NOOB general questions.

NOOB general questions.

Postby SIBUD » Mon Jan 07, 2013 7:36 pm

So I purchased one of these:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/CNC-Router-Kits ... 1e762046a9

My understanding is that to make it work I need:

1. Some sort of drawing program (if not included in the next step)

2. One of the Vectric programs

3. Some type of post processor to take the code from 2 and translate that to code that moves the cutter. The machine maker recommends Mach 3.

Very general and high level but am I on the right path?
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Re: NOOB general questions.

Postby Rcnewcomb » Mon Jan 07, 2013 8:18 pm

You can do drawing in Vectric Cut2D, V-Carve, and Aspire, so items 1 & 2 are the same.
For #3 you would select a Mach3 post processor in your Vectric program. Mach3, which you will also need to purchase, is your control program which translates G code into actual electrical impulses to the motors.
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Re: NOOB general questions.

Postby SIBUD » Mon Jan 07, 2013 8:25 pm

Rcnewcomb wrote:You can do drawing in Vectric Cut2D, V-Carve, and Aspire, so items 1 & 2 are the same.
For #3 you would select a Mach3 post processor in your Vectric program. Mach3, which you will also need to purchase, is your control program which translates G code into actual electrical impulses to the motors.


Thanks for the quick and helpful response.

I've played with the demo program of V Carve and find it pretty intuitive and easy to use.

The is one think I don't readily find. How to draw a straight line and have the tool path cut on that line.

I'm sure it is there and I will be :oops: when someone tells me how easy it is to do.
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Re: NOOB general questions.

Postby jimwill2 » Mon Jan 07, 2013 9:34 pm

Welcome to the world of CNC!

The first thing you should do is watch the tutorial videos that Vectric has on their website. They are very informative and cover all of the 'basics.' We were all new to this at some point... there is a lot to learn about the business, use the tools available to learn how to do the basics in VCarve. If you still have questions about techniques we will be here.
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Re: NOOB general questions.

Postby SIBUD » Mon Jan 07, 2013 9:38 pm

Thanks Jim,

Appreciate the welcome. I've watched them all (but not sure that I could do them :mrgreen: ) to gain some understanding of the capacity of the software and to see what others are doing. Read hundreds of post on the forum here.

Still having problems with the search logic. I tried to find some info on routing a straight line but haven't yet found what I'm looking for.

I have to say that this forum sure does a great job of making new members feel right at home. :D
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Re: NOOB general questions.

Postby Adrian » Mon Jan 07, 2013 9:43 pm

A profile toolpath is what you need for routing on a straight line. Draw the line. Switch to the toolpath tab and choose a profile toolpath, set it to be ON the line and away you go.

Obviously that's a very simple explanation and there's probably a lot in that that will trip you up.

As has been said (and as you'e started) the best thing is to keep plugging away with the tutorial videos and FAQ's at http://support.vectric.com
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Re: NOOB general questions.

Postby SIBUD » Mon Jan 07, 2013 10:08 pm

Adrian wrote:A profile toolpath is what you need for routing on a straight line. Draw the line. Switch to the toolpath tab and choose a profile toolpath, set it to be ON the line and away you go.

Obviously that's a very simple explanation and there's probably a lot in that that will trip you up.

As has been said (and as you'e started) the best thing is to keep plugging away with the tutorial videos and FAQ's at http://support.vectric.com


That is the part that wasn't obvious to me.

Since your post I've mucked around some more. I was looking for a line draw tool. I found that the polyline tool is the one to use and if, after drawing the line I want, I click and move the next segment off of the object then click the line will stop where I first clicked and the remaining segment disappears.

So that works, but I don't know if that is the "correct" way to do it. :mrgreen:
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Re: NOOB general questions.

Postby Rcnewcomb » Mon Jan 07, 2013 11:46 pm

What do you plan to make with your machine and do you know which Vectric software you plan on using? That may influence how you perform certain operations.

Aspire has more features than V-Carve, which has more features than Cut2D. Vectric provides an upgrade path if you eventually need to move to a Vectric program with more features.
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Re: NOOB general questions.

Postby SIBUD » Tue Jan 08, 2013 12:59 am

Rcnewcomb wrote:What do you plan to make with your machine and do you know which Vectric software you plan on using? That may influence how you perform certain operations.

Aspire has more features than V-Carve, which has more features than Cut2D. Vectric provides an upgrade path if you eventually need to move to a Vectric program with more features.



Randall,

Thanks for asking.

The first project will be the new communion table at our church. VCarve "IN REMEMBRANCE OF ME" on the front apron of the table which will be be 48" X 6". Have had fun with the demo software playing with that design and have it just the way I want it. Nothing forces you to learn faster than actually trying to create something with the software.

VCarve because that is the most I can afford at this time.

Wooden games, decorated boxes, like to try a clock early on, signs of all kinds. I have a friend who is a custom cabinet maker, I will make some pieces for door fronts that will have, on the inside of the door, "Custom Made for "Joe and Nancy Doe" by Heckert Custom Woodworking. A nice touch for the customer and advertising for my friend.

I also turn pens, and was looking at presentation boxes today. They would be very easy to make, could be custom engraved on the lid and on the bottom with my info.

I'm also thinking about the design of a presentation wine box that could be shipped unassembled (flat) and quickly put together with sliding dovetail joints and a sliding lid.

My problem will be focusing on one thing at a time.

But trying different things forces one to learn new skills.

I've been so excited to look at all the examples of boxes on the forum.

These by Spalm just blow me away. http://www.vectric.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=5&t=12440

I'm anxious to get started but it will be at least a month till I've made room in my shop, get the machine assembled, wired and tested, get a cheap PC to run it, buy the VCarve and Mach 3 software. We are retired and are gone a lot so the rest of January is filled and I won't have much time available.

But February is all clear and I can spend some extended time trying stuff out.

Oh, did I say I was excited! :mrgreen:
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Re: NOOB general questions.

Postby Rcnewcomb » Tue Jan 08, 2013 2:41 am

February is all clear and I can spend some extended time trying stuff out

That is a great plan.


Get your machine square and your spoilboard level.

Give yourself time to learn how to hold material on your machine -- clamps, vacuum, screws, double-sided tape, hot glue, etc. -- and what some of the limits are with whichever method you choose. For example, you will probably try to V-Carve something and the letters will be too deep/heavy on part of the board, so you will learn to look for things like one end of the board being lifted because the screw wasn't down tight, or there was a wood chip under the board, or the board was warped, or...

Do your first practice cuts in the air.

When you are confident with that buy sheets of pink or blue insulating foam to practice on since it is less of a catastrophe when the machine moves in a direction you weren't expecting.

Work on basic things until you can do them repeatably. Cut out boxes with a 90 degree V-bit and make sure all the pieces fit together perfectly when you glue or tape them together.

V-Carve simple door signs for all of your family members and neighbors.

People on the forum can give you general guidance on bits and feed rates, but you need to determine what works best for your setup. Expect to break a few bits :shock: , but try to keep it under a dozen. :mrgreen:

Post photos of both your triumphs and your failures. For each person that posts on the forum there are hundreds who are watching and learning from your adventures.

It's a great learning experience and absolutely everyone on this board once was at the starting point where you are now.
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