The 2014 R2 release of Delcam’s PowerMill CAM software for high-speed and five-axis machining includes new simulation and customization tools, greater editing flexibility, and features designed to minimize programming and manufacturing times.
The company’s Vortex high-efficiency area-clearance strategy has been updated, improving the ordering of tool paths to minimize lifts and air moves and increase efficiency. A dialogue with redesigned user interface enhances the presentation of positioning data and the limits set for each axis. A slider can be used to jog the machine components into position during simulation and displays a warning if any axis limit is exceeded. An added toolbar simulates and adjusts the configuration and tool axis of 3 + 2 machines or any equipment with incremental rotary axes. The toolbar can be used to edit the tool axis and orientation of the machine tool for fast updates to existing tool paths. An added plug-in provides a graph of the linear and rotary axes during the simulation, enabling users to locate potential problems such as sudden changes in direction or axis reversals.
A new method enables merging adjacent arcs, lines, curves and surface edges into one composite curve, simplifying 2D programming and flowline machining. It is possible to insert and edit fillets within a composite curve, and the tangents of a point on a Bezier curve can also be modified. The number of points on a curve can be edited and redistributed along the curve. Raster strategies have been updated for less fragmented tool paths, avoiding overlaps. The software automatically eliminates any small, isolated segments that can leave marks on the workpiece surface. The dialogue boxes for creating custom toolbars have been redesigned, and the maximum number of custom toolbars has been increased from four to 32. In addition, toolbars can be exported in .XML files for use on other computers.