Ability to avoid clamps and other obstacles

I’d like to see the ability to identify obstacles (usually hold-downs) that need to be avoided.

I have a CAM program that does that but I don’t think you want to spend more than the cost of your machine for CAM.
I’m not sure there is a low cost CAM that can do that. On second thought possible the CAM that comes with Fusion360 can. Maybe a fusion user can confirm that.


If you are using a graphics program like illustrator or inkscape… you first task should be to make a “template” of your bed. On a separate layer ( an easily identifiable) lay out your stock shape and hold down positions… I draw those things in red… then position your artwork where it wont interfere with those danger zones. just make sure the template is accurate.

Yeah, but you won’t know where the G Code will start the toolpath, and the machine moves the spindle in a straight line to that point.

Here’s what I mean. The spindle could move anywhere in that red area at any time, so you can’t put clamps there. See how that’s kind of limiting, especially down along the bottom left edge? If you aren’t aware of that or aren’t thinking about it, it’s pretty easy to crash a bit into a hold down.

Generally, I try to clamp the workpiece with as little of the clamp as possible. Also, I try to always look at the toolpath in Easel or UGS or whatever machine controller I’m using before I make the cut to double check if there is a clamp in the way.

Also, you can set the safety height of the machine to be higher than your clamps and that way there’s no possibility the machine will crash into them.


Let us mark the locations of the clamps, with rectangles, and set a default and specific height per clamp.
Draw the clamp in red if it will cause a crash.

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