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FeatureCAM Standard supports 2.5D milling, turning and wire applications.

Collision Avoidance function in the FeatureCAM allows to create safe, collision-free tool paths and to make visualisation of machining in order to verify its correctness.

FeatureCAM provides simulation options, such as the view of a central line, 2D and 3D simulations, fast and positioning movements, comparing of workpieces and full testing of a risk of collisions with machine elements.

FeatureCAM makes it possible to generate a tool path with automatic recognition and avoidance of clamps and holders. To determine a body as a clamp or a holder, you only need to choose a command “Use solid as a clamp”. The software provides the possibility to enter the minimum distance to the clamp.

The Feature Recognition function is a module that allows for automatic recognition of features in solid models and automatic generation of the machining processes It also enables conversion of a solid model edges to curves or to draw out a curve from the rotary profile. Feature Recognition in its standard version offers the possibility to import such file formats as:

  • SolidWorks (3D models natively
  • Inventor (3D models natively)
  • Solid Edge (3D models natively)
  • Parasolid
  • IGES
  • ACIS
  • DXF
  • DWG

All FeatureCAM functionalities assist to speed up programming of parts, thus increasing the output. The function of feature Recognition automates the whole process, delivering efficient solution from importing a CAD model up to a ready-made part manufactured using the CNC machine.

2.5D milling is the basic function in FeatureCAM. It contains the whole power and operating comfort, which make a part of each FeatureCAM product: advanced 2.5D milling, milling indexed in relation to 4 axes, indexed 4th rotary axis or engraving. It allows to read-in IGES / DXF / DWG formats. In addition, it enables optimization of a feed and advanced verification of 3D (solid) simulation. It allows introduction of modifications of created features by tilting walls, chamfering edges or inserting roundings. All, using flat finger tools tipped with a sphere and torus tools. Additionally, it is possible to create templates of linear, circular, rectangular operations or operations in indicated points.

Advantages:

  • Import of standard industrial formats, such as, e.g. IGES, DWG and DXF – easy communication with customers
  • Fast and easy creation of reliable tool paths, thanks to using step-by-step wizards – time saving
  • Connection of individual subprograms into the programs intended for many workpieces – minimization of programming times
  • Support for series machining for both vertical and horizontal machines – allows for machining many parts under one setting
  • Large subprocessor library, to speed up starting of the work on a machine tool

2.5 D Milling function enables creation of the following features:

  • Holes – straight, counterbored, spotter, stepped drilled, straight tapped, stepped tapped
  • Pockets – unlimited number of pockets with variable depth
  • Grooves – engraving, inner, outer, on XY plane
  • Islands – unlimited number of islands with variable height
  • Thread milling – inner and outer threads

Available milling and drilling operations:

  • Compensation of tool points for roughing and finishing tools
  • Several rough diameters and several finishing diameters for faster completion of a feature
  • Leaving machining allowance on a bottom, intended for after-machining
  • Semi-finishing machining
  • Multiple machining of regions with limitation for in-air machine cutting
  • Several roughing tools (from big to small) for faster machine cutting of large volume of material
  • Holders defined by a user
  • Optimization of tool changing and minimization of quick movements
  • Tool life management
  • Setting machining tolerances
  • External / own drilling and milling macros
  • Division of programs into stages
  • Toolpath options (variety)
  • Trachoidal toolpath for straight gaps and grooves
  • In-cut milling and out-cut milling
  • Entry into a workpiece material – spot drilling, helical, zig-zag
  • Spot drilling
  • Drilling of holes – pilot
  • Approximation of toolpaths by curves and by straight sections
  • Multiple passes for better surface quality
  • Compensation of finishing tool point
  • Estimation of machining time – operations and total time
  • Work in metric and inch systems – metric and inch dimension tools

2.5D Milling is in common use in production of parts, which, generally speaking, are prismatic. Good example here are the automotive or aircraft parts, in which pockets or profiles have vertical walls or feature the uniform shapes of the curve (generating) wall in the entire profile. Parts may contain many different holes, e.g., drilled, counterbored, tapped, reamed, etc.

2-axis Turning function allows for quick and easy programming of all types of turned parts.

This function in the FeatureCAM allows fully utilize capabilities of the centre lathes for faster and more effective production. Powerful, yet easy to use module, contains the FeatureRECOGNITION to speed up programming through automatic selection of appropriate tools and settings based on a geometry of workpieces. Elements can be designed quickly and intuitively or imported from other CAD systems. Tool paths are fully associable with the elements, in case any of their features is changed, relating G-codes will be automatically adjusted to such feature. FeatureCAM has large library of standardized threads, both metric and inch ones, which facilitate programming. Lathe operations are programmed in such a way as to eliminate the possibility of damaging already machined surfaces. FeatureCAM allows to fully use the unchanging machining cycles, thus reducing the program size and providing the shortest possible machining time.

The Turning function first of all includes:

  • Holes – straight, counterbored, spotter, stepped drilled, straight tapped, stepped tapped – possible for programming in constant cycles
  • Turning of outer profiles based on a 2D curve
  • Boring of inner profiles based on a 2D curve
  • Grooving based on a 2D curve or on a wizard
  • Face planning based on a wizard
  • Cutting-off based on a wizard with the possibility to program the capturing
  • Turning of inner/outer threads based on a wizard or any thread contour defined by a 2D curve
  • Operating of a rod feeder/collector
  • Operating of a counter spindle with the possibility to program different capture types

The Wire Electrical Discharge Machining function in FeatureCAM facilitates programming of 2- and 4-axis wire-cut EDM machines. Machining can be generated basing on solids or on 2D curves. Material base allows for automatic control of the selection of machining parameters. In addition, in the Wire Electrical Discharge Machining module, there is a possibility to chose from different types of entering wire into the machined material. Different machining strategies are also available, e.g. allowing for cutting with bridging, and then complete cutting-off of a material. Basing on a workpiece geometry, the Electrical discharge machining module automatically chooses all applicable settings. It is suitable for all types of wire-cut EDM machines. The function will reduce programming times and facilitate quick production of high quality parts.

FeatureCAM with the Wire Electrical Discharge Machining function enables the following operations:

  • Machining of pockets
  • Machining of bosses
  • Machining of open recesses
  • Machining with constant wire inclination

Typical applications of the FeatureCAM include manufacturing of gears, elements of hydraulic systems or precision valve parts.

Advantages:

  • Automatic selection of operations for different cutting strategies
  • It has the database of cutting conditions that contains the EDM generator settings, washing settings and tool compensation
  • It is delivered with checked post-processors for the leading machines in the market, including such brands as Agie-Charmilles, Fanuc, Mitsubishi and Sodick
  • It contains full range of functions necessary for creation of parts, including dies, stamps and sides
  • Reduction of programming time due to full personalization based on the user’s templates
  • Avoiding to break wire, and consequential standstills, through automatic selection of appropriate machining parameters
  • Reduction of the machine start up time thanks to the proven post-processors for WEDM machines, including Agie-Charmilles, Fanuc, Mitsubishi and Sodick
More about FeatureCAM functions in individual versions here ⇒