CAM Software Eases Programming of Part Families

Delcam’s 2015 version of its FeatureCAM software eases programming of part families by matching the names of features within the part library with user-created curves relating to those features, making the programming of subsequent parts in the family much easier and faster.

Delcam’s 2015 version of its FeatureCAM software eases programming of part families by matching the names of features within the part library with user-created curves relating to those features, making the programming of subsequent parts in the family much easier and faster. The release also offers enhancements to its three-axis milling, turning and turn-mill, and wire EDM capabilities.

In three-axis machining, the software enables using stock models in conjunction with other geometry, such as part surface dimensions and boundary curves, providing better control over the area to be machined and confining tool paths to specific regions. Automatic collision checking of the tool shank and holder as well as the cutter has been added for three-axis roughing and finish tool paths. The user can stop the simulation immediately when a gouge is detected or run the complete tool path to highlight any gouges as they are detected. The tool path can then be recalculated with those segments clipped away.

The software’s five-axis programming functionality now enables creating patterns of holes of similar size with regular positioning. Any subsequent changes to the program can then be made for all the holes in the pattern in one operation, rather than having to edit the tool paths separately for each individual hole.

The release also offers more efficient turning by producing tool paths that rapid up and over previously machined diameters rather than feeding along them, reducing overall cycle times and avoiding dragging of the tool. “Pinch and follow” turning can now be chosen when machining components using the “face” or “back face” cycles. For turning and turn-mill machine tools, support has been added for the use of traveling steady rests for greater flexibility in turning very long parts. Additionally, the software can manage multiple part catchers on turn-mill equipment.

Additionally, FeatureCAM 2015 provides an expanded wire-cut database to support multiple wire EDMs with varying formats and methods of operation, with the ability to specify nozzle and fluid type, material type and thickness, wire type and diameter, and machine.

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