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New to CNC, few CAM queries

Discussion in 'CAM' started by Hix, Nov 28, 2016.

  1. Hix

    Hix Well-Known
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    Hi,
    I stumbled on this site this afternoon. What a find!!! This is a new world of possibilities for me :)
    So. I'm a design engineer by trade and use Catia V5 on a daily basis. However, I've never done any CNC stuff. I can generate NC code in Catia, but I'm wondering if there are any decent CNC controller packages that are Open Source? I'm happy using OS X, Win X and Linux, so free to choose.
    I'm looking at building something like the C-Beam, though I would prefer more Z flexibility. I plan to mostly mill aluminium 6082-T6 and use it in a variety of projects I have inside my head.

    Let me know what you guys use as I'm still mulling over how to approach the build (and trying to justify the already spiralling BOM costs). All good info gratefully received.

    Cheers
    Ade
     
  2. David the swarfer

    David the swarfer OpenBuilds Team
    Staff Member Moderator Builder

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    Hi
    try SketchUcam
    and a long discussion on CAM software at CNC Software

    nutshell: Everything GRBL is open source, so is LinuxCNC. Maybe TinyG and others too.

    you said 'Z flexibility', the longer you make the Z, the more flexible it is (-: or do you mean you want to be able to exchange cutting heads? That is exactly what I plan on my OX since I have a Dremel, and RC brushless motor based spindle, and I want to make one of those oscillating pin cutters as well.
    Like this Brushless Motor Foam Cutter and cutting sheet foam

    I will just attach each 'thing' to a plate (maybe 4mm aluminum) and screw the plate to the Z as needed.
     
  3. Hix

    Hix Well-Known
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    Hi,
    I had a look at SketchUCAM, but I don't think it is going to be viable for me. I am doing all my design work in Catia V5 so it seems ludicrous to then try and translate things into a format that Sketchup can read. I can generate G-Code from Catia, but what I need is some software that will then take the G-Code and communicate with the CNC Controller board. I've read a bit into LinuxCNC and it seems like it is pretty well supported, but I'll have to do some further research.

    I plan to use something like a min 800W spindle Spindle Motor 3 Phase 2.2KW Water cooled ER20 with Matching VFD. To enable me to machine Al properly, I'll need the spindle speed. I also think that I'll have to beef up the framing, but that's not a massive ordeal. Worst case, I can start with the basic C-Frame and machine the bits to make a proper beast.
     
    #3 Hix, Nov 29, 2016
    Last edited: Nov 29, 2016
  4. dddman

    dddman Master
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    You're looking for Mach3 or GRBL universal Gcode sender
     
  5. David the swarfer

    David the swarfer OpenBuilds Team
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    @Hix I meant for you to read the threads that I linked, they contain the information you seek.
     
  6. Hix

    Hix Well-Known
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    @David the swarfer doh, sorry. Will have a look.
    @dddman I played with mach3 at a previous job but never used it. It looked a little underwhelming for paid up software, will check out the other option mentioned.
    Cheers chaps.
     

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