CAM Software Features Plunge Roughing, Five-Axis And 3D Machining, Plus 64-Bit Implementation

64-bit implementation allows this CAM software to take advantage of multi-processor PCs with four or more GB of RAM.

Gibbs and Associates, developer of GibbsCAM software for maximizing programming efficiency of CNC machine tools and a Cimatron company, announced today that it is now shipping GibbsCAM 2010.  This new release includes multiple new features, additions, enhancements, and productivity tools.  

“We have been working very hard to provide customers new functionality across the GibbsCAM product family,” says Bill Gibbs, founder and president of Gibbs and Associates. “We added many capabilities to make programming and machining easier and more efficient, especially with new features in five-axis and solids machining. We also implemented 64-bit operation to enable faster processing of long programs and complex parts, added support for new tools and tool holders, extended functionality within various modules, and extended and updated interoperability with various CAD systems,” he adds. “All this is in addition to the recent integration of VoluMill and making GibbsCAM compatible with the Windows 7 operating system.”
 
GibbsCAM 2010 began shipping to new customersand maintenance customers in January 2010.
 
Key Five-Axis Enhancements
These include more spiral machining options, new gouge check projection options, a new lead in/lead out “flip” option, a new axial shift damp option for trimming applications, and support for countersink and keyway cutters. More specific additions are the following.
 
Geometry Creation—A Surface Tools plug-in has been added to create surfaces for repairing or improving machinability of surfaces from solids.
 
Adaptive Cuts—This new option enables regulating the distance between paths based upon the angle of the surface to be machined to provide a consistent surface finish, regardless of surface angle.
 
Impeller Roughing—Has been enhanced with functionality that covers more contingencies, especially useful when roughing near and around splitter blades.
 
Tool Retraction—A new option, Retract Through Tube Center, enables retracting cutting tools from angled pockets while avoiding walls, especially useful for machining cylinder head ports and similar geometry.
 
Key EnhancementsTo Solids Machining
 
New, More Capable Plunge Roughing—No longer a plug-in, it is a tile in the CAM palette, with the ability to calculate material removal strategies that accommodate carbide-inserted drills, which require special motion for no-drag retractions, while avoiding collision in tight or narrow areas.
 
Enhancements to Advanced 3D Machining—These include the addition of Hit Flats with specified tools for Pocketing, the ability to specify flatness tolerance in Flats Cut to ensure all desired “flat” areas are machined, locking high feed rate for Shortest Route and Minimal Vertical retract styles, addition of Trim to Ramp Advance as a Contour option for waterline cuts, specifying surface finish with step-over distance or scallop height parameters, and using Stock Bounding Box as an additional machining boundary.
 
Addition of Option for Stock—Facet bodies, generated from a previous machining process, or brought in through a data file, can now be used as initial stock in solid pocketing.
 
64-Bit Implementation
 
A significant development, the 64-bit implementation allows taking advantage of the more powerful, multi-processor PCs equipped with 4GB or more of RAM. This provides tighter interoperability with 64-bit CAD systems that are co-resident with GibbsCAM on a PC. Also, 64-bit operation reduces computation time when processing extremely long programs or working with complex geometry. It will also enable users to take advantage of system enhancements when running under the Windows 7 operating system.
 
Even More Enhancements
 
GibbsCAM 2010 includes many more features, some for ease of use, and others to extend functionality, including enhancements to the user interface and for the milling, MTM (multi-task machining) and wire EDM modules, as well as new add-ins for data exchange to support Inventor 2010, SolidWorks 2010, and additional CAD file import and translation. Furthermore, the macros menu was enhanced with changes for easy access, uninterrupted operation, and support for five-axis and advanced 3D processes and calls to plug-ins.