User interface - suggestions (or teach me?)

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User interface - suggestions (or teach me?)

Postby ctbjdm » Sat Jun 23, 2018 11:55 am

I'm working on a fairly complex project; tons of vectors and toolpaths. I thought I would call out some thoughts that came to mind to make Aspire easier to use - perhaps these exist and I'm just not aware?

1) Easy ability to identify which tools are tied to which toolpaths. I know I can hover over a toolpath and see the details, and I'm also aware the icon changes for the toolpath for different types of tools, but perhaps a toggle to indicate the actual tool (assign a tool number, or color code, or ???) showing which specific tool is tied to which toolpaths. As an example in this project I have 1/8, 1/4, 3/8, and 1/2 end mills to optimize cutting. At the end I'd like to visually see which toolpaths are which tools so I can group toolpaths to reduce tool changes (so color coding would be good, or some other symbol/indicator)

2) Ability to easily identify vectors that are tied to toolpaths. I'm aware I can put vectors on layers and associate toolpaths with layers, but I thought it might be helpful to hover over a vector and see if it is contained on any existing toolpaths - is there a way to do this now?

Hoping I can learn or see if this prompts any discussion
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Re: User interface - suggestions (or teach me?)

Postby Adrian » Sat Jun 23, 2018 12:43 pm

1) Not sure how having the vectors different colours etc makes grouping toolpaths by type/number any easier. When you save or merge the toolpaths it tells you the tools used which is the point you really need to know if you want to group toolpaths. Maybe we're thinking of different things with "grouping"?

2) When you toggle toolpath visibility on/off only the vectors associated with that toolpath have 2D previews shown. You can toggle to solid previews to make it even clearer on busy jobs. Also if you're using layers associated with toolpaths you can use the vector selector on the Selection menu and/or the layer selection commands.

Making use of layers, templates and having a good naming conventions is the "trick" to handling complex jobs.
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Re: User interface - suggestions (or teach me?)

Postby 4DThinker » Sat Jun 23, 2018 1:12 pm

I've gotten into the habit of naming each toolpath in a complicated job so the bit used is obvious. A profile cut using a 1/4" end mill might be named "EM.25 perimeter" or some such. Vbits get "V60" or "V90", and ball nose bits get "BN.125" or "BN.1875" in their name to reflect bit type and size. Done consistently a quick glance of the toolpath list will show me all that use the same bit. Click the box on any single path and it will show up where it is in your drawing. If you toggle toolpath drawing style to solid you also get visual verification that your toolpath name correctly reflects what it will actually do.

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Re: User interface - suggestions (or teach me?)

Postby armbrusterco » Mon Jun 25, 2018 4:40 pm

Like 4dThinker, I also include a designation of the bit in the toolpath name and a brief description of the purpose of the toolpath.

In addition, I start the toolpath name with a two digit number to identify the sequence of the toolpaths as I want them to run. This is a big help on complex jobs and when I group toolpaths into one toolpath, I can easily check that I have the sequence correct before I save the toolpath.
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