billb

CNC Software
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About billb

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  1. billb

    creating a "spiral" wireframe

    Interesting problem. What about using zSpiral add-in (c-hook) in a rotated view then projecting it (flatten it) in your working view? Or create a 2D HST Peel or Dynamic peel path and backplot/save path as geometry.
  2. billb

    2019 Finish Pencil Toolpath

    I'm stumped. I logged this as D-37697 "Finish/pencil fails to yield toolpath". I get a similar failure with HST-Pencil (same two drive surfaces, same tool). Maybe this has something to do with the surfaces being somewhat far from the Cartesian origin. If I translate/move the geometry +800 in X and regen, path motion is output. Here's a work-around: add a check surface to the finish/pencil operation. It can be anywhere (well away from the part). Now regen. This time, you'll get a path output. The presence of the check geometry causes a slightly different algorithm to be used, one which yields a result.
  3. billb

    Linking parameters in flow toolpath

    I logged this issue as R-19176. I did my testing in MC2020. With a "keep down" distance of 2.0mm or 1.0mm the tool doesn't retract (I agree, I think it should). With a "keep down" distance of zero, it still doesn't retract. But I was able to enter a "keep down" distance of "-1.0mm" (!) and when I regenerated, the tool did retract. Maybe that will work for you, too, as a work-around.
  4. billb

    Linking parameters in flow toolpath

    If I go to the front view and rotate (move) the cylinder 90 degrees and regen... well, then the tool retracts between cuts. Maybe the "keep down" move is being measured in the wrong view? I'll keep digging.
  5. billb

    Odd stock model behavior

    Thanks for this part. I am able to duplicate the odd shift in MC2018. It looks to be repaired in MC2019 (and beyond). I believe this got fixed under S-47439 (a general testing/refactoring/improvement story). I logged your part as D-37138 so that we can do some more testing with it. It is a good test part. I was able to create a similar comparison "shifted" Stock Compare in X9. I don't, immediately, see any work-around for MC2018.
  6. billb

    Mastercam 2019 Flow line toolpath 1 st pass gauge

    Looks like the cutter compensation goes perfectly sideways along the very bottom edge of the fillet surface. The tool pushes out rather than down and out (which it does for other contact points on the surface). That is how the flowline raw pass is constructed (before gouge-check or any check surface trimming). I'll get this logged; perhaps there is something we can do to influence the raw pass based on nearby (local) curvature of the part (bump it down a little bit). As a work-around, I was able to use "Split" to split off a very little bit of the bottom edge. (Split splits the surface into two; I reselected just the top big portion). Another work-around might be finish/contour (or rough/pocket with rough passes turned off).
  7. billb

    2019 Flowline Lillipop Alarm

    For lollipop, it looks like the shoulder diameter is limited to the cutting diameter for all 3 shank shapes (straight, tapered, reduced neck). I guess that makes sense - once the shoulder diameter equals the cutting diameter, you no longer have a lollipop mill - you have a ball endmill. For tapered and reduced shapes, you can set the shank diameter to something wider than the cutting diameter. For the straight option, both the shank diameter and shoulder diameter are limited to the cutting diameter. To work around that rule, I was able to set up a tapered shape but use a big value (89 degrees) for the taper angle and set a really short shoulder length.
  8. billb

    2019 Flowline Lillipop Alarm

    Yes, non-cutting geometry. That message appears when you use a "reduced neck shank" on a lollipop mill in a toolpath that supports undercutting (finish/contour, rgh/pocket, ...). The undercut detection code doesn't support that neck shape. It will allow the tool to undercut but, perhaps, not undercut as far as it really can. You won't get this message with a "tapered shank" or "straight shank". I'll see what I can do to clarify that warning message. (Thanks!)
  9. billb

    Surface contour

    You're right - that 2018 help is a bit terse (and confusing). It looks like it was revised for the 2019 help: Detect undercuts - "Only available when an undercut tool is selected. When selected, undercutting is enabled." That is better but I'll ask around and see if we can do more.
  10. billb

    Surface contour

    Oh, the help probably mentions unchecking the "gap gouge check" checkboxes (short and long) on the Gap Settings dialog. That is still true - you want to disable gouge-checking of the keep down motion when undercutting (if it sees a gouge, it will "lift" the tool - not what is wanted here). I'll reread the help to see if there is anything that should be updated. Glad you got what you needed.
  11. billb

    Surface contour

    On the third tab page of the Finish/Contour operation's parameter dialog, check that you have enabled the (new) "Detect undercut" checkbox.
  12. I logged this as S-59039. I agree - it would be nice if 2D HST would provide more information if no toolpath motion is output. In this case, a message like "avoidance region obscures machining region", or something, might help. (I'm not sure how/what we can do but I'll give it some thought.) I see the Preview Chains shows the correct image - but it is a bit hard to decipher (until you study the selected chains). Thanks for the part.
  13. billb

    PROJECT TOOLPATH ERROR

    It could be that the source path got deselected. When you look at the Cut Parameters page, the source path is highlighted in the tree dialog. If you click on the "Properties" branch in that tree dialog, the source path will be deselected and will remain unselected when you green check out. Now regen the path and you'll get that failure message. If you go back into the Cut Parameters page, it will reselect the first operation in the tree so it is a bit hard to deduce what is going wrong. This just got logged as D-29224. Minimally, I need to put better error messaging in. (This is in HST-Project but there may be similar behavior in finish/project or any path with a tree dialog on a parameter page)
  14. billb

    Clock Icon

    Those operations are marked for "batch" processing (at a later time). Go into your parameters and go to the tool page and look in the lower left for the "To batch" checkbox. Uncheck that and save parameters (and regenerate).

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