WorkNC V21 vs Powermill 2012
We have just had a new Spinner 5 Axis machine with Siemens 840d SL controller installed.
Our primary workload is Tool/Moldmaking.
We are currently using WorkNC V19 on our 3 axis machines and are quite happy with the software.
We have two options on the table as far as software for the new machine goes:
Powermill 2012 or WorkNC V21.
Are there any users out there who have used both packages and what are your thoughts.
I have done 3 days introductory training on PM and have been using WNC for 5 years.
My initial thoughts on PM is that it going to be a long process to learn and essentially going to have to forget a lot of programming methods used in WNC.
My personal preference would be for our shop to stick to WNC due to a quicker ROI and easier to train new staff but the Boss is currently on the fence.
We were in a similar situation about 8 years ago. We had been using WorkNC for about 10 years to program our 3-axis machines. When we bought our first 5-axis Hermle, everyone involved in the sale were telling us that we need to switch to PowerMill. We had demo'd PowerMill twice in the past, but never found it to have any advantages over WorkNC. This time around, the Delcam rep wouldn't allow us to do a demo, but insisted we buy it, with a no-questions-asked money back guarantee if we weren't happy with it. To make a long story short, we stuck with WorkNC because PowerMill offered no advantages over WorkNC. In fact, the whole Delcam-PowerMill experience got ugly, and they burnt their bridges at this company. We will never look at another Delcam product again based off of how all of that mess went down.
My advice, for whatever it's worth, would be to stick with WorkNC.
OK I'm biased, but if you are in the tooling and mold-making, definitely take a good hard look at the Auto-5 module in WorkNC before making a final decision. It does a very good job of allowing a lot of flexibility in cutterpath styles while easily making 5-azis cutterpaths for utilizing short tools deeper.
I am a huge Powermill fan and its unfortunate Dan had such a bad experience, it is very top of the line 5x software. However, I would agree with him and stick with Work NC, the learning curve will be much more forgiving and there probably would not be much of an advantage to get involved with a completely different system.