Systems & Software

CAM for Die/Mold
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CAM software for die/mold machining has to respond to the complex 3D milled geometries typical of die and mold tooling. In addition to milling the shape correctly, the CAM software also has to pick a pattern of tool paths that can achieve the required surface finish. These tool paths are far too numerous and too mathematically complex to be written by a programmer, so CAM software is essential for generating them automatically. The programmer ensures that the underlying CAD model is correct and complete, then chooses basic parameters such as cutting tools and the preferred patterns and parameters of machining, to let the CAM software author the program. The CAM software also is likely to account for such important die/mold machining practices as high speed machining, most likely doing this by adapting the direction changes in the tool paths so that the tool does not see any sharp turns but instead changes direction gradually. This minimizes impacts to the tool, workpiece or machine while the tool feeds rapidly and efficiently across the part.

Featured Zone Content

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.

Efficient High-Speed Roughing


The Vortex roughing strategy produces tool paths with a controlled engagement angle for the complete operation.



Southwestern Industries Trak

Mills and Lathes with CNC Technology Increase Productivity

By: Jedd Cole
Southwestern Industries will exhibit its Trak line of mills and lathes featuring the company’s ProtoTrak conversational CNC language, designed to reduce time-consuming machine setups and enable less-skilled machinists to do higher-level work.

DP Technology to Host Esprit World Conference

By: Jedd Cole
The educational conference will be held June 6-10 in Florida.

Broken-Up Programs Limit Broken Tools

By: Matt Danford
Posting tool paths for different operations to the machine individually rather than as a single, combined part program helps this heavily lights-out operation quickly address the causes of tool wear and breakage.

Open Mind HyperMill 2016.2

Software Provides Strategies for Roughing, Drilling, Finishing

By: Jedd Cole
Open Mind will present HyperMill 2016.2, which includes the Maxx Machining performance package, a set of high-performance toolpath techniques for roughing, drilling (pocket-opening) and finishing.

CGS CAM-Tool

CAM Release Incorporates User-Defined Features

By: Jedd Cole
CGS North America will demonstrate the latest version of its CG CAM-Tool software, designed for machining molds or dies with minimal or no polishing required.


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