In this final lesson, we will take an introductory look at some of FeatureCAM's 3D Milling strategies, while still reinforcing what we've learning about 2.5D milling so far. As always, we will use the same workflow to help guide us through the programming of this part.
With a blank milling document open, we can now import our solid model to program features from.
The Import Wizard will help us setup our part, covering our stock step, as well as some of our machining prep.
Now that we have completely worked through the import wizard, we are just a few short steps away from creating features.
With our part imported, stock setup, and machining details accounted for, we are ready to start programming!
In this exercise, we will recognize 2.5D features from this solid model, much like we did in the previous exercise. The chief difference with this part is that we will need to machine a surface that cannot be simply defined by a 2.5D feature in FeatureCAM. Before working through these instructions, try recognizing the 2.5D features on your own! Keep in mind that there are multiple ways to program this part. Your program may very well take a different approach from these instructions, but as long as the end result is the same, it does not matter how you get there.
While FeatureCAM wasn't able to automatically find all of the pockets on this part, it was able to find the pocket with the island in the middle, along with the two semi-circle pockets for us.
Now that we have recognized and programmed all the 2.5D features on this solid model, we are ready to program the remaining face of this part using a Surface Milling feature.
We have now created all the features necessary for the machining of this model. It's time to check our results, and make any necessary revisions!
We will likely want to change our finish allowance for each 2.5D feature like we did in the previous exercise, however, rather than making the same edit multiple times, let's explore making global changes for a given document.
We just utilized the Machining Attributes to make a global change in our document. It is important to realize that FeatureCAM's 'built-in intelligence and automation' comes from our machining attributes. Any default behavior that we do not specifically define at the time of feature creation is being taken from our Machining Attributes. It is also important to understand the difference between Machining Attributes, and Machining Configurations. Anything we change in the Machining will only affect the open document. If you would like to make a change to the default behavior of every document, you will need to create a new Machining Configuration and set it as your initial configuration when opening a new document. It is common practice to create multiple configurations for various materials, machines, or operators, as not every material, machine, or operator requires the same machining behavior.
Explore the Machining Attributes, and make any changes to the default Machining Attributes you desire, noting how the changes are reflected in the attributes of each individual feature.
We have now essentially created a template of our machining attribute preferences, and told FeatureCAM to always use this configuration for new documents. It is a good idea to spend the time customizing your Machining Configuration early on. This will end up saving you a lot of time in the future when you are in the 'Simulate, Revise' stage of programming.
Run a final simulation
With our final simulation run, our NC Code has been generated and is ready to be sent to the machine.
Note: This exercise is for educational purposes. The post-processor used in this exercise is a generic post-processor used for training that will likely not work for your machine. Do not attempt to run any code generated in this exercise.
Share a photo of your finished project with the class!
Nice work! You've completed the class project