Users of Alphacam 2019 R1 (www.alphacam.com
) will find two major enhancements for 3-D Machining: a much-improved Automatic Collision Detection algorithm (which avoids gouging non-machined faces and surfaces in the Select Solid Faces function) and improvements to Cylindrical-Parallel Machining (optimised tool-paths can now be created for parts under conditions that were previously impossible).
This update greatly enhances functionality in previous releases by including complex geometries, thereby opening new possibilities for four-axis machining. Furthermore, the ability to provide universal control over the stock in an Auto-Z operation means that the user can set the reference level on a geometry to the top or the bottom.
The user interface now includes two powerful enhancements: the first allows a selection window to be created, while the second allows users to re-size the preview window in their NC code to fully show the posted code, regardless of how long or complex it is.
Meanwhile, a completely re-designed and compact nesting interface provides a streamlined way to quickly create and deploy nest projects, giving greater flexibility and productivity.
Another process, which reduces the number of process steps, is the ability to automatically align a part to a neighbouring angled part on the nest. Parts are matched by simply selecting which elements must be aligned.
An update to the Automation Manager does away with the need to create a CSV (comma-separated value).
When importing CSV files for sub-components, the main parametric job can now pass detailed information to sub-components in an assembly, thereby allowing complex and parametric objects to be fully controlled.
Furthermore, automation jobs now benefit from the new Tool Ordering utility.
When importing a part to a job in Automation Manager, the system interrogates the geometries — including solids — to find the part sizes (X, Y and Z) that can then be used throughout the interface, resulting in greater clarity, better reporting, and enhanced automation.
Improvements have also been made to the Sawing module (this now allows users to select solid faces for sawing from a solid model), while Parametric Rules now have a new ‘Else’ condition, which provides a complete ‘If…Then…Else’ structure, for greater ease of use and maintenance, as well as enhanced reliability and productivity.
Finally, changes to the Custom Line Width in Line Properties provide greater functionality for the presentation of drawings and prints, allowing users to set true custom line widths both by layer and at the individual geometry level.