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  1. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry_C View Post
    ..... Not to mention if your internet goes down your dead in the water
    So with the many different systems that have to "call home" even if you store your data and have the program itself on your computer what happens with no net access for hours or days?
    My cable connection does not go down often, maybe 5-10 times a year and mostly at late night but this would be a killer for a 24/7 operation with say a 4 hour outage.
    And if the system has to move a lot of data to run and you are on dial-up?
    My local gas station and many local stores have to close if the net connection goes down.
    I find this absurd and could not use a CAD/CAM that would not run under such conditions.
    Bob

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    Quote Originally Posted by Zahnrad Kopf View Post
    There were a number of others doing it before them, and better. Unigraphics NX was one, for starters.
    Just in the interest of accuracy ... Unigraphics was UniAPT that ran on PDP-8's in the 70's. In the 80's (?) they became Unigraphics and intially ran on RISC workstations, I don't believe they ran on a peecee until Windows NT ? Which would be the early-to-mid nineties ? They became NX when I-DEAS was merged into Unigraphics, pretty recently.

    On the peecee, Mastercam using Cadkey models could have been one of the first graphical CAM programs. I remember Smurfcam being pretty much contemporary but possibly a bit later. SmartCAM was possibly the first one that actually worked ? And Gibbs on Apple was contemporary. Whether anything was useful or not before NT, that's another question ... Mastercam on anything less than a pentium, just thinking about it makes me shudder. Even APT was slow as molasses on a 286. If you wanted graphical, you bought Euclid* on an Indigo2. Or I-DEAS


    *I'd love to find an old copy of Euclid, if anyone knows where an antique hard drive is stashed. Just for fun, old computers are sort of a hobby ...

  3. #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by SeaMoss View Post
    .....
    On the peecee, Mastercam using Cadkey models probably was one of the first graphical CAM programs. .....
    I ran this combo on one of first 286-16s... "so fast it will leave skid marks on your desk" ....

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    Quote Originally Posted by SeaMoss View Post
    Whether anything was useful or not before NT, that's another question ... Mastercam on anything less than a pentium, just thinking about it makes me shudder.
    I had Smartcam on a 386 in '87. I don't know if that qualifies as 'graphical' in your sense, but it did show toolpath and verification onscreen. Ran on DOS. Smartcam and Mastercam were head to head competitiors. I still have the old Smartcam if that's interesting. (Windows 3.1 was such a blessing when it came out, you could task switch and look at your code without shutting down Smartcam and then restarting it after you looked at it.)

    I drew with CADMAX on that 386-16, it was the first 3D CAD to run on a PC, the machine to run it cost $15,000 in 1987.

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    I personally prefer mastercam, It is the first software I learned but have also used edgecam, to which I was not a fan. And I also used cimatron e, cimatron has great cad work flow, and the programming is good to, but mastercam has more ways to modify your programming ,so that you get the result you want, it does take
    Longer to learn all of the tricks In the software, but you have to
    Walk before you can run
    Last edited by Jerry_C; 06-18-2017 at 10:31 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry_C View Post
    I get that fusion is priced well for what you get, but having a cloud based software and having to save files on someone else's server seems sketchy to me. Not to mention if your internet goes down your dead in the water
    You can run in offline mode and sync files every couple weeks.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Zahnrad Kopf View Post
    Sir, it is not only true, it is very commonly known and has been for decades. The number of times they went after shops pales in comparison to the number of times that they turned a blind eye. I have seen it with my own eyes and been in the room when it happened so you'll get zero traction trying to tell me otherwise.



    No, it was not.
    I was not in Wisconsin back then. Had nothing to do with you. The head of the School's Manufacturing Technologies Department was approached by MC, offering free seats for the classes, and each of the instructors. I had been a student, later became a local Small Business owner serving on the Advisory Committee, and then later was a part-time Instructor. I was given a seat back then. Later, I would purchase a seat for my shop, with my own money. I used that for the shop, as well as the freelance programming I did. Later still, a large corp bought me a personal seat to program for them.

    So, what about my other questions regarding your use of MC and other CAM systems?



    ?????

    I started to write a longer response to that, but have decided against contributing to the conversation going in that direction. Suffice to say I have not, yet have complimented you so have to imagine that you've read a bit overmuch into something I've written. Regardless, the OP likely has enough information to make an informed decision by this point.
    Probably a wise decision on your part.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Johnny SolidWorks View Post
    Unless you currently employ someone who knows MasterCAM, I personally can't see any reason to buy it over one of the other options.

    As far as I'm concerned, it's a pretty antiquated software, and it only continues to be as popular as it is because so many people know it. It's also (again, in my opinion only) very counter-intuitive for new users, especially the younger guys who are just learning CAM.

    You can get Fusion from Autodesk for $300 a year, and there is a huge online community of enthusiastic users. It doubles as CAD/FEA software, the UI is much more intuitive for new CAM users, and on and on.

    I've heard some criticisms of it from the heavy users (but you're running a TM-1, so that's not you) and I've heard the lathe capabilities are pretty much useless right now, but for the most part, it's a more than capable program, and is also constantly improving as they receive user feedback from a very active community. (Try saying that about MasterCAM.)
    I would only consider Fusion360 if you are a startup hurting for cash and have no intellectual property worth protecting. Fusion requires an internet connection for all saves and saves on a remote server you have no control over nor is the security of your files guaranteed. Also Fusion is pay as you go and the second you stop paying you also stop working. There are gobs of people who buy a permanent seat of software, never renew or spend any more money and use it for years and years. Never have to go online, save files on their own workstation which does not have go online to do so. Fusion is for those who want to rent everything and be secure in nothing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by SeaMoss View Post
    Just in the interest of accuracy ... Unigraphics was UniAPT that ran on PDP-8's in the 70's. In the 80's (?) they became Unigraphics and intially ran on RISC workstations, I don't believe they ran on a peecee until Windows NT ? Which would be the early-to-mid nineties ? They became NX when I-DEAS was merged into Unigraphics, pretty recently.

    On the peecee, Mastercam using Cadkey models could have been one of the first graphical CAM programs. I remember Smurfcam being pretty much contemporary but possibly a bit later. SmartCAM was possibly the first one that actually worked ? And Gibbs on Apple was contemporary. Whether anything was useful or not before NT, that's another question ... Mastercam on anything less than a pentium, just thinking about it makes me shudder. Even APT was slow as molasses on a 286. If you wanted graphical, you bought Euclid* on an Indigo2. Or I-DEAS


    *I'd love to find an old copy of Euclid, if anyone knows where an antique hard drive is stashed. Just for fun, old computers are sort of a hobby ...
    When I started out with Cadkey and Mastercam, I was running it on a 286 computer. It was slow, but I had nothing faster to compare it with. The point of this post is that it worked, and I was able to generate 3-d cutter paths for local toolmakers. One other point is that Unigraphics did not run on a PC. It required a PDP-8 or better. So there was no comparison there with Cadkey and Mastercam. One of the Mastercam machining routines that I found specially useful was Coons Patches. You could cover a 3-d surface with along and across rows of Coons Patches, which each of the four sides would be represented by 3-d splines. You could then machine the resultant surface with a ball end mill. You could draw the coons patches in Cadkey and then export them to Mastercam via CADL files.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mud View Post
    (Windows 3.1 was such a blessing when it came out, you could task switch and look at your code without shutting down Smartcam and then restarting it after you looked at it.)
    Who is General Protection Fault and why does he hate me ?

    It was better in OS/2 because only the windows program would crash, but still a pain until late-version NT. I liked a lot of my DOS programs but getting them to work together, gack.

    I drew with CADMAX on that 386-16, it was the first 3D CAD to run on a PC, the machine to run it cost $15,000 in 1987.
    There was a bunch I can't remember now - Microcimm ? NCHQ ? but until about 1995 (iirc) the definition of "graphical" was, it drew a circle moving around outside a bunch of lines. Unless you had the high-dollar spread ... as in, 50-60-70,000 dollars What does NCL run on ? An Onyx2 ?


    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce Nelson View Post
    One of the Mastercam machining routines that I found specially useful ... You could then machine the resultant surface with a ball end mill ...
    Anything Mastercam can do, APT can do better

    What happened to Smurfcam ? I thought that was nicer than Mastercam.

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    One could do lots in the old Cadkey/Mastercam setup.
    For those who have the old 5 1/4s laying around try loading it up on a new pc.
    What was slow back then is now lighting fast. In later versions of Cadkey with the solid modeler there was a selection to "spin rendered image".
    On a complex model it was tick, tick tick slow to the point of almost useless.
    Now even when run in a virtual box the slowest speed spins so fast you can't really see the part.
    I like running old cad/cam software on today's computers. There is never any hesitation.
    Everything is instantaneous, even generating 5000 line toolpath programs and they can handle 90% of what I need to do.

    I'm not much for waiting even 1/2 second for a function to complete. It stops my thinking process, the program should always be faster then me.
    Newest software therefore requires the newest PC to run. Not much on buying the newest and fastest PC every 6 months either.
    Perhaps here is another point where the net enabled/subscription model has a problem. The person writing the code may have a machine way faster than you do.
    Software developers should be forced to work or at least test on 4-8 year old machines but that is a whole other argument.

    APT was perhaps too complicated and then killed by the point and click graphical method.
    More a programming language and cnc guys don't do the same type of programming as code slingers.
    Always wonder why writing RS-274d G-code was considered "programming" but it is just as ladders in a PLC are.
    I came from hard wired relays and PLC logic is just a representation of wiring together a few hundred switches, not real programming.

    But is a new world and the definitions have changed.
    Once upon a time being a "hacker" was a very good thing and a badge you wore with a shitload of pride.
    This change hurts us old guys. Try telling people you are a old school computer hacker and see the reactions.

    SeaMoss, our days are numbed and the young and exuberant do not care for the old ways or advice.
    Remember being there? ........
    Bob

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    I use fusion 360 on my TM1, works fine for what I need.

    IF you ran two options past your boss, one with the a £9,000 price tag, and one with a £300 price tag, and no way of being able to realistically justify the price difference (as a newb to CAD/CAM its not like previous experience of a more expensive licence is worth anything, and using the TM1 your not throwing extreme strategies or 5th axis work at it) I'm pretty sure I know which one they will pick...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry_C View Post
    I get that fusion is priced well for what you get, but having a cloud based software and having to save files on someone else's server seems sketchy to me. Not to mention if your internet goes down your dead in the water
    That's not true anymore, it was, and it was a flaw, but you can now keep local versions for time the net drops out.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mtndew View Post
    You'd have to contact your reseller for what exactly is in each package.
    But I do know that with the basic package, you're limited to cutting 1 surface per toolpath (at least that's how it used to be). As for the HSM toolpaths, I don't see why they wouldn't be in the basic mill package.
    I run the basic mill package, 1 surface per toolpath is correct and all of the HSM stuff is there too.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Zahnrad Kopf View Post
    Regardless, the OP likely has enough information to make an informed decision by this point.
    I have been silently lurking and yes I appreciate all the well informed opinions. It seems like at a certain point it comes down to preference and value. As long as the software isn't disproportionately expensive it comes down to what the CAM is being used for and the user's personal opinion.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CarbideBob View Post
    SeaMoss, our days are numbed
    hey ! that's enough of that ! I'm counting in base two and trying to fool myself !

    and the young and exuberant do not care for the old ways or advice.
    Remember being there? ........
    Actually, no. I was always flabbergasted by what them old bastards could do and wanted to learn how ...

    Personally, I'd rather run APT than mastercam but oh well

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    Quote Originally Posted by Diego View Post
    Hello, I'm trying to find a good CAM software for my company's TM-1 HAAS Mill. While initially researching I had eliminated MasterCAM as an option because I heard it was very pricey, but after receiving a very reasonable quote for only 6k + post processors and maintenance I am now very tempted to go with MasterCAM. I'm primarily also looking at VisualCAM and OneCNC, but why would I go with these cheaper options when I could spend a couple thousand more just once and get the most widely used CAM software?
    Can anyone talk me out of buying MasterCAM? I know it isn't the Goliath it was 10 years ago but it seems like a very safe investment.
    Widely used? Yes. The best? Most certainly not, lol, but in your price range it is good cam software. The design part of it is very, basic and lags behind many others but realistically MC doesn't tout itself as a CAD solution; not yet anyways. They will probably continue to develop the CAD side and I predict MC releasing modules in the future for things like die design and electrode modeling so users won't have to go to a third party for those solutions.

    I would never, ever say any CAM software has top notch support without having a single, unified source for support. Dealer based support can be very good but the flip side of that argument is dealer support can also be utterly terrible. Our NX support from Siemens is definitely world class and our MC programmers get very good support from their local dealer but a friend of mine, in another state, gets horrible support from his MC dealer.

    If MC covers your needs and the quote is that reasonable I would jump on it. If your current needs are greater than what MC can do easily than I would pass it up because you should never think struggling with ANY part of your software is acceptable. If you do that you are wasting time and making payments on a better suited software which you don't have.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Johnny SolidWorks View Post
    If you don't mind me asking: what was the price-point to get it with multi-axis milling, turning, and WEDM capabilities?
    I don't mind at all. Unfortunately, I cannot answer it, patently. There are a number of options that each must decide for or against as they fit their needs. ( or not as the case may be ) Plus, there are discount offers from time to time, so it's a bit of a moving target. We have some of the more advanced options with ours, and not knowing the specifics of what another might need, I couldn't speculate. ( well... I could, but more than likely would muck it up ) I'll be happy to put you in touch with someone that is not a salesman in effort to sort it out, if you like. I get no recompense for doing so. Just happy to help. Shoot me an e* if you desire.

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  23. #79
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry_C View Post
    I get that fusion is priced well for what you get, but having a cloud based software and having to save files on someone else's server seems sketchy to me. Not to mention if your internet goes down your dead in the water
    Again, it's all about what fits your situation..

    Not storing my files someplace where they're universally accessible to me would be wildly inconvenient for me. While I value my CAD\CAM\PLM data immensely, I value it's accessibility just as highly. Granted, I generally solve this issue with a local data\network backup solution that solves both problems simultaneously. For the unaware, Fusion has moved in that same direction, and now offers something like a 360+ day offline cache.

    I can't recall a single time where a service outage caused me a meaningful work stoppage; there have been a few times where accessing files in low-connectivity situations (airplanes, foreign countries) was mildly frustrating, but they were all prior to enabling the extended cache. I've also yet to hear of any lost CAD\CAM data due to server failures, and would be willing to gamble that multiple times more is lost each year to internal server\hard-drive failures. I'm sure some day servers will get hacked, and something valuable will be leaked among the hordes of fidget cubes and spinner designs.. Still, probably more likely to happen currently, with valuable data sitting on servers secured by the nerdy neighbor kid.

    Security is another issue entirely, and that may make Fusion not a realistic option for large business sectors where it isn't a good fit anyway. It would be a shame, though, to extrapolate a lack of support for fringe cases as a broad assessment of a software's value as a whole.

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    A program where it's mandatory to store your files online, and if you don't pay the monthly sub, you're shit outta luck... that just seems like the dumbest way to do things.
    I don't care if it was free, there's no way in hell I'm going with that model.

    What if their servers go down? Or they decide to do maintenance that day when you NEED to get your file?

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