Just curious to know which cam/cad programs folks are using for their xcarve?
I presently use Alibre/Geomagic 3D CAD and Draft Sight 2D CAD. CAM software is SprutCAM 9 and CamBam. Right now I use these programs with my CNC mill.
When I receive and modify my machine I will use these same programs. My machine will run LinuxCNC and Gecko G540 4 axis stepper drivers.
I use VCarve Pro for design and Mach 3 for CAM. @DavidSohlstrom - what voltage are you going to run on your Gecko drive? I heard it is super smooth and very fast compared to generic Chinese BOBs and stepper drivers (although I am very happy with mine - I am limited to 36 volts) I have seen them connected to 19 through 48 volts.
I’ll be running at 48 VDC. My nema 23 steppers are also 280 oz.
I used to use Geomagic, but they are so poor at customer relations and very slow at adding improvements, I moved over to use Fusion360 about 8 months ago.
I also used CAMBAM, which is very good.
Take a look at Fusion360, apart from everything else, the integrated CAD and CAM is a winner for me.
Customer engagement is top notch and they provide frequent updates.
I could say a lot more about Fusion360, but I don’t it to come across as a big advert for them. I don’t have any links to them.
I looked at Fusion360 for a shot time but did not like it real well. I have also looked at Onshape.com and they look very promising.
Look at “NYC CNC” on youtube. He’s been doing some quick projects using Fusion360. Love his channel!
Thanks @JohnScherer, I’ll have a look.
i use aspire, inkscape, sketchup, easel, and UGS
I just looked at upgrading from VCarve Pro to Aspire. It is… FOURTEEN HUNDRED DOLLARS! Yikes.
I have always wanted to be able to turn flat vectors into 3D models. Like pulling a vector up on its z-axis, but being able to radius or chamfer the edges of the raised vector. For example, creating raised, rounded letters within a project. Is there anything like that out there? V-Carve Pro only lets you import 3D MOdels and create tool paths.
i think blender can do that and it is free. ive never used it though
MeshCAM is only $250.
I just downloaded Fusion 360. Another learning curve… this might be a better “dead of the winter” project.
Im still waiting for my machine so I have been researching software. I came across a cam program that had a wizard for simple operation but cant remember the name. You went into the wizard and chose a simple operation, like drilling a hole. Insert the height/misc variables, and it went to work. Can anyone tell me what the name of this program is?
Check your browser history for the day you found it.
You my friend are a genius. now to kick myself for not thinking of it. . .
That done, the wizard is called conversational cnc and is built into g-wizard. I like the idea of the simple operations without having to cad a whole part. Just another option for the ever growing list of software i guess.
If you do not have Gwizard and use it for figuring feeds and speeds then run do not walk and get it. I do no CAM work without it open on my left monitor and my CAM open on the right.
Plus there is a ton of other very helpful info in the program. There is a second program Bob has called Gwizard Editor that you can load your Gcode into and run a sim to see if it does what you want. Great tool to have.
Watch his web site he does sales on his software on a regular basis.
I got the trial g-wizard but dont like the online requirement. I prefer an all offline solution since I plan on using my system without wifi access. Unfortunately there is no alternative to g-wizard that I have found yet.
I ran a Cat6 line from my internet router to the shop so I have internet in the shop. I also do most of my CAM work here in the house so the online requirement does not bother me at all.
The program is well worth the need to have it online.
I have ideas for wifi if absolutaly necessary but would prefer the offline solution from the start.