General Information in Converting the Perforated Pattern in CAD/CAM Software as a Layout

There are many CAD/CAM packages available for generating CNC code for Turret Punch machine tool. Most Turret Punch manufactures also supply the software that either is sold together with the machine as one unit package or is sold separately. For example is Trumps. They also sell their own software package for their turret punch machine called TruTops Punch.

However, there are also many companies that create CAD/CAM software to be used as general purpose software in generating CNC code for many CNC machine tools such as Amada, Trumps or Strippit. In order to be compatible with particular machine tools, these third party companies will create or supply additional post-processor programs or codes that can generate particular CNC code for particular CNC Turret Punch machine tool.

Regardless the variety of CAD/CAM packages available in this industries, the procedure in generating the CNC code would be based on geometrical information that can be obtained either by using the built-in CAD package or by importing the information from external sources in the form of vector format (i.e. DXF, AI, DWG, IGES, etc). Therefore, the DXF format, that holds the perforated pattern information, can be imported to the CAD/CAM software. When user imports a DXF file, usually a dialog box will open to let customer filters the information so it only gather the useful information. There are many options in filtering the information. One of the options is usually to filter the layer. The other option could be filtering by objects such as lines, annotation, circle or ellipses and so on. For example, in Sigmanest CAD/CAM package, the DXF can be filtered by layering system. As soon as the imported DXF has been verified, a dialog box will be provided to the user to allow them to filter the information. Then the user can select the layers that they want to import ( i.e. all the three tool layers and the layer that hold the center point of the cluster). However, if there is no filtering option available on the user’s CAD/CAM packages, he or she needs to eliminate unnecessary information/objects (i.e. the cluster tool objects) by using CAD software such as ProgeCAD or AutoCAD®.

After all the necessary perforated pattern layout is import, the next step is to perform automatic tooling. Most of the CAD/CAM software has this automatic feature recognition especially to recognize the round tool object. One of the software that can recognize round tool is Jetcam and Sigmanest. After the tooling recognition, we would notice that all center points has also been converted as a tooling objects. The next step is to select all this same object and change the tool to your cluster punch tool.

The next step after defining the tool is to program the sequence of the tool path and start from this point you can refer the procedure to your CAD/CAM package and the operation manual of your Turret Punch machine tool.

Note: This general information provided on this section is based on the knowledge of an experience CNC programmer and operator. However, the information may be obsolete for particular machine tools, CAD/CAM system or CNC workshop system remembering that the technology behind the commercial CAD/CAM packages as well as the CNC machine tool is always growing so fast and changing from time to time.



More sub-topics for this tutorial is on the right hand side bar, or if you want to go back to Applying Cluster Recognition tutorial please click here