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  #1  
Old Mon 15 November 2010, 17:58
coinhunter
Just call me: coinhunter
 
Bogota
Colombia
Which is the easiest software to..

Im a beginner in the world of CNC, I know a little about CNC programs but I want to learn, so Im looking for opinions about an easy program for starting. As a matter of fact, I need to know the two necessary programs to develop a simple project, that is, the software to design the piece and the software to generate the G code. To begin I want to cut some pieces from wood, plastic and aluminum using three axis, I thank your help.
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  #2  
Old Tue 16 November 2010, 00:03
javeria
Just call me: Irfan #33
 
Bangalore
India
Solidworks and solid cam for mechanical parts

Vectric aspire or Artcam for art and signages

start with youtube videos!

and welcome to the world of CNC'ing!
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  #3  
Old Tue 16 November 2010, 02:43
sailfl
Just call me: Nils #12
 
Winter Park, FL
United States of America
coinhunter,

Irfan has good suggestions....

But what you need is a CAD program to do your drawing - you pick the brand or what you decided on.

CAM program to convert the vectors into G Code that Mach will use to convert to the stuff you want to cut out.

I use Aspire. I like it because it is good and cheaper than some.
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  #4  
Old Tue 16 November 2010, 05:13
Kobus_Joubert
Just call me: Kobus #6
 
Riversdale Western Cape
South Africa
Send a message via Yahoo to Kobus_Joubert Send a message via Skype™ to Kobus_Joubert
I waited 2.5 years for Aspire. Will never change to another CAM program I think.
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  #5  
Old Tue 16 November 2010, 09:46
liaoh75
Just call me: David
 
Taibao
Taiwan
I'll second Kobus on the Aspire package. Expensive if it is just a hobby, but well worth the money if you can afford it. Good luck!
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  #6  
Old Tue 16 November 2010, 22:52
KenC
Just call me: Ken
 
Klang
Malaysia
It all depends on your requirements & the eventual use of your machine.
I you are cutting just simple straight line & radius combo, which will only constitute a few G-codes the you don't even need a CAM software, just write your own G-code but if complex figures of a few 10k lines then let the CAM do the work which I did.
In the software department, nothing is really "easy"...
You will still have to horn your drafting skill on a CAD of your choice for fast editing & get familiar with the CAM features for the best results.
On top of that, you will have to have some idea of the machining process... which require more actual cutting & experimentation... is really more art than science.
I use Vcarve pro... not that I dislike Aspire, I just couldn't afford it...
I heard many good review for the Artcam but I'd not tried them (why try when I know I can't afford them??? )
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  #7  
Old Wed 17 November 2010, 06:53
smreish
Just call me: Sean - #5, 28, 58 and others
 
Orlando, Florida
United States of America
Gosh,
for years I just sent my closed polyline drawings from Corel or Auto Cad to LAZY CAM, then to Mach 3.....it didn't get much simpler.

I do LOVE Cut2D for the simple 2d stuff. Cheap, quick, reliable.

Sean
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  #8  
Old Wed 17 November 2010, 14:38
Greg J
Just call me: Greg #13
 
Hagerman, New Mexico
United States of America
If your tight on funding, check out Vcarve Pro. It has allot of nice CAD features and generates G code. Great 2.5D carving.

I didn't have any CNC experience before MM, but was cutting 1 hour after purchasing Vcarve Pro. The support is great also.
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  #9  
Old Wed 17 November 2010, 20:03
coinhunter
Just call me: coinhunter
 
Bogota
Colombia
Friends, thanks for your answers!!!!!!!!!!!!
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  #10  
Old Wed 27 February 2013, 05:49
Bob Reda
Just call me: Bob
 
Monessen, Pa
United States of America
The thing about v carve pro from vectric is that if you will be mostly doing 2 d work, it is wonderful. If you are going to occasionally do some 3 d work, vectric has a free 3d program for use with THEIR models. So if you buy a model from them you can use the program. Then you can import the toolpaths from the 3d program into v carve pro that will do the translation and cut. I just wanted to add that their 3d machinist program is only for their models.

Bob
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  #11  
Old Wed 27 February 2013, 15:14
alan254
Just call me: Al #95
 
mystic ct
United States of America
Vetrics, Vcarve Pro. You can learn the basics in a couple of days and do real well in a week. The graduate up to Aspire .

Al
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  #12  
Old Thu 28 February 2013, 06:34
smreish
Just call me: Sean - #5, 28, 58 and others
 
Orlando, Florida
United States of America
Vectric products are far the simplest I have used.

If you just need simple 2d cutting the CUT2D is cheap, easy to use and quick to learn.
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  #13  
Old Sun 17 March 2013, 19:38
Mojo
Just call me: SolarImages
 
Bisbee, AZ
United States of America
Artcam

I just been working with Artcam for the last month or so i have yet to cut any of the files i have made but for 160.00 give or take a few bucks it has been very easy to learn and play with so far. So question i have is are the files generated from Artcam and Vlectric mutually exclusive to each other? at least till they converted to gcode i am assuming?
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  #14  
Old Mon 18 March 2013, 22:34
Red_boards
Just call me: Red #91
 
Melbourne
Australia
Artcam or Rhino for 3D CAD?
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  #15  
Old Tue 19 March 2013, 11:41
danilom
Just call me: Danilo #64
 
Novi Sad
Serbia
Artcam or Aspire for artistic 3d like carvings, Rhino for everything else about 3d
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  #16  
Old Tue 19 March 2013, 22:28
Red_boards
Just call me: Red #91
 
Melbourne
Australia
Thanks, Danilo
That one line makes a lot of sense and is a great help
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  #17  
Old Wed 20 March 2013, 15:34
2e0poz
Just call me: Paul
 
Swindon
United Kingdom
I don't have my MM yet but do have a cnc router and mill. I run Linux so use CAMBAM which runs on Windows too, LibreCad and Draftsight which are free.
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  #18  
Old Wed 20 March 2013, 22:33
Mojo
Just call me: SolarImages
 
Bisbee, AZ
United States of America
Cam

I think the biggest thing is find the easiest program for you to work with, most if not all i have seen, have demo's take them for a spin doesn't take long to get a feel for a program with one tutorial i have found. No MM finished here yet either but i am diligently learning the software side hopefully post some examples soon.
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  #19  
Old Fri 22 March 2013, 19:41
pblackburn
Just call me: Pete #98
 
South-Central Pennsylvania
United States of America
Cam programs...
For wood I would definitely say Aspire, very user intuitive. May not be as handy with shortcuts but it is a very powerful program and the support is awesome. The training videos provided are worth the price of the software. I have never seen so much training videos provided for any piece of software. I do not own a business and only do this as a hobby so it was hard to swallow but I am glad I made the purchase.
Cad programs...
I am only familiar with Autocad from where I work and I love it.
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  #20  
Old Tue 26 March 2013, 04:36
normand blais
Just call me: Normand
 
montreal
Canada
Rhino is a nurbs software and artcam and aspire are mesh software. That I think is the main difference .
http://www.google.ca/search?hl=en&si...mg.e0KHb7fxdCI

Nurbs are kind of like vector in 3D and mesh are like bitmap. kind of


Also from what I have heard ,I never try them Artcam and Aspire are not 3D ,but more like 2.5D relief that has to be wrap around .They are cad cam wich is very handy since you do not have to switch betwin software


Look at the software galery to help you decide depending what you want to do.

Sometime friendly mean not that many commands, wich is why it is fast to learn .
On the other hand what is the point of $$ software with thousand command if it is not been use because it is to complicate
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