CAM System Features Rib-Machining Module

Delcam has added a rib-machining module to its PowerMill CAM system for high-speed and five-axis machining.

Delcam has added a rib-machining module to its PowerMill CAM system for high-speed and five-axis machining. The module is said to speed up and simplify the machining of cavities to form ribs, such as the reinforcing ribs required in many types of plastic molds. According to Delcam, the rib-machining module makes it easier and safer to program the machining of narrow ribs, even when the cutter’s length is much greater than its diameter. This dedicated rib-machining strategy is said to provide a better surface finish than using a standard finish-machining option and improve efficiency by limiting the number of air moves.

The first stage of the process is to create a pattern for a single rib by sketching a line along its length. The PowerMill software uses the line to automatically identify all the surfaces needed to form the rib and then calculates the machining sequence. Machining is typically accomplished by cutting progressively deeper along the centerline of the cavity with a form tool that matches the rib profile or by profiling along either side of the rib with a standard tool. If all the ribs in a part have similar depth and width profiles, the same machining strategies and tooling can be applied across the complete network, minimizing programming times.

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