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  1. #181
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    Quote Originally Posted by as9100d View Post
    What you're currently doing works. Might have some issues you hate but it does work and it's super cost effective. I'd look for other ways to speed up making parts to get your cost per hour down so you can be more profitable.

    I'm still looking for a magic wand that will just make parts without employees. If you find one I'd like to buy it Sick of Fusion 360 / Affordable Alternatives

    Sent from my Pixel 3 using Tapatalk
    Maybe a $300,000 Robot cell? One for each machine unless you can get the terminator style that walks for 2 mil!

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    Quote Originally Posted by aldepoalo View Post
    Here is a live video I did yesterday in the BobCAD public facebook group. Not sure if it will show here, but let's try.




    In this video, I walk through 2D pocketing, and 3D Adaptive roughing for open pockets on different Z levels.

    At this time BobCAD offers a stand-alone package called V32 and also a plugin for Solidworks called V8. Both of these packages offer 2-5 axis milling and turning and other features. The license is perpetual ( doesn't expire ) and updates for the software ( service packs ) are installed by the user ( no automatic updates ).

    As a job shop or really any manufacturer, BobCAD's software suite offers many options to speed up programming by capturing and reusing your machining process.

    With that said V32 is not a parametric assembly modeler, for those shops that need higher-end design solutions, that's when BobCAD recommends Solidworks and BobCAM V8.

    The V32 stand-alone package might not be as powerful of a design solution as some primary systems. The design tools it does offer allows for 2D and 3D wireframe surfaces and solids. Because there are no design constraints, you can draw very quickly with it. It also has a CAD history tree keeping track of all your 3D design steps and edits.

    • Operation Stock
    • Check Surfaces
    • Fixture Avoidance
    • Adaptive Toolpaths
    • High-End Surfacing
    • Machine Simulation
    • Multi-spindle and turret support
    • User-configurable post processors
    • Standard Universal File Translators


    And the list goes on, it's 2020 and BobCAD has been busy. Typically the biggest complaints on this board about BobCAD is the sales team, sales process. Who really likes salesman anyway, right? And to be fair anonymous groups like this get "venting posts" all the time.


    Many things have changed about BobCAD and the biggest changes are yet to come. All I can say is IMTS 2020 is going to be awesome!
    How much is BobCad? I ssume the Cad is Shite and you need to buy a cad software seperately. Cam you import files from Catia V5 ?

  3. #183
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mud View Post
    I looked at it a few years ago, it was a subset of NX. I'm interested in it now again. I have SE and love it, hate my current CAM.
    Whats your cuurrent cam?

  4. #184
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hardplates View Post
    I have no issues with fusion other than it requiring internet and updates. If they gave an option to buy it outright that is likely what I would do, no payments, no credit, no subscription, no changes! I don't do cutting edge work or need cutting edge equipment and software. My business sense works just fine, I owe no one anything, have more work than I can do and could shut down for a year if I wanted to and do just fine.

    I just realized that I have been using DNC software by OneCNC for quite some time and have been very happy with it. I will likely be looking further into their CAD CAM package
    I like your mindset!

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    Quote Originally Posted by goooose View Post
    He's referring to Esprit TNG. It's available now...and has been for a few years.

    Esprit is the best secret in machining. People have heard of it, some have heard they do multi axis well, not many know how good it is at absolutely everything.
    How much is total $$$

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    I'm in the middle of reading all these posts but has anyone used Camworks ?
    3 Axis Milling | 3 Axis CNC Milling | CAMWorks

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gman4405 View Post
    I like your mindset!
    I tried OneCNC and it just didn't offer the control I need. Such as not being able to keep the tool down in a pocket, it has to retract before coming back down to helix to the next depth. I use a lot of high feed mills and retracting every .030" is a major no go for me. Also the CAD side isn't parametric so that renders it almost useless for me.

    I ended up going with SolidCAM and Solidworks and have been very happy. I got every 3d mill package/option they have which ended up coming with 3+2, also got 2 axis turning with sub spindle. I've been very happy with it and cycle times are much faster than Fusion as well as tool life being better. By creating process templates I can program different but similar parts in a matter of minutes.

    After some negotiating I payed around $13,500 for it with Solidworks standard minus drawings ($900 to add them in the future)

    IIRC Esprit was going to be around $16k-18k with posts plus I would need solidworks on top of that. That wasn't out of the question as I'm sure I could have negotiated a nice chunk off that if the time had come to buy it BUT they will only do demos and do not offer a trial.


    Sorry Esprit but I'm not going to spend that kind of money without being to play with it on my own for at least a few days. Solidcam gave me a 60 days trial and about 30 days into it I purchased the license.

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  9. #188
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    Thumbs down

    Quote Originally Posted by Larry Dickman View Post
    I have a question. Not trying to be critical or trying to tell people how to spend their money. I'm just fascinated by the number of threads that come and go with a common theme. Cheap cad/cam.

    How much do you have invested in your shop? Between machines, inspection equipment, tooling, even for a small shop probably close to 1/2 mil?

    But 10-15K for a decent cam package to make it all run smooth is out of the question? Seriously, think it through.

    Another thing that cracks me up. I know of so many shops that finally broke down and paid 20K or so for mastercam, but then install it on their kids old PC with no graphics or memory.

    All a matter of priorities?
    You are absolutely Correct BUT when you pay for the subscriptions and the software STILL doesn't work when you NEED it to work. What good is it???? I have seen this comment all over the internet and I feel the blood boil.....Autodesk had the Fusion 360 for students, hobbyist etc....that was their "excuse"....you have all this money tied up in equipment, why not spend the money on software.....I will tell you why, my older Romi machines don't talk back at me and say, I need another $475 dollars this year to keep working. I treat them right with maintenance and they run. Autodesk is a greedy company that has to squeeze every nickel and dime out of everyone.....and don't get me started on the other cad/cam companies.

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    May I make a suggestion and recommend Alibre? I have no connection to them other than buying the design portion of the software. Reminds a lot of Pro-E back in the day. Purchase a license for life, no subscription. I have NOT tried the CAM software since I don't need it at home. Certainly worth a look. I agree with others, if you need CAM, why cheap out. But Alibre is a viable alternative and can compete directly with Fusion, it seems.

    Alibre, LLC - Professional, Affordable 3D CAD Software

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    I am with you. I have recently switched to Linux after two high dollar computers bit the dust. I found a computer called a Raspberry Pi 4B, 64 bit, with 4 cores, running about 2 ghz. You can buy a new keyboard, mouse, monitor stand, micro SD cards, USB adapter, and have most any Microsoft-like application available as open source. Everything - I have priced it out - under $200; all except the monitor. The code is at:

    Aptos download | SourceForge.net

    If you want help on installing Linux software on the Raspberry Pi, I made some instructions. It is a tough switchover to Linux. But in 2 months, I have an APT processor. Honestly, I haven't used any postprocessor with it yet. I am looking at many issues. I have written postprocessors myself in FORTRAN, though, so that is not my biggest worry. Just throwing this thought out there for ya.

    It is a standard programming language, btw, since the '50's, as in 1950's. ANS X3.37-95 is the standard I am most familiar with, but it is an international effort, and various standard groups collaborate the standard.

    Hardware is at:

    Raspberry Pi 4 Model B/8GB - PiShop.us

    I can share a list of the hardware I use.

    my email is: [email protected]

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    Hello,
    I would recommend EZ-CAM. You own the software, Internet is not required, and your maintenance doesn't double for each year you skip, not to mention it is not as expensive as MasterCAM or other compatible software.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hardplates View Post
    I am so sick of the constant updates and crashing and it wanting an internet connection. As far as the CAD CAM aspect of it I am pleased. I will admit I have yet to do any research but is there any affordable "stand alone" software out there that is comparable. Say in the couple thousand $ range?

    It has served me well and introduced me to the world of trochoidal tool paths but I'm not some guy playing in his basement, I'm a business and get VERY frustrated and ANGRY every time it crashes and or doesn't work.

    I do 3 axis mill work and 2 axis lathe work, nothing crazy. I would love Esprit but that is way out of the question.

    What's out there?

    PS I run older machines so I need to be able to smooth out the tool paths since my controllers will not do that.
    I'v been using Powerstation for about 20 yrs easy to use and learn and works for me .

    It's about 1k with no maintenance charges,
    microcimm.com or Glass House Software. Prices are listed .I think that they have about a month free Trial. No phone calls.

  15. #193
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    First CAM software I used was Powerstation, way back in the mid 80's. It worked amazingly well given we had a mixture of Fanuc, Allen Bradley and Bandit controls at the time. Used it on lathes and mills. I'm amazed it's still around.

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    I use fusion, and I often find myself cursing it out, but I also find the CAM part VERY easy to use (but very difficult when it won't do what you want, kind of like apple products). And great value. I BOUGHT a mastercam license ~10 years ago, which was some brand-new version and no one on the planet seemed to know how set the origin. I even brought in a real machinist who used it every day (an earlier version) and he tried and failed. Hard to make progress if you can't set the origin... But I acknowledge that mastercam is likely way better for serious machining.

    But my comment only tangentially related to CAD/CAM: has anyone noticed that the music streaming services are starting to offer actual music stored on your device as a "new" feature? Maybe some bright young marketing engineer will come up with a similar feature for the web-based CAD software.

    And please, I know that fusion works without the internet. I like fusion 360, and for high school students, the web-based file structure is a godsend: no more "the dog ate my CADfile".

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    Quote Originally Posted by LockNut View Post
    May I make a suggestion and recommend Alibre? I have no connection to them other than buying the design portion of the software. Reminds a lot of Pro-E back in the day. Purchase a license for life, no subscription. I have NOT tried the CAM software since I don't need it at home. Certainly worth a look. I agree with others, if you need CAM, why cheap out. But Alibre is a viable alternative and can compete directly with Fusion, it seems.

    Alibre, LLC - Professional, Affordable 3D CAD Software
    I've been using Alibre for about 5 years for CAD and like it quite a bit. I buy the maintenance plan and they've done some pretty reasonable updates on it over the years. Couple times I've had questions or problems they were quick to respond.

  18. #196
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    Quote Originally Posted by SeeFair View Post
    I BOUGHT a mastercam license ~10 years ago, which was some brand-new version and no one on the planet seemed to know how set the origin.
    Did you get any training? Ask your reseller? Ask on Mastercam.com or eMastercam.com? Mastercam is far from perfect, but it's by far the easiest to get help with.

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    Quote Originally Posted by SeeFair View Post
    And please, I know that fusion works without the internet.
    Your Fusion works without internet? What widget/extension did you download to make that work?

    If mine is disconnected from the internet I get several pop ups alerting me to the fact I am not connected to the internet. If I don’t immediately get the connection fixed, I get several warnings that Fusion has failed to save. If I still don’t get it connected I get a pop up alerting me that portions of the program have crashed and have closed. If I still haven’t fixed the internet by then Fusion as a whole collapses.

    I’ve had numerous conversations with Autodesk about this issue, and have been told it is operating correctly. I was also told they have no idea what the messages mean, as they have never seen them before.

    Seems like a bit of a contradiction, but I’ve had at least 3 or 4 meetings about it and they were all very confident that it is working correctly and they have no idea what they mean.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fal Grunt View Post
    I’ve had numerous conversations with Autodesk about this issue, and have been told it is operating correctly. I was also told they have no idea what the messages mean, as they have never seen them before.
    It is working as intended, as they want you to have a constant umbilical to the mother ship to maintain your privilege of using the software you paid for. They have not seen the messages because when they deign to use the software it's ON the mothership.

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    Quote Originally Posted by SeymourDumore View Post
    Dude, I know you are not just a shill for one ( any one ) software company.
    I pretty much know that.
    At the same, you are absolutely fucking insane trying to spew the most rotten bullshit about the reasons why current trends go where they are headed!

    I know you are smarter than that, but if you do actually believe that it is driven by technology and not profits, then I am truly sorry not only for you, but all the other assholes you infect!!!

    And with that said, if you read some of the comments on the Autodesk forum, just how fucking dumbass stupid moron idiot do you have to be to trade in your permanent license???
    No more maintenence? Fine, Fuck You!
    I'll keep the permanent license as-is with the now frozen version, and I'll subscribe to the new one if/when I absolutely need to.
    you obviously have no idea how expensive it really is to develop software, and q/a it.
    everytime you change code, you break something. so it's very expensive to keep adding onto. good companies do the QA and get it right as much as possible, yet stuff still breaks.

    most software companies are not extremely profitable. some are, but usually for other reasons, like buying up the competition. most companies do rely on maint (support and upgrades) to keep going.

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    I have been using Fusion for years but with the purchase of a 4th axis it's been really rough on more advanced stuff. I was trying get 4th continuous toolpaths on non circular objects and it just doesn't work. I tried the forums and had Fusion "geniuses" try to help but to no avail. Just want a damn chamfer to wrap around from the front to top. Driving me nuts.

    So I went to test drive Alibre mid Dec of 2020. First off Alibre makes CAD. NOTHING else. All the CAM is 3rd party that can work with it. I didn't find it's CAD any better than Fusion but I don't do assemblies or high end stuff. Just one piece models. Hated that Alibre didn't have the timeline. But only used for about 3 days.

    So they had about 3 different CAM you could use that basically just gave you a button in Alibre CAD that you could hit that would launch the CAM product and import the model for you. Not integrated like Fusion 360, just weird to have the CAM just be a dialog box. I took a test run of AlibreCAM 2020 by Mecsoft the others looked weak. It had like 11 4th axis toolpaths as compared to the one (Rotary)in Fusion. Yes Fusion can index, and other toolpaths can fake it but that's about it. I had about 2 days with it and then had my biggest customer give me a job that took a month. Software trial ran out and I had to put it on the back burner.

    So about a week ago got sick of banging my head into the wall again with Fusion and called them to get things started again for a trial. So I check Alibre site and the Professional package is still there. On sale now for $750 down from $1000. I then check Mecsoft for AlibreCAM 2020 and it's missing. I check back on Alibre site and look at CAM under AddOns and they have Sprut and some other basic one listed. No AlibreCAM. Checked Sprut website real fast. No prices, RFQ. Immediately eliminated.

    I call Mecsoft and they regret to inform me that they no longer are partnered with Alibre. They say their Visual CAD/CAM is the exact same product it just doesn't launch from inside Alibre. Price for the Professional, the first level with good 4th toolpaths is $5,000.

    I have been just importing .stl from Fusion to test with, no CAD yet. There is a learning curve. Not nearly as polished as Fusion but if it will give me more control over toolpaths I will deal with ugly icons. Fusion did just add Trim and Extend or some such to better control toolpaths but it's all under the $1600 a year for the Machining Extension. With the normal Fusion price that is just of $2,000 a year so I am over the price of VisualCAD/CAM within three years. There is an option $700 a year maintenance on VisualCAD/CAM to get updates and help. Alibre I think it was like $300 a year for maintenance.

    Just starting my due diligence. Trying to do the tutorials but they don't have the tutorial part files on their website. YouTube video say to email to get a download link. I did on Sunday and still no link. Weird to go from a huge website with tons of stuff and information everywhere on the web to basically being on my own. Going to keep going to see if it has good 4th axis toolpaths. Didn't pay $25k for a 4th so it would just be a glorified indexer.


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