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Newbie Questions
« on: April 20, 2013, 07:08:45 PM »
I am new to the CNC world and could use some help. We are wanting to cut steel silhouettes out with our plasma cutter. I currently have CorelDraw, Aspire (Vetric), Sheetcam and Mach 3. I have a lot of silhouette patterns that I made in CorelDraw several years ago when we had a laser and cut them out of Masonite. I would like to use them and some new ones and make a business selling at craft shows. I have taken all of the silhouettes from CorelDraw and exported them as dxf files. I then put them in Aspire and created a gcode for them. However, I think my cnc machine thinks it is supposed to carve them because it will sometimes cut the same lines out several times. Also, the z axis will pick up and down each time it cuts out a line. But if I put the dxf drawing into Sheetcam to create the code, I can't tell where the image is going to cut out on the material or what the size of it is. Ideally, I would like to make a 4x4 sheet and then transfer it to Sheetcam but don't know if that is feasible or not. I did get one image to cut in Mach3 but the outside line cut way off center of the image. Can someone give me some beginner pointers of what I should be doing or am I in over my head?

Offline Tweakie.CNC

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Re: Newbie Questions
« Reply #1 on: April 21, 2013, 04:56:35 AM »
Hi Scgrove,

Welcome to the forum.

I don’t use Sheetcam (probably the best choice of software for you to use) but I do use Vectric.
I think you need to check your .dxf files for duplicate lines etc. and edit as necessary to get the drawing as you want it to be (origin etc.) then make sure the vectors are correctly joined before generating the GCode (the procedures are all detailed in the Vectric tutorials).

Hope this helps.


Offline stirling

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Re: Newbie Questions
« Reply #2 on: April 21, 2013, 06:04:43 AM »
You can do what you've described no problem at all in sheetcam. I'm afraid it's RTFM though because it's all in there.

Here's an example pic of a sheetcam setup where I've set up my table size, my stock size and nested 3 (.dxf) parts.