Tech Tips

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18 06, 2018

Mastercam 2019 Advanced Toolpath Display

By | 2018-06-18T08:32:58+00:00 June 18th, 2018|Categories: Mastercam, Tech Tips|0 Comments

Mastercam 2019 now displays toolpaths with different colors, based on the move type. The following image depicts a part with a Dynamic OptiRough toolpath, with Advanced Display toggled on. This is unavailable for Wire toolpaths. If Advanced Display is not toggled on, Mastercam displays only cutting motion and rapid motion in different colors. Change the display state by selecting Advanced Display on the View tab. Set these colors in the System Configuration dialog box on the Advanced Toolpath Display page, which is located under Colors. You can also set colors by selecting the dialog box-launcher for Advanced Display. You can also change the line style, line width, and other attributes. For drill toolpaths, you can set the color, line style, and line width of the drill tool diameter. Use the drop-down menu to display different sections of the toolpath. For example, if you deselect Exit Motion, then any exit motion does not display in the graphics window. You can also toggle the display from the Toolpaths Manager. Classic Backplot and Mastercam Simulator display the customized toolpath colors if the Advanced Display toggle is on. If it is not, the default colors display. Stay tuned to many more tips and tricks [...]

11 06, 2018

Mastercam 2018 Undo-Redo for Model Prep

By | 2018-06-11T08:36:14+00:00 June 11th, 2018|Categories: Mastercam, Tech Tips|0 Comments

There is a new enhancement to the solid direct editing tools. In previous versions of Mastercam any changes made with model prep could not be undone. Now, up to twenty-five steps can be rolled back or forward using controls completely independent from the main Undo/Redo commands. If you have some toolpaths already programmed on a part you will see the standard Undo/Redo arrows on the quick access toolbar as shown below . . . . . . as well as the model prep specific ones shown here in the Solids Manager. Now, let’s say you use the Push/Pull and Position to alter the part and fixturing models. Then you change the slot depths on the part and move some of the holes. You will notice that the Undo arrow on the Solids tab becomes active. You can make similar changes to the clamps and reposition the nuts using the position layout tool and then as you step back and forth in the Solids Undo, you can see how the edits to the model are affected. Undo Redo However, please note that the positioning of the clamp nuts is affected by the main Undo/Redo command set. Only [...]

4 06, 2018

Mastercam 2018 Seam Control

By | 2018-05-22T08:21:07+00:00 June 4th, 2018|Categories: Mastercam, Tech Tips|0 Comments

There is a new enhancement to the positional transform in Mastercam 2018 called Roll. Seam control integrates a new dynamic gnomon and an on-screen seam position indicator to help make your results more predictable. On the screen below you can see two lines of text that need to be engraved on the outside of the part around the 12 o’clock position. Since we are unsure where the text will end up when its rolled we can use the seam control to adjust the position. Next, go to the Transform Ribbon and select the Roll icon in the position group. When the chaining box appears, select Window Chaining and window the first line of text. When the chaining is complete the new controls appear on the screen. Now you can use the handles on the rotation gnomon to adjust the wrapped geometry position. A translucent cylinder indicates the rolled diameter. Two bright yellow lines show the rotation axis and seam for the rolled patch. Any adjustments you make are previewed instantly and you can snap to any point in space, an increment on the angle dial, or any reference geometry. The end result is your geometry in place so that you [...]

25 05, 2018

Rego-Fix PowRgrip Tool Holders

By | 2018-05-18T09:18:44+00:00 May 25th, 2018|Categories: Mastercam, Tech Tips|0 Comments

As we continued our training and application experience here at Cimquest to apply Mastercam Dynamic toolpaths, we ran into several issues, some big ones being the ability to hold a tool when power cutting and maximizing tool life when speed cutting. First let’s explain what power and speed cutting is. Power cutting is cutting at more than 50% tool diameter and 1.5 to 2 times depth using traditional type speeds and feed to maximize metal removal rate. This places a large amount of torque against the tool, which wants to pull the tool out of the holder because of the flute helix. Speed cutting is the opposite, small step over at up to 6 times tool diameter depth at very high chip loads and SFM to take advantage of radial chip thinning. This high rpm and feed can increase tool runout and in turn reduces tool life. One of the best solutions we found is the Rego-Fix powRgrip system. The powRgrip system uses hydraulic pressure to press fit the tool in the collet into the holder all of which is super precise in size, location and surface finish. The press fit gives excellent grip strength to hold the tool and [...]

23 05, 2018

Differences Between Scan-Based and CAD-Based Neutral Files

By | 2018-05-22T16:47:11+00:00 May 23rd, 2018|Categories: 3D Scanning, Tech Tips|0 Comments

Scan-based files involve cleaning up the scan, optimizing the mesh quality, and ensuring that the scanned mesh is watertight. At this point we can generate the neutral file based on this processed scan data. CAD-based is bit more labor intensive. It involves interrogating the mesh, creating CAD sketches and CAD features and fitting them to match the scanned data. Once the scanned data has been recreated as CAD data, we can then generate the neutral file based on the final CAD geometry. Let’s analyze the differences between the two. The main difference between these two approaches is that a CAD-based neutral file is able to preserve the true geometric features of the scanned part. This means that a cylinder would remain a true cylinder. The same would apply for planar faces, cones, and spheres. This would allow you to create and leverage construction geometry, such as planes, axes, and faces. Being a true CAD shape, any sharp edges on the original part would also be preserved. In summary, if you are looking to preserve geometric features, use the file for 2-axis machining on prismatic parts, or plan on modifying a neutral file in CAD, a CAD-based neutral file would be [...]

16 04, 2018

Mastercam Tech Exchange

By | 2018-04-16T09:01:48+00:00 April 16th, 2018|Categories: Mastercam, Tech Tips|0 Comments

The Tech Exchange page on the Mastercam website is a valuable resource available to all registered Mastercam customers. It has links to dozens of files you can download and use in your projects. Here are some examples of how it works. When you log in at and go to the Support button and select Tech Exchange from the drop-down menu. Near the top, there are several search filters you can apply if you want to narrow down the display list results. From there, browse the category tabs below the search filters and choose between Sample Files which show the latest innovations in toolpath, Tool Libraries featuring several cutter and tool holding component manufacturers. It also includes some Posts that you can try before buying a fully customized one. The Downloads are all clearly labeled with the Mastercam version, product type, and measurement units that they support. Once you have downloaded some files, you can explore ways to use the resources in the files. For instance, you can explore the use of stock models and multi-axis roughing techniques in the docking ring sample. Or, try a new type of tooling like the circle segment line, or test outfit a turret [...]

19 03, 2018

Mastercam 2018 Angle Sweep Commands

By | 2018-03-19T09:58:00+00:00 March 19th, 2018|Categories: Mastercam, Tech Tips|0 Comments

Mastercam 2018 includes a new enhancement to both the Solid and Surface Primitives tools called Angular Sweep Control. It allows you to dynamically edit round object geometry while you are creating it. Here’s a summary of how it works . . . Let’s start by executing the Primitive Surface Cylinder command. After you set the Basepoint, Radius, and Height, the new Dynamic Arrow Controls appear on the screen. You can click on an arrow to activate the drag handle, then simply click on anything to set the angle sweep, such as a point in space, an increment on the rotation dial, or any other snap location in the graphics screen. These same controls are available when you create a sphere, a cone, or a torus. Keep in mind that Solid Primitives have full history so you can go back and edit them extensively, changing not only their angular sweep, but also base positions, radii, heights and even the extrusion vectors very easily. As you can see, these new handles give you instant visual cues and very accurate control when you are modeling. Please be sure to sign up for our 2 Minute Tuesday video series to receive tips and tricks [...]

16 03, 2018

SolidWorks 2018 Importing STL Files

By | 2018-03-16T09:35:05+00:00 March 16th, 2018|Categories: SOLIDWORKS, Tech Tips|0 Comments

Today we are going to give you some tips and tricks using SOLIDWORKS 2018 when importing STL format files. The STL format file, or “Stereolithography” format, was developed by 3D Systems, and has been around since 1987. In these past three decades, it has been widely used in rapid prototyping, as well as in the 3D Printing industry. As for SOLIDWORKS, it has the ability to import STL files. The default import setting is to import the body as a graphics body, therefore, what you can do with it is very limited. For example, you can’t get a cross-section, you can’t perform Boolean operations, nor can you create a sketch on the body’s faces. In short, it’s like having a 3D picture on your screen. However, did you know that there is a way to change that setting and import STL files either as a BREP solid or a surface body? The first step to do this is to set your system options for importing Mesh files. Go to System Options > Import, and set your File Format to STL. This is where we will change the import option to Solid Body. Now, the next time you open an STL, [...]

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