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  1. #21
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    I'm anything but lazy when it comes to software and happen to have a knack for picking up new software quickly. Camworks was a much lesser software ran by a pretty questionable team for some time. However, that seems to have all changed drastically, especially since the partnership with Solidworks cam. If they continue developing Solidworks CAM at the current impressive rate we just might end up on that team one day. Buuut SolidCAM has been very aggressive with development as well and the support is VERY good.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dan B View Post
    Couldn't that be said for any product? If I walked away from WorkNC I couldn't access my WorkNC files.

    I don't know if it makes sense to avoid a product because of what might happen someday. I'm concerned with today and the foreseeable future, not the hypothetical "what if" future.

    But that's just me. Not looking for an argument.

    Dan
    The difference is, if you stop paying your AD subscription you can't access your files anymore.
    Oh, and if the internet goes down? Same story.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dan B View Post
    Couldn't that be said for any product? If I walked away from WorkNC I couldn't access my WorkNC files.

    I don't know if it makes sense to avoid a product because of what might happen someday. I'm concerned with today and the foreseeable future, not the hypothetical "what if" future.

    But that's just me. Not looking for an argument.

    Dan
    If you buy, say, Mastercam or any other perpetual licensed software, the version you bought will work for the rest of your life even if you don't pay maintenance. You'll always be able to access all your files...yes, forever.

    If you are running a perpetual licensed software and decide to jump ship, you'll still have all your old files accessible with the software you own....again...forever.

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  6. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Toolslinger View Post
    Ok, so, yes, I went through lots of older posts, because everyone gets tired of the same topics over and over.... Did I miss one? Very likely. If you know of the post I need, please feel free to refer me to it...

    That said... I need to look for a new CAM software. Here are my parameters.
    • We're a Solidworks shop. That isn't going to change.
    • I want to be inside Solidworks. I don't want an external program.
    • I'm currently running the free HSM from Autodesk, and quite honestly, I really like it. I'd be happy to stay with it, but well, Autodesk...
    • I would like the opportunity to go full 3 axis, rather than 2.5. Frequently, no, and I've cheated my way through with HSM ok so far, but I'm trying to expand the possibilities here a bit. That right there takes me outside the Solidworks baked in packages of Camworks... (this one is real negotiable, but I would like it)
    • If I find price for the full 3 axis is beyond reality, then I'm back to 2.5, and ok with that.
    • I do want whatever the equivalent of Adaptive Clearing is in HSM... Volumill in Camworks I think, and whatever in SolidCam...
    • So currently, I'm looking at Camworks, and SolidCam. I believe I know what I would have to buy from Camworks, I don't have a clue for SolidCam as their website is making my head spin...
    • My IT department is a nightmare. I will not get any support on any of this from them. They will do their best to thwart me from making any progress.
    • Obviously these programs keep evolving... I need info that's current, not 5 years old...
    • Is anyone willing to give me some kind of price ranges you're dealing with? Yes, they're all expensive. I have rough pricing on the baked in Camworks versions, but obviously the standalone will be higher with more capability... I find nothing on SolidCam. If you don't want to post it, feel free to PM it. I just need some realistic basis to work from when I talk to the money people to see if we can do this...
    • The work here is with a Haas VF2ss. I run prototypes, and small parts runs of the odd pieces. Production runs get sent to shops with lots of machines, and really good programmers.
    • I know they'll both make parts... I'm looking for as painless a transition as I can manage. I am going to try to keep my current setup going, and set up a complete separate computer for the new option. Once I get up and solid on the new, then the old can wither away, but I don't want to just loose all the saved tool paths that work in case I need to make something RIGHT NOW...
    • I'm not going to say money is no object... That said, I'm more concerned with functionality, and ease of use...


    Ok, I think that covers it... Let the arguments begin...

    Thanks!
    I got a lot of help from Solidcam when I was in the process of cam evaluation. They have a lot of info on youtube and a lot of online help. I've also tried a lot of others as well. I liked visual cam and go a lot of help from them as well. My main criteria was that it would work as a plug in in my solidworks as well. Mastercam was unhelpful. I then downloaded fusion for free not expecting much and didn't like the "cloud" thing. I used the cam for a while and it works very well but it wasnt integrated and was very time consuming if I had to make any changes. There was also a learning curve as I was so used to Solidworks to do simple things like create different surfaces or sketched in the model for my toolpaths. Then I was made aware of the HSM plug in for a few hundred that works in solidworks. I've been using that with great results. But like others have said there is uncertainty with Autodesk. Up to date they have been VERY helpful though.
    Attached are some product pricing that I got from Solidcam approx a year old. They have at times offered free HSR or HSS modules for free as a promo (~$3800). Im sure they will be running these again.
    If I have to switch I will most likly be going to solidcam but the price would be somewhere in the $8k range for what HSM works does.

    sc3.jpgsc2.jpgsc1.jpg

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  8. #25
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    Seems to me that most reliable way for CAM would be either NX, solidCAM or Mastercam..

    I was astonished to read, that hsmworks is basically a dying horse.. Very unfortunate..

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    We use CamWorks and Fusion 360. Lathe, mill, 4th axis. The younger machinists tend to like Fusion 360, the more experienced seem to like CamWorks. You can do the same thing with both packages. We have both just to have the option. I will say for the price you can’t beat fusion 360 even has 4th axis standard. Most of the people that dislike fusion are people who learned on mastercam. I’ve found a lot of the younger guys who took machine shop in high school are being introduced to 3D modeling in auto desk packages like inventor and auto as and are then learning the mastercam solid works CamWorks later on. I think that’s why they tend to go for fusion over some of the other more powerful packages.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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  11. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by DFrench View Post
    I'm anything but lazy when it comes to software and happen to have a knack for picking up new software quickly. Camworks was a much lesser software ran by a pretty questionable team for some time. However, that seems to have all changed drastically, especially since the partnership with Solidworks cam. If they continue developing Solidworks CAM at the current impressive rate we just might end up on that team one day. Buuut SolidCAM has been very aggressive with development as well and the support is VERY good.
    All software packages have their pros and cons and I think camworks has been a great package for a very long time. I am willing to bet Soldicam is a great packaged along with mastercam, fusion 360 etc. All packages have their quirks at time also.

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  13. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Toolslinger View Post
    Had been told it was a steep learning curve

    That is 100% dependent on the person learning. If you're green as grass it might be, if you already have knowledge of cad and/or cam then you'll be fine. Mastercam has a TON of resources at our fingertips to learn from, if i had to guess I would say it has the best support of them all. But that's just a guess.

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    Solidworks cam only runs in solidworks and is not a standalone.
    $2400 for the program
    $600/year for subscription
    $900 for 2 days online cam standard training
    $585 for 1 day cam professional training

    The stand alone version for solid modeling from CAMWorks is $10,100

    BobCad has V8 that runs in SolidWorks is around $2500

  15. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by apex55 View Post
    Solidworks cam only runs in solidworks and is not a standalone.
    $2400 for the program
    $600/year for subscription
    $900 for 2 days online cam standard training
    $585 for 1 day cam professional training

    The stand alone version for solid modeling from CAMWorks is $10,100

    BobCad has V8 that runs in SolidWorks is around $2500
    HSMWorks runs in SW, $500/year for the Fusion 360 entitlement, can't beat that price, you don't have to use Fusion at all.

    So I'll wait to hear the neigh say'rs, I say milk the cost savings and sock away $2000 a year and if it dies you already have the funds to buy the next best thing, whatever that will be..??

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    I'm in the same boat as a lot of people with Autodesk. I purchased perpetual licenses of Powershape and Powermill before the switch. Sounds like after this year it will go the way of Featurecam and become something like Fusion with Powermill with possibly some things from Powershape ported into Fusion (at additional costs I'm sure) and being dropped. I'm having a hard time paying for maintenance this year feeling it will go away next, especially with no more improvements than have happened, and sure won't fall for their subscription model. My hardest thing is the cad. Very few have the tools to do core cavity separation like Powershape in that price range. From what I've seen Visi is the top contender at that price point then either NX or Catia for much more money once the modules that do that are added in. If anyone has any other suggestions I'm all ears.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ChipSplitter View Post
    The difference is, if you stop paying your AD subscription you can't access your files anymore.
    Oh, and if the internet goes down? Same story.
    Maybe our scenario is different. We don't do production runs that require us to revisit the same files over and over. We do about 70,000 unique details per year, and once that job is cut, those files are pretty much redundant. There is the odd time that an engineering change will require us to reuse a file, but that's rare, as changes often involve new toolpaths. But it's even less of an issue as we are only using Fusion for pins on our Okuma mill/turn. "What if" we stop paying our subscription? I'll worry about that if that day comes. Right now, the $645/year isn't something I'm worried about paying. If we can't pay that, we're washed up as a company anyway, so it won't matter. As for the internet being down, I've been here almost 30 years, and as long as there has been internet, I could count on my fingers the number of minutes it has not worked in that 30 years. So, again, the "what ifs" don't worry me.

  18. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by goooose View Post
    If you buy, say, Mastercam or any other perpetual licensed software, the version you bought will work for the rest of your life even if you don't pay maintenance. You'll always be able to access all your files...yes, forever.

    If you are running a perpetual licensed software and decide to jump ship, you'll still have all your old files accessible with the software you own....again...forever.
    Like I mentioned above, accessing old files for completed jobs is not a major factor for us. You know what I don't like? If we stop paying maintenance on a certain product we own (that I won't mention here), they cripple the software so that it only processes on a single core, and can only open one window at a time. So that maintenance is forced down our throats, like it or not. And I'm not talking chump change. I'm talking big bucks here.

    I think there are pros and cons to both, and I don't disagree with what you are saying. I think each individual needs to access their situation and figure out what works best for them. Maybe it's perpetual licenses. Maybe it's subscription. Or maybe, like for us, it's a combination of both.

  19. #34
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    Default Imo

    Hi, I'm new to the forum but, started as a machinist back in 1986. Been programming for 20 years.
    I used CAMWorks for a couple of years. And I'm currently using NX now. The problem with these software's is they come from CAD companies. CAM is secondary to their CAD software. So their CAM sucks! Their support sucks because they don't care about or want to spend money on the CAM side. Go with a company that's main focus is CAM.
    That being said, most of my time as a programmer has been with MasterCam. If I had my way I would be using it now, because NX is the biggest POS I've ever used. CAMWorks is a bit better but, not much.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dan B View Post
    If we stop paying maintenance on a certain product we own (that I won't mention here), they cripple the software so that it only processes on a single core, and can only open one window at a time.
    You have to mention this company now because I've never heard of this practice before.

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    I hadn't heard of that either, until we tried to drop the maintenance. I knew that we were giving up multiple windows open at once, but it blindsided us when one window took way longer to process. It made trying to get any WORK done pretty difficult, especially siNCe we have guys who were used to doing 2 and 3 things at once.

    But I don't want to come right out and name the product, because we still have to work with them for the forseeable future.

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  23. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by goooose View Post
    You have to mention this company now because I've never heard of this practice before.
    If you keep the work station offline it can’t update and it will always work good.....


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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    Quote Originally Posted by Micmac1 View Post
    If you keep the work station offline it can’t update and it will always work good.....
    Not in our case. The cores are disabled with an annual license code. Don't pay maintenance, the code disables multiple core usage. Pay it, the code enables it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dan B View Post
    Not in our case. The cores are disabled with an annual license code. Don't pay maintenance, the code disables multiple core usage. Pay it, the code enables it.
    I'm guessing it's your WorkNC.....?

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    Well I know it ain't Mastercam. The license manager doesn't work that way.


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