100% beginner
Close
Login to Your Account
Results 1 to 19 of 19

Thread: 100% beginner

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2021
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    North Carolina
    Posts
    4
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    4
    Likes (Received)
    0

    Default 100% beginner

    Hello,
    To start out with, I want to say that I have just joined this forum and I am trying to learn about CNC machining. Some background. I have background in Solidworks 3D modeling and drawings. I currently work for a company that has a Milltronics VM5020 milling machine that they bought last year. The previous CNC machinist has just left the company and now without a CNC machinist. Since I know how to draw in CAD, I am trying to take it upon myself to learn how to generate code from a 3D model using Solidworks 2021. I have been told that I need a post processors for the Milltronics VM 5020 (which I have not been able to find). Can someone guide me on how to setup Solidcam and post processor?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    6,155
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    5764
    Likes (Received)
    3932

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by vp0730 View Post
    Hello,
    To start out with, I want to say that I have just joined this forum and I am trying to learn about CNC machining. Some background. I have background in Solidworks 3D modeling and drawings. I currently work for a company that has a Milltronics VM5020 milling machine that they bought last year. The previous CNC machinist has just left the company and now without a CNC machinist. Since I know how to draw in CAD, I am trying to take it upon myself to learn how to generate code from a 3D model using Solidworks 2021. I have been told that I need a post processors for the Milltronics VM 5020 (which I have not been able to find). Can someone guide me on how to setup Solidcam and post processor?
    The first thing you would need to learn is speeds and feeds for all of the different materials you use, for all of the tools that you will be using and also for all of the different types of toolpaths that you will be doing.
    As for your post, Can you contact Solidcam directly and have them give you a default Fanuc post? What control is on that machine?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2021
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    North Carolina
    Posts
    4
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    4
    Likes (Received)
    0

    Default

    Mtndew,
    I am told that the CAM program will figure the speeds and feeds automatically if I have the material and tool(s) inputted when generating code. I have contacted Solidworks for a post processor and they are going to be a month out before I can get training with them and spend a several thousand dollars to create a post processor. Solidworks CAM already comes with several post processors to choose from. On the controller, it just says Milltronics 9000 CNC.
    VM5020 – Milltronics

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2021
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    Florida
    Posts
    16
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    4
    Likes (Received)
    1

    Default

    You probably know this, but I just wanted to mention both camworks and solidcam can be integrated with SW. I've seen a few people mix them up.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2021
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    North Carolina
    Posts
    4
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    4
    Likes (Received)
    0

    Default

    I do know that I have solidcam standard as part of my solidworks subscription.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    canada
    Posts
    816
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    111
    Likes (Received)
    488

    Default

    Hire a CNC machinist.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2019
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    New York
    Posts
    555
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    0
    Likes (Received)
    555

    Default

    ^^^ The programming is the easy part.

  8. Likes Gobo liked this post
  9. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    Oregon
    Posts
    2,010
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    737
    Likes (Received)
    1225

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by AJ H View Post
    ^^^ The programming is the easy part.
    Could not be said better. Just about anyone can generate machine code, making a program that works,,,,,, a bit more difficult.

  10. Likes gmoushon liked this post
  11. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    Colorado
    Posts
    547
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    113
    Likes (Received)
    321

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by goooose View Post
    Hire a CNC machinist.
    Man there is so much right with your statement.

    SO many things I want to tell OP about why this isn't as easy as "generate the code from the Solidworks model" but I honestly don't believe it is worth my time to punch it all in.

    Just to scratch the surface here - OP is not a machinist and is now tasked with being a CNC machinist. OP have you ever set up a CNC mill? Ever used carbide cutting tools? Toolholders?

    It might sound counterintuitive but your company will 100% save money by hiring a machinist to do the machinist's job here.

  12. Likes thatjonesgirl liked this post
  13. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2021
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    North Carolina
    Posts
    4
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    4
    Likes (Received)
    0

    Default

    I am a manual machinist by trade. We are looking for a CNC machinist at the moment to replace the guy that left. Unfortunately, it is very very difficult to find someone in these times (for no apart reason). I wish we could hire one today. This is a project that I want to learn in the mean time to try to figure it out. It sounds like I need to take a course with a local community college to better understand the basics of setup. Solidworks people are coming to our facility next week to discuss the steps the company needs to take to move forward. Like everything else that is solidworks related, this is going to be very very expensive.

  14. #11
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    CA
    Posts
    1,206
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    15
    Likes (Received)
    335

    Default

    vp0730,

    What I would personally recommend is...

    Forget having Solidworks come to your facility at this point -- it will be expensive, and it will be a bit like putting the cart before the horse.

    The good news is, you have manual machining experience. That will serve you well, as "sound and feel" will provide a lot of information.

    However, the things to do >FIRST< (IMO) before a program is ever loaded into the machine are to really learn tool offsets and work offsets. These are two very important things that need to be clearly understood (not just have someone explain it in an hour or two). This is what prevents an operator from *crashing* a machine. Loading a program is easy... heck: generating a program out of CAM software is easy. NOT crashing a machine takes a deeper understanding, and crashing a machine gets very expensive very quickly.

    Just because a "new guy" gets lucky with the first half a dozen jobs and gets them finished does not mean a big crash isn't waiting just around the corner.

    Good "habits" in job setup need to be developed from the very, very beginning, and practiced religiously.

    Goooose made the right suggestion: "hire a CNC machinist/operator". Maybe your company could look into just hiring a very experienced person to come in a couple evenings a week for some "cash on the side", and teach you. That would, IMO, be money very well spent.


    All only my opinion -- which combined with $4, will get you a coffee at Starbucks.

    PM

  15. Likes charlie gary, vp0730, thatjonesgirl liked this post
  16. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    6,155
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    5764
    Likes (Received)
    3932

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by vp0730 View Post
    Mtndew,
    I am told that the CAM program will figure the speeds and feeds automatically if I have the material and tool(s) inputted when generating code.
    TECHNICALLY yes, you can have it spit out feeds and speeds based on material.
    But that's where it ends.
    The issue is that machining isn't static, meaning you can't just go off of a set list of values for materials. There are SO many variables that it simply cannot account for.

    I mean sure, if all you're doing is drilling holes with HSS drills having the program give auto-populate speeds and feeds is fine. But take note that those default speeds and feeds for materials still need to be set up correctly or else you're just going to get numbers based on a percentage of some other number.

    Going the route of having the cad/cam being smarter than the programmer is just setting yourself up for eventual chaos.

    The best thing you can do as a programmer is to learn how and why certain speeds and feeds are used not only for different materials but also for every type of toolpath.

  17. Likes vp0730, thatjonesgirl liked this post
  18. #13
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Country
    CANADA
    State/Province
    Saskatchewan
    Posts
    10,403
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    1421
    Likes (Received)
    3825

    Default

    Some of you guys make it sound like CNC is something extraordinarily hard to do. It isn't, but you start with simple jobs (like hole drilling), which will make you get your post processor set up correctly. A manual machinist should already have some notion of what order to do the operations in, and how to hold stuff so it can be machined, how to flip it and relocate a new datum point. It's very repetitive in nature, but the important thing is to have a software that provides an easy to configure post processor and an accurate simulation, like OneCNC.

    Even after many years of machining, a good machining simulation is priceless in value. I catch all sorts of 'innocent' mistakes that way.

  19. #14
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Country
    CANADA
    State/Province
    Ontario
    Posts
    323
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    157
    Likes (Received)
    180

    Default

    If there was already a CNC machinist at this facility running this particular machine, it seems the place to start it to look at how the old machinist was generating programs.

    If the old guy was running CAM, then there should be a complete CAM setup already in place. Just use that. Look at the old programs and the help files and manual for the CAM. If you can't figure it out, perhaps get some training from the CAM vendor.

    If the old guy was hand programming, then the programs probably weren't that complex. Since the OP is a manual machinist, you should be able to get by learning to read the old programs and figure out what G-codes are in use. If you're doing manual machining at the level of 3-axis with a DRO (or even the dials), then learning that level of g-code isn't that much. Probably just G0, G1, G80, G81, maybe a tapping cycle, maybe a peck drilling cycle. Probably don't even need to figure out G2, G3 arcs. For setting up the work coordinates, that should be in the machine manual.

  20. Likes Antarctica liked this post
  21. #15
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    Michigan
    Posts
    14,242
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    4854
    Likes (Received)
    5133

    Default

    Study what you can until you understand this guy and that will be a decent start, perhaps graduating kindergarten.
    I didn't listen to his whole video so don't know if he missed any key points.

    G and M code programing.
    a safety run of a cnc program - Bing video

  22. Likes vp0730, thatjonesgirl liked this post
  23. #16
    Join Date
    Apr 2019
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    Oregon
    Posts
    95
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    3
    Likes (Received)
    50

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by vp0730 View Post
    Mtndew,
    I am told that the CAM program will figure the speeds and feeds automatically if I have the material and tool(s) inputted when generating code. I have contacted Solidworks for a post processor and they are going to be a month out before I can get training with them and spend a several thousand dollars to create a post processor. Solidworks CAM already comes with several post processors to choose from. On the controller, it just says Milltronics 9000 CNC.
    VM5020 – Milltronics
    SolidCAM does sell the "smart machine" feature that will auto pick your feeds and speeds. It's a good starting point but you will want to be aware of what's going on. There is a good training program they have called "Solid Professor" that shows everything you need to know. SolidCAM is good. I like it better then Camworks. You should be able to pick up programming pretty easy. Running the machine... Well, pucker time. Don't be surprised if you crash some tools and ruin some parts. Not a big deal. Everyone does.

  24. #17
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    Florida
    Posts
    6,370
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    2539
    Likes (Received)
    3153

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Mtndew View Post
    TECHNICALLY yes, you can have it spit out feeds and speeds based on material.
    But that's where it ends.
    The issue is that machining isn't static, meaning you can't just go off of a set list of values for materials. There are SO many variables that it simply cannot account for.

    I mean sure, if all you're doing is drilling holes with HSS drills having the program give auto-populate speeds and feeds is fine. But take note that those default speeds and feeds for materials still need to be set up correctly or else you're just going to get numbers based on a percentage of some other number.

    Going the route of having the cad/cam being smarter than the programmer is just setting yourself up for eventual chaos.

    The best thing you can do as a programmer is to learn how and why certain speeds and feeds are used not only for different materials but also for every type of toolpath.
    I don't know the capabilities of Solidcam (?), but I have my MCAM set up so speeds and feeds are calculated based on SFM and chip load per tooth. So easy to make adjustments based on material, tool length, etc.

  25. #18
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    Colorado
    Posts
    547
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    113
    Likes (Received)
    321

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by HuFlungDung View Post
    Some of you guys make it sound like CNC is something extraordinarily hard to do. It isn't, but you start with simple jobs (like hole drilling), which will make you get your post processor set up correctly. A manual machinist should already have some notion of what order to do the operations in, and how to hold stuff so it can be machined, how to flip it and relocate a new datum point. It's very repetitive in nature, but the important thing is to have a software that provides an easy to configure post processor and an accurate simulation, like OneCNC.

    Even after many years of machining, a good machining simulation is priceless in value. I catch all sorts of 'innocent' mistakes that way.
    Just wanted to chime in with a counter argument to your post. Yes, CNC is that hard because we've all seen bad CNC guys do bad things.

    In terms of the actual mechanics and the Gcodes themselves, its not "hard" per say. But it is complicated as fuck. And cumbersome. Even running the best CAM and simulation software you're still expecting someone to know how to properly drive some ultra bespoke software solutions which take years to master. Hand coding I guess yea that is easier?

    The whole production chain has so many inputs that you need to understand those inputs to get a proper output. If you don't understand G43.4 then how can you expect to know what the machine is going to do? Tooling, setup, physical machining conditions all interact with your software conditions to either generate a good output or a shit output. Knowing how to get good output takes years to master and fully understand.


    If you want to change the output of your Gcode via post-processor edits, you either need to know post processor edits or pray that your software reseller gives half a shit to help you out, otherwise you might be SOL. In my experience, knowing how to tweak a post is a skill worth having.

  26. #19
    Join Date
    Sep 2017
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    Florida
    Posts
    12
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    11
    Likes (Received)
    1

    Default

    I am a Recruiter that basically has nothing but metal working and machine operating jobs and this forum has been an invaluable resource for me when I need to understand more about a particular role so that i can know what the heck I'm talking about when I'm interviewing someone. Just wanted to say thank you for the link to the video! I really appreciated it and learned even more.


Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •