognition operations. In each such operation, SolidCAM enables you to perform a specific geometry modification. The modification is relevant only for the current operation and does not affect other operations based on this geometry. The Modify button, located on the Geometry page, displays the Geometry Modify dialog box which enables you to define the parameters of the geometry modification.
Through pocket

This section enables you to modify the depth of the through pockets with the specified Delta value. When a positive Delta value is applied, the through pockets will be deeper by the specified Delta value.
Machine floor fillets

The Machine floor fillets option enables you to control the machining of the fillets between the floor and walls of the pocket features. When this option is activated, SolidCAM generates a multilevel pocket geometry, evenly distributed along the Z-axis. The machining of this geometry performs the rough machining of the fillets.

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5. Automatic Feature Recognition and Machining (AFRM)

The Number of Steps button enables you to display the Fillet Step number dialog box. This dialog box enables you to control the parameters of the multi-level geometry generation and provides you with the information about the Maximum Fillet Radius found in the geometry. This dialog box enables you to specify the range of the fillet radii and assign for each such range the number of steps; SolidCAM generates such a number of evenly distributed Z-levels. At each level, a closed contour is automatically generated.

Transparency

The Transparency section enables you to apply the transparency for the solid bodies used for the geometry definition.
Preview

The Preview button enables you to display the modified geometry on the solid model. The Resume button enables you to return from the preview state to the dialog box.
List of the geometry elements

This list displays the geometry elements participating in the current geometry. Each element in the list is accompanied by the following information in the parentheses: Z-level at which the element is located, radius of the adjacent fillet (if any) and diameter of circular pockets. The check box, located at the side of the geometry elements in the list, enables
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you to exclude the current element from the geometry of the current operation. When the check box is activated, the element will be machined by the current Pocket recognition operation. A right-click menu is available on the elements of the list. This menu enables you to perform the following actions: •
Check all. This command enables you to check all the elements of the list. Uncheck all.

This command enables you to uncheck all the elements of the list.

Invert check states. With this command the state of the check boxes of all the elements will be reversed.

5.2.3 Milling Levels

The

page enables you to control the machining level parameters: Start Level, These parameters are similar to the parameters of the regular Pocket Operation.
Levels Clearance level, Safety distance, Upper level, Step down.

Note that the Pocket depth parameter is absent; it is automatically recognized from the solid model, specifically for each pocket feature.

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5.2.4 Technological parameters

Most of the technological parameters used for the Pocket Recognition operation are similar to the technological parameters of the Pocket operation. For more information about technological parameters, refer to Guide.
SolidCAM Milling User

Following is the explanation of the specific parameters of the operation.
Final Cut

Pocket Recognition

When this option is activated, SolidCAM generates only the finish path for the floor area of the pockets; rough machining will not be performed. Since the Floor offset parameter is disabled, machining will be performed only at the specified pocket depth.

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5.3 Using color information in AFRM
SolidCAM2008 R12 enables you to use the color information from the model for the

technology definition in the AFRM module.

During the hole features recognition, SolidCAM recognizes the color of the hole feature segments. The color information is displayed in the Show data dialog box.

During the conversion of the hole feature segments into machinable hole feature segments the RGB color is converted into a number of Float type and assigned to the hr_segm_color variable. This variable can participate in the conditions defined in the Technology Database in order to choose the necessary technology solution. Assigning color value to a variable Choosing the Color definition command displays the Select Color dialog box.

This dialog box enables you to assign the color value to the variable. The color button enables you to choose the color from the Color dialog box.

Click on the Pick face button and then pick on the model face. The color of the picked face will be captured and displayed in the dialog box. The Float value of the color and its RGB values are displayed in the relevant edit boxes. When the dialog box will be confirmed with the OK button, the Float color value will be assigned to the variable.

5.4 Dividing deep holes for machining from both sides
SolidCAM2008 R12 provides you with new functionality for machining cylindrical through holes with depth significantly greater than a normal cutting length of a tool. Such holes are divided into two halves so that they can be approached by the tool from both sides and are machined with an overlap equal to 10% of the entire hole depth.

Overlap

To divide a hole, right-click on its entry in the Features page of the HR Manager and choose the Divide Hole Segment command from the menu. Divided holes can be joined. The Join Hole command in the menu enables you to join the divided segments.

Segment

High Speed Machining (HSM)

6

6.1 Boundary definition by faces selection HSM Module provides you with new method of the boundary definition which enables you to define the boundary by faces selection similar to the Working area definition for the 3D Milling Operation.
SolidCAM2008 R12

To use this mode of boundary definition, switch to the Created manually option in the Boundary type section and choose the Selected faces option in the combo box.

Click on the Define button to start the boundary definition. The Selected faces dialog box is displayed.

Name

This section enables you to define the boundary name and the tolerance that is used for the boundary creation.
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6. High Speed Machining (HSM)

Drive faces

This section enables you to define Drive faces – the set of faces to be milled. The tool path is generated only for machining of these faces. The Define button displays the Select faces dialog box which is used for the faces selection. The Offset edit box enables you to define the offset for the Drive faces. When the offset is defined, the machining is performed at the specified offset from the Drive faces.
Check face Drive face Drive faces offset

Check faces

This section enables you to define Check faces – the set of faces to be avoided during the generation of the tool path. The Define button displays the Select faces dialog box which is used for the faces selection. The Offset edit box enables you to define the offset for the Check faces. When the offset is defined, the machining is performed at the specified offset from the Check faces.

Check faces offset Check face Drive face

Guide.

For more information about the Select Faces dialog box, refer to SolidCAM Milling User

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6.2 Helical Machining strategy HSM Module provides you with a new Helical Machining strategy. With this strategy, SolidCAM generates a number of closed profile sections of the 3D Model geometry, located at different Z-levels, similar to the Constant-Z strategy. SolidCAM then joins these sections in a continuous descending ramp in order to generate the Helical Machining tool path.
SolidCAM2008 R12

The tool path generated by the parameters:

Helical Machining

strategy is controlled by two main

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6. High Speed Machining (HSM) • Step down. This parameter defines the distance along the Z-axis between two

successive Z-levels, at which the geometry sections are generated. Since the Step down is measured along the Z-axis (similar to the Constant-Z strategy), the Helical Machining strategy is suitable for steep areas machining.

• Max. Ramp angle. This parameter defines the maximum angle (measured from

horizontal) for ramping. The descent angle of the ramping helix will be no greater than this value.

Max. Ramp Angle Step down

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6.3 Offset Cutting strategy In previous versions, SolidCAM was offering you the Morph Machining strategy, where the tool path is generated between two Drive curves, that define the shape of the tool path.
Tool path

HSM Module provides you with an additional Offset Cutting strategy. This strategy is a particular case of the Morph Machining strategy; the Offset Cutting strategy enables you to generate a tool path using a single Drive curve. The tool path is generated between a Drive curve and a virtual offset curve, generated at the specified offset from the Drive curve.
SolidCAM2008 R12

Drive curve

The Curve section in the Drive boundary page enables you to define the Drive curve used for the tool path definition.

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6. High Speed Machining (HSM)

The Clear direction section enables you to specify the direction in which a virtual offset of the Drive curve is created. SolidCAM enables you to generate the offset in Right, Left or Both directions from the Drive curve.
Left

Drive curve

Right

The Cutting direction section enables you to determine how the machining is performed. If the Along option is chosen, the machining is performed along the drive curve. The tool path morphs between the shapes of the drive curve and the offset curve, gradually changing shape from the first drive curve to the offset curve. When the Across option is chosen, the tool path is performed across the drive curve; each cutting pass connects corresponding points on the drive curve and offset curve.

Along

Across

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The Clear offset parameters located at the Passes page enable you to define the offset distance used for the virtual offset curve calculation. SolidCAM enables you to define separate values for the Left Clear offset and Right Clear offset.
Tool path Drive curve

Left Clear Offset

Right Clear Offset

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Sim. 5-Axis Machining

7

7.1 User interface enhancements and new parameters
SolidCAM2008 R12

provides you with a number of enhancements of the Sim. 5-Axis operation user interface. These user interface enhancements are intended mainly to group parameters in a more logical manner. Also a number of new parameters and options have been added. 7.1.1 Sim. 5-Axis Operations In previous versions, SolidCAM offered you three types of Sim. 5-Axis Operations to perform 3-, 4and 5-Axis machining.

In SolidCAM2008 R12 the Sim. 5-Axis operation performs both simultaneous 4- and 5-Axis machining. The Sim. 5-Axis (3-Axis) operation of the previous version has been renamed as HSS (High Speed Surface machining) and set as a separate operation (see topic 7.2).

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7. Sim. 5-Axis Machining

7.1.2 Geometry

The Geometry page provides you with the following sections: • • •
Pattern.

This section enables you to define the machining strategy.

Geometry. This section enables you to choose the geometry necessary for the

chosen strategy.

Area.

This section enables you to define the machining area. The
Sorting

Tool path parameters

section, existing in previous versions, is moved to the page (see topic 7.1.5).

The Round corners option is moved to the Area section from the Tool path parameters page. For more information about Geometry page parameters and options, refer to SolidCAM Sim. 5-Axis User Guide.

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Margins provides you with a new option for the Margins definition for the Full, start and end at exact surface edges method of the Area definition.
SolidCAM2008 R12

The Add tool radius to margins enables you to expand the cutting area, defined by margins, by the tool radius distance.

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7. Sim. 5-Axis Machining

7.1.3 Tools

The Tool page provides you with the following sections: • • • •
Tool data. Spin. Rate.

This section enables you to define the tool for the operation.

This section enables you to define the spindle spin speed. This section enables you to define the feed rate for the operation.

Rapid move parameters. This section enables you to specify the feed rate used for rapid movements. This option is moved from the Change Feed Rate According to Surface Radius dialog box.

The First cut feed rate scale percentage option is moved to the from the Misc. Parameters page.

Tool

page

For more information about Tool page parameters and options, refer to SolidCAM Sim. 5-Axis User Guide.

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7.1.4 Levels

The Levels page provides you with the following sections: •
Clearance area. This section enables you to define the Clearance area, which is

the area where the tool movements can be performed safely without gouging the material.
Retract

Levels.

This section enables you define the approach and retract from the part.
Levels

and

Safety distance

to

Sim. 5-Axis User Guide.

For more information about

page parameters and options, refer to

SolidCAM

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7. Sim. 5-Axis Machining

Several new options are added to the Clearance area section: Plane This option enables you to define the Clearance area by plane. The plane orientation is defined by a vector normal to the plane. In previous versions, SolidCAM enabled you to define this vector as one of the Coordinate System axes (X, Y or Z). SolidCAM2008 R12 provides you with an additional capability to define the plane by an arbitrarily-oriented vector (the User defined direction option). The Direction dialog box enables you to define the direction vector by its coordinates (dX, dY and dZ parameters). Using the button, SolidCAM enables you to pick the start and end points of the vector directly on the solid model. Cylinder This option enables to define the Clearance area as a cylindrical surface enclosing the Drive surface. In previous versions, SolidCAM enabled you to define the cylinder axes only parallel to one of the Coordinate System axes (X, Y or Z). SolidCAM2008 R12 provides you with an additional capability to define the cylinder axis by an arbitrarily-oriented vector (the Parallel to user defined direction option). The Direction dialog box enables you to define the direction vector by its coordinates (dX, dY and dZ parameters). Using the button, SolidCAM enables User-defined vector you to pick the start and end points of the vector directly on the solid model.
User-defined vector

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7.1.5 Tool path parameters

The Tool path parameters page provides you with the following sections: • • This section enables you to define the parameters that affect the surface finish quality. This section enables you to control the merging of the tool path segments, generated for separate surfaces, into the operation tool path. This section enables you define the Chaining tolerance parameter which defines the tolerance of the initial grid used for the tool path calculation.
Sorting. Advanced options for surface quality. Surface Merge edge distance. Surface quality.

• •

This section enables you define the order and direction of the cuts.

Tool contact point.

This section enables you define the point on the tool surface that contacts with the drive surfaces during the machining.

For more information about Tool path parameters page parameters and options, refer to SolidCAM Sim. 5-Axis User Guide.

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7. Sim. 5-Axis Machining

Scallop provides you with a new Scallop parameter, added to the Surface quality section. This parameter enables you to define the cusp height of the machined surface.
SolidCAM2008 R12

The Scallop parameter is available only when a Ball Nose Mill tool is chosen for the operation. parameter corresponds to the Max. Step Over parameter. When a Scallop is defined, SolidCAM automatically updates the Max. Step Over value according to the chosen tool diameter and the Scallop; vise versa, when the Max. Step Over is redefined, SolidCAM automatically recalculates the Scallop value. The
Scallop

Scallop

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7.1.6 Link

The Link page provides you with the following sections: • • • • • This section enables you to define the first approach of the tool to the cutting area. This section enables you to define the last retreat of the tool from the cutting area, after the machining.
Gaps along cut. This section enables you define how the tool moves in the gap areas along the cutting passes. Links between slice. This section enables you define how the tool moves between cutting passes. Links between passes. Last exit. First entry.

This section enables you define how the tool moves between cutting levels.

5-Axis User Guide.

For more information about Link page parameters and options, refer to SolidCAM Sim.

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7. Sim. 5-Axis Machining

Links between passes

enables you to choose two different linking options for large and small movements between cutting levels. The maximum size of movements to be considered as small can be specified by a Value.
SolidCAM2008 R12

7.1.7 Default Lead In/Out

The Default Lead In/Out page provides you with the following sections: • • This section enables you to define the parameters used for the approach movements.
Lead Out parameters. Lead In parameters.

This section enables you to define the parameters used for the retreat movements. The Same as Lead In option provided in SolidCAM2008 R12 enables you to use the defined Lead In strategy for the Lead Out definition.

For more information about Default Lead In/Out page parameters and options, refer to SolidCAM Sim. 5-Axis User Guide.

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7.1.8 Tool axis control

The Tool axis control page provides you with the following parameters and sections: • • •
Output format.

This parameter enables you to choose either 4-Axis or 5-Axis output format for the operation.

This parameter enables you to define the maximal allowed angle change between the tool axes at two consecutive tool positions.
Tool axis direction. This section enables you to choose the tool tilting strategy.

Max angle step.

The tool tilting strategy enables you to define the orientation of the tool axis, during the machining relative to the surface normal. This option enables you to limit the tool tilting along the tool path.
Tool axis control

Limits.

For more information about

SolidCAM Sim. 5-Axis User Guide.

page parameters and options, refer to

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7. Sim. 5-Axis Machining

Orthogonal to edge curve This new option is added to the list of Side tilt definition options available when the Tool axis direction is set to Tilted relative to cutting direction (in the Parallel to curve and Morph between two curves strategies). With this option, the plane of the side tilting is orthogonal to the edge curve at each cutting position.
Tilt angle at side of cutting direction Tilt angle at side of cutting direction

Edge curve Edge curve

Rotary axis provides you with a new option which enables you to define the tool axis orientation when the 4-Axis output is chosen. The Point tool to rotary axis option is added to the 4th Axis dialog box (this dialog box is available with the Rotary axis button, when the 4-Axis output is used).
SolidCAM2008 R12

With this option, the tool is oriented in such a way that its axis is intersecting the rotary axis. When this option is activated, all other options defining the tool axis orientation are not available.

Rotary axis

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7.1.9 Gouge check

The Gouge check page provides you with the following parameters and sections: • This parameter enables you to define the clearance offsets for arbor and tool holder in order to get a guaranteed clearance gap between arbor, tool holder and workpiece.
Gouge pages. SolidCAM enables you to define four different sets of gouge checking parameters. In each set you have to choose components of the tool holding system and model faces to check the possible collisions between them. You also have to define the strategy how to avoid the possible collisions. Combining these sets, SolidCAM enables you to choose different strategies for avoiding the different types of possible collisions. Gouge check Clearance.

For more information about

SolidCAM Sim. 5-Axis User Guide.

page parameters and options, refer to

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7. Sim. 5-Axis Machining

Moving tool away provides you with a number of new retract options available for the Move tool away strategy of the gouge checking. With these options, SolidCAM enables you to define the direction of the retract movements performed when possible collisions are detected.
SolidCAM2008 R12

Retract tool opt. in XY, XZ, YZ plane

With this option, the retract movement is performed in the chosen plane, similar to the Retract tool in XY, XZ, YZ plane options; the differences are in the direction of the retract movements in the chosen plane. The contact points, at which collisions are detected, are projected on the chosen plane and connected into a contour. This contour is offset outwards by a distance equal to the sum of the tool radius and the Stock to leave values. This option enables you to perform the retract movements in optimal directions, generating the shortest tool path.

Retract tool in user-defined direction

This option enables you to define the direction of the retract movements by a vector. The Direction dialog box (available with the Select button) enables you to define the direction vector by its coordinates (dX, dY and dZ parameters). Using the button,
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SolidCAM enables you to pick the start and end points of the vector directly on the solid model.

Retract movement

Retract direction vector

Retract along tool contact line

With this option, the retract movements are performed along the contact line between the tool and the drive surface.

Contact line

Retract movements

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7. Sim. 5-Axis Machining

Advanced options for Use lead/lag and side tilt angles mode With the Use lead/lag and side tilt angles mode (available for the Tilting tool away with max angle strategy), SolidCAM enables you to use a combination lead/lag tilting and side tilting to avoid possible collisions. SolidCAM2008 R12 provides you with a number of advanced options for this mode. The Optimize parameters dialog box is available with the Advanced button located in the Use lead/lag and side tilt angles dialog box. This dialog box provides you with the following options and parameters enabling you to optimize the tool tilting:
Optimize with following order

This section enables you to define a number of the optimization preferences and set their priority. The preferences are ordered in the list from the highest priority (top of the list) to the lowest priority (bottom of the list).
• Stay close to initial tool orientation.

This option enables you to perform an optimal tool tilting with a minimum angular deviation from the initial tool orientation.
Respect tool axis angle limits in cut direction.

• • •

With this option, SolidCAM tries to keep the tool orientation in the cutting direction in the specified limits. vertical as possible. With this option, the tool is oriented as

Keep tool axis as vertical as possible.

Minimize rotary axis moves.

axis movements. movements.

This option enables you to minimize the rotary

• Minimize tilt axis moves.

This option enables you to minimize the tilting axis

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Fix axis (Rotary, Tilt, Both)

With this option, SolidCAM enables you to fix the CNC Machine axes during the tilting movement, used to prevent collisions.
Re-optimize for

This slider enables you to perform re-optimization of the tilting movement, used to prevent collisions. During the re-optimization, SolidCAM smooths the tilting movements. Leaving out gouging points With this option, SolidCAM enables you to avoid possible collisions by the tool path trimming. SolidCAM2008 R12 provides you with the following trimming options: • With this option, only the colliding segments of the tool path are trimmed out.
Do not trim tool path.

Trim tool path after first collision. With this option, SolidCAM trims the whole cutting pass, after the first detected collision.

Trim tool path before last collision.

With this option, SolidCAM trims the whole cutting pass, before the last detected collision.

Trim tool path between first and last collision.

With this option, SolidCAM trims the cutting path between the first and last detected collisions.

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7. Sim. 5-Axis Machining

Report collisions

gouge avoiding. With the Report collisions option, SolidCAM checks only for collision between the tool and the checkfaces, without trying to avoid the collision; a warning message is displayed.

SolidCAM2008 R12 provides you with a new strategy of

Using the simulation, you can check the collision areas and choose the appropriate method to avoid gouging.

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7.1.10 Roughing

The Roughing page provides you with the following parameters and sections: • This section enables you to trim the cutting passes to the pre-machined or casting stock faces to avoid unnecessary air cutting.
Multi passes. Avoid air cuts using following stock definition.

Using this option, SolidCAM enables you to perform the machining with a number of roughing and finishing passes generated from the initial cutting pass in the direction of the surface normal. with a number of roughing and finishing passes generated from the initial cutting pass in the direction of the tool axis.

Depth cut. Using this option, SolidCAM enables you to perform the machining

• • •

Plunge. Using this option, SolidCAM enables you to perform 5 axis machining

using plunging technology.

Morph pocket.

This option enables you to perform 5 axis pocket machining.

Area roughing. With this option, the roughing tool path is generated inside the initial tool path. For example, the floor area between impeller blades can be machined using this strategy, if the initial tool path describes the left and right side of the area limitations.

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7. Sim. 5-Axis Machining

This option enables you to create a circular pattern of the tool path around a specific axis.

Rotate.

For more information about Roughing page parameters and options, refer to SolidCAM Sim. 5-Axis User Guide. Avoid air cuts using following stock definition
SolidCAM2008 R12

provides you with the possibility to shrink/expand the stock model used for avoiding air cuts. The defined Shrink/Expand value enables you to define the 3D offset by which the stock model will be modified. Rotate

SolidCAM2008 R12

provides you with enhanced functionality to control the linking and trimming of the tool path generated with the Rotate option.

The Apply stock option enables you to trim the tool path with the stock model either before or after the rotation.
• Before rotation. With

this option, SolidCAM generates the initial tool path, trims it with the stock model and then performs the rotation. In this case all the tool path instances are trimmed with the same stock.

• After rotation. With

this option, SolidCAM performs trimming after the tool path rotation. In this case the stock used for the trimming is updated after each rotation instance.
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The Apply linking option enables you to link the tool path either before or after the rotation. • When the Before rotation option is chosen, SolidCAM generates the initial tool path, links it and then performs the rotation. In this case the link movements in all the rotated instances of the tool path are the same. • When the After rotation option is chosen, SolidCAM applies linking after the tool path rotation. It is recommended to use this option with the collision control activated to avoid possible collisions in the link movements.

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7. Sim. 5-Axis Machining

7.1.11 Motion limit control

Using the parameters located on the Motion limits control page, you can optimize the calculated tool path, according to the kinematics and special characteristics of your CNC machine. • A 5-axis vector of the tool axis can always be mapped into two different angle pairs. This section enables you to choose the necessary angle pair.
Angle control. These parameters enable you to control the angular tool movements of the calculated tool path. Interpolation for distance. Using this option, SolidCAM enables you to perform Angle pairs.

• • •

interpolation for the linear tool movements.

With this option, SolidCAM enables you to use the machine limits defined within the machine definition to limit the tool path movements in both translational and rotational axes. This section enables you to define the angle limits for the output tool paths, in order to generate a tool path compatible with the angular limits of the specific CNC-Machine controller.
Control definition.

Use Machine Limits.

For more information about Motion limit control page parameters and options, refer to SolidCAM Sim. 5-Axis User Guide.
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7.1.12 Miscellaneous parameters

The Misc. parameters page enables you to define a number of miscellaneous parameters and options related to the 5 axis tool path calculation.

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7. Sim. 5-Axis Machining

7.2 HSS Operation (High Speed Surface machining) provides you with the HSS operation which enables you to use Sim. 5-Axis Machining strategies to perform 3-Axis Machining.
SolidCAM2008 R12

This operation provides you with the same interface, strategies, options and parameters as Sim. 5-Axis operation. Since the tool in 3-Axis Machining has a constant orientation (parallel to the Z-axis) and cannot be tilted, the Tool axis control page is not available. In the Gouge checking page, the Tilting tool away with max angle strategy which uses the tool tilting to avoid collisions are also not available for the HSS operation.

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7.3 Sim. 5-Axis Sub-operations
SolidCAM2008 R12 provides you with a number of

Sim. 5-Axis sub-operations dedicated for specific Sim. 5-Axis machining tasks. Such sub-operations provide you with a subset of the parameters and options, relevant for the chosen technology. Using such sub-operations provides you with quick programming of specific Sim. 5-axis tasks. provides you with the following Sim. 5-Axis sub-operations:

SolidCAM2008 R12

• Swarf Milling • Impeller Machining • • • • Roughing Wall finish Floor finish - curve control of tilt Floor finish - surface control of tilt

The Technology section of the Sim. 5_axis operation enables you to switch between the Standard Sim. 5-Axis operation and sub-operations.

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7. Sim. 5-Axis Machining

7.3.1 Swarf Milling provides you with the Swarf Milling Sim.5-Axis sub-operation. The Swarf Milling strategy provides you with a number of advantages during steep areas machining. With Swarf Milling machining is performed by the tool side. The contact area between the tool and the workpiece is a line, therefore a better surface quality can be achieved with a minimum number of cuts.
SolidCAM2008 R12

Geometry

The Pattern section enables you to define the strategy of the swarf machining. SolidCAM offers you the following strategies:
• Parallel to curve.

This strategy enables you to perform the machining of the Drive surface along a lead curve; the generated cuts are parallel to each other.
Drive surface

• Parallel to surface.

This strategy enables you to generate the tool path on the parallel to the specified check surface.

For more information about these strategies, refer to SolidCAM Sim. 5-Axis User Guide.

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The following geometries should be defined for the Swarf Milling sub-operation:
• Wall surfaces.

This section enables you to define the surface where the machining will be performed (Drive surface). The Surface offset edit box enables you to define the offset for the Wall surface. The machining will be performed at the specified distance from the Wall surfaces.

This section enables you to define the guide curve for the Parallel to curve strategy. The machining is performed along this curve; the generated cuts are parallel to each other. Generally for Swarf Milling the lower edge of the Wall surface is used for the edge curve definition. guide surface for the Parallel to surface strategy. The machining is performed parallel to this surface; the generated cuts are parallel to each other. Generally for Swarf Milling the surface, that is adjacent to the lower edge of the Wall surface, is used for the edge surface definition. This section enables you to define the Floor Surfaces that will be avoided during the machining. The Surface offset edit box enables you to define the offset for the Floor surface. The machining will be performed at the specified distance from the Floor surfaces. This section enables you to define the Check Surfaces that will be avoided during the machining (e.g. clamping). The Surface offset edit box enables you to define the offset for the Check surface. The machining will be performed at the specified distance from the Check surfaces.
Floor Surfaces. Edge surface. This section enables you to define the

Edge curve.

• Check Surfaces.

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7. Sim. 5-Axis Machining

Tool path parameters For Swarf Milling definition, SolidCAM provides you with a number of tool path parameters.

The Surface quality section enables you to define the parameters that affect the surface finish quality.
Cut tolerance

The Cut tolerance parameter defines the tool path accuracy.
Distance

The Distance parameter enables you to define the maximal distance between two consecutive tool path points.
Number of cuts

The Number of cuts parameter defines the number of cutting passes. By default, SolidCAM offers you to perform the Swarf Milling in one cutting pass. When the Number of cuts parameter is greater than 1, the Max. Step Over parameter enables you to define the distance between two adjacent cutting passes.
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The Cut control section enables you to define the order and direction of the cuts.
Cutting method

The Cutting method option enables you to define how the cuts are connected. SolidCAM provides you with three possibilities: Zigzag, One Way and Spiral. When the One Way or Spiral options are chosen for Cutting method, SolidCAM enables you to define the direction of cuts using the Direction for one way option. SolidCAM enables you to choose either Climb or Conventional direction for the cutting passes.
Start point

The Start point option enables you to define a new position of the start point of the first cut.
Simultaneous 5-Axis User Guide.

For more information about Tool path parameters of the Swarf Milling refer to SolidCAM

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7. Sim. 5-Axis Machining

Tool Axis control

The following parameters enables you to control the tool axis orientation during the Swarf Milling.
Output format

This parameter enables you to define the Output format of the current Sim. 5 axis operation. For Swarf Milling sub-operation, either 4-Axis or 5-Axis format can be used.
Max. Angle Step

The Max. Angle step parameter enables you to define the maximal allowed angle change between the tool axes, at two consecutive tool positions.
Lag angle to cutting direction

The Lag angle to cutting direction parameter enables you to define the tool tilting in the direction of the cutting pass.

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Side Tilt definition

The following options are available for the side tilting definition for the Swarf Milling.
Follow surface iso direction. With this option, the direction of

the side tilting is chosen according to the direction of the U- and V-vectors of the drive surface.

With this option, the plane of the side tilting is orthogonal to the tool path direction for each cutting position. direction vector definition as the reference for the side tilting direction. The side tilting is always performed in the direction defined by the spindle main direction vector.
Use user-defined direction. Use spindle main direction. With this option, SolidCAM uses the spindle main

Orthogonal to cutting direction at each position.

With this option, SolidCAM enables you to specify the reference vector that determines the side tilting direction.

Use tilt line definition. This option enables you to define the direction of the side tilting by user-defined lines. Orthogonal to edge curve. With this option, the plane of the side tilting is orthogonal to the edge curve at each cutting position.

Limits

With this option, SolidCAM enables you to limit the tool tilting along the Swarf Milling tool path. For more information about Tool Axis Control parameters of the Swarf Milling refer to SolidCAM Simultaneous 5-Axis User Guide.

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7. Sim. 5-Axis Machining

Gouge check

SolidCAM provides you with the following parameters that enable you to perform the gouge check for Swarf Milling:
Side Tilt Collision Control

With this option, SolidCAM performs the gouge checking between all the tool components (Tool holder, Arbor, Tool shaft and Tool tip) and the Drive surface (Wall surface). The Tilting tool away with max. angle strategy is automatically used to avoid the possible collisions by tool tilting in the side direction.
Clearance

The Clearance section enables you to define the clearance offsets for arbor, tool holder and tool shaft in order to get a guaranteed clearance gap between tool components and workpiece. For more information about
Gouge check SolidCAM Simultaneous 5-Axis User Guide.

parameters of the

Swarf Milling

refer to

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Roughing

SolidCAM provides you with the following options to control the rough Swarf Milling:
Avoid air cuts using following stock definition

With this option, SolidCAM enables you to trim the Sim. 5 axis passes to the pre-machined or casting stock faces, to avoid unnecessary air cutting. When this option is chosen, SolidCAM will calculate the Updated Stock after all the previous operations. SolidCAM automatically compares the updated stock model with the operation target geometry and machines the difference between them.
model

Multi passes

Using the Multi passes option, SolidCAM enables you to perform the machining with a number of roughing and finishing passes. During the tool path calculation, SolidCAM generates the initial cutting pass located on the drive surface and then creates a specified number of roughing and finishing passes at different specified offsets in the direction of the surface normal for the roughing and finishing.
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7. Sim. 5-Axis Machining

Depth Cuts

The Depth cuts option enables you to perform 5 axis rough and finish machining similar to Multi passes option. Using the Multi passes option, SolidCAM generates roughing and finishing passes in the direction of the surface normal, independent from the tool orientation. The Depth cuts option enables you to perform roughing and finishing cuts in the direction of the tool axis. For more information about Roughing parameters of the Swarf Milling refer to SolidCAM Simultaneous 5-Axis User Guide.

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7.3.2 Impeller Roughing

The Impeller Roughing sub-operation enables you to perform the Sim. 5-Axis Rough Machining for impeller parts. Geometry SolidCAM enables you to define the following geometries for the sub-operation: blade.
Impeller Roughing

• Right. This section enables you to define the right wall surface of

the impeller

• Left.

This section enables you to define the left wall surface of the impeller blade.

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7. Sim. 5-Axis Machining • Floor. This section enables you to define the

floor surface between the impeller blades. The Surface offset edit box enables you to define the offset for the floor surfaces. The machining will be performed at the specified distance from the floor surfaces of the impeller. This section enables you to define the check surfaces that will be avoided during the Impeller Roughing. Generally, the wall surfaces of the blades are used for the check surfaces definition for the Impeller roughing.

• Check surfaces.

The impeller roughing is performed using the Morph between two surfaces machining strategy. SolidCAM generates the morphed tool path on a Floor surface, enclosed by two Wall surfaces. The tool path is generated between the wall surfaces and evenly spaced over the Drive surface. The check surfaces are used to perform the collisions control and avoid the unnecessary contact between tool components and blade surfaces. SolidCAM performs the gouge checking between all the tool components (Tool holder, Arbor, Tool shaft and Tool tip) and the Check surfaces. The Tilting tool away with max. angle strategy is automatically used to avoid the possible collisions by the tool tilting in the side direction.
Drive Surface Collision Control

This option enables you to perform an additional collisions control between the tool tip and the tool shaft components and the Floor surface (Drive Surface). The Retracting tool along tool axis strategy is used to avoid the possible gouges.
Advanced

SolidCAM enables you to define a number of advanced options relevant for the Morph between two surfaces strategy used for the Impeller roughing.
SolidCAM Simultaneous 5-Axis User Guide.

For more information about

Geometry

parameters of the

Impeller Roughing

refer to

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Tool path parameters

For Impeller Roughing definition, SolidCAM provides you with a number of tool path parameters. The Surface quality section enables you to define the parameters that affect the surface finish quality.
Cut tolerance

The Cut tolerance parameter defines the tool path accuracy.
Max. Step over

The Max. Step over parameter defines the maximum distance between two successive cutting passes applied over the Floor surface. The Cut control section enables you to define the order and direction of the cuts.
Cutting method

The Cutting method option enables you to define how the cuts are connected. SolidCAM provides you with two possibilities: Zigzag and One Way. When the One Way option are chosen for Cutting method, SolidCAM
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7. Sim. 5-Axis Machining

enables you to define the direction of cuts using the Direction for one way option. SolidCAM enables you to choose either CW or CCW direction for the cutting passes.
Cut order

The Cut order option enables you to define the sequence of the cuts. For more information about Tool axis control
Impeller Roughing: Tool path parameters SolidCAM Simultaneous 5-Axis User Guide.

of the

Impeller Roughing

refer to

The following parameters enable you to control the tool axis orientation during the

Output format

SolidCAM enables you to use only the 5 Axis output format for the Impeller Roughing sub-operation.

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Max. Angle Step

The Max. Angle step parameter enables you to define the maximal allowed angle change between the tool axes at two consecutive tool positions.
Lag/Tilt angles

relative to cutting direction

To define the tool axis orientation for the Impeller Roughing, the Tilted option is used. With this option, SolidCAM enables you to define the tool tilting relative to the cutting direction, using the following angle values:
Lag angle to cutting direction

The Lag angle to cutting direction parameter enables you to define the tool tilting in the direction of the cutting pass.
Tilt angle at side of cutting direction

The Tilt angle at side of cutting direction parameter enables you to define the tool inclination in the plane orthogonal to the tool path direction for each cutting position. The Tilt angle at side of cutting direction parameter is measured relative to surface normal.
Limits

With this option, SolidCAM enables you to limit the tool tilting along the Impeller Roughing tool path. For more information about Tool Axis Control parameters of the Impeller Roughing refer to SolidCAM Simultaneous 5-Axis User Guide.

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7. Sim. 5-Axis Machining

Roughing

SolidCAM provides you with the following options to control the Impeller Roughing:
Avoid air cuts using Updated Stock model

With this option, SolidCAM enables you to trim the Sim. 5 axis passes to the pre-machined or casting stock faces, to avoid unnecessary air cutting. When this option is chosen, SolidCAM will calculate the Updated Stock after all the previous operations. SolidCAM automatically compares the updated stock model with the operation target geometry and machines the difference between them.
model

Depth Cuts

The Depth cuts option enables you to perform roughing and finishing cuts in the direction of the tool axis.

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Rotate

The Rotate strategy enables you to perform the machining of identical elements of the impeller, arranged in a circular pattern. Instead of adding a separate operation and defining the same parameters for each of these elements, you can have the same tool path repeated a given number of times by rotation around a specific axis. parameters of the SolidCAM Simultaneous 5-Axis User Guide. For more information about
Roughing Impeller Roughing

refer to

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7. Sim. 5-Axis Machining

7.3.3 Wall finish

The Impeller Wall finish sub-operation enables you to perform Sim. 5-Axis Rough Machining of the wall surfaces of the impeller blades. Geometry SolidCAM enables you to define the following geometries for the Impeller Wall finish sub-operation:
• Blade.

This section enables you to define the wall surface of the impeller blade.

• Floor. This section enables you to define the

floor surface between the impeller blades. The Surface offset edit box enables you to define the offset for the floor surfaces. The machining will be performed at the specified distance from the floor surfaces of the impeller.

The machining is performed using the Parallel to surface strategy. With this strategy, the tool path is generated on the Wall surface, parallel to the specified Floor surface.
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Area

The Area option enables you to define the cutting area on the Drive surface (Wall surface).
Side Tilt Collision Control

This option enables you to perform an additional collision control between the tool tip and the tool shaft components and the Blade surface. The Tilting tool away with max. angle strategy is used to avoid the possible gouges.
Advanced

SolidCAM enables you to define a number of advanced options relevant for the Parallel to surface strategy used for the Impeller Wall finish. parameters of the SolidCAM Simultaneous 5-Axis User Guide.
Geometry

For more information about Tool path parameters

Impeller Wall finish

refer to

For Impeller Wall finish definition, SolidCAM provides you with a number of tool path parameters.

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7. Sim. 5-Axis Machining

The Surface quality section enables you to define the parameters that affect the surface finish quality.
Cut tolerance

The Cut tolerance parameter defines the tool path accuracy.
Distance

The Distance parameter enables you to define the maximal distance between two consecutive tool path points located at the cutting pass.
Max. Step over

The Max. Step over parameter defines the maximum distance between two successive cutting passes applied over the Wall surface. The Cut control section enables you to define the order and direction of the cuts.
Cutting method

The Cutting method option enables you to define how the cuts are connected. SolidCAM provides you with two possibilities: Zigzag and One Way. When the One Way option is chosen for Cutting method, SolidCAM enables you to define the direction of cuts using the Direction for one way option. SolidCAM enables you to choose either CW or CCW direction for the cutting passes. For more information about
Tool path parameters SolidCAM Simultaneous 5-Axis User Guide.

of the

Impeller Wall finish

refer to

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Tool axis control

The following parameters enable you to control the tool axis orientation during the Impeller Wall finish:
Output format

SolidCAM enables you to use only the Impeller - Swarf wall sub-operation.
Max. Angle Step

5 Axis

output format for the

The Max. Angle step parameter enables you to define the maximal allowed angle change between the tool axes at two consecutive tool positions.

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7. Sim. 5-Axis Machining

Side tilt definition

With this option, SolidCAM enables you to define the direction of the side tilting. For Impeller Wall finish, SolidCAM automatically uses the side tilt angle calculated with the following formula: 85°-Tool Taper Angle. For the tools which have no conical parts (e.g. End Mill), the side tilt angle is 85°. The following options are available to define the direction of the side tilting:
Follow surface iso direction. With this option, the direction of

the side tilting is chosen according to the direction of the U- and V-vectors of the drive surface.

Orthogonal to cutting direction at each position. With this option, the plane of the side tilting is orthogonal to the tool path direction for each cutting position. Orthogonal to cutting direction at each contour. The direction of

the side tilting is determined by an orthogonal line to a tool path segment. SolidCAM approximates the orthogonal vectors in all the tool path positions and calculates a single orthogonal vector instead of all the tool path positions vectors.

direction vector definition as the reference for the side tilting direction. The side tilting is always performed in the direction defined by the spindle main direction vector.
Use user-defined direction.

Use spindle main direction. With this option, SolidCAM uses the spindle main

With this option, SolidCAM enables you to specify the reference vector to determine the side tilting direction. The side tilting is always performed in the direction defined by user-defined vector.
Impeller Wall finish

For more information about Tool Axis Control parameters of the refer to SolidCAM Simultaneous 5-Axis User Guide.

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7.3.4 Impeller Floor finish - curve control of tilt

The Impeller Floor finish - curve control of tilt sub-operation enables you to perform the finish machining of the impeller floor surfaces. The tilting curve used for this suboperation enables you to define the tool axis orientation. Geometry
• Right.

This section enables you to define the right wall surface of the impeller blade.

• Left. This section enables you to define the

left wall surface of the impeller blade.

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7. Sim. 5-Axis Machining • Floor. This section enables you to define the

floor surface between the impeller blades. The Surface offset edit box enables you to define the offset for the floor surfaces. The machining will be performed at the specified distance from the floor surfaces of the impeller.

The impeller floor machining is performed using the Morph between two surfaces machining strategy. SolidCAM generates the morphed tool path on the Floor surface, enclosed by two Wall surfaces. The tool path is generated between the wall surfaces and evenly spaced over the floor surface.
• Tilt curve.

The Tilted through curve strategy is used for the impeller floor machining. The tilting curve is used to define the tool axis orientation during the machining. The tilting through curve is performed using the From start to end for each contour option. With this option, the tool tilting is calculated for each tool path position; the tool axis is tilted to the corresponding point on the Tilt curve. The tool tilting changes gradually from the start point of the Tilt curve to its end point.

Drive Surface Collision Control

This option enables you to perform additional collision control between all the tool holder components (tool tip, tool shaft, arbor and holder) and the Floor surface. The detected collisions are reported.
Advanced

SolidCAM enables you to define a number of advanced options relevant for the Morph between two surfaces strategy used for the Impeller floor machining. For more information about Geometry parameters of the Impeller Floor finish - curve control of tilt refer to SolidCAM Simultaneous 5-Axis User Guide.

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Tool path parameters

For Impeller Floor finish - curve control of tilt definition, SolidCAM provides you with a number of the tool path parameters. The Surface quality section enables you to define the parameters that affect the surface finish quality.
Cut tolerance

The Cut tolerance parameter defines the tool path accuracy.
Max. Step over

The Max. Step over parameters defines the maximum distance between two successive cutting passes applied over the Floor surface. The Cut control section enables you to define the order and direction of the cuts.
Cutting method

The Cutting method option enables you to define how the cuts are connected. SolidCAM provides you with two possibilities: Zigzag and One Way. When the One Way option is chosen for Cutting method, SolidCAM enables you to
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7. Sim. 5-Axis Machining

define the direction of cuts using the Direction for one way option. SolidCAM enables you to choose either CW or CCW direction for the cutting passes. For more information about Tool path parameters of the Impeller Floor finish - curve control of tilt refer to SolidCAM Simultaneous 5-Axis User Guide. Tool axis control

Impeller Floor finish - curve control of tilt:

The following parameters enables you to control the tool axis orientation during the

Output format

SolidCAM enables you to use only the 5 Axis output format for the Impeller Floor finish - curve control of tilt sub-operation.
Max. Angle Step

The Max. Angle step parameter enables you to define the maximal allowed angle change between the tool axes at two consecutive tool positions.

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Limits

With the Limits option, SolidCAM enables you to limit the tool tilting along the tool path. For more information about Tool Axis Control parameters of the Impeller Floor finish curve control of tilt refer to SolidCAM Simultaneous 5-Axis User Guide.

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7. Sim. 5-Axis Machining

7.3.5 Impeller Floor finish - surface control of tilt

The Impeller Floor finish - surface control of tilt sub-operation enables you to perform the finish machining of the impeller floor surfaces. The tilting direction is defined relative to the drive surface normal. Geometry
• Right. This section enables you to define the

right wall surface of the impeller blade.

• Left.

This section enables you to define the left wall surface of the impeller blade.

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• Floor. This section enables you to define the

floor surface between the impeller blades. The Surface offset edit box enables you to define the offset for the floor surfaces. The machining will be performed at the specified distance from the floor surfaces of the impeller.

The impeller floor machining is performed using the Morph between two surfaces machining strategy. SolidCAM generates the morphed tool path on a Floor surface, enclosed by two Wall surfaces. The tool path is generated between the wall surfaces and evenly spaced over the floor surface.
Side Tilt Collision Control

This option enables you to perform collision control between the tool tip and the tool shaft components and the Floor surface (Drive Surface). The Retracting tool along tool axis strategy is used to avoid the possible gouges. This section also enables you to define the Check surfaces that will be avoided during the Impeller machining. Generally, the wall surfaces of the blades are used for the check surfaces definition for the Impeller machining. When the Check surfaces are defined, SolidCAM performs an additional collisions control between all the tool holder components (tool tip, tool shaft, arbor and holder) and the Check surface. The Tilting tool away with max. angle strategy is automatically used to avoid the possible collisions by the tool side tilting.
Advanced

SolidCAM enables you to define a number of advanced options relevant for the Morph between two surfaces strategy used for the Impeller floor machining. For more information about Geometry parameters of the Impeller Floor finish - surface control of tilt refer to SolidCAM Simultaneous 5-Axis User Guide.
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7. Sim. 5-Axis Machining

Tool path parameters For Impeller Floor finish - surface control of tilt definition, SolidCAM provides you with a number of the tool path parameters.

The Surface quality section enables you to define the parameters that affect the surface finish quality.
Cut tolerance

The Cut tolerance parameter defines the tool path accuracy.
Max. Step over

The Max. Step over parameters defines the maximum distance between two successive cutting passes applied over the Floor surface.

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The Cut control section enables you to define the order and direction of the cuts.
Cutting method

The Cutting method option enables you to define how the cuts are connected. SolidCAM provides you with two possibilities: Zigzag and One Way. When the One Way option are chosen for Cutting method, SolidCAM enables you to define the direction of cuts using the Direction for one way option. SolidCAM enables you to choose either CW or CCW direction for the cutting passes.
Cut order

The Cut order option enables you to define the sequence of the cuts. SolidCAM provides you with three possibilities: Standard, From Center Away and From outside to center. With the Standard option, SolidCAM performs the machining from one side of the drive surface and continues to the other side. With the From Center Away option, the machining starts from the center of the drive surface and continues outwards. With the From outside to center option, the machining starts from the drive surface edges and continues inwards. For more information about Tool path parameters of the Impeller Floor finish - surface control of tilt refer to SolidCAM Simultaneous 5-Axis User Guide.

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7. Sim. 5-Axis Machining

Tool axis control The following parameters enables you to control the tool axis orientation during the Impeller Floor finish - surface control of tilt:

Output format

SolidCAM enables you to use only the 5 Axis output format for the Impeller Floor finish - surface control of tilt sub-operation.
Max. Angle Step

The Max. Angle step parameter enables you to define the maximal allowed angle change between the tool axes at two consecutive tool positions.

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Lag/Tilt angles

To define the tool axis orientation for the Impeller Floor finish - surface control of tilt, the Tilted relative to cutting direction option is used. With this option, SolidCAM enables you to define the tool tilting relative to the cutting direction using the following angle values:
Lag angle to cutting direction

The Lag angle to cutting direction parameter enables you to define the tool tilting in the direction of the cutting pass.
Tilt angle at side of cutting direction

The Tilt angle at side of cutting direction parameter enables you to define the tool inclination in the plane orthogonal to the tool path direction for each cutting position. The Tilt angle at side of cutting direction parameter is measured relative to surface normal.
Limits

With this option, SolidCAM enables you to limit the tool tilting along the Impeller Floor finish - surface control of tilt tool path. For more information about Tool Axis Control parameters of the Impeller Floor finish surface control of tilt refer to SolidCAM Simultaneous 5-Axis User Guide.

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Turning

8

8.1 Partial machining
SolidCAM2008 R12

offers you a new functionality that supports rough, semi-finish and finish machining of long turning parts. In long turning parts the machining of the whole geometry all at once might cause problems due to the deformation of the workpiece under the cutting tool. The new functionality provides the capability to machine the geometry partially by dividing it into several sub-geometries.

The new Partial machining option in the Modify geometry section of the Technology page of Turning Operation dialog box enables you to machine the profile in segments.

When you choose this option and click on the Data button, the Partial machining dialog box is displayed. The Data button is available only when the Rough or Profile option is chosen for the Work type, and the Geometry and Tool are defined.

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8. Turning

Select profile

The Select profile section enables you to choose the chain for which the Partial machining will be used; choose the chain by the number in the combo-box. The Next profile button enables you to automatically switch to the next chain in the geometry.
First point/Second point

The First point and Second point sections enable you to define the profile segment which will be machined by the operation and the parameters of the tool approach/ retreat movements. The generated partial cutting pass is performed between the first and second points; the cutting pass direction is determined according to the Profile direction option state.
First point

Second point

SolidCAM automatically generates the approach and retreat passes at the First and Second points according to the machining direction. In the illustration above, the approach movement will be performed at the Second point and the retreat movement at the First point. The approach/retreat passes consist of an arc, tangential to the partial machining geometry, at the First/Second point and a line connected to the arc. The line direction is automatically chosen according to the Tool type, Tool tip angle and Safety angle parameters.

221

Point location

This section enables you to define the location of the First/Second points. • The Pick button enables you to select the approach and retreat points directly on the model geometry. The Pick First point/Pick Second point dialog box is displayed. When the point has been picked, SolidCAM calculates the Distance along axis and Diameter values for the picked point and displays it in the Partial machining dialog box.
• Distance along axis. First/Second point

This field displays the distance from the CoordSys to the along the Z-axis. In case when the Pick option was used, the value is calculated automatically. It can also be used as an alternative to the Pick option to define the First/Second point locations. Even if the Pick option was already used, you can edit the value received from the model and thus change the First/Second point locations.

• Diameter.

This field displays the value of the part diameter, at the specified location, and is calculated automatically according to the geometry and the Distance along axis value. When there are several Diameter values for a single Distance along axis value, SolidCAM chooses the maximal Diameter value determined.
Diameter First point Diameter

Second point

X CoordSys Z Distance along axis Distance along axis

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8. Turning

Approach/Retreat Parameters

SolidCAM provides you with the following parameters enabling you to define the approach/retreat passes: •
Radius.

This field defines the radius of the approach/retreat arc, which is tangential to the profile at the First/second point.

• Line length.

This field defines the length of the straight line tangential to the arc. The direction of the approach/retreat lines, connected to the approach and retreat arcs, is chosen according to the Tool type.
Retreat line length Retreat radius Approach radius Approach line length

First point

Second point

Rough tool.

The scheme below illustrates the approach line direction for an

External

Approach line direction First point Second point

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The scheme below illustrates the approach line direction for an Groove tool.

External

Approach line direction First point Second point

When the approach/retreat lines are located inside the Material boundary of the pre-machined stock, SolidCAM automatically extends them till the Material boundary.

Approach line length First point Second point

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8. Turning

This check box enables SolidCAM to perform automatic modification of the defined Start/Finish point according to the geometry. The point modification enables you to avoid possible collisions during approach/retreat movements. The image below illustrates the not modified Second point.

Modify point to avoid collision.

First point Second point

The possible collision during the approach movement can be avoided by the automatic point modification.
First point Second point

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Modify contour to avoid collision

The Modify contour to avoid collision check box enables you to perform the modification of the partial machining geometry. When this check box is activated, SolidCAM performs the geometry modification according to the tool shape. The modification enables you to avoid the possible collisions between the tool and geometry during the machining. During the geometry modification, the machining geometry is changed in areas where the possible collisions are detected. The geometry is changed taking into account the tool shape.
collision check box affects on the finish and semi-finish only, when the Profile option is chosen for the Work type. When the Rough option is chosen, the geometry modification is automatically performed, irrespective of the state of the Modify contour to avoid collision check box.

Not modified contour

The

Modified contour
Modify contour to avoid

The Show button enables you to display the machining geometry and the updated partial geometry between the First and Second points, with the tangential arcs and connected lines. When you click either on the Show button or on the OK button, SolidCAM checks the position of the First/Second points on the geometry; if these points are defined outside of the geometry, a warning message is displayed.

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8. Turning

8.2 Interoperational movements In previous SolidCAM versions, all the tool movements between turning operations were performed through a position that is located outside of the CAM-Part. This means that when the cutting passes of a specific operation are completed, the tool moves to the point mentioned above and from there continues to the start position of the next operation (if tool change is not performed). Such behavior causes a number of unwanted extra tool movements.

SolidCAM2008 R12

provides you with the capability to optimize the interoperational movements between turning operations in order to shorten them. 8.2.1 Interoperational tool movement optimization When the interoperational turning tool movement optimization is activated for the current CAM-Part, the optimization is performed as described below. When the cutting passes of a turning operation are completed, the tool moves to the operation end position. From this point the tool moves directly to the start position of the next turning operation in the shortest possible route.

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During this movement a check for possible gouges is performed. If a gouge is detected during the interoperational tool movement, the tool path is modified so that the gouge will be avoided.

The optimization of the interoperational tool movements is performed between two successive operations that use the same tool. 8.2.2 SolidCAM Settings The Milling levels page in the SolidCAM Settings dialog box is renamed into Interoperational tool movements. The new group
Movements between

turning operations:

is added. This group contains the Optimize check box. The check box defines the default status of the optimization use for each new CAM-Part and can be customized for a specific CAMPart with the Part Settings. The Optimize check box is disabled when a CAM-Part is loaded.

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8. Turning

8.2.3 Part Settings The Milling levels page in the Part Settings dialog box is also renamed as the Interoperational tool movements. This page is available for Milling, Turning, Turn-Mill and Mill-Turn CAM-Parts.

The new Movements between turning operations: group is added. This group contains the Optimize check box. This check box enables you to control over the optimization of the interoperational turning tool movements within in the current CAM-Part (Turning, Turn-Mill or Mill-Turn). The status of the check box is for a new CAM-Part is determined by the Optimize check box in the SolidCAM Settings dialog box (see topic8.2.2).

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8.3 Rest Material calculation for Milling Drilling operations
SolidCAM2008 R12 provides you with the functionality of

automatic turning rest material calculation for the Drilling operations performed by the rotating tool (Milling Drilling operations). The Rest material update is performed in the same manner as for Turning Drilling operations. For each Drilling operation SolidCAM checks the direction of the tool movement. If this direction is coincident to the Z-axis of the Turning Coordinate System, the Rest material is updated according to the operation.
Drilling operation

Updated Rest material

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8. Turning

8.4 Generation of the Material boundary solid In previous versions, SolidCAM was automatically generating the updated Material boundary after each turning operation. The Material boundary, generated after a specific turning operation, was used for the automatic rest material calculation for the succeeding operation. SolidCAM was also enabling you to generate a sketch in the CAM-component of the CAM-Part assembly, containing the Material boundary after a specific operation. SolidCAM2008 R12 provides you with the additional functionality to generate a revolved solid feature that represents the Material boundary after a number of turning operations. The generated solid body can be used as input stock for an additional CAM-Part that continues the machining, starting from this stock. This functionality is needed in case you have a turning machine and a milling machine and you want to complete a part that has both turning and milling operations. The Generate Material boundary as solid command is added into the right-click menu available for single operations.
Material boundary sketch

Material boundary revolved feature

The Generate Material boundary as solid command generates a revolved feature in the CAM-component. The revolved feature is based on sketch of the Material boundary obtained after the chosen operation. If a previously generated revolved feature already exists in the CAM-component, SolidCAM updates it to represent the Material boundary for the chosen operation.
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8.5 Tool direction and imaginary tool nose enables you to define the application direction for the turning tools. In addition to the application direction definition, SolidCAM provides you with the possibility to define the imaginary nose point of the tool that will be used for the tool nose compensation; this replaces the previous Origin definition (the necessary conversion for already defined CAM-Parts in previous versions is done automatically by SolidCAM2008 R12).
SolidCAM2008 R12

The Application direction section located in the Topology page of the Part dialog box enables you to set the application direction for the current tool.

Tool Table

The first check box enables you to choose the major direction for the tool from the list. SolidCAM provides you with the following values for the major application direction. In addition to the major application direction, SolidCAM enables you to perform the fine tuning of the application angle with the second edit box. This edit box enables you to define the value from 0° to 89°. When the upper limit is exceeded, the next major tool direction is chosen.

0º 90º 270º

180º

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8. Turning

The Origin Pos button displays the Tool positions dialog box, which enables you to define the location of the imaginary tool nose point.

The Tool positions dialog box enables you to choose the location of the imaginary tool nose point according to the major application direction.

When this dialog box is loaded, SolidCAM offers you several 2 possible locations for the imaginary nose point suitable for the current major application direction. The imaginary nose point is defined by choosing a point on the illustration in the dialog 7 box; the number written at the chosen point is sent to the postprocessor.
3

6 0,9

1

5

8

4

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For example, when the 90° is chosen for the major application direction, the following possibilities (marked by circles) are available to define the imaginary nose point: 2 6 0,9 1

7

5

3

8

4

If the defined application direction (e.g. 150°) is between the major application directions (0°,90°, 180°, 270°), SolidCAM takes the defined major application direction (in this case: 90°) for the imaginary nose point definition. The automatically generated image displays the actual location of the imaginary nose point that is chosen, relative to the tool geometry. The Define delta from center option enables you to define the location of the imaginary nose point, by the Z- and X- delta distances from the tool radius center.

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8.6 TX/TZ parameters for Machine Simulation
SolidCAM2008 R12

introduces two new tool parameters that are defined for Machine Simulation: TX and TZ.

Spindle

The TX parameter defines the X-distance from the CNC-machine spindle to the imaginary tool nose point. The TZ parameter defines the Z-distance from TX the CNC-machine spindle axis to the imaginary tool nose point. These parameters are defined in the page of the Part Tool Table dialog box.
Topology

TZ

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8.7 Clamp and Material boundary synchronization provides you with the functionality that enables you to establish associativity between Material boundary and Clamp and the design model; the associativity is available if the Material boundary and Clamp are defined using sketches.
SolidCAM2008 R12

To establish the associativity and obtain the possibility to perform the synchronization between the Material boundary / Clamp and design model, the sketches used for the Material boundary / Clamp definition should each contain one closed contour, marked as non-construction geometry. When Material boundary / Clamp are defined on sketches (the 2D Boundary mode of the Material boundary definition), SolidCAM saves the name of the sketch and associates it to the defined geometry; the sketch name will be used during the synchronization. Synchronization The Synchronize command is available in the rightclick menu on the CAM-Part header. This command enables you to perform the synchronization of the Material boundary / Clamp geometries. During the synchronization SolidCAM retrieves the relevant sketch, by its name saved in the geometry, and generates the chain for the closed contour, retrieved from this sketch. If the relevant sketch is not found, the Material boundary / Clamp geometry remains the same; the synchronization is not performed. If the chain suitable for the Material boundary / Clamp cannot be created, SolidCAM leaves the Material boundary / Clamp unchanged; a warning message is displayed. In this case you have to repair the sketches and perform the synchronization again.

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8. Turning

When new suitable chains are created, SolidCAM checks the Clamp chain and Material boundary chain for common boundaries or intersection (since in SolidCAM the clamp and material boundary must either intersect or have a common boundary). If common boundaries or intersection are found, SolidCAM substitutes the current Clamp and Material boundary with the new chains; if there are no common boundaries or intersection, the Material boundary / Clamp geometry remains unchanged (synchronization is not performed); a warning message is displayed. In this case you have to repair the sketches and perform the synchronization again.

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8.8 Envelope calculation enhancements provides you with a new enhanced method for the envelope calculation. In the new method, SolidCAM determines the type of the model faces used for the envelope calculation. For regular model faces, like cylinder and cone, SolidCAM uses an analytical algorithm which generates envelope segments relevant for this type of face. For complex B-spline surfaces, SolidCAM generates the envelope segment related to this surface using the facetted model of the surface; the facets are generated according to the Facet tolerance parameter specified in the Part Data dialog box.
SolidCAM2008 R12

The Facet tolerance parameter defines the accuracy of triangulation; smaller tolerance values increase the precision of the envelope generation but increase the envelope calculation time.

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8. Turning

8.9 Turning geometry definition by picking model entities provides you with the capability to define the geometry for turning operations, on the generated envelope/section, by picking the model entities such as faces, edges and vertices. When model entities are picked, SolidCAM automatically defines the geometry on the envelope/section segment corresponding to the selected model elements.
SolidCAM2008 R12

With this method of the turning geometry definition, SolidCAM enables you to choose two entities (faces, edges, vertices, origin and sketch points) on the solid model. The selected entities are projected on the envelope/section in the defined direction. The envelope/ section segment, enclosed between the points determined by the model entities projection, is chosen as the geometry chain.

Geometry Envelope

Selected faces

The Define button, in the Geometry page of the operation dialog box of the Turning, Grooving and Threading operations has two options:

• On Profile.

This option enables you to define the turning geometry by wireframe geometry selection using the Geometry Edit dialog box. This is the default option that was available till now.
239

• On model.

This option enables you to define the turning geometry by the model entities selection using the Geometry selection on model dialog box.

Geometry Name This option enables you to define the name of the geometry. SolidCAM offers you a default geometry name that can be edited. Envelope/Section side Determines the side of the envelope/section where the geometry will be defined, by projecting the selected entities. SolidCAM enables you to choose the External, Internal, Left or Right side of the envelope/section. Also SolidCAM enables you to use the following combinations of sides: External + Left, External + Right, Internal + Left and Internal+ Right. The illustration below shows the result of the projection of the same faces on the external and internal parts of the envelope.
External Envelope

Internal Envelope

Selected faces

Current selection Enables you to pick the model entities (faces/edges/vertices) for the geometry chain definition. The Start edit box enables you to choose the start entity for the envelope/section segment definition. To choose the model entity you have to place the focus on the edit box (the edit box is highlighted) and then pick the model entity; the picked model entity name is displayed in the edit box.

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8. Turning

When the Start entity is defined, the focus is automatically moved to the End edit box. This edit box enables you to select the end entity for the envelope/section segment definition. When both of the Start and the End entities are defined, SolidCAM determines the envelope/section segment and highlights it. The Start/End extension edit boxes provide you with the capability to extend the defined envelope/section segment. The extension is performed by the specified distance, tangentially to the geometry at the start/end points.
End extension

Geometry Start extension

Selected faces

Chain List The Chain List section enables you to manage the defined geometry chains. • The Accept button enables you to confirm the current chain. The confirmed chain will be displayed in the chains list. • The Reject • The Reverse button rejects the current chain selection. button reverses the direction of the current chain.

The management of the geometry chains is performed with the right-click menu available in the chains list, similar to the Geometry Edit dialog box.
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8.9.1 Associativity and Geometry Synchronization When the geometry is defined, SolidCAM saves the tags of the selected model entities; these tags are used to perform the geometry synchronization in case of model changes. When the model is changed, SolidCAM enables you to perform the synchronization of the Target model. During the Target model synchronization, SolidCAM regenerates the envelope/section. During the synchronization check for the geometries, SolidCAM compares the geometry with the regenerated envelope/section; if they are not exactly the same, SolidCAM enables you to perform the synchronization. During the synchronization, SolidCAM determines the model entities used for the geometry definition according to the saved tags. With these entities, SolidCAM automatically determines the envelope/section segment and updates the geometry according to the regenerated envelope/section.
Initial Geometry

Initial model Initial Geometry

Updated model Synchronized Geometry

Updated model
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8.10 Rough turning at angle
SolidCAM2008 R12

provides you with the capability to perform rough turning at an angle to the X-axis. Such capability enables you to optimize the cutting passes for the machining of inclined revolution faces like a cone.

Rough angle

The Rough angle section in the Rough dialog box enables you to define the angle between the X-axis and the cutting passes.

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Mill-Turn

9

SolidCAM2008 R12

provides you with a new type of CAM-Parts named Mill-Turn. This type is intended for the programming of Mill-Turn CNC machines, especially 5-axes milling CNC machines with turning capabilities (e.g. DMU FD-series of DMG).

This Mill-Turn functionality provides you with a number of significant advantages compared to the current Turn-Mill type: • The Mill-Turn module provides you with the full functionality of the Coordinate System definition, identical to the SolidCAM Milling. • The Turning mode of the Coordinate System enables you to use the same coordinate system for milling as well as for turning without additional definition. • In stock definition, you can define the Stock in the same manner as in SolidCAM Milling and the Material boundary in the same manner as in SolidCAM Turning. • The Mill-Turn module enables you to perform Milling, Turning and Mill-Turn operations with the same post-processor. • Using the Mill-Turn module, you do not need to learn new rules; you just work in regular milling and can add turning operations as needed. It is recommended to use the new Mill-Turn type for all Mill-Turn machines (instead of the current Turn-Mill type) and for Turning machines where you need support for a second Coordinate System for turning. All current parts of Turning or Turn-Mill type can be automatically converted by SolidCAM2008 R12 to Mill-Turn type.

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Mill-Turn

9.1 CAM-Part definition A new Mill-Turn item is added into the New submenu of the SolidCAM menu in order to create Mill-Turn CAM-Parts.

The Mill-Turn Part data dialog box is displayed. This dialog box enables you to choose the CNC-machine controller, define coordinate system, stock/material boundary, target etc.

9.1.1 CNC-controller definition Choosing CNC-controller is the first step in the Mill-Turn CAM-Part definition. The CNC-Controller edit box displays all the controllers suitable for Mill-Turn. The new MILL_&_TURN_FULL type of CNC-Controllers is added to the controller definition file (MAC-file). The machine_type = MILL_&_TURN_FULL command in the MAC-file enables you to turn on the support of Mill-Turn machines.
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9.1.2 Coordinate System definition Mill-Turn module enables you to define the coordinate systems in the same manner as in SolidCAM Milling.
SolidCAM2008 R12

The Machine Coordinate system #1 (Position #1) can be used for turning operations as well as for all the milling operations. In the Turning mode, SolidCAM uses the Turning Coordinate System created by rotating of the Machine Coordinate System #1 (Position #1) around the Z-axis. The turn_home_x and turn_home_y parameters in the controller definition file (MAC-file) define the orientation of the X- and Y-axes of the Turning Coordinate System respectively relative to the Machine Coordinate System #1 (Position #1): For example:
turn_home_x turn_home_y = = 0.0 1.0 0.0 -1.0 0.0 0.0

With such parameters definition, the X-axis of the Turning Coordinate System is codirectional to the Y-axis of the Machine Coordinate System #1 (Position #1); the Y-axis is codirectional to the negative direction of the X-axis of the Machine Coordinate System #1 (Position #1).

Y X Z Y Machine Coordinate System #1 (Position #1)

X

Z

Turning Coordinate System

The Turning Coordinate system is used for the definition of the turning operations, Material boundary and Clamp. If the turn_home_x and turn_home_y variables are not specified in the controller definition file, the axes of the Turning Coordinate System are collinear to the respective axes of the Milling Coordinate System (turn_home_x = 1.0 0.0 0.0; turn_home_y = 0.0 1.0 0.0)
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Mill-Turn

CoordSys Data In the Mill-Turn module, facial and radial machining is performed using the same Coordinate System. But since the part levels used for facial milling are measured along the Z-axis whereas those used for radial milling are measured around the Z-axis, the CoordSys data must be defined separately. The Facial and Radial tabs are added into the different sets of levels can be defined.
CoordSys Data

dialog box so that two

The Facial tab contains a set of machining levels describing the planes parallel to the XY-plane and located along the Z-axis.

CoordSys X

Part Lower Level Y

Z

Part Upper Level Clearance level Tool Start Level Tool Z-level

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The Radial tab contains a set of machining levels describing the virtual cylinders situated around the Z-axis.
Tool Z-level Tool Start Level Clearance level Part Upper Level CoordSys

X

Z Y

Part Lower Level

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Mill-Turn

9.1.3 Stock and Machining boundary SolidCAM enables you to define both of the Stock and Material boundary for Mill-Turn CAM-Parts. The stock definition process is similar to the stock definition in SolidCAM Milling. The Material boundary definition process is similar to the Material boundary definition in SolidCAM Turning. The Turning Coordinate System (see topic 9.1.2) is used for the Material boundary definition. The Material boundary definition is obligatory in order to enable the use of turning operations in the Mill-Turn CAM-Part. For the Mill-Turn CAM-Parts containing only milling operations the Stock and Material boundary definition is optional. The defined stock model is used in the SolidVerify simulation mode. If the stock model is absent, and only the Material boundary is defined, it is used instead of the stock for the SolidVerify simulation. 9.1.4 Clamp definition SolidCAM enables you to define the clamp (the Main Spindle/Back Spindle buttons) for Mill-Turn CAM-Parts. The Clamp definition process is similar to the Clamp definition in SolidCAM Turning. The Turning Coordinate System (see topic 9.1.2) is used for the Clamp definition. The Clamp definition is obligatory in order to enable the use of turning operations in the Mill-Turn CAM-Part. For the Mill-Turn CAM-Parts containing only milling operations the Clamp definition is optional. Optionally, SolidCAM enables you to define the Fixture, similar to Fixture definition in SolidCAM Milling. During the SolidVerify simulation, the Clamp is displayed for Turning operations; for Milling operations, the Clamp is hidden and the Fixture is displayed. 9.1.5 Target definition SolidCAM enables you to define the Target model for MillTurn CAM-Parts. The Target model definition process is similar to the Target model definition in SolidCAM Turning. The Target section of the Mill-Turn Part Data dialog box, enables you to choose Envelope or Section to be generated during the Target model definition. When the None option is chosen, SolidCAM does not perform the Section/Envelope generation.
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9.2 Existing CAM-Parts conversion you to convert existing CAM-Parts of the Milling, Turning and Turn-Mill type into the Mill-Turn type. To convert a CAM-Part you have to choose in the Part data dialog box a new Mill-Turn CNC-Controller. The following message is displayed informing you about the CAM-Part conversion. The message enables you to choose one of the following options:
• Continue. SolidCAM2008 R12 enables

With this option, the CAM-Part will be converted to the chosen Mill-Turn CNC-Controller.

• Backup&Continue. With this option a backup copy of

the CAM-Part is created and the CAM-Part is converted to the Mill-Turn type. This option aborts the conversion.

• Exit.

Conversion of Milling CAM-Parts During the conversion of Milling CAM-Parts into Mill-Turn, SolidCAM keeps all the Machine Coordinates Systems and related positions existing in the initial Milling CAM-Part preserving their location and orientation unchanged in order to provide seamless conversion of the geometries and operations. In addition to this, SolidCAM automatically generates the Turning Coordinate System. It is created according to the position and orientation of the Machine Coordinate System #1 (Position #1) taking into account the turn_home_x and turn_home_y parameters defined in the controller definition file (MAC-file). Conversion of Turning CAM-Parts During the conversion of Turning CAM-Parts into Mill-Turn, SolidCAM automatically generates the Machine Coordinate System #1 (Position #1) according to the position of the Turning Coordinate System. The axes orientation is defined according to the turn_home_x and turn_home_y parameters. All the turning operations defined in the initial Turning CAM-Part are kept unchanged.

252

Mill-Turn

Conversion of Turn-Mill CAM-Parts During the conversion of the Turn-Mill CAM-Parts, SolidCAM considers the Machine Coordinate System #1 (Position #1) of the Turn-Mill CAM-Part as Turning Coordinate System and automatically generates the Machine Coordinate System #1 (Position #1) according to the position of the Turning Coordinate System. The axes orientation is defined according to the turn_home_x and turn_home_y parameters. All other Machine Coordinate Systems defined in the Turn-Mill CAM-Part (Mac #2 used for sim. 4-axis operations, Mac #3 used for indexial milling operations and Mac #4 used for milling operations in back spindle) are converted into positions of the Machine Coordinate System #1. All the operations and geometries are converted and assigned to the relevant positions (converted from the Machining Coordinate Systems of the initial CAM-Part). SolidCAM does not enable you to convert into Mill-Turn the Turn-Mill CAM-Parts defined using the Projections mode of the Coordinate System definition. Conversion of Mill-Turn CAM-Parts from one CNC Machine to another During the conversion of a Mill-Turn CAM-Part from one CNC Machine to another, SolidCAM converts the Machine Coordinate System #1, preserving the orientation of the Turning Coordinate System defined in the initial CAM-Part, according to the values of the turn_home_x and turn_home_y parameters specified in the controller definition file (MAC-file). All the operations and geometries are converted and assigned to the relevant positions (converted from the Machining Coordinate Systems of the initial CAM-Part).

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9.3 Additional Turning Coordinate Systems SolidCAM enables you to define a number of Turning Coordinate Systems that can be used for the machining of parts using the back spindle or for the machining of parts from both sides, using the main spindle. When a new Machine Coordinate System is defined according to the conditions listed below, the Turning Coordinate System is automatically created for this Machine Coordinate System according to the values of the turn_home_x and turn_home_y parameters specified in the controller definition file (MAC-file). The following conditions should be maintained: • The Z-axis of the additional Machine Coordinate System should be collinear to the Z-axis of the Machine Coordinate System #1 (Position #1); it can be the same or in the opposite direction. • The origin of the additional Machine Coordinate System should be located on the Z-axis of the Machine Coordinate System #1 (Position #1). Y

Z

Y X Z
Machine Coordinate System #1 (Position #1)

X
Machine Coordinate System #2 (Position #1)

In the illustration above the Turning Coordinate System will be created for the Machine Coordinate System #2, since the origin of this Coordinate System is located on the Z-axis of the Machine Coordinate System #1 (Position #1) and the Z-axes are collinear. The Turning Coordinate System is created according to the turn_home_x and turn_home_y parameters.

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Mill-Turn

If the additional Machine Coordinate System is intended to be used for turning, the Back Clamp should be defined. All the turning operations defined with this Machine Coordinate System will use the Back Clamp.
Main Clamp Back Clamp

Machine Coordinate System #2 Position #1

Machine Coordinate System #1 Position #1

The additional Machine Coordinate System can be used to perform the operations using the Back Spindle. In this case the Back Clamp describes the geometry of the clamping device mounted on the back spindle.
Main Clamp

Machine Coordinate System #1 Position #1 Main Spindle machining

Back Clamp

Machine Coordinate System #2 Position #1 Back Spindle machining
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The defined Machine Coordinate System can be also used to perform the machining of the CAM-Part from both sides, using the Main Spindle. In this case, the Back Clamp describes the geometry of the clamping device mounted on the main spindle used for the back side machining.
Main Clamp

Machine Coordinate System #1 Position #1 Front side machining in Main Spindle Back Clamp

Machine Coordinate System #2 Position #1 Back side machining in Main Spindle

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Mill-Turn

9.4 Pre-processor customization As described before, any Milling, Turning or Turn-Mill pre-processor file (MAC file) can be converted into Mill-Turn by setting the machine_type parameter to MILL_&_TURN_FULL. The turn_home_x and turn_home_y parameters should be defined to set the orientation of the Turning Coordinate System. In addition to these parameters, the num_axes = 5 parameter should be defined in order to provide you with all the possibilities of 5-axis machining. In Turning and Turn-Mill pre-processors a number of parameters should be defined to provide you with the support of the indexial 5-axis milling. For example, the _5x_rotary_axes and tilt_axis_dir parameters should be defined. The _5x_rotary_axes parameter defines the linear axes which provides you with the possibilities to perform rotation around them. The tilt_axis_dir parameter enables you to specify the direction in which the tilting is performed. In Milling pre-processors, a number of the parameters affecting on the turning should be defined. For example the turn_common_proc parameter which enables you to control the generation of the common geometric points procedure for several cycles and the turning_cycle / groove_cycle parameters which determine whether the machine has a turning /grooving cycles.

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9.5 Post-processor customization SolidCAM enables you to adapt any Milling, Turning or Turn-Mill post-processor for MillTurn Machine. 9.5.1 Milling post-processor adaptation To adapt a Milling post-processor for Mill-Turn, the Turning functions should be added to the post-processor. For example, to add support for turning cycles in the postprocessor, the @turning function should be added. The @turn_change_tool function should be added to support changing of turning tools. For more information about turning functions, refer to GPPTool User Guide. Some of the functions used in Mill-Turn post-processors (e.g @line, @rapid_move or @arc) are common for Milling and Turning. In this case, you can customize the GCode output for this functions according to the machining type (either milling or turning). In the example below different GCode output is performed for milling and turning operations in @line function.
;------------------@line gcode = 1 {nb,[‘G’gcode]} if job_machine_type eq milling {[‘ X’xpos:coord_f], [‘ Y’ypos],[‘ Z’zpos], [‘ F’feed]} else ; turning {[‘ X’xpos], [‘ Z’zpos], [‘ F’feed]} endif endp ;-------------------

In the example above different formats are used for the xpos output in Milling and Turning. For Milling, the coord_f format is used, for Turning, the default xpos_f format is used.

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Mill-Turn

9.5.2 Turning post-processor adaptation To adapt a Turning post-processor for Mill-Turn, the Milling functions should be added to the post-processor. For example, to add support for 4- and 5-axis output in GCode, the @line_4x and @line_5x functions should be added. The @home_data / @tmatrix functions can be modified or added to support indexial 5-axis machining. For more information about Milling functions, refer to GPPTool User Guide. Some of the functions used in Mill-Turn post-processors (e.g @line, @rapid_move or @arc) are common for Milling and Turning. In this case, you can customize the GCode output for this functions according to the machining type (either milling or turning). In the example below, different GCode output is performed for milling and turning operations in @arc function.
@arc if job_machine_type eq milling call @arc_mill else ;turning if arc_direction eq CCW then gcode = 3 else ; CW gcode = 2 endif {nb, [‘G’gcode] ‘ X’xend:xpos_f ‘ Z’zend} if arc_size >= 180 then radius = -radius endif {‘ R’radius, [‘ F’feed]} endif endp ;------------------@arc_mill skipline=true ;-- arc plane -if change(arc_plane) then if arc_plane eq XY then gcode = 17 endif if arc_plane eq YZ then gcode = 18 endif
259

if arc_plane eq ZX then gcode = 19 endif {nb,’G’gcode, ‘ ‘} endif if arc_direction eq CCW then gcode = 3 else ; CW gcode = 2 endif if change(gcode) then {nb,’G’gcode} else {nb,’ ‘} endif {[‘ X’xpos:coord_f] [‘ Y’ypos] [‘ Z’zpos]} if arc_size eq 360 then if arc_plane eq XY then {‘ I’xcenter_rel, ‘ J’ycenter_rel} endif if arc_plane eq YZ then {‘ J’xcenter_rel, ‘ K’ycenter_rel} endif if arc_plane eq ZX then {‘ K’xcenter_rel, ‘ I’ycenter_rel} endif else if arc_size >= 180 then radius = -radius endif {‘ R’radius} endif endp ;-------------------

In the example above, the @arc function contains the condition which enables you to customize the GCode output for Milling and Turning. The @arc function defines the format for Turning GCode output. For Milling, the @arc_mill function is called from the @arc function. The method of the postprocessor programming described above, enables you to modify the @arc function in a Turning post-processor by adding conditions that define different actions for milling and turning. The @arc_mill function can be obtained by copying the contents of the @arc function from a Milling post-processor
260

Mill-Turn

9.5.3 Turn-Mill post-processor adaptation To adapt a Turn-Mill post-processor for Mill-Turn, the @home_data / @tmatrix functions should be modified in order to support work with Coordinate Systems in Mill-Turn. The example below illustrates the @tmatrix function from a Turn-Mill post-processor. This function provides you with different handling for different Machine Coordinate Systems. For example, for the Machine Coordinate System #2, the @tmatrix function enables you to orient the tool to perform the simultaneous 4-axis milling.
@tmatrix if job_machine_type eq milling if part_home_number <> pre_part_home_number if mac_number eq 1 {NB,’#101=’rotate_angle_z} {nb,’ G91 G28 X0’} {nb,’G90’} if rot_axis_type eq axis4_none {nb,’G69’} {nb,’M212’} {nb,’G0 B0. C’rotate_angle_z} {nb,’M210’} else {nb,’G69’} {nb,’M212’} {nb,’G0 B0. C’rotate_angle_z ’ Y0’} endif endif if mac_number eq 2 {NB,’#101=’rotate_angle_z} {nb,’ G91 G28 X0’} {nb,’G90’} if rot_axis_type eq axis4_none {nb,’G69’} {nb,’M212’} {nb,’G0 B90. C’rotate_angle_x} {nb,’M210’} zpos = znext ypos = ynext change(xpos) = false call @rapid_move change(ypos) = false change(zpos) = false xpos = xnext else

261

{nb,’G69’} {nb,’G0 B90. C’rotate_angle_x ’ Y0’} change(ypos) = false change(zpos) = false xpos = xnext endif endif if mac_number eq 3 {NB,’#101=’rotate_angle_z} {nb,’ G91 G28 X0’} {nb,’G90’} call @home_data2 endif pre_part_home_number = part_home_number endif endif endp

The @tmatrix of Mill-Turn post-processor provides you with the same handling for Positions of all the Machine Coordinate Systems. This function defines the Position location and orientation relative to the Machine Coordinate System.
@tmatrix {nb, ‘G69’} {nb, ‘G49’} {nb, ‘G91 G28 X0’} {nb, ‘G28 Y0 Z0’} {nb, ‘G90’} {nb,’M108’} {nb,’G0 B’rotate_angle_y,’ ‘chuck_axis rotate_angle_z} {nb,’M107’} {nb,’G68 X’,shift_x, ‘ Y’shift_y, ‘ Z’shift_z, ‘ I0. J1. K0. R’rotate_angle_y} endp

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9.6 Geometry wrapped around axes for 4-axis machining In the previous Turn-Mill module, the definition of geometry for 4-axis machining required an additional Coordinate System suitable for radial milling. The Mill-Turn functionality enables you to perform radial milling using the same Coordinate System as for facial milling. For Profile geometry, the Wrapping mode of the geometry definition in the Geometry Edit dialog box offers you the choice of axis around which the geometry is wrapped.

X

Profile geometry wrapped around Z

Z Y

263

For Around 4th axis drilling geometry, the similar option is added into the Around 4th Axis Drill Geometry Selection dialog box. It enables you to choose the axis around which the drilling centers are located.

X

Drilling geometry wrapped around Z Y

Z

264

Wire Cut

10

10.1 Improvements of the 4-axis Geometry definition
SolidCAM2008 R12

provides you with the number of improvements of the geometry definition for the 4-Axis Operation.

The enhanced 4 Axis Geometry Edit dialog box enables you to define the geometry for 4-Axis Operation. Defining the Upper and Lower profiles The Chains Selection section enables you to define two chains describing the Upper profile and the Lower profile of the 4-Axis geometry and manage them. SolidCAM enables you to choose either Auto mode for the chains definition. With the available:

Manual Manual

or

mode the following options are

Add chain

This button enables you to define the new chain using the Chain options dialog box.
• Delete chain

This button enables you to delete a chain from the current geometry. Click on the chain you want to delete The confirmation message is displayed:

Confirm the message with the Yes button. The chain is deleted from the geometry.
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Wire Cut

Replace chain

This button enables you to update a chain in the current chain geometry. Click on the chain you want to replace. The confirmation message is displayed.

Confirm the message with the Yes button. The old chain is deleted and you can define a new chain using the Chain options dialog box.
• Edit chain

This button enables you to edit an existing chain. Click on the chain you want to edit. The confirmation message is displayed.

Confirm the message with the Yes button. The Chain options dialog box is displayed. You can reverse the chain or undo the selection steps to modify the chain.

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The Auto mode enables you to define the Upper and Lower profiles by picking on the solid model face. When the face is picked, SolidCAM automatically determines the closed loop of the picked face and all the faces adjacent to this loop. The first chain is defined automatically on the closed loop of the selected face. The second chain is defined automatically on the opposite edges of the faces adjacent to the picked face loop.

Selected face Defined chains

Adjacent faces

If only one loop is determined for the face, SolidCAM automatically defines the geometry chain along the edges of this loop. If the picked face contains more than one loop, they are highlighted; you then have to choose the necessary loop for the chain definition by picking and the chosen chain is highlighted. The Reject button enables you to delete the chains defined by faces picking. Defining the Connect points Connect points are the pair of points situated on the Upper and Lower profiles of the 4-Axis geometry. The line connecting these points provides smooth transition of the profiles. When both of the Upper and Lower profiles are defined, SolidCAM automatically generates a number of connect points pairs on the profiles and connects them.
Connect points 3

3

1

2

1

2

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Wire Cut

SolidCAM enables you to define new connect points and manage existing connect points using the Single connection and Connection sections. The following buttons are available:
• Add point

This button enables you to add a pair of connect points. Click on the first chain to define the location of the first connect point, and then click on the second chain to define the location of the corresponding second connect point. The pair of points and the connecting line are added.
• Delete point

This button enables you to delete a pair of connect points (on the upper and lower profiles) by picking on one of them.
• Edit point

This button enables you to move a connect point to a new position on the upper or lower profile. Click on a connect point on one of the chains and then click on the same chain to specify a new location for the connect point. The Connection section provides you with the following commands:
• Reset.

This command enables you to regenerate the original connect points. This command is available only for chains defined with the Manual mode. This command enables you remove all the connect points from the Upper and lower Profiles.
Delete All.

Defining the Start point The Start Point button located in the Start points section, enables you to add the pair of start points on the Upper and Lower profiles. In these points SolidCAM starts machining the workpiece.

269

Defining the Insertion point

This option enables you to define the point where the wire is inserted into the workpiece. The following options are available for the insertion point definition:
• Manual

The
point

Define

button enables you select the insertion point. The Pick insert dialog box is displayed enabling you to pick the point location.

• Auto

SolidCAM automatically defines the insertion point at the normal to the first chain element at its start point. The Normal value defines the normal distance from the start point of the chain to the insertion point. Spline approximation

SolidCAM enables you to define the selection.

Spline approximation

tolerance for the chain

For more information about the Spline approximation refer to the SolidCAM Wire Cut User Guide.

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Wire Cut

10.2 Sharp corner machining in Profile and Angle operations In previous SolidCAM versions, the Fillet for last cut option provided the possibility to add a radius to sharp corners, without changing the geometry of the machined part. SolidCAM2008 R12 introduces an additional option for machining of corners; the Looping option is added in the Profile/Angle Operation dialog box under Fillet for last cut. This option enables you to obtain sharp corners, by adding a loop at each corner.

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272

Simulation

11

11.1 SolidVerify support in Machine Simulation In previous SolidCAM versions, the Machine Simulation mode provided you with the capability to simulate the tool path and CNC machine motions during the machining. SolidCAM2008 R12 provides you with an additional capability to perform the solid verification of the material cutting process using the SolidVerify mode, integrated into the Machine Simulation. With this functionality, SolidCAM enables you to display the stock model and perform the simulation by dynamic subtraction of the tool solid model (using solid Boolean operations) from the stock solid model.

The Full Machine verification option is added to the Machine Simulation page of the SolidCAM Settings dialog box. When this option is activated, the solid verification is performed in the Machine simulation mode.

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Simulation

11.2 Machine Simulation for Turning, Turn-Mill and Mill-Turn you with the support of the Machine Simulation mode for Turning, Turn-Mill and Mill-Turn modules.
SolidCAM2008 R12 provides

With this functionality turning operations can be verified as well as milling operations. For more explanations on the CNC-Machine definition for the Machine Simulation refer to SolidCAM Turning User Guide.

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11.3 Fixtures support within Machine Simulation
SolidCAM2008 R12 enables

Machine Simulation.

you to display the fixtures defined for the CAM-Part in the

To use this functionality, you have to add the fixture into the CNC-Machine definition. Since the fixture is clamping the workpiece on the CNC-Machine table and these components are always moving together, all the coordinate transformations are the same for workpiece and fixture. Therefore you do not need to define a separate coordinate transformation for the fixture; you can use the existing transformation of the workpiece. The fixture definition should be added to the CNC-Machine definition tree under the Workpiece transform. In the CNC machine definition tree, right click on the workpiece_transform coordinate transformation item and choose the Add Geometry command from the menu.
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Simulation

This command enables you to define the geometry of the fixture. The Element properties dialog box is displayed.

Define the ID of the fixture geometry. Use the built-in name Fixture for the ID definition. This name is hard-coded in SolidCAM and cannot be changed. Click on the Browse button and choose the fixture.stl file, containing the fixture model, from the CNC-Machine folder. During the specific part simulation this file will be overwritten with the STL-file of the actual fixture used in the CAM-Part. If you have no fixture.stl file, you can create it by copying and renaming any other *.stl file. In this case the content of the STL-file is not important, because it will be overwritten with the relevant data during the simulation for every CAM-Part.

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11.4 Solving verification

self-intersections

and

noise

problems

in

solid

11.4.1 Checking and fixing self-intersections Many problems occur in solid verification (SolidVerify, RapidVerify and Machine simulation modes) if the solids used (Machined Stock model, Target model and Fixture) are not topologically valid. In particular, solid verification is likely to encounter problems with solids that contain self-intersections – that is, solids which contain pairs of polygons which overlap each other, or individual polygons whose edges cross. Self-intersections can be encountered in the following cases: • The model (Stock, Target or Fixture) is based on a SolidWorks assembly or sub-assembly containing a number of components. • The model (Stock, Target or Fixture) is based on a SolidWorks part containing a number of disjointed solid bodies. • The model (Stock, Target or Fixture) is based on a SolidWorks part with corrupted geometry (gaps, self-intersections etc.). Such self-intersection problems can be solved during the Stock/Target/Fixture model definition.
Self-intersections section of the dialog box enables you to check the model for self-intersections and, if they are found, fix them. Check and fix Stock model/Target model/Fixture

The

button in the

When the self-intersections are detected, the following message is displayed; confirm it with the Yes button to fix the selfintersections. Note that the process of self-intersection fixing can take a long time to complete, depending on the complexity of the model.
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Simulation

11.4.2 Rounding of input data During the facetting of Stock and Target models, the coordinates of facets generated by SolidCAM are often calculated as numbers of the float type with many digits after the point. These numbers cause problems during the SolidVerify simulation, such as self-intersections and gaps in model.
SolidCAM2008 R12 provides you with a new functionality that enables you to avoid such problems. The Automatically remove noise from input data check box added to the Updated Stock & SolidVerify page of the Part Settings dialog box enables you use a smart rounding algorithm that removes the noise in facet coordinates so that the model is displayed properly.

Note that the process of rounding can take a long time to complete.

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11.5 Improving the simulation performance in the SolidVerify mode To improve the quality of the SolidVerify simulation performance with different graphic adapters, you can choose the software/hardware OpenGL acceleration options. Additionally, SolidCAM2008 R12 provides you with possibility to use hardware acceleration provided by your graphic adapter. To use this option, click Settings, General in the simulation menu. In the OpenGL rendering section of the General Settings dialog box, click Hardware and select the Use advanced hardware acceleration check box.
SolidVerify

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