Sign in to follow this  
Mhoppe

Best G-Code Backplotter for larger file sizes

Recommended Posts

Hello Guys. I have a question regarding g-code backplotters. I have tried a variety of backplotters but am having a difficult time finding one that will plot files in the 50MB to 2GB+ range. That is a tall order, I know. Many text editors don't like such files either. I generally use good ole ncplot, and it is amazing for what it is but it seems to choke on files larger than about 10-20MB, which is fine for 95% of my work but there are those edge cases where I am working with massive files and I would love to be able to verify them prior to running them on the control as the majority of the tools we use are $1700+ and even a relatively minor crash can result in thousands of dollars pretty quickly.

I have a great setup in terms of RAM(256GB) and other hardware. Does anyone with experience with vericut know how it handles very large file sizes? It is probably overkill for what I am trying to do, and crashes here even without simulation are very, very rare but some of the machining cycles here might take 100-300 hours. I would sleep much better at night knowing that everything looked good prior to pressing the start button. I work in the optics industry, and I am able to do some verification by reducing the resolution of the parts I am trying to cut and simulating that surface but would prefer to simulate the actual surface if possible.

Thanks for any input you all might have.

 

Martin

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Mart,

Silly question but can you reduce the file size by plotting 1 or 2 tools only at a time?

Compromise yes but...

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi noob, great question. However,  those files are generally only for one to three tools as is. If you saw the majority of the tool paths you would laugh. These aren't crazy jobs like I have seen many here working on with a bazillion tools and holes all over at odd angles. My hats off to you guys in that arena. 

Many of the parts I cut are very simple aspheric surfaces for optical injection molds.  Nothing particularly novel or worrying there.

I run into particular trouble when cutting certain freeform fresnel lenses on 25" plates, or other weird things like simultaneous 4 axis lathe work. Much of the software used to generate such code is developed in house, by me or others, so it would just be nice to have a code double check prior to running on the control for these sorts of parts. I can probably divide the files and plot piecemeal,  not a bad idea actually. I am just hopeful that there is a more elegant route is all :)  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Probably silly question No:2 , but what about the Cimco editor ?  

Gracjan

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Vericut should handle large file sizes, up to a point. I know I've worked on some very large files that tested it's limits. Maybe Ron can chime in on that.

I'd seriously look at both Vericut and NCSimul. Both of those should handle your large files, in all but the most extreme cases. Also, they both do material removal as well, although I don't know if that would be an advantage for you or not?

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I ran several GB of code through Vericut and it was able to handle it. Yes I pushed it to place 99% of the users never do, but I was able to get it done.

NCSIMUL with it ability to make changes on the fly and the graphics ability are very good.

I have done some good size files in CAMPLETE and it did a good job of back plotting the code. Real difference is Posting and Simulation in one package.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Awesome suggestions guys. I will look into all of them. I downloaded a demo of CIMCO and it worked fine on a 50mb file. Then I got greedy and made the mistake of trying the 3d feature. Insta-lock. But the backplot function did its job :) The material removal feature could be interesting and having access to it might be more useful then I anticipate but that would definitely be icing on the cake. Some of the features I am machining are on the single digit to sub micron scale so they are typically difficult to render properly, at least that has been my experience. I'm mostly interested in issues resulting in damage to the machine or tool. And a cursory glance at the plotted profile will generally show 95% of those potential issues.

Thanks again everyone for the suggestions..

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

Join us!

eMastercam - your online source for all things Mastercam.

Together, we are the strongest Mastercam community on the web with over 56,000 members, and our online store offers a wide selection of training materials for all applications and skill levels.

Follow us