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  1. #1
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    X and Z cutting paths

    Hi All

    Back in the shed after years of hiatus and need some help please.

    I have a wood lathe and just got myself a cnc engraver which I want to mount over my turning stock. I want to use X for travel and Z to do the cutting profile while my stock is rotating.

    I have my profile just can't work out how to do cutting path, ill be doing chess pieces.

    Any help appreciated.

    Thanks

  2. #2
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    Re: X and Z cutting paths

    use CAM.

  3. #3
    Community Moderator Jim Dawson's Avatar
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    Re: X and Z cutting paths

    Yes, CAD/CAM is what you need to generate the G code for the tool paths. You could write the code manually but it would not be easy for complex shapes. My personal choice for a CAD/CAM package is Fusion 360, free to hobbyists and startups. Another reasonable option would be CamBam, it has some 2D CAD capability as well as reasonable CAM functionality for turning. There are other options also ranging from free to crazy prices.

    Normally on a lathe the Z axis is parallel to the spindle centerline, and the X axis is perpendicular to the spindle centerline, the Y axis, if equipped, is perpendicular to the X axis. A bit confusing at first because it's different from the way we are used to thinking about mills and routers.

    https://www.engr.uvic.ca/~mech410/CA...mig_Basics.pdf
    Jim Dawson
    Sandy, Oregon, USA

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Dawson View Post
    Yes, CAD/CAM is what you need to generate the G code for the tool paths. You could write the code manually but it would not be easy for complex shapes. My personal choice for a CAD/CAM package is Fusion 360, free to hobbyists and startups. Another reasonable option would be CamBam, it has some 2D CAD capability as well as reasonable CAM functionality for turning. There are other options also ranging from free to crazy prices.

    Normally on a lathe the Z axis is parallel to the spindle centerline, and the X axis is perpendicular to the spindle centerline, the Y axis, if equipped, is perpendicular to the X axis. A bit confusing at first because it's different from the way we are used to thinking about mills and routers.

    https://www.engr.uvic.ca/~mech410/CA...mig_Basics.pdf
    Thanks Jim, good read and makes sense. I must admit it starting to look like it's out of my league, so many videos later a little closer but long way to go. Cheers mate

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Dawson View Post
    Yes, CAD/CAM is what you need to generate the G code for the tool paths. You could write the code manually but it would not be easy for complex shapes. My personal choice for a CAD/CAM package is Fusion 360, free to hobbyists and startups. Another reasonable option would be CamBam, it has some 2D CAD capability as well as reasonable CAM functionality for turning. There are other options also ranging from free to crazy prices.

    Normally on a lathe the Z axis is parallel to the spindle centerline, and the X axis is perpendicular to the spindle centerline, the Y axis, if equipped, is perpendicular to the X axis. A bit confusing at first because it's different from the way we are used to thinking about mills and routers.

    https://www.engr.uvic.ca/~mech410/CA...mig_Basics.pdf
    Hi Jim, I've been given access to a PC that has mastercam, the owner isn't much help because he downloadd files.

    I've had a play, I'm not sure what machine I should use, do I use router or mill. Or should I just get fusion and try that. Cheers

  6. #6
    Community Moderator Jim Dawson's Avatar
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    Re: X and Z cutting paths

    Quote Originally Posted by steptoey View Post
    Hi Jim, I've been given access to a PC that has mastercam, the owner isn't much help because he downloadd files.

    I've had a play, I'm not sure what machine I should use, do I use router or mill. Or should I just get fusion and try that. Cheers
    I am not sure what router or mill means to MasterCam. Functionally they are about the same in the real world. I would think that in either case a chess piece would be a 4th axis part with a ''spun profile'', in other words a 2D profile carved into a rotating cylinder, I don't know what MasterCam calls this operation. Really no different than using a hand held carving tool on a wood lathe, or a CNC controlled lathe without a rotating tool. The only real difference in what you are proposing is that the tool bit is rotating, like a lathe with live tooling.
    Jim Dawson
    Sandy, Oregon, USA

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