I'm making a cut-out name with a base to hold the letters together. The material is 18" x 5" x .75". I tried drawing a straight line open vector across the bottom of the letters, but Aspire won't let me weld them together. Next I tried a rectangle that follows the three outer edges of the material and the bottom of the letters. I welded this to get one big vector (plus the little ones inside the o, e and so forth). I will cut this as an outer profile. What I want to do is tell the machine not to bother following the outer edges of the rectangle which match the edges of the material. How can I prevent the machine from wasting its time following the material's edges?
I did that before posting, although I did not group the letters. Tried it with grouping, but I still get the same result: my straight line disappears when I click the Weld icon. For what it's worth, I'm using Aspire 8.5. I wouldn't think that would matter, but it's worth saying.
The working area is 5" x 18". At this point, the text has been converted to curves, the letters have all been positioned on or about Y 0.49, they've been grouped together, and a line has been drawn from 0,0.5 to 18,0.5. When I select the letters and the line and click "Weld Selected Vectors" the line disappears.
I also tried welding using a rectangle, which worked, and then using Node Edit to get rid of the left, right and bottom sides. That worked, but when it calculated a profile cut, it was all messed up.
Looks like I've got it. When I used the rectangle and then used delete span to get rid of the 3 sides, I was still using "Outside/Right" for the profile. Once I switched to "On" it appears to have done what I want. Although, I'm going to have to do some tinkering with the position of the letters on the line.
With a closed vector the software knows which is outside the line, on the line or inside the line, with an open vector it has no idea which is outside the line or inside the line
With open vectors which side of the line is the outside & which is the inside is determined by the start node (the green coloured node). If the software cuts on the wrong side of the line you have 2 options, either select inside for the cut rather than outside as you had it set or move the green start node to the other end of your vector. Moving the start node is the easier of the 2 options for me so that is what I always do. Select your vector, enter node edit mode & you will see where the green node is, select the node at the other end of your vector & use the right click menu, select make start point. Then recalculate your toolpath & all will be good
GollyRojer wrote:How can I prevent the machine from wasting its time following the material's edges?
Unless it is a repetitive job or you already have the appropriate jigs, you may waste much more time fixing your material in its exact right position on the machine bed and telling the CAM not to machine the border then let the machine cut the raw material.