What CAM are you using for Wire EDM - Ballpark Prices?
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  1. #1
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    Default What CAM are you using for Wire EDM - Ballpark Prices?

    I am just wondering what cam software you guys are currently using to do your WEDM Programming, and how do you like it?

    I currently just have a homebrew AutoCAD lisp setup that works by converting Polyline points to gcode. This is of course pretty limited, and only works with 2D drawings.

    I wouldn't mind getting something that is 3d capable, the only must for me would be Fanuc Post availability.

    So what are you using? Do you like it? And most importantly, what is a ballpark figure on the price?

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheBigLebowski View Post
    I am just wondering what cam software you guys are currently using to do your WEDM Programming, and how do you like it?

    I currently just have a homebrew AutoCAD lisp setup that works by converting Polyline points to gcode. This is of course pretty limited, and only works with 2D drawings.

    I wouldn't mind getting something that is 3d capable, the only must for me would be Fanuc Post availability.

    So what are you using? Do you like it? And most importantly, what is a ballpark figure on the price?
    Are you needing/wanting to do 4 axis? What options and/or features does the machine have, ie power settings, tank (submerged) fill/dump, high and low pressure flushing controlled by machine or post, etc..?

    I ask because I programmed a Charmilles for many years and all I did was get the NC code (g code) and the machine files (CMD, TEC) handled the rest, rough and finish offsets, number of passes, etc. If you need your cam to do all that it would change what software is recommended I think.

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    I have yet to encounter any need for accurate 4 axis work, I mostly do die work (land and taper). The newer machine I am looking at buying is 4 axis capable. (Fanuc Robocut w/ 16w control) Flushing, Tank fill, and cut settings are all controllable from the program.

    I am also seeing that most people are moving entirely toward 3d data, so it would be a time save to be able to program directly from that, rather than going through the process of converting it to 2d and cleaning up the data. (removing extra lines, fixing radii, etc.)

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    Hi TheBigLebowski:
    I have heard very good things about Esprit for the kind of capability you're looking for, and when I reviewed the options available 5 years or so ago, it stood out then as the most capable for working directly from a 3D model, especially to produce code for cuts involving continuously changing tapers or rotary axis work.

    One aspect Esprit seemed to handle particularly well was managing models where there were not two parallel planar surfaces to define the top and bottom wire paths in complex upper and lower cutting.
    This is a common issue when wire cutting parts for injection molds which is a respectable part of my business and was the motivator for me to look into a more sophisticated solution than the one I had been using up to then.
    It is also extremely useful if you cut a lot of custom form tools for turning or for milling...the top rake makes them a real pain in the ass to program directly from the model.

    I didn't end up buying it because I couldn't justify it for the amount of wire work I do and the method I use has never let me down so far (Mastercam Mill and hand editing) but I run a prototype shop all by myself so I can afford to be less efficient with my programming than say a big wire shop with lots of machines and lots of employees.

    So Mastercrap and Fingercam for me!
    But if I wanted to spend some significant coin to find a better way, I'd look seriously at Esprit.
    I seem to recall a price tag around 15K if memory serves.

    Cheers

    Marcus
    Implant Mechanix • Design & Innovation > HOME
    Vancouver Wire EDM -- Wire EDM Machining

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    TheBigLebowski,

    Marcus is right about ESPRIT being a great solution for EDM programming, as we've been doing it for 30+ years. And yes, it is 3D capable and has a fully proven Fanuc post available.

    Let me know if you're interested in checking it out - I'm the ESPRIT sales manager for Michigan so I'd be happy to get you a quote and demo.

    Drew Peer
    [email protected]
    1-800-627-8479 ext.213

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    I went the cheap route when I bought my Sodick and bought BobWire. Been more than happy with it for both 2d and 4 axis work and it is inexpensive.

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    we're using Opticam with our Sodick AP500. It puts out perfect code everytime. I cqan't remember the cost, I think around 6000.00 I've also used OneCNC, not quite as nice as Opticam, but a lot easier to use. Both systems will do 4 axis stuff.

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    Hi. I run Agie Charmilles CutP350, Agie VP2, and Mits FA10. I setup, program, and run the machines. To answer your question, Esprit is extremely easy to use, you can program from the solid (I havent never used it). We run 4axis programs, regularly. All we ever use is the wireframe. Most of our work is also dies and punches, but we do other complicated jobs also. All of our machines run these programs with no trouble. Everyone we have talked to say Esprit is more EDM friendly than some of the other programming software.

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    FeatureCAM ..it comes with the Fanuc PP

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    Bobwire for me, and I actually find that the older software is a bit easier to use

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    The BobCAD BobWire software may be a suitable solution for you. The current version is the V31.


    Here is the link to the current prices.

    BobCAD-CAM


    No matter what system you choose, I highly recommend taking the software for a test drive and or getting a demo from the vendor.

    Here is a link to a webinar I did on 2 and 4 axis wire in the V29.




    Here is another video on the V31 Wire



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