Systems & Software

CAD, CAM and Related Software
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CAM Software is used to generate machining programs corresponding to part designs. Short for “computer-aided manufacturing,” CAM creates these programs for CNC machine tools including machining centers, lathes and EDM machines. Sometimes, machining programs can be written and input manually, right at the machine’s control. However, if the workpiece geometry is at all complex, or if the machined features are numerous, then generally CAM software is essential for generating the program both accurately and quickly. In general, CAM development has proceeded along two different tracks. Geometry-based CAM systems used in die/mold machining and other applications focus on complex milled geometries. Algorithms provide specific and efficient ways for machining complex geometries with both high precision and long tool life. By contrast, feature-based CAM systems are generally used in the production machining of geometrically simpler components. These latter CAM systems are often engineered to automate otherwise repetitive programming tasks such as assigning similar tools to similar features.

Featured Zone Content

Retired Yet Inspired to Learn Machining


A retired engineer with no prior machining experience is learning how to be a machinist. His quickly increasing skillset demonstrates how new machining technology is becoming more capable and easier to pick up and apply.

A Smooth Transition to Five-Axis Machining


A mold manufacturer that specializes in precision, thin-walled container molds chose an integrated approach to establishing an effective five-axis “3 + 2” machining process.

QFS Keeps Its Customers Moving With Integrated CAD/CAM


Quickly updating tool paths to remachine die surfaces enables this shop to provide short runs of prototype formed sheet metal parts. This fast response to engineering changes and design adjustments helps its customers adhere to tightly scheduled vehicle launch programs. QFS relies on integrated CAD and CAM software to make this happen. In this case, the software of choice are PowerShape and PowerMill from Delcam.



Video: Accelerated Blisk Milling

By: Peter Zelinski
CAM and cutting tool companies develop a process for machining a titanium bladed disk in less than half the conventionally expected cycle time.

Vero Visi 2016 R1

CAD/CAM Software Improves Cooling Channel Management for Moldmaking

By: Jedd Cole
Version 2016 R1 of Vero’s Visi CAD/CAM software includes updates across the platform while maintaining its emphasis on mold, tool and die making.

Delcam Partmaker 2016

CAM Software Improves 2 ½-Axis Programming, Machining

By: Jedd Cole
Delcam has released the 2016 version of its PartMaker software for programming CNC mills, lathes, wire EDMs, turn-mill centers and Swiss-type lathes, featuring powerful 2 ½-axis milling strategies, support for multiple solid models in a single CAM file, broaching support, and faster 2D CAD drafting and toolpath selection.

CAM, Simulation Software Enhances Port Machining Toolpaths

By: Jedd Cole
ModuleWorks has released the 2015.12 version of its CAM software, which includes new features for five- and three-axis programming as well as simulation.

CAM Plug-In for Solidworks Supports Multitasking Machine Programming

By: Jedd Cole
BobCAD-CAM has released version 5 of its BobCAM for Solidworks CNC programming software including more features, modules and overall system improvements.


SmartCAM features New Mill/Turn Sub-Spindle and B-axis Support, Morph Pattern Roughing.
• 2-5 Axis Milling
• Mill/Turn and Multi-Task Machining
• Solid Modeling & High Speed Machining
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