Please read the latest tutorial in HSMAdvisor Tutorials section here This is a pretty Unique way of doing it.
It is still in the beta-mode. But it is fully functional. I have tested it on MasterCAM and SurfCAM with great results. While some functionality is not supported well on all cadcam packages, it is still much better than nothing.
Please send me your feedback on how it works with your CADCAM package.
I have also added a list of recently used materials.
Now material list will have 6 recently used items at the very top of it. Later on i will allow user to enter whatever number of recent items he wants to see there. But for now its just 6.
New Computer ID and New License keys
Starting from this release i have changed how Computer ID keys are generated. This was done to fix problems some of the users experienced when they added or removed additional hardware on their computers.
New Computer ID's mean License keys have been changed for all users as well. Not to worry though, License keys will be automatically updated for all of our users, so no action from their side is required.
If you have active license. You will get a message telling you what happened and your license file will be updated automatically.
Some bugs got fixed as well.
All of them were pretty minor, nothing to write home about.
Material definitions got updated as well.
Added several materials, updated speeds and feeds for tool steels and stainless steels.
I still have to add some of the previously requested materials (like Weldox Graphite, etc) to the list. And i am planning to add it in the next release.
Chiploads for micro-milling were changed as well.
Chiploads for micro-endmills (below 1/16 dia) were reduced significantly.
One of the most requested features in HSMAdvisor has long been integration with various CAD/CAM solutions available on the market.
There are two possible ways of achieving said task.
First way: using CAD/CAM API to create plugins to enable HSMAdvisor to "talk to" various software packages. This road could produce the best results, however implementing it would be laborous and results not always very convinient to use. Also developer(me) would have to create plugins for many dozens of cad/cam software packages. Muliply that by the fact that with each CADCAM release, a new version of plugin would need to be produced, tested and debugged. This work is for a whole software department and would call for a product far more expensive than what a lot of my customers could afford.
Second way: Grab tool, speed and feed data directly from the CAD/CAM window, process it and then update required information when the calculation is done. This solution is easyer to implement and could prove to be the most convinient for user as well.
Need i tell you that i have chosen to go the easy way?
Without further delay let me introduce the first Speed and Feed calculator that can be integrated with a CAD/CAM solution by a user himself!
This is How it Works
Step One: User launches CAD/CAM solution. We will use MasterCAM x2 in our case.
A toolpath is programmed the usual way, a proper tool is selected and when it is time to enter your speed and feed data you launch HSMAdvisor.
It means High Efficiency Milling. It only became available when constant tool engagement toolpahs became almost standard on most of the CAM software.
Unlike HSM that utilizes chip thinning effect, HEM relies on much larger widths of cut and thus chip thinning does not occur. What gives it its name is much higher material removal rate that would normally be possible.
When you are machining a pocket you are most often only milling at about 50% WOC. But nevertheless you need to calculate speeds and feeds based on the fact that the very first move and every corner will be full slotting action. Which means that the whole pocket needs to be machined at lower feedrate.
HEM uses constant engagement toolpths to make sure that this never happens and that Width of Cut remains optimal. Tool never needs to make a full slot so you can ramp up the feedrate as if you were doing outside profiling.
Here is a video of a 1/2" 3 flute endmill machining a 5/8" deep pocket in aluminum at full depth. Normally this pocket would have been machined in 2 steps at 150 inches per minute.
Using Constant Tool Engagement toolpaths we can go full depth at 0.175" stepover and 275 inches per minute.
The advantage of this method is obvious- Higher Productivity.
HEM is not ideal for all cases and each application merits its own method of machining, but its always nice to know more than one way to do your job.
Lately there have been a lot of really interesting HSM topics on PracticalMachinist forums.
In one of them a guy who owns his own resharpening business posted a video of his endmill milling a block of D2 hardened to over 60 RC. The forum topic is located here First try on D2 62Rc(video)
Here is his post so you know what we are talking about:
In an effort to perfect our speeds and feeds while hardmilling, this is the first try. Its not right yet, but far from a failure. I apologize for the language at the end, but I do not edit my videos. The endmill was a reground garr VRX at .353 diameter. Parameters were 750 sfm, .018 radial, .300 axial and .004 ipt. The next run will be at 650 sfm, .006 ipt using a mist sprayer. Also, any small areas will be blocked off to be ran at lower speeds to allow cooling time for the cutter. Just a note for anyone using a Mag Fadal, The E-stop button is not quick enough, use feed hold. The endmill was badly worn on the corners, but not broken, and will be resharpened and used again.
In the ensuing discussion i posted my own take on how and why HSM works
HSM works in many ways.
1) Reduced cutting time per edge per revolution allows it to cool down more. 2) Chip thinning allows to increase chipload (advancement per tooth per revolution) 3) Increased depth of cut combined with shallow radial positively affects deflection. Tool bends less as it is more rigid towards the tool holder. 4) Higher cutting speed actually reduces cutting forces as heat generated in the cutting zone makes it easier to shear off a layer of metal. Yet because the time of contact is so small, most of the heat is carried away with the chip. 5) Higher RPM also allows to get rid of hot chips faster thus further reducing heat transferred to the tool. 6) Higher feedrate actually reduces relative cutting speed. 7) At high axial engagements more than one flute is in contact with the workpiece at different points along the axis of the tool. This too helps combat vibrations and chatter. 8) You are using more of the tool than just its tip, so technically you can do more work with one tool before it gets dull. 9) lastly it looks cool as hell and is very impressive. Whenever we know visitors or bosses are coming we try to make sure some HSM is going on even if application does not merit that I am not sure if the air that is moved by the endmill is doing much, but i suspect he didn't mean exactly that.
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