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New materials are here!

November 18, 2013, 12:17 am by Eldar Gerfanov (Admin)

I have just completed revising HSMAdvisor's material library.

Around 20 different materials have been added.
Some speeds and feeds were adjusted as well.

New library is not yet available in the official release, but you cen get it as a separate file from here

Just scroll to the bottom of the page there and download the file.
Instructions of how to use it are there as well.

Once a new update is ready to be published i will include the new library into the official release.

The list of added materials includes Toolox, Weldox and other pre-hardened steels.

Also graphite was added to hard non-metals.

Update: Halloween sale has been extended untill Nov 13th

November 7, 2013, 8:22 pm by Eldar Gerfanov (Admin)

I have decided to keep the sale on HSMAdvisor until November 11.

This should give everybody just enough time to make up their mind.

Update

The sale has been extended until November 13 th.

I have received not one but two letters asking me what happened to the sale prices and why it ended so soon.....

Well, you guys have 2 more days to decide!

Also i have uploaded an update to HSMAdvisor that fixes problems with the integration module giving out errors.

Now everything works fine.

HSMAdvisor 0.610 Has just been released

November 2, 2013, 5:17 pm by Eldar Gerfanov (Admin)

In this release I have added CAD/CAM integration.

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.

HSMAdvisor Integration with CADCAM

November 1, 2013, 9:53 pm by Eldar Gerfanov (Admin)

NOTE. THIS INTEGRATION MECHANISM HAS BEEN DEPRECIATED AND REMOVED FROM HSMADVISOR.

PLEASE CHECK OUT OUR MASTERCAM X9 AND MASTERCAM 2017 HOOKS FOR MASTERCAM

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.

On FSWizard page you first select the kind of work-piece material you are working with then click [Capture] button.

A new dialog window called Capture Wizard will appear.
A red message will be saying that target window was not found.

Do not worry. This simply means that you have not saved any profiles yet.

  1. Click Add button.
  2. Type in the EXACT title of the window that contains tool and cut information.
    In this particular case it will be "Drill/Counterbore". Please note that you can use particial title like "Drill/" or "bore", but "Drill/Counterbore" will still be picked up.
  3. Click OK.
    This adds the new window title into the target list.
  4. Hit [Re-Scan All] button to refresh the wizard and find our target window.

(Picture below shows exactly what we did)

A message below the target list drop-down will say whether any taget from the list was found.

Lets hope that it was. In that case Tool Data, Speed and Feed etc. groups will become available for edit.

Capture wizard scans Target Window using its title. Then it puts text from the elements if found to various drop-down lists.

Now its time to to tell our Capture Wizard which fields represent what kind of parameters.

The main fields that need to be selected are Diameter, Tool Type. RPM and Feedrate.

Those are 4 basic things that we need to get the job done.

  1. Re-Scan All to refresh the wizard and re-scan all windows if needed
  2. In tool Data Check "Capture" check box
  3. From the "Diameter" drop-down list select the value that represents the tip diamter of our tool
    In this case our drill is 0.199
  4. In the Tool Type, Material And Coating check at least Tool Type filed checkbox and select the value that contains tool type data in this window.
    In this case we choose "Tool name" field that contains word DRILL - this is enough to associate it with HSMAdvisor's Drill Tool Type
  5. Choose whether to capture tool material
  6. Choose whether to capture tool coating
    In many cases you can use text in Comment field to tell HSMAdvisor what kind of tool is being used
  7. In Speeds and Feeds section check Capture and/or Update check boxes to be able to receive and send result data.
  8. Choose values that represent Cutting speed, Chipload, RPM and feedrate
    In this case Mastercam does not even show us cutting speed or chipload! But, we can still work with only RPM and Feedrate
  9. SAVE- Click Save button to save your work on this profile.

 

At this point you can hit [Capture] button to transfer captured information back to HSMAdvisor.

BUT. It would not capture any tool type information.

To be able to correctly parse tool type you need to go to Tool Type, Material and Coating Recognition tab and enter "DRILL" into the Tool Type table right across Jobber Twist Drill tool type.

What capture wizard does is looks for word "DRILL" inside Tool Type Field text. If it does see that text it assumes it is Jobber Twist Drill.

Now you can his SAVE again to save your recent changes and click [Capture] button to bring all that into back to HSMAdvisor.

What then

After successfull capture you should have pretty much exactly the same data as you just had in CAD/CAM cut parameter window.

You then perform your normal calculation to find the proper speeds and feeds.

When ready you click on [Capture] button again.

If you saved your previous work you shlould now have all fields ready to use.
Make sure "Update" checkbox inside Speeds and Feeds section is ticked.

And simply click [Update] button.

This will copy the information into the corresponding fields on the target window.

Limitations and considerations

There are some limitations and considerations.

  • Target window MUST be open and it MUST be the only window with this particular title on the desktop at this particular time.
  • If target window contains different tabs, a tab with information being captured needs to be selected.
  • You may have to run HSMAdvisor in admin mode in order for this to work.
  • This only works with conventional basic windows form data and will not work for data contained in list boxes and non conventional elements like list views, tables and trees.

Conclusion

I know this may feel a little laborious, but there is no way around it if we want to implement any sort of integration across multiple CAD/CAM pacakges at once.

This Will Not work in some cases at all. In many cases some features will not work properly Always double-check your data.

Testing was done using SurfCam 5,6 and MasterCAM-X2.

Later on if this Capture Wizard catches on i will introduce pre-defined CAD/CAM profiles  for various supported software packages and their versions.

Please direct your feedback here or create a new forum thread on our support forums.

Halloween Sale is On!

October 22, 2013, 7:17 pm by Eldar Gerfanov (Admin)

Haloween sale is ON!

All HSMAdvisor Licenses over $90 are currently 15% off!

You can buy a 3 Year Floating License Subscription Or a Permanent License now for just $82

Life Time Subscription is only $165 And Permanent License with LifeTime updates is $186

 Cheers!

How to properly choose cutting parameters in less than ideal conditions

July 13, 2013, 4:40 pm by Eldar Gerfanov (Admin)

We all have manufacturer speed & feed charts and have used their recommendations.

But sometimes those charts just don't apply.

For example manufacturer charts assume you are using their endmills at a certain stickout length, flute length and at a certain depth of cut.

But in the real life you rarely match all these conditions.
Sometimes you need to use longer endmill. Sometimes your flute is longer than what manufacturer gave you speeds and feed for.

What i am trying to say is that whenever your real life conditions differ from "normal" you "need to adjust accordingly".
In fact this is what is printed below many charts.

Too bad not many sources tell you how and what to adjust.

While failure to adjust cutting parameters often leads to chatter, poor surface finish and even tool breakage, one of the biggest mistakes people do when machining is trying to compensate for imperfect conditions by reducing spindle speed and feedrate.

Believe me there are much better solutions.

Lets set up a case here:

A long 1/4" dia endmill needs to mill several slots with the deepest one being at 1" deep. Workpiece material is hot rolled a36 mild steel.

It is obvious that out endmill will have to stick out at least one inch from the tool holder.
It will also need to have longer flute length.

Thats it. Right there we have a less than perfect situation: our tool is very long and has long flute length. Additionally we will be making full width cuts that put alot of stress on the tool.

What are we going to do? What speed and feed to choose?

Naturally we look up the manufacturers charts and it says something like "Slotting at 1xD depth- SFM: 500, Chipload: 0.0015-0.0020".
It may also say "these numbers are given as starting point only....blah...blah....not ideal...blah blah.. adjust accordingly".
This information is a bit confusing to say the least. It does not even say what to adjust. Naturally many will simply pick the lowest recommended chipload and keep depth the same.

I have a better solution.

Here is a step by step walk-through.

You fire up HSMAdvisor (i assume you have one.)

  1. Select your workpiece material. We will choose a36 hot rolled steel
  2. Select your tool type. I will use a Hi-Performace endmill
  3. Select tool material. The endmill is carbide
  4. Select tool coating. This endmill has TiAlN coating (despite fairy tales people tell you: coating does NOT affect chipload!! Chipload totally depends on what and how the cutting edge is made of, such as tool material and cutting geometry)
  5. Enter diameter of the endmill. We will enter 0.25. 
  6. Enter number of flutes. We have 4
    At this point all of the input fields will have default values already put in place for you.
    All you will have to do is change the one that are different in your particular case.
  7. Enter new Stickout length. We will have to use 1" stickout as this is the minimum length of the endmill we will have to use.
  8. Enter new flute length. This is important. Flute length is the second most important factor when it comes to deflection after Stickout length (again some people stubbornly do not wish to realize that)
    Now DOC (Depth of cut) and WOC (Width of Cut) fields will have default values in them. You know they are default when they are green, green means safe.
  9. Since we are going to be slotting check "Slotting/Pocket" check box.
    This automatically sets Width Of Cut to equal diameter of the endmill. in our case it will become 0.2500
    But most importantly DOC field will display proper depth of cut for this particular endmill!
  10. Thats it.

Your FSWizard screen now should look like this:

This recommended depth of cut is what you should use as a starting point.
No separate "cut balancer" is required. Everything is done automatically, the way it should be, you change tool paramters and the recommended cut parameters update in real time.

This way you can better see how different factors affect depth of cut and feedrate.

If any field background color is not green, it means that its value is not what is recommended. To make it default you simply click on the text label that represents it.

By the way HSMAdvisor will try to keep recommended chipload no matter what length endmill you are using. Instead recommended Depth Of Cut will vary in order to keep endmill within proper deflection range.

Chipload and thus feedrate will only change when user insists on using his own depth of cut.

By the way this is the video where i use exacly the same parameters as described in this article:

HSMAdvisor is going commercial!

June 27, 2013, 11:55 am by Eldar Gerfanov (Admin)

Hello gentlemen,

On September the 1st HSMAdvisor will turn one year old.

At that point 75$ for life deal will stop being offered.

Prices will go up.
New payment plans will be introduced.

Considered packages are:

  • Current Release Single Seat License (1 key): xxx$
  • Current Release Five Seat license (5 keys): xxx$ (30% savings)
  • Current Release Company-Wide License (Unlimited seats within company premises): xxx$

Program Upgrades (Upgrading from version 1.xx to version 2.0):

  • Single Seat License Upgrade: xx$
  • Five Seat license Upgrade: xxx$
  • Company-Wide License Upgrade: xxx$

 

I am not exactly set on pricing right now, so i can not say just how much things will cost.
I can only promise that pricing will continue being more than reasonable and very competitive.

Until September i will release several updates, but I will no longer offer trial extensions after September the 1st.

Announced changes will only affect commercial HSMAdvisor.

Free Online FSWizard will remain free for everyone.

 

HSMAdvisor v0.300 has been released

June 23, 2013, 10:47 pm by Eldar Gerfanov (Admin)

This release features some pretty major updates and features.

First of all, Tool deflection model has been radically improved over previous versions.
Now model fully considers not only the flute length, but also depth of cut and how it affects deflection!

No other speed and feed calculator alows you to do that.

Calculator now helps getting full advantage of those Hight Axial engagement toolpaths.

New things

  • HSMAdvisor can now print!
    For now you can print a screenshot of application window. Make sure to select "Album" layout in your printer settings, otherwise portion of the window may get cut off.
    Tool library printing is next in line to be done.
  • User Library Export and Import in XML format is now available.
    You can use it to back up your tool library and share library files with others.
  • Library Tabs are now right-clickable by mouse- this allows to right click on the library tab and select desired action like "Delete" "Merge" and "Rename".
  • Speeds for some tool and stainless steels have been revised.
    Couple of materials were added.

Things updated and improved

  • Improved tool deflection model.
  • Improved and fixed machine and tool limits trigering.
  • Creation of new Tool or Cut now forces newly-created tool/cut to get loaded, so you dont have to search it from the drop-down list- it becomes active right away.
  • Viewing and editing of tool/cut info in myCutDB page now does not close opened tool tree.
  • Tool material and Work Material are now a single column. Its called Tool&Work Material and it shows tool material for Tool rows and work material for Cut rows

HSMAdvisor 0.201 Update has been released.

May 26, 2013, 8:50 pm by Eldar Gerfanov (Admin)

This is a bug fix release.

Because of amount of new features that was added to the front and back end in the previous version some bugs have crawled in.

Bugs fixed in this update

  • Fixed the behaviour of Manufacturer Settings- Speed and Chipload

  • Fixed Slotting Checkbox getting stuck when it was supposed to be unchecked

  • Fixed Edit Tool and Edit Cut dialogs that did not update changed data properly

  • Click on DOC label in turning mode now resets DOC to default

  • Removed the nag screen that appears after 15 days of usage - was never inteded to be there

Again thanks to everybody sending their bug reports and suggestions to me.

Without you my job would have been much harder.

    HSMAdvisor v0.101 (FIXED)

    April 14, 2013, 10:34 pm by Eldar Gerfanov (Admin)

    HSMAdvisor v0.1 is now available.

    (newest version is 0.101)

    A decision has been made that updates containing new features will increment by 0.1 each time

    Bug fix updates and improvement updates will increment by 0.01

    This should be a hint that first fully commercial release is in sight. (you still have another 6 months or so of free updates).

    There is only one major feature

    • Machinery with gear boxes is now supported- users can enter a list of RPM machine can have set and FSWizard will force all calculations to stick to those pre-defined numbers.
      There is a sample machine called "Manual Lathe" that demonstrates this feature. You can use "Import" function in Machine Definitions dialog to load that machine and see how it works

    Several bugs have been fixed

    • Manually entered RPM for lathe tools have been fixed
    • Minimum RPM entered in Machine Definitions dialog now actually forces FSWizard to not go below that value and generate a warning.

     

    How Sticky RPM works:

    • Create new machine in Machine Definitions by clicking Add button and giving it a name you would recoginze.
    • Fill up all of the input boxes including Min and Max RPM, Horse Power and Torque.
    • Enter list of RPM values your machine supports into the Power Curve table.
      (Note RPM values HAVE to be in incremental order)
    • Against each RPM row enter the max Horesepower your machine has (because its a gear-box, machine HP value is constant at any spindle speed)
      Tip: if Max torque was unknown, now you can enter the highest value you see in Torque row.
    • Check Calculations Stick to pre-defined RPM only check box (Yes i know the picture shows that box unchecked, but you have to CHECK it)
    • Check Use Horse Power Curve Compensation check box

    Thats it!

    Now FSWizard will force calculated RPM to match the closest RPM value from the table.

    Sticky RPM sticky_RPM.JPG
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