Zone: CAD, CAM and Related Software

OVERVIEW: CAM Software is used to generate machining programs corresponding to part designs. Short for “computer-aided manufacturing,” CAM creates these programs for CNC machine tools including machining centers, lathes and EDM machines. Sometimes, machining programs can be written and input manually, right at the machine’s control. However, if the workpiece geometry is at all complex, or if the machined features are numerous, then generally CAM software is essential for generating the program both accurately and quickly. In general, CAM development has proceeded along two different tracks. Geometry-based CAM systems used in die/mold machining and other applications focus on complex milled geometries. Algorithms provide specific and efficient ways for machining complex geometries with both high precision and long tool life. By contrast, feature-based CAM systems are generally used in the production machining of geometrically simpler components. These latter CAM systems are often engineered to automate otherwise repetitive programming tasks such as assigning similar tools to similar features.

Featured Zone Content

A Primer for Working with 3D Engineering Data

Automation takes many forms in the metalworking shop and one of them is incorporating 3D engineering data into the production process. ...MORE

Open Mind hyperMill 2013.2

CAM Software Incorporates CAD Component

Open Mind’s hyperMill 2013.2 release includes updates to hyperCAD-S, a CAD component designed to address the requirements of NC programmers, particularly for tool and moldmaking. ...MORE

Software Application Accelerates Toolpath Generation

Vero’s Edgecam 2014 R1 CAM software features updates designed to optimize high-precision machining through SolidWorks. ...MORE

Delcam for SolidWorks 2013 R2

CAM Release Adds Tombstone Machining Functionality

The 2013 R2 version of Delcam for Solidworks offers support for tombstone machining, new options for stock models, enhanced support for holes and more flexible Z-level roughing. ...MORE

Automate Programming with CAM

Even for those shops still manually programming their simple parts on Swiss machines, there are compelling reasons to automate the programming process now. ...MORE

Video: Optimizing Rapid Moves on a Five-Axis Machine

How do you optimize rapid positioning tool paths for five-axis operations? This write-up and video explains one approach. ...MORE