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       CHAPTER 10
       5-AXIS LASER CUTTING


       GENERAL                                                                      quickly adjust the calculation at a later time to al-
                                                                                    low for new trimmed curves, for example.

       INFORMATION
       You can use the LASER module to generate control
                                                                                    The cutting paths calculated are not necessarily
                                                                                    collision-free. Users must make the appropriate
                                                                                    changes to head positions to eliminate colli-
                                                                                                                                            W
       programs for 5-Axis automatic laser cutters. You                             sions and then check the changes using the
       can generate cutting curves with a defined beam                              CHECK (➔ page 750) function in the simulation
       direction or ray orientation perpendicular to the                            mask before the paths are output to Control as
n ew
       component or tangentially to control surfaces. In-                           an NC program.
                                                  Sheet metal

          Laser contour with fixed nozzle
                                                                                    The cutting paths generated can also be simulated,
          orientation
                                            Laser contour with nozzle orientation
                                                                                    analyzed and checked for collisions with the com-
                                            perpendicular to the surface
                                                                                    ponent. A fuzzy align function helps you align
                                                                                    components that cannot be clearly positioned via
                                                                                    reference points.

                                                                                    The module also includes functions to help you lay
        Traversing
        movement
                                                                                    out and calculate jigs and fixtures in cross-stan-
                                                                                    chion construction.

              Z
        Y            X




       teractive step-by-step calculation of the cutting
       paths lets users alter system specifications to suit
       their individual requirements after every calcula-
       tion of the intermediate results. All parameters
       and interactive user data entered during calcula-
       tion of the cutting paths can be saved. This lets you




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   5-AXIS LASER CUTTING



         PROCEDURE AND BASIC                                          mine the corresponding axis system in the CAD
                                                                      file. The NC paths will then be calculated for
         INFORMATION                                                  this axis system.
                                                                  3.2 However, if you do not yet know the exact ma-
         Follow the schedule below when generating laser
                                                                      chine position, first create laser paths into a
         cutting paths. The required functions will be ex-
                                                                      self-selected appropriate axis system, which
         plained later in the description of functions.
                                                                      you can then convert into the valid reference
                                                                      system by using the TRANS function
         1. Define the laser cutting head
                                                                      (➔ page 765) after setting up the workpiece.
         Create the backup models for the geometry and ki-
         nematic characteristics of the laser cutting head.       4. Lay out jigs and fixtures
         (➔ page 722)
                                                                  Use the LSEAT function to generate jigs and fix-
                                                                  tures for attaching the component to the workta-
         2. Construct trimmed curves
                                                                  ble. (➔ page 753)
         Construct the trimmed curves on the component.
         To do this, you can use the new BOUND command            5. Define approach and retract paths
         from the CONS function (➔ “Generating boundary
                                                                  Use the MACRO function to establish appropriate
         curves”, page 373), for example. And please note
                                                                  approach and retract paths for your requirements.
         that:
                                                                  (➔ page 770)
         • Always, it must be possible to probe unambigu-
           ously on a surface.                                    6. Machining parameters and strategy
           Place any double surfaces and surfaces that do            selection
           not have tangential contact on the sides in the
                                                                  Cutting paths are calculated using the LCONT func-
           off.
                                                                  tion. To do this, enter the following information in
         • The system tolerates gaps of up to 1 mm be-            the appropriate dialogs:
           tween surfaces.
                                                                  • Product surfaces, run-off surfaces and protected
         • The curve may be located up to 1 mm from the             surfaces (➔ page 727),
           surfaces.
                                                                  • Machining parameters (➔ page 729),
         3. Component position / reference system                 • Macros, retracts (➔ page 731) and
         In many case the machine position does not coin-         • Machine and process parameters (➔ page 737).
         cide with the position in the CAD system. However,
         for correct calculation, in particular of angular val-   7. Start cutting path calculation
         ues, this position must be known. The Laser Mod-
                                                                  After you have started the calculation in the LCONT
         ule provides two options:
                                                                  function, you can interactively change the follow-
                                                                  ing calculation details:
         3.1 If the component is already aligned in the new
             position and orientation to the machine, use         • Specify areas (➔ page 739),
             the JUSTIFY(➔ page 763) function to deter-




    T
                                                                       GENERAL INFORMATION                           721
                                                            PROCEDURE AND BASIC INFORMATION



    • Specify path corrections (➔ page 741),                10. Save cutting paths and parameters
    • Optimize head orientation and rotary motions          After the calculation has been concluded, you can
      (➔ page 744) and                                      save it together with all parameters and individual
                                                            changes (➔ page 750). This lets the calculation
    • Set technology macros (➔ page 747).
                                                            process continue if changes are made later and
                                                            only recalculate the changed areas.
    8. Use help functions and step-by-step control.
    Step-by-step control and a number of help func-         11. Modify calculated cutting paths
    tions are available during LCONT calculation:
                                                            You can use the NC job function to open saved cal-
    • Change view of cutting head (➔ page 751),             culations (➔ page 766). This lets you copy manual
                                                            vector optimizations when you want to cut a modi-
    • Undo or reset changes (➔ page 751),
                                                            fied contour.
    • Switch on online quality analysis (➔ page 751)
      and                                                   12. Output cutting paths in the form of control
    • Toggle back and forth between calculation steps           programs
      (➔ page 753).                                         Completed cutting paths and traverse paths are ex-
                                                            ported in the form of control programs using the
    9. Simulate calculated cutting paths and check          PUT/NC command. (➔ “Exporting NC data”,
       them for surface violations                          page 86)
    At the conclusion of calculation, the movements of
    the automated cutting system can be dynamically
    simulated via a view of the tilting and rotating unit
    as it works through the cutting path, including all
    macros and the connecting and positioning move-
    ments. (➔ page 768)

    At the same time, the automated cutting system's
    movements can be checked numerically for colli-
    sions with the milling elements and protected ele-
    ments. (➔ page 750)


W   The cutting paths calculated are not necessarily
    collision-free. Users must make the appropriate
    changes to head positions to eliminate colli-
    sions and then check the changes using the
    CHECK (➔ page 750) function in the simulation
    mask before the paths are exported to the NC
    Control as an NC program.




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   5-AXIS LASER CUTTING



         SWITCHING TO LASER                                     These machine parameters are managed in four
                                                                files, which must be created separately for each
         You can switch back and forth at any time between      machine or machine head. The system searches for
         any Tebis modules included in the scope of your li-    these files first in the current directory and then in
         cense, without having to return to the operating       the cnf directory.
         system level. Click on the M button to view the list
         of available modules.
         MODULE
                                                                The definition file for the machine head (*.msn)
                                                                must be reloaded after making changes to any of
                                                                these four files in order for the changes to be rec-
                                                                                                                         !
                  CADCAM
                                                                ognized. To do this, confirm the PARAM mask once
                  SURFEXT
                                                                with the field HEAD empty and then enter the
                  SURFMOD
                                                                name of the definition file.
                   SCAN

                  FEATURE                                       1. INITIALIZATION
                   NC2AX                                        A text file (e.g.: laser.msn) defines where the
                                                                head geometries are described and contains infor-
                   NC5AX
                                                                mation about the type of axis control (linear or
                   LASER                                        roll-over) and the maximum angle of rotation. This
                   TUBE                                         file must have the following structure:
                  VIEWER                                        AXIS-1 :     'lasera.cnf',L,-140.0000,140.0000
                  MPOINT                                        AXIS-2 :     'laserc.cnf',R,-360.0000,360.0000
                                                                TOOLDIR:     0.0000,0.0000,-1.0000,
                                                                PARTROT:     1


         DEFINING THE GEOMETRY AND
         KINEMATIC CHARACTERISTICS OF
                                                                PARTROT = 1: Component rotates (head stays);
                                                                PARTROT = 0: Component stays (head rotates)              !
         THE LASER HEAD                                         The following table shows the meaning of the indi-
                                                                vidual parameters:
         Tebis requires data about the geometry and kine-

                                                                                                                         !
         matic characteristics of the machine head in order     The system looks for the two CAD files that describe
         to calculate and simulate laser paths. Designations    the head geometry with the .cnf extension in the
         in compliance with DIN 66 217 are used to allocate     current directory or in the cnf directory. You must
         rotary axis to the linear axis. The following exam-    specify any other directory or file extension used.
         ple assumes that the machine used is equipped
         with an A and C-head, that the C-head rotates in a     2. SIMULATION FILES
         positive direction about the Z-axis of the machine     Two CAD files (e.g.: lasera.cnf and
         axis system and that the A-head rotates in a posi-     laserc.cnf) are used to calculate angular val-
         tive direction about the X-axis of the machine axis    ues and the simulation of machine head move-
         system (when C = 0°).                                  ments. These files describe the geometry and kine-




    T
                                                                          GENERAL INFORMATION                             723
                                                               PROCEDURE AND BASIC INFORMATION



AXIS-1 :   Definition line for first axis                      system must be positioned parallel to the machine
                                                               axis system at the cutting point of the laser, with
           Directory and name of CAD file for A or B
lasera.cnf                                                     the Z-axis opposed to the beam direction. The Z-
           head
                                                               axis and the A or B-axis of rotation must intersect.
           Type of the A or B axis:L=linear,
L
           R=roll over                                         Place a second axis system in the A or B-axis of ro-
-140.0000 minimum angle of rotation of A or B-axis             tation at X=0, Y=0. This axis system's Z-axis is the A
 140.0000 maximum angle of rotation of A or B axis             or B-axis of rotation and points toward the C-head.
AXIS-2 :   Definition line for second axis                     In the Tebis system, by definition, the Z axis of a
                                                               rotation axis system for an A head is parallel to the
laserc.cnf name of CAD file for the C head
                                                               X axis of the absolute axis system. For a B head, it
R          Type of the C axis:L=linear, R=roll over            is parallel to the Y axis.
-360.0000 minimum angle of rotation of C-axis
 360.0000  maximum angle of rotation of C-axis
TOOLDIR:   Definition line for laser beam's zero setting
 0.0000    X-component
 0.0000    Y-component
                                                                           Y
-1.0000    Z-component                                                                     Z

           Rotational axis of the machine outside the
PARTROT: 1 head, e.g. for cutting tubes (only supported                            X               Rotary
                                                                                                   coordinate
           in the TSIMU function).                                                                 system A


         matic characteristics of the machine heads in a
         wireframe representation.
                                                                                       Z
                                                                               Y
                                                                                                X
                                                                                               Reference
                                                                                               coordinate system
                                                                                               A head



                                                               Construct the C-head in its zero position in a CAD
                                                               file (e.g. laserb.cnf). The reference axis sys-
                    Z                                          tem must be oriented as the current axis system
                Y                                              parallel to the machine axis system and its origin
                          X
                                                               must be the origin of the rotary axis system of the
                                                               A or B-head. You can use another axis system's Z
           Reference coordinate                                axis to specify the C head's axis of rotation for ma-
           system C head
                                                               chines with horizontal kinematic characteristics.

         Construct the A or B-head in its zero position in a   The sole purpose of the two *.cnf files is to calcu-
         CAD file (e.g. lasera.cnf). The reference axis        late and simulate laser paths.




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   5-AXIS LASER CUTTING



     !   To enable a shaded view of the spindle head, the
         files must contain surface models that are hidden
         via PARA/OFF.
                                                                 cutter axis system. This ensures that small fillets
                                                                 will also be thoroughly probed.




                                                                  Head geometry

          Reference coordinate                                       Approximation by
          system C head                                              elementary body
                                                                     entity
                         Z
                     Y           X                                       20
                    Y            Z

                             X

                                         Rotary coordinate                    4
                                         system A head

                             Z
                         Y                 Reference             In the *.def file, each line describes a single en-
                                     X     coordinate system
                                           A head                velope element. The first column indicates whether
                                                                 the element is a sphere (K) or a rounded cylinder
         3. BACKUP MODEL OF COLLISION ZONE                       (S). The second column contains the diameter of
                                                                 the element and the third column the corner radius
         For a mathematical collision check of the swivel
                                                                 of the cylinder. The next three columns describe
         head and the lower portion of the C-head, Tebis
                                                                 the position of the tip of the element relative to
         uses a backup model made of envelope bodies that
                                                                 the origin of the cutter axis system at the cutting
         are in the form of spheres and rounded cylinders
                                                                 point of the laser beam. The last column describes
         and standing parallel to the tool axis system's Z-
                                                                 the length of the respective element.
         axis. This model is converted into a surface block
         every time a laser path is generated and can be dis-
         played during a simulation. You can arrange up to
         32 backup models randomly in space to describe
         the envelope geometry.

         Create a text file in which the desired positions and
         radii are listed in the structure shown below. Give
         the file the same filename (with the exception of
         the extension .def) as the corresponding *.msn
         file (e.g. laser.def).

         For the first element, use a sphere 3 mm to 6 mm in
         diameter whose tip is located at the origin of the




    T
                                                              GENERAL INFORMATION                             725
                                                   PROCEDURE AND BASIC INFORMATION



Example of laser.def:                              DEFINING TECHNOLOGY FILE
*Type Diam. Radius        X      Y     Z Length    WITH CUTTING DATA
K       4.0     0.0     0.0    0.0    0.0   1.0    A technology file must be specified for every tool-
S       7.0     1.0     0.0    0.0    1.0   0.5    path calculation. This file defines cutting parame-
K      11.0     0.0     0.0    0.0    1.5   5.5    ters for different materials and workpiece widths,
K      20.0     0.0     0.0    0.0    7.0   12.0   including performance, cutting gap width, gas
K      32.0     0.0     0.0    0.0   19.0   20.0   composition, etc.. Depending on the postproces-
                                                   sor, you may be able to copy this information into
K      52.0     0.0     0.0    0.0   49.0   26.0
                                                   the NC program. In the toolpath calculation, cut-
K      82.0     0.0     0.0    0.0   75.0   75.0
                                                   ting gap widths are treated like side offsets.
S      20.0     0.0     27.0   43.0 150.0   20.0
S      20.0     0.0 -27.0      43.0 150.0   20.0   The file also contains subroutines, e.g. for switch-
S      20.0     0.0     27.0 -43.0 150.0    20.0   ing on and off beams or offset regulation, adjust-
S      20.0     0.0 -27.0 -43.0 150.0       20.0   ing feed and performance, and user-defined mac-
S      48.0     0.0     73.0   51.0 170.0   10.0   ros.
S      48.0     0.0     73.0 -51.0 170.0    10.0
                                                   You can find an example of this type of technology
                                                   file in the laser.tec file in your session or
                                                   cnf directory. The system lets you maintain more
                                                   than one technology file. You can specify the tech-
                                                   nology file to be used in the calculation step for
                                                   cutting paths (➔ page 737).

                                                   In this file, enter each control command in plain
                                                   text on a separate line. Refer to the instructions in
                                                   the manual for your control system. You may also
                                                   insert comments using the prefixed characters “*”.




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   5-AXIS LASER CUTTING



         DESCRIPTION OF                                      • Construction of jigs and fixtures
                                                               LSEAT             LNEST
         FUNCTIONS
         The individual functions of the LASER module are
         described below in the order in which they appear   CALCULATE CUTTING
         in the menu.                                        PATHS
         ENTITY LASER                     M                  You can use the LCONT function to calculate cutting    LCONT
         LCONT   LSEAT            LNEST                      paths across multiple components for 5-Axis auto-
                                                             mated cutting systems.

                                                             In the Normal strategy, the cutting head is first
                                                             run along the product's boundary curves perpen-
                                                             dicular to the product surfaces.

                                                               Vectors of beam
                                                               direction                 Laser contour




         JUSTIFY MACHINE GET
                                                                    Z
                                                              Y          X


         NCJOB       TSIMU        MACRO
                                                             In the Side strategy, the cutting head is first run
                                                             along the product's boundary curves parallel to
                                                             the isoparameters of the control surfaces.
         • Calculating, modifying, simulating and re-im-
                                                             The interactively controlled calculation lets users
           porting cutting paths
                                                             subsequently change head orientation and rotary
           LCONT      NCJOB     TSIMU     MACRO    GET       motions to suit their needs.

         • Justification functions                           If a product is specified that contains recesses, or
                                                             if multiple products are specified, the system auto-
           JUSTIFY      MACHINE
                                                             matically calculates the processing movements re-
                                                             quired between the individual areas of the cutting
                                                             path.




    T
                                                                         DESCRIPTION OF FUNCTIONS                 727
                                                                          CALCULATE CUTTING PATHS



    After the LCONT button has been pressed, a mask      SPECIFY PRODUCT SURFACES,
    appears in which you can enter the information re-
    quired for the calculation in four subdialogs:
                                                         RUN-OFF SURFACES AND
                                                         PROTECTED SURFACES
    • Specify product surfaces, run-off surfaces and
      protected surfaces,                                Tebis always calculates cutting paths on the sur-
                                                         face elements in the CAD model. Dummies such as
    • Enter strategy and machining parameters
                                                         facet models or needle cushions are not used. This
    • Allocate macros and retracts, and                  is the basis for the accuracy of the NC programs
                                                         calculated by the system. You can use the
    • Allocate machine and process parameters.
                                                         Tolerance parameter to define the maximum
      MACHINE PROFILE                                    permissible deviation of the cutting path from the
              Product   0.00                             component surface.
              Extension 0.00
              Stop      0.00
                                                         The component surface is recorded separately un-
              Normal
              SOffset   0.00                             der Product and Extension. If no curves are speci-
              Slope Ang.10.00                            fied directly, the product surfaces' boundaries will
              PB PE CB CE                                be the trimmed curves. Single-plane trimmed
              Z-value. 200.00
              Safety    10.00                            curves in the form of circles, slots and right angles
                                                         (including rounded right angles) are automatically
              domino5_co.msn
              optimo.tec                                 recognized as shape elements.
              pc 0.8mm

      START             CANCEL                           The orientation of the cutting head is based on the
                                                         product surface's normal vector. Run-off surfaces
                                                         are used only for collision calculation.
    Now you can press the START button to start the
    interactive calculation of the cutting path.
                                                         You can also enter protected elements, e.g. to in-


W
                                                         clude clamping elements in the collision analysis.
    The cutting paths calculated are not necessarily
    collision-free. Users must make the appropriate        ENTITIES
    changes to head positions to eliminate colli-           Milling elements
    sions and then check the changes using the             Product              E,_
    CHECK (➔ page 750) function in the simulation          Extension             E,
    mask before the paths are exported to NC Con-          Wall thick.      0.000

    trol as an NC program.                                  Protected element
                                                           Elements              E,
                                                           Wall thick.      0.000
                                                           Stock allow      0.000


                                                            OK              CANCEL




                                                                                                              T
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   5-AXIS LASER CUTTING



         When you click the button for selecting elements a    not deviate from the basic shape by more than
         mask opens and you can enter the appropriate ele-     0.05 mm.
         ments and parameters.
                                                               K Extension (option)
                                                               Select the faces, surfaces or meshes to be cut from
         ——— Milling elements            ———————               the component.

         K Product (option)                                    The extension surfaces selected will temporarily
                                                               turn light blue (2).
         Specify the topologies, faces, surfaces or meshes


                                                                                                                       L
         to be cut.
                                                               If you set the mask to Faces, you can select the
                                                               individual faces of a topology as run-off surfaces.
         The product surfaces selected will temporarily turn
                                                               If parts of the topology are to serve as product sur-
         dark blue (3).
                                                               faces, you must select them first.


                                                                                                                       !
         The product surfaces will be connected internally
                                                               Since the system background generates a single
         into topologies. If no curves are entered directly
                                                               topology from all the surfaces to be machined, it is
         during the strategy selection, the boundaries of
                                                               a good idea to create this topology manually in ad-
         these topologies will be the trimmed curves. The
                                                               vance. Otherwise, overly long computing times
         orientation of the cutting head is based on the
                                                               may result.
         product surface's normal vector.
                                                               R Wall thick. (option)
         Trimmed curves in the form of single-plane circles,
         slots and right angles (including rounded right an-   Enter the difference between the constructed sur-
         gles) are automatically recognized as shape ele-      face and the surface to be machined in case of pos-
         ments. They can be processed using the corre-         itive/negative.
         sponding control subroutines.


    L    If you set the mask to Faces, you can select the      ——— Protected element (option)
         individual faces of a topology as product surfaces.   Specifying protected elements lets you include
         The rest of the topology can then be entered as a     those elements in the collision analysis. A wall
         run-off surface.                                      thickness and stock allowance can also be defined
                                                               for these elements.

     !   At the start of the calculation (➔ “Start cutting
         path calculation”, page 738) Tebis checks the tran-
         sition angles between the product's surfaces and
                                                               K Elements (option)
                                                               Select the faces, surfaces or meshes to be included
         faces. If it finds any angles greater than 150° a     in the collision analysis.
         warning appears.
                                                               The protected elements selected will temporarily
                                                               turn red (8).
         To enable automatic recognition of shape ele-
         ments, they must not deviate from their plane by
         more than 1 mm and within this plane they must




    T
                                                                         DESCRIPTION OF FUNCTIONS                729
                                                                          CALCULATE CUTTING PATHS



R Wall thick. (option)                                 If you don't want the product boundary curves to
Enter the difference between the constructed sur-      serve as the trimmed curves, this is where you can
face and the surface to be machined in case of pos-    specify other curves.
itive/negative.                                          STRATEGY


R Stock allow (option)
Offset on the stop surface to be taken into account.      Normal
                                                         Elements        _
             Click OK (or press ENTER) to confirm
    OK                                                    Parameter
             the settings and close the mask.
                                                         Side offset         0.000
                                                         Tolerance           0.000
             Click CANCEL (or press Esc) to dis-         Angle error         5.000
 CANCEL
             card the settings and close the mask.       Corner ang.         20.000
                                                         Distance    <       20.000
                                                         Slope Ang.<         10.000
                                                         Damping             20.000

ENTER STRATEGY AND MACHIN-                                OK                  CANCEL
ING PARAMETERS
After you click the button a mask will appear in       The Tolerance, Angle error, Distance <
which you can specify the strategy and the parame-     and Slope Ang. < parameters are the key fac-
ters for the actual toolpath calculation.              tors determining how precisely the cutting path
                                                       will follow the trimmed curves and the product sur-
Click a button to select one of the two different      face's normals or the isoparameter direction of the
strategies available:                                  control surfaces.
• Normal and
                                                       K Elements (option)
• Side.                                                Select trimmed curves, if necessary. Cutting paths
                                                       will then be calculated only along the curves you
                                                       select here. The product's boundary curves will
                                                       then have no significance.
                                                       The trimmed curves selected will temporarily turn
                                                       turquoise (9).

                                                       Trimmed curves in the form of single-plane circles,
                                                       slots and right angles (including rounded right an-
                                                       gles) are automatically recognized as shape ele-




                                                                                                             T
730 10

   5-AXIS LASER CUTTING



           ments. They can be processed using the corre-          R Angle error
           sponding control subroutines.                          Maximum deviation from the surface normal or iso-

     !     To enable automatic recognition of shape ele-          parameter direction in the field between two NC
           ments, they must not deviate from their plane by       points and maximum rotation of the A, B or C-axis
           more than 1 mm and within this plane they must         between two consecutive NC points.


                                                                                                                           !
           not deviate from the basic shape by more than
           0.05 mm.                                               The maximum deviation of the nozzle from the sur-
                                                                  face normal or isoparameter direction in the entire
           You can also select points to call NC programs that    path is the sum of the Angle error and the

    n ew
           have been saved in the CNC system at those points.     Slope Ang. <.
           The name of the subroutine is entered by means of
           a user-defined technology macro. (➔ “4. Set tech-      R Corner ang.
           nology macros”, page 747)                              Angle in the curve contour after which the corner
                                                                                                                           n ew
    L
                                                                  should no longer be rounded but will have to be
           If the points happen to lie on a layer that has the
                                                                  approached exactly.
           same name as a user-defined technology macro,
           then his macro will be assigned automatically.
                                                                  R Distance <
           K Surfaces (only for Side)                             Largest tolerated distance between two successive
                                                                  NC points of a laser path.
    n ew   Select the surface elements whose isoparameters
           are to determine the ray orientation.
                                                                  R Slope Ang. < (only for Normal)
           R Side offset                                          Maximum tolerated lateral or frontal tilt of the
                                                                  nozzle toward the surface normal at an NC point
           Lateral distance between the cutting paths and the
                                                                  due to evasion movements when minimizing rota-
           original curves (boundaries or specified).
                                                                  tion angles.
           R Tolerance
           Permissible tolerance of the cutting path from a
                                                                  The maximum deviation of the nozzle from the sur-
                                                                  face normal in the entire path is the sum of the
                                                                  Angle error and the Slope Ang. <.
                                                                                                                           !
           specified curve. The cutting path consists of points


                                                                                                                           !
           connected by line segments. The tolerance de-
                                                                  Here, we recommend entering the smallest possi-
                  Component                                       ble value (0.01). As a result, the angle of rotation
                                                                  is not globally optimized but can be optimized for
                                   Tool path                      individual fields during the interactive toolpath
                                                                  calculation.

                       Tolerance                                  For tilt axis heads, the nozzle's tilt must be deacti-
                                                                  vated by entering “0” to minimize rotary motions.
                                                                  The partially automated optimization of the angle
                                                                  of rotation then uses the interpolation types “A/B
           scribes the maximum permissible deviation of a         opt” and “C opt” in the interactive toolpath calcu-
           line segment from the trimmed curves.




    T
                                                                           DESCRIPTION OF FUNCTIONS              731
                                                                            CALCULATE CUTTING PATHS



lation to follow the product normals as closely as      CE: End of each contour in the cutting program
possible.                                                   (end of contour)

R Damping (only for Normal)                             The macro input mask is organized as follows:
Length on which it is possible to tilt before and af-   The top section shows the following information
ter a modifier from the normal to the product sur-      for each of the four macro insertion points: Start
face up to the maximum slope.                           and end of the program (PB, PE) and start and end
                                                        of each cut (AB, AE):
                                                        • the currently defined macros,
ALLOCATE MACROS AND                                     • associated incremental retracts and
RETRACTS
                                                        • type of absolute retract.
Use this command to:
                                                        In the Position section you can set additional
• assign approach and retract macros,
                                                        parameters such as optimizing retracts, retract
• define retraction characteristics,                    planes, safety clearance and radial positioning.
• define characteristics for stepover to the next         MACRO
  contour.                                                           Inc     Pos
                                                         PB    ✔    10.000 Z-VAL >
Once you have selected the icon for macro selec-         PE    ✔    10.000 Z-VAL >
tion, an input mask is displayed with which you          CB         0.000    NONE >
can:                                                     CE         0.000    NONE >
                                                           Position
• select the desired macro,                               Element
                                                          Z-val.            100.000
• define appropriate retract planes and elements
                                                          Safety             10.000
  and
                                                              Optimize          Off

• check macro definition (➔ “Macro library”,              Radius              0.000

  page 770).                                               OK                 CANCEL


for the four possible macro positions. Macros and
incremental and absolute retracts can be inserted       The following elements and attributes can be de-
at the following positions:                             fined independently for each of the positions (PB,
                                                        PE, CB and CE):
PB: Beginning of a milling program or (begin-
    ning of program)                                    • macros,

PE: End of a milling program or (end of pro-            • incremental retract motions and
    gram)                                               • absolute retract motions to an element (curve or
CB: Beginning of each contour in the cutting              surface (ELEM) or
    program (beginning of contour)




                                                                                                             T
732 10

   5-AXIS LASER CUTTING



         • absolute retract movements to a Z-value of the      Parameters for assigning macros, retracts
           current (green) axis system (Z-val.) or             and stepovers
         • a combination of absolute retract motions first     The parameters and buttons in the MACRO mask
           to an element and then to a Z-value of the cur-     are described below. The descriptions are summa-
           rent axis system (COMBI).                           rized in accordance with functionality and the se-
                                                               quence does not correspond to the layout of the
         The retract element and the Z-value of the absolute   mask. The functions can be grouped as follows:
         retract are identical for all positions.              • Assigning approach and retract macros
                                                                 (➔ page 733),
         Please note the following characteristics of macros
         and retracts:                                         • Incremental retracts (➔ page 734),

         • Macros are run with the orientation of the first/   • Absolute retracts (➔ page 734),
           last machining position.                            • Automatic and optimized retract, and safety
         • Macros are traversed at the tool feed rate (G01).     clearance (➔ page 736),

         • Retracts are traversed at rapid feed (G00).         • Execute rounded stepover and positioning mo-
                                                                 tions (➔ page 736),
         • Macro approach and retract motions and posi-
           tioning motions are checked for collision with                   Click OK (or press ENTER) to confirm
                                                                   OK
           the component and stop surfaces.                                 the settings and close the mask.


   W     If a macro movement hits a component surface
         or protected surface, a collision results that the
                                                                CANCEL      Click CANCEL (or press Esc) to dis-
                                                                            card the settings and close the mask.


                                                                                                                     W
         user must correct with other macros or via the
         interactive calculation of the cutting paths.         The system provides a wide variety of options
                                                               with incremental and absolute return motions
                                                               to elements and Z elevations. This also increases
                                                               the risk of making incorrect entries. For this rea-
                                                               son, you should check the generated retract and
                                                               linking movements carefully before exporting
                                                               the cutting paths in the form of an NC program.




    T
                                                                            DESCRIPTION OF FUNCTIONS                    733
                                                                             CALCULATE CUTTING PATHS



    ASSIGNING APPROACH AND RETRACT                           After you have assigned a macro, in the column
    MACROS                                                   next to the buttons (PB, PE, CB, CE) a checkmark
    You can use these mask elements to:                      (✔) will appear. To delete a macro assignment,
                                                             click on the corresponding checkmark. Click again
      MACRO                                                  at that position in this column to re-assign the
                 Inc     Pos                                 macro selected in the macro library to this loca-
     PB    ✔    10.000 Z-VAL >                               tion.
     PE    ✔    10.000 Z-VAL >



                                                                                                                    L
     CB         0.000    NONE >
                                                             When you move the mouse pointer over the check-
     CE         0.000    NONE >
       Position
                                                             mark of an assigned macro, the name of that as-
      Element
                                                             signed macro will appear in the tool tip text field
      Z-val.            100.000                              (➔ “Tool tips”, page 22).


                                                                                                                    !
      Safety            10.000
          Optimize          Off                              When selecting macros, make sure that these mac-
      Radius              0.000                              ros are normally used with active offset regulation.
                                                             Consequently, the macros should not be run in
       OK                 CANCEL
                                                             empty space but rather in contact with the surface.
    • assign macros from the macro library to the po-        If shape elements are exported with PUT/NC as
      sitions PB (Program Beginning, PE (Program             control cycles, it is possible that only the radius
      End), CB (Contour Beginning) and CE (Contour           and distance values are transferred for macros ef-
      End).                                                  fective for PB and BA. All other macro entries for
                               Follow the procedure below    shape elements will be ineffective.
    PB PE CB CE

                                                                                                                    W
                               to assign a macro to one of
    these positions:                                         If a macro movement hits a component surface
                                                             or protected surface, a collision results that the
    Click the button (PB, PE, CB, CE) that corresponds       user must correct with other macros or via the
    to the position where you want to insert a macro.        interactive calculation of the cutting paths.
    The macro library then opens, which contains all
    the available macros. The current selected macro is      Press ENTER to confirm your entries or continue
    highlighted in blue.                                     with additional settings in the subsequent sections
                                                             of the input mask.
    How to select a macro is described in the chapter
    “Libraries” (➔ “Assigning approach and retract
    macros”, page 251). There you will also find gen-
    eral operating instructions for the library functions
    (➔ “Libraries”, page 213).


!   Use the MACRO command for global macro defini-
    tion (➔ “Managing macros”, page 249).




                                                                                                                   T
734 10

   5-AXIS LASER CUTTING



         INCREMENTAL RETRACTS                                    ABSOLUTE RETRACTS
         You can use these mask elements to:                     You can use these mask elements to:
           MACRO                                                   MACRO

                      Inc     Pos                                             Inc     Pos
          PB    ✔    10.000 Z-VAL >                               PB    ✔    10.000 Z-VAL >
          PE    ✔    10.000 Z-VAL >                               PE    ✔    10.000 Z-VAL >
          CB         0.000    NONE >                              CB         0.000    NONE >
          CE         0.000    NONE >                              CE         0.000    NONE >
            Position                                                  Position
           Element                                                 Element
           Z-val.            100.000                               Z-val.            100.000
           Safety            10.000                                Safety             10.000
               Optimize          Off                               Optimization          Off
           Radius              0.000                               Radius              0.000


            OK                 CANCEL                                 OK               CANCEL


         • assign incremental retracts to the positions PB
                                                                 • assign absolute retracts to the positions PB (be-
           (beginning of program), PE (end of program),
                                                                   ginning of program), PE (end of program), CB
           CB (beginning of contour) and CE (end of
                                                                   (beginning of contour) and CE (end of con-
           contour).
                                                                   tour).
         Follow the procedure below to assign incremental
                                                                 Follow the procedure below to assign absolute re-
         retracts to one of these positions:
                                                                 tracts to retract planes or elements to one of these
                                                                 positions:
         R Inc (option)
         Enter value for incremental retract in the nozzle di-          Press the “>” button to select the type of ab-
         rection.                                                 >
                                                                        solute retract.
         You may enter different values for PB, PE, CB and       You can enter different values for PB, PE, CB, CE
         CE on the appropriate lines of the Inc column.          and R on the appropriate lines of the Pos column.
                                                                 The following options are available:
         Press ENTER to confirm your entries or continue
         with additional settings in the subsequent sections     NONE            No absolute retract is executed.
         of the input mask.
                                                                 ELEM            The tool is retracted to the element
                                                                                 (curve or surface) designated in
                                                                                 Position/Element.

                                                                 Z-VAL           The tool is withdrawn to the Z-plane
                                                                                 of the current (green) axis system
                                                                                 designated in Position/Z-VAL.




    T
                                                                           DESCRIPTION OF FUNCTIONS                   735
                                                                            CALCULATE CUTTING PATHS



                  The location is indicated by a small      The location is indicated by a small green plane in
                  green plane in the graphics window.       the graphics window.

    COMBI         The tool first retracts to the element
                  designated in Position/Element
                                                            Make sure the button in the Pos column is set to Z
                                                            VAL or COMBI. Otherwise, no approach or retract
                                                            movements will be generated. The tool may be po-
                                                                                                                  !
                  and then to the Z-plane specified in
                                                            sitioned on the component under some circum-
                  Position/Z-VAL..
                                                            stances.
                  The location is indicated by a small
                  green plane in the graphics window.
                                                            Press ENTER to confirm your entries or continue

!   Be sure to specify practical retract elements (Ele-
    ment) or retract elevations (Z-value) for the op-
    tions ELEM, Z-VAL and COMBI. Otherwise, the
                                                            with additional settings in the subsequent sections
                                                            of the input mask.

    tool may be positioned on the component under
    some circumstances.

    Define the retract element if required:

    K Element (option)
    Select the curve or surface to which the tool will be
    withdrawn for the retract mode ELEM and COMBI.
    All positioning motions are carried out to the re-
    tract element.
    The retract elements selected will temporarily turn
    green (6).


!   Make sure the button in the Pos column is set to
    ELEM or COMBI. Otherwise, no approach or retract
    movements will be generated. The tool may be po-
    sitioned on the component under some circum-
    stances.

    Define a retract plane if required:
    R Z-val. (option)
    Specify the Z elevation relative to the current
    (green) axis system to which the cutter will be
    withdrawn for retract modes Z-VAL and COMBI.




                                                                                                              T
736 10

   5-AXIS LASER CUTTING



         AUTOMATIC AND OPTIMIZED RETRACT, AND                   maintained to the milling elements and protected
         SAFETY CLEARANCE                                       elements.
         You can use these mask elements to:
                                                                The following return movements remain unaf-
         • specify a safety clearance for switching from        fected by the Optimize function:
           rapid feed to tool feed between retracts and         • absolute returns with return elements,
           macros or paths and
                                                                • returns to the beginning and end of the entire
         • raise or lower the retracts entered absolutely as      cutting program.


                                                                                                                        !
           the Z-value to the locally required height.
                                                                In the case of absolute COMBI returns that with-
           MACRO                                                draw the cutter first to an element and then to a
                      Inc     Pos                               fixed Z-value, the Optimize/On switch only
          PB    ✔    10.000 Z-VAL >                             causes a return to the element.
          PE    ✔    10.000 Z-VAL >
          CB         0.000    NONE >
                                                                                    Click on this button to toggle
          CE         0.000    NONE >                                 Optimize
                                                                                    between retract optimization
            Position
                                                                options.
           Element
           Z-val.            100.000
           Safety            10.000                             Off Absolute retracts are run in accordance with
               Optimize          Off                                how they have been specified.
           Radius              0.000

                                                                On    The retracts are locally limited (or raised) to
            OK                 CANCEL
                                                                      the safety clearance.

         Define a safety clearance if required:                 Press ENTER to confirm your entries or continue
         R Safety (option)                                      with additional settings in the subsequent sections
                                                                of the input mask.
         Distance at which the system should switch at the
         beginning of the program or area from Rapid feed
                                                                EXECUTE ROUNDED STEPOVER AND
         to Feed. The distance is measured from the first
                                                                POSITIONING MOTIONS
         machining point or from the start of a macro.
                                                                You can use these mask elements to prevent
         Optimize the connections, if necessary:                “square” tool travel, easing the load on the ma-
                                                                chine. Radii are inserted between approach and re-
         Click on the Optimize button to raise or lower
         the absolutely specified retracts for connections
         between individual cuts to the locally required
         height and thus optimize the positioning move-
         ments.

         Component and stop surface offsets are taken into
         account. A safety clearance (at least 10 mm) is also




    T
                                                                             DESCRIPTION OF FUNCTIONS               737
                                                                              CALCULATE CUTTING PATHS



    tract movements and tool travel at the retract ele-     ALLOCATE MACHINE AND
    vation.
                                                            PROCESS PARAMETERS.
      MACRO
                                                            After you click the button for specifying the ma-
                 Inc     Pos
                                                            chine and technology parameters, a mask appears
     PB    ✔    10.000 Z-VAL >
     PE    ✔    10.000 Z-VAL >
                                                            in which you can select the machine head and the
     CB         0.000    NONE >
                                                            technology table.
     CE         0.000    NONE >
                                                              PARAMETERS
       Position
                                                               Machine
      Element
                                                               File        rapido5.msn
      Z-val.            100.000
      Safety            10.000                                 Technology
          Optimize          Off                                File         rapido.tec
      Radius              0.000                                Index         pc 0.8 mm

       OK                 CANCEL                               OK                CANCEL



    R Radius (option)
    Enter the radius to be inserted at the transition be-   ——— Machine ————————————————
    tween approach and retract movements at rapid                        Click this button to open an input
                                                               File
    traverse to the retract elevation.                                   field for selecting files and select the

!   The radii you enter are reduced accordingly if they     configuration file for the machine head (e.g.
    are too large for a tangential transition between       laser.msn).
    the two positions.

    Press ENTER to confirm your entries or continue         ——— Technology —————————————
    with additional settings in the subsequent sections                Click on this button to open an entry
                                                               File
    of the input mask.                                                 field for file selection and select the
                                                            technology file for the machine (e.g.
                                                            laser.tec).

                                                            This file defines cutting parameters for different
                                                            materials and component widths, including perfor-
                                                            mance, cutting gap width, gas composition, etc..
                                                            Depending on the postprocessor, you may be able
                                                            to copy this information into the NC program. The
                                                            file also contains technological subroutines, e.g.
                                                            for ignition and conclusion positions, speed or
                                                            user-defined functions.




                                                                                                                T
738 10

   5-AXIS LASER CUTTING



                      Click this button to have the system       View of the cutting paths
           Index
                      display the table with the cutting pa-     During the NC programs' interactive calculation,
         rameters. There you can select the row with the         the individual areas are shown as a green polygon.
         correct parameters for the current material and the     The individual NC points on the area currently se-
         current component width.                                lected are shown as green vectors. Two NC points
                                                                 are connected by a line or arc. For shape elements,
                       Click OK (or press ENTER) to confirm      an axis system is also displayed in the middle of
             OK
                       the settings and close the mask.          the shape element together with a text banner
                                                                 showing the shape element's type.
                       Click CANCEL (or press Esc) to dis-
          CANCEL
                       card the settings and close the mask.     Selection
                                                                 All changes made during the interactive calcula-
                                                                 tion can be done to existing NC points as well as
         START CUTTING PATH                                      newly placed NC points. By holding down the left
                                                                 mouse button you can run the current position
         CALCULATION                                             anywhere you like along the current area. You can
         The cutting paths are calculated in five steps, with    select from the existing points by selecting the
         graphic interaction enabled:                            corresponding line. Then use the left mouse key to
                                                                 capture the other existing NC points you require.


                                                                                                                       !
         1. Specify areas,
                                                                 No NC points can be placed on shape elements.
         2. Specify path corrections,
         3. Optimize head orientation and rotary motions,        Modifiers
                                                                 Changes in the following categories can only be
         4. Set technology macros and
                                                                 placed on a so-called “modifier”:
         5. Simulate cutting paths.
                                                                 • Path correction,
         In each step, users can change the system specifi-      • Vectors and
         cations to match their requirements. All settings       • Technology.
         can be saved to allow you to call and alter the trim-
         ming calculation at a later time.                       A modifier is an information medium that de-
                                                                 scribes what change the user has made at this loca-
         All user specifications can be undone and reset         tion. There are always at least two modifiers
         step-by-step in Steps 1-4. Within these steps you       present, one at the beginning and one at the end
         can also display an online analysis of the cutting      of each area. An NC point is also always located on
         path with regard to the angle of rotation per path,     a modifier's position. The modifiers are displayed
         slope to the product surface and collision of the       using a small yellow cross and a sequential num-
         cutting head (➔ “Online quality analysis”,              ber. Changes, such as interpolation of the nozzle
         page 751).                                              orientation, always refer to the field between two
                                                                 modifiers. The modifiers of the individual catego-
                                                                 ries are mutually independent.




    T
                                                                     DESCRIPTION OF FUNCTIONS                     739
                                                                      CALCULATE CUTTING PATHS



Interactive changes                                   • Change side offset and the approach/retract
All changes made during the interactive calcula-        macros.
tion of the cutting paths always refer to the cur-
rently selected area, NC point, modifier or field.    Proceed as follows to define and sort the cutting
That is the element on or in which the cutting head   process's areas:
is standing. If the cutting head has been hidden      1. Check whether all trimmed curves have been
from view or is outside the field of view, you can       properly recognized as contours or as shape
recognize the currently selected area by its green       elements. If necessary, correct the trimming
direction vectors and the cutting head's current         type recognized by the system.
position by a small, turquoise rectangle. The cur-
rent modifier is also displayed in turquoise.         2. If necessary, separate the recognized areas
                                                         further and define which areas actually are to
1. SPECIFY AREAS                                         be machined.
You can use this mask to specify and change the in-   3. Define the normal direction and the cutting di-
dividual areas. The following functions are avail-       rection and specify which side the side offset
able:                                                    should be applied to.
 AREAS                                                4. If necessary, define the starting point for the
 Form                                                    individual areas and change the machining se-
                                                         quence.
                                                      5. If necessary, redefine the head position on the
                                                         starting points of the individual areas.

            A/B      15
                                                      6. If necessary, check your changes for collisions
 -C   C+      C      99                                  or violations of the permissible axis angle ro-
                                                         tation areas. (➔ “Online quality analysis”,
  HEAD            CHECK
                                                         page 751)
  BACK     NEXT   CANCEL
  AUTO     SAVE    SEND
                                                      At each area's starting point, the system displays a
                                                      yellow axis system with normal direction (N), cut-
• Change path type (contour or shape element),
                                                      ting direction (D) and side offset direction (S). A
• Change machining sequence,                          small yellow rectangle with a number showing the
                                                      processing sequence is displayed at this axis sys-
• Separate or join areas,
                                                      tem's origin. A small, yellow cross is shown at each
• Exclude areas from machining,                       area's endpoint.
• Change starting position,
                                                      In the following, always select first the area or po-
• Change head position at the starting position,      sition you would like to change.
• Switch machining side,
• Reverse machining direction and




                                                                                                              T
740 10

   5-AXIS LASER CUTTING



         r Form                                                 To end manual re-sorting, click the button again. If
         With this selection field you define whether the       all areas are re-sorted this function will end auto-
         current area is a contour or a shape element. This     matically.


                                                                                                                        !
         allows the system to recognize areas not automati-     This button is active only when the current area is
         cally identified as shape elements as such after the   not already the second to last or last area in the
         fact. This may be necessary e.g. for shape elements    processing sequence.
         that are not completely flat.
         CONT         The selected area is a sculptured con-                   Click this button to automatically re-
                      tour.                                                    sort the areas after the current area
                                                                in the processing series.
         CIRC         The selected area is a circle with the    This function can also be combined with the man-
                      parameters Position, Orientation to       ual sorting described above. In that case, any re-
                      A/B-head and Diameter.                    maining areas will be re-sorted according to the
         SLOT         The selected area is a slot with the      criteria for automatic sorting.
                      parameters Position, Orientation to
                      A/B-head, Length and Width.                             Click this button to divide the current
                                                                              area into to separate areas at the
         RECT         The selected area is a rectangle with     current position.
                      the parameters Position, Orientation
                      to A/B-head, Length, Width and Cor-                     Click this button to join the current
                      ner radius.                                             area to the next area.

                      Click this button to enter the current
                      area as the first area in the process-
                                                                This button is active only when the current posi-
                                                                tion is at the end of an area and immediately next
                                                                to the start of another area. (Distance tolerance
                                                                                                                        !
         ing order.


     !
                                                                0.01 mm, angle tolerance 1 degree)
         This button is active only when the current area is
         not already the first area in the processing se-                     Click this button to exclude the cur-
         quence.                                                              rent area from machining or to reas-
                                                                sign it to machining.
                      Click this button to manually sort the
                      areas again after the current area in                   Click this button to reverse the cur-
         the processing order.                                                rent area's processing direction.

         The areas are re-sorted by being selected in the or-
         der desired. The currently selected area is dis-
                                                                Shape elements' processing directions cannot be
                                                                reversed.                                               !
         played in yellow. Areas that come before it in the
         sequence are shown in red.                                           Click this button to reverse the cur-
                                                                              rent area's processing side (normal
                                                                direction).




    T
                                                                                 DESCRIPTION OF FUNCTIONS                 741
                                                                                  CALCULATE CUTTING PATHS



                  Click this button to reverse the direc-   overriding definition to individual contours. The
                  tion of the current area's side offset.   following functions are available:


!   If the trimmed curves are automatically derived
    from the product surfaces, the side offset is always
    applied facing away from the product.
                                                              PATH CORRECTION

                                                               ABS      X
                                                                        Y
                                                                            _     0.00
                                                                                  0.00
                                                                        Z         0.00
    The side offset direction cannot be reversed for
                                                               SET                DEL
    shape elements.
                                                              Element

                  Click this button to define the current      MACRO        A:    E:

                  position as the new starting point for
    this area.                                                 HEAD              CHECK



!
                                                               BACK     NEXT     CANCEL
    For open areas, only endpoints can be entered as
                                                               AUTO     SAVE      SEND
    new starting points. Shape elements' starting
    points cannot be specified.
                                                            • For contours: Enter changed trimmed curves
                                                              while simultaneously copying all previous inter-
    -C      C+   Click this button at an area's starting
                                                              active changes to the path calculation,
                 point to specify on which side of the
    head the C-axis is to be.                               • For contours: Change the position of individual


!
                                                              path points (relative or absolute),
    These buttons are only active when the current po-
    sition is an area's starting point.                     • Change the position and orientation of shape el-
                                                              ements,
    The help functions and step-by-step control in the
                                                            • Change the geometry of shape elements
    lowest three rows of buttons are identical in all the
    interactive calculation steps. They will be de-         • Assign macros and retracts to individual con-

                                                                                                                   n ew
    scribed below. (➔ “Help functions and step-by-            tours
    step control during the calculation”, page 750)
                                                            Numerically correct path points in contours
    2. DEFINE PATH CORRECTIONS                              Proceed as follows to make path corrections to
    You can use this mask to correct the position of in-    contours by entering numbers:
    dividual path points, enter changed trimmed
                                                            1. Specify whether you want to enter corrections
    curves without losing the interactive changes to
                                                               relative to the active axis system or relative to
    the cutting path and change the position, orienta-
                                                               the current NC point.
    tion and geometry of shape elements. You can also
    assign macros and retracts deviating from the           2. Place modifiers around where the path is to be
                                                               corrected by entering numbers.
                                                            3. At the proper position, enter the necessary nu-
                                                               merical modification and confirm it with SET.
                                                            4. If necessary, check your changes for collisions.
                                                               (➔ “Online quality analysis”, page 751)



                                                                                                                  T
742 10

   5-AXIS LASER CUTTING



         At each area's starting point, the system displays a   Change contours by entering elements
         yellow axis system with normal direction (N), cut-     Proceed as follows to make path corrections to
         ting direction (D) and side offset direction (S). A    contours by using changed trimmed curves, correc-
         light blue axis system is displayed at the current     tion points or constraints:
         position with the normal direction (W), cutting di-
         rection (U) and side direction (V). The system         1. If you want to use a curve to change only part
         identifies the individual modifiers with sequen-          of the current area, select a position outside
         tially numbered small yellow rectangles. A small          the area to be changed.
         yellow plus is used to identify the position on the    2. If you want to use points or constraints to

                                                                                                                        n ew
         original trimmed curve.                                   change the contour, set modifiers at the start
                                                                   and end of the area to be changed. Select the
         There are always at least two modifiers present for       position to be changed.
         path correction, one at the beginning and one at
         the end of the area. The path correction placed on     3. Select the elements (curve, points, con-
         a modifier is interpolated to the two neighboring         straints) that describe the changed trim.
         modifiers.                                             4. If necessary, check your changes for collisions
                                                                   or violations of the permissible axis angle ro-
         In the following, always select first the position        tation areas. (➔ “Online quality analysis”,
         you would like to change.                                 page 751)

            ABS
                      Click this button to switch between       K Elements
                      entering and displaying the coordi-       Select a curve, point or constraint that describes
            REL       nates, relative to the active axis sys-   the corrected course of the area. If only part of the
                      tem (ABS) or relative to the current      area is to be corrected by a curve, the current posi-
         NC point (REL).                                        tion must lie outside the correction area. The curve
                                                                for the correction area must connect exactly to the
         R X, Y, Z / U, V, W                                    original trim curve.
         For each coordinate, enter the value you want for
         the path correction.                                   After the curve is selected, the system recalculates
                                                                the cutting path in the current area. All manual
                       Click this button to confirm the coor-   changes that have been made to the current area
            SET
                       dinates of the path correction. A        are projected onto the new cutting path.
         modifier will be inserted at the current position
         and an NC point placed there if none was there al-
         ready.
                                                                When you are working with wall thickness, stock al-
                                                                lowance or side offset, the correction curves must
                                                                lie on the surface of the product, because they are
                                                                                                                        !
                      Click this button to delete a modifier.   first projected internally, before the correction is
            DEL
                                                                calculated.

     !   This button is active only when the current posi-
         tion is a modifier.                                    The help functions and step-by-step control in the
                                                                lowest three rows of buttons are identical in all the




    T
                                                                     DESCRIPTION OF FUNCTIONS                  743
                                                                      CALCULATE CUTTING PATHS



interactive calculation steps. They will be de-                    Click this button to change the shape
                                                         POS
scribed below (➔ “Help functions and step-by-step                  element's position and orientation.
control during the calculation”, page 750).
                                                                      PATH CORRECTION

                                                                        POS           GEO
Path correction for shape elements
                                                                       ABS     X   _ 134.18
Proceed as follows to change position, orientation                             Y       44.19
and geometry of shape elements:                                                Z      343.67
                                                                             PHI       92.49
1. Click the POS button to change position and
   orientation.
2. Define whether you want to enter corrections
   that are absolute to the active axis system                        HEAD            CHECK

   (ABS) or relative to the axis system in the mid-                   BACK     NEXT   CANCEL
   dle of the shape element (REL).                                    AUTO     SAVE    SEND


3. Correct the position and orientation of a shape
   element. The changes will be carried out as           ABS       Click this button to switch between
   soon as you exit the current entry field.                       entering and displaying the coordi-
                                                         REL       nates, absolute to the active axis sys-
4. Click the GEO button to change the geometry                     tem (ABS) or relative to the axis sys-
   of the shape element.
                                                      tem in the middle of the shape element (REL).
5. Correct the shape element's geometry. The
   changes will be carried out as soon as you exit    R X, Y, Z
   the current entry field.                           Enter for the coordinates the desired position rela-
6. If necessary, check your changes for collisions    tive to the active axis system.
   or violations of the permissible axis angle ro-
   tation areas. (➔ “Online quality analysis”,        R PHI
   page 751)                                          Enter the angle between the A/B-head and the
                                                      shape element's orientation.
In the following, always select first the area you
would like to change.




                                                                                                           T
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   5-AXIS LASER CUTTING



                                Click this button to change the ge-   Assign macros and retracts for individual
            GEO
                                                                                                                              n ew
                                ometry of the formula element.        contours
                                                                      Proceed as follows to assign retracts and macros to
           PATH CORRECTION
                                                                      individual contours:
              POS                GEO
                                                                      1. Click the MACRO button to get into the mask
             R          R   _     0.00
                    W
                        L        42.48
                                                                         for macro selection.
             L          W        12.50
                                                                      2. Select the macro and the length of the incre-
                                                                         mental retract.
                                                                      3. After confirmation, the system will display the
                                                                         macros and retracts immediately.
            HEAD                 CHECK

            BACK        NEXT     CANCEL                                              Click this button to individually as-
                                                                        MACRO
            AUTO        SAVE      SEND                                               sign macros and incremental re-
                                                                      tracts to individual contours.
         R R                                                            MACRO
         Enter the radius of the circle or the corner radius of                  Inc     Pos
         the rectangle.                                                CB   ✔   10.000
                                                                       CE   ✔   10.000

         R L                                                             OK              CANCEL
         Enter the length of the slot or rectangle.
                                                                      You can find more details below on assigning mac-
         R W
                                                                      ros and incremental retracts (➔ “Assigning ap-
         Enter the width of the slot or rectangle.                    proach and retract macros”, page 733) (➔ “Incre-
                                                                      mental retracts”, page 734).
         The help functions and step-by-step control in the
         lowest three rows of buttons are identical in all the        The help functions and step-by-step control in the
         interactive calculation steps. They will be de-              lowest three rows of buttons are identical in all the
         scribed below (➔ “Help functions and step-by-step            interactive calculation steps. They will be de-
         control during the calculation”, page 750).                  scribed below (➔ “Help functions and step-by-step
                                                                      control during the calculation”, page 750).

                                                                      3. OPTIMIZE HEAD ORIENTATION AND
                                                                      ROTARY MOTIONS
                                                                      You can use this mask to change the head orienta-
                                                                      tion in individual fields and optimize the course of




    T
                                                                         DESCRIPTION OF FUNCTIONS                     745
                                                                          CALCULATE CUTTING PATHS



    the rotation movement using different criteria. The       – By entering numbers for the slope relative
    following functions are available:                          to the product surface's normals (REL) or
      VECTORS                                                 – By selecting a line, a plane or a constraint
       ABS    A/B _     81.28
                                                                that will determine the orientation of the
     -C C+      C      -54.94                                   head.


                                                                                                                  !
        SET            DEL
                                                          If a high number is entered in the strategy dialog
      Element                                             for Slope <, newly placed modifiers may not
      Slope <           15.00                             have the same orientation as the bordering fields.
      Interp Product                                      In such cases, you must correct the modifier orien-
                                                          tation next.
      HEAD             CHECK

      BACK      NEXT   CANCEL                             3. Select any position in the field between the
      AUTO      SAVE    SEND                                 two modifiers.

    • Set head orientation in individual fields and
    • Adjust course of rotation movement:
                                                          If an orientation was defined for a modifier that
                                                          deviates from the normals of the product's surface,
                                                          you will not be allowed to use the interpolation
                                                                                                                  !
      –Perpendicular to the product surface,              types “Product”, “A/B Opt” and “C Opt” in the bor-
                                                          dering fields. That could lead to a flaw in the angle
      –Interpolated between two spatial directions,
                                                          rotation course.
      –Interpolated between two axis angle positions,
      –One axis follows the component normal, the         4. Select your interpolation type and, if neces-
        other is interpolated, and                           sary, set the maximum permissible slope rela-
                                                             tive to the product surface's normals.
      –Interpolated between two orientations relative
        to the product surface.                           5. Check any changes you made, if applicable, for
                                                             the rotation angle course, slope relative to the

!   You can only optimize head direction and rotation
    movements for contours.
                                                             product surface's normals, collisions and vio-
                                                             lation of the permissible axis angle rotation
                                                             areas. (➔ “Online quality analysis”, page 751)
    Proceed as follows to change head direction and
                                                          6. Repeat as necessary the steps from 1. to 5.,
    optimize rotation movements:
                                                             until you are satisfied with the result.
    1. Place a modifier at the beginning and end of
       the field in which you want to adjust the head     A light blue axis system is displayed at the current
       position.                                          position with the normal direction (W), cutting di-
                                                          rection (U) and side direction (V). The system
    2. Adjust to the desired head orientation at the
                                                          identifies the individual modifiers with sequen-
       modifiers:
                                                          tially numbered small yellow crosses.
        – With graphic interaction,
        – By entering numbers in the form of axis co-     A turquoise line is used to show the beam direc-
          ordinates (ABS)                                 tion. On this line, you can use the mouse to pull




                                                                                                              T
746 10

   5-AXIS LASER CUTTING



         the head into any position the kinematic charac-         fier will be inserted at the current position and an
         teristics allow. The line will turn red as soon as the   NC point placed there if none was there already.
         slope relative to the product surface's normals ex-
         ceeds the value entered for Max. slope in the                          Click this button to delete a modifier.
                                                                      DEL
         strategy dialog. When you use the mouse to select
         the A/B or C-head, only the corresponding axis will
         be moved.
                                                                  This button is active only when the current posi-
                                                                  tion is a modifier.                                      !
         There are always at least two modifiers present for      R Slope <
         vector correction, one at the beginning and one at       Enter the maximum permissible slope at the NC
         the end of the area. You can either enter the vector     points relative to the product surface for the inter-
         values in the mask or set them onscreen through          polation types “Product”, “A/B Opt” and “C Opt”.
         graphic interaction.

         In the following, always select first the position or
         field you would like to change.
                                                                  If “0” is entered as the slope in the strategy dialog,
                                                                  that parameter will not influence interpolation
                                                                  here.
                                                                                                                           !
            ABS
                     Click this button to switch between          r Intpol
                     entering and view the vectors, in the        Select the desired interpolation type for the cur-
             REL     machine's axis angles (ABS) or in-           rent field.
                     clined frontally and laterally relative
         to the component normals at the current position         Product       The cutting nozzle's orientation de-
         (REL).                                                                 pends on the product surface's nor-
                                                                                mal direction.
         R A/B, C                                                 Vec Int       The cutting nozzle's orientation in-
         Enter the desired angle values for the A/B axis or                     terpolates between the field's start-
         C-axis.                                                                ing and ending vector.

         R F, L                                                   A/B;C Int The A/B and C axis interpolate be-
                                                                            tween the field's starting and ending
         Enter the desired angle values for frontal or lateral
                                                                            positions.
         tilt relative to the surface normals.
                                                                  A/B Opt       The A/B-axis' orientation follows the
                      Click this button at an area's starting                   product surface's normal direction,
          -C    C+
                      point to specify on which side of the                     and the C-axis interpolates between
         head the C-axis is to be.                                              the field's starting and ending posi-


     !
                                                                                tion.
         These buttons are only active when the current po-
         sition is an area's starting point.                      C Opt         The C-axis' orientation follows the
                                                                                product surface's normal direction,
                       Click this button to confirm the val-                    and the A/B-axis interpolates be-
            SET
                       ues of the angle correction. A modi-                     tween the field's starting and ending
                                                                                position.




    T
                                                                             DESCRIPTION OF FUNCTIONS                     747
                                                                              CALCULATE CUTTING PATHS



    F,L Int           The cutting nozzle's orientation in-    • Switch offset regulation on and off,
                      terpolates between the slope relative
                                                              • Adjust cutting conditions to contour radius,
                      to the product surface's normal di-
                      rection at the field's starting and     • Set user-defined macros and
                      ending point.
                                                              • Define path control in corners.


!   You can only set the interpolation type when the
    currently selected position is not the starting or
    ending point of a field.
                                                              Follow the procedure below to set technology mac-
                                                              ros:
                                                              1. Select the position where you want to place
    Since the interpolation types “Vec Int” and “A/B;C           the macro.
    Int” do not reference the product's normal direc-         2. Select the macro from the corresponding se-
    tion, this may result in undesired rotation move-            lection field.
    ments. Make sure you check the result with the on-
    line quality analysis (➔ page 751) and the simula-        The following selection fields contain lists of the
    tion (➔ page 749).                                        available technology macros. Their availability de-
                                                              pends on the machine and control you are using.
    The help functions and step-by-step control in the        User-defined macros are defined in the associated
    lowest three rows of buttons are identical in all the     *.tec file. When you select a macro, the system
    interactive calculation steps. They will be de-           places a corresponding modifier on the current po-
    scribed below (➔ “Help functions and step-by-step         sition. An NC point is inserted if none was there al-
    control during the calculation”, page 750).               ready.


                                                                                                                      !
    4. SET TECHNOLOGY MACROS                                  Please remember that most technological func-
    You can use this mask to set technological macros         tions have to be switched on and off. When you re-
    at individual positions on the cutting paths. The         verse an area's processing direction, the technol-
    following functions are available:                        ogy macros are not updated to match. Users have
      TECHNOLOGY
                                                              to make sure that their macros are in the proper or-
                                                              der.
      Laser
      Sensor
      Cont.                                                   The actual effect of these macros on the NC pro-
      User                                                    gram depends on your machine control and post-
      Corner                                                  processor capabilities.
       SET               DEL
                                                              In the following, always select first the position
                                                              you would like to change.
       HEAD            CHECK

       BACK    NEXT    CANCEL
       AUTO    SAVE     SEND


    • Switch beam on and off,




                                                                                                                     T
748 10

   5-AXIS LASER CUTTING



         r Laser                                              r Corner
         This selection sequence contains the technology      This selection sequence contains the technology
         macros for switching the beam on and off.            macros for controlling the path in corner areas.
         BEAMON       Switches the beam on.                   G9            The NC point specified must be ap-
                                                                            proached with precision.
         BEAMOFF      Switches the beam off.
         SHUTON       Opens the shutter.                                    Click this button to insert an unspeci-
                                                                   SET
                                                                            fied technology modifier at the cur-
         SHUTOFF      Closes the shutter.
                                                              rent position. An NC point will be inserted if none
                                                              was there already.
         r Sensor
         This selection sequence contains the technology                    Click this button to delete a modifier.
         macros for switching the offset regulation on and         DEL


                                                                                                                      !
         off.                                                 This button is active only when the current posi-
         SENSON       Switches the offset regulation on.      tion is a modifier.
         SENSOFF      Switches the offset regulation off.
                                                              The help functions and step-by-step control in the


     !
                                                              lowest three rows of buttons are identical in all the
         When you switch on the offset regulation, the cut-
                                                              interactive calculation steps. They will be de-
         ting head must be near a surface.
                                                              scribed below (➔ “Help functions and step-by-step
                                                              control during the calculation”, page 750).
         r Cont.
         This selection sequence contains the technology
         macros for reducing feed and performance for
         small contours.
         CONTS        Feed and performance are adjusted
                      for a contour with a small radius.
         CONTM        Feed and performance are adjusted
                      for a contour with a medium radius.
         CONTL        Feed and performance are adjusted
                      for a contour with a large radius.

         r User
         This selection sequence contains the user-defined
         technology macros stored in the *.tec file.




    T
                                                                     DESCRIPTION OF FUNCTIONS                    749
                                                                      CALCULATE CUTTING PATHS



5. SIMULATE CUTTING PATHS                                      Cutting head jumps back to the start of
You can use this mask at the end of the calculation            the current area.
to create a simulation of the cutting path that in-
cludes all macros and the connecting and position-             Cutting head moves back one NC record.
ing movements. The following functions are avail-
able:                                                          Cutting head moves forward one NC
                                                               record.
  SIMULATION

                                                      These NC points are taken from the parameters
                                                      Tolerance, Angle            error and Max.
                                                      distance. The NC points the system exports de-
                                                                                                             !
  SHOW   AREA    VIEW                                 pend on the post-processor.
  FLAG   VEC     DATA
         GEN                                                   Cutting head jumps ahead to next area.

  HEAD          CHECK                                          Cutting head toggles between starting
                                                               and end points of the cutting path.
  BACK    OK    CANCEL
  AUTO   SAVE    SEND
                                                               Continuous reverse travel of cutting head
• Graphic simulation of the processing of the cut-             to starting point of cutting path.
  ting paths,
                                                               Continuous forward travel of cutting head
• Numeric check of the processing of the cutting               to endpoint of cutting path.
  paths for collisions with the backup model of the
  head,                                                        Interrupts continuous travel of the cut-
• Display technology macros and feed rates,                    ting head.
• Show coordinates of the current NC point in the
                                                               Accelerates continuous travel of the cut-
  command window,
                                                               ting head.
• Display the vectors of the cutting path's orien-
  tation,                                                      Slows continuous travel of the cutting
                                                               head.
• Generate lines with the orientation of the cur-
  rent nozzle position and
                                                      At any time during the simulation, you can select
• Orient the model perpendicular to the current       any point in the cutting path to reposition the cut-
  nozzle position.                                    ting head. Hold down the left mouse button to
                                                      move it along the cutting path.
Simulate calculated cutting paths
The following buttons are used to control the simu-   Show all elements
lation of the cutting paths:                                      Shows the elements that were not
                                                        SHOW
                                                                  used to calculate the cutting path.




                                                                                                           T
750 10

   5-AXIS LASER CUTTING



         These elements were hidden beforehand when the         Check cutting paths for collision with part
         START button was pressed.                                             Click the CHECK button to check the
                                                                  CHECK
                                                                               selected cutting path for collision
         Display cutting paths by area                          with the part. Collisions with machining and stop
                     Changes the view so that only the          elements are displayed as colored points on the
            AREA
                     cutting path's current area is dis-        cutting path. The assignment of individual colors
         played.                                                to given test tolerances and the value of the great-
                                                                est violation of the component is displayed in the
         Switch to direction of cutting head view               command window. A mask is displayed that you
                     Changes the view to show a projected       can use to save the points.
           VIEW

                                                                                                                        W
                     representation of the cutting head.        The cutting paths calculated are not necessarily
                                                                collision-free. Users therefore absolutely must
         Display interpolation points, feed rates               use the CHECK function to check the cutting
         and technology macros                                  paths before they are exported to the NC control
                      Shows in the current area all circle      as an NC program.
            FLAG
                      interpolation starting and ending
         points (AB = Arc Begin; AE = Arc End), as well as
         the feed rates (G0, G1) and the technology mac-
         ros.
                                                                Only component violations greater than the value
                                                                specified in Chord tolerance are checked.               !
                                                                Save cutting path
         Display vectors of the head orientation                             Saves the cutting path and closes the
                                                                    OK
                                                                                                                        n ew
                       Shows in the current area the orien-                  mask. This represents the end of
             VEC
                       tation of the cutting head on the (ac-   step-by-step control.
         tual) NC points using symbolic yellow lines.


     !   These NC points are taken from the parameters
         Tolerance, Angle            error and Max.
                                                                If you would like to modify the cutting path calcu-
                                                                lation later, you will have to use the SAVE button to
                                                                save it as an NC job (➔ page 752).
                                                                                                                        !
         distance. The NC points the system exports de-
         pend on the post-processor.
                                                                HELP FUNCTIONS AND STEP-BY-STEP
                                                                CONTROL DURING THE CALCULATION
         Display NC records
                                                                During the interactive calculation of the cutting
                     Displays toolpath parameters and NC
           DATA                                                 paths, some functions will remain permanently
                     blocks in the command window.
                                                                available:
         Set nozzle direction vector                            • Change head view,
                      Places a geometry point on the cur-       • Undo or reset changes,
            GEN
                      rent position as well as a line of
         length 100 in the nozzle direction.                    • Online quality analysis and




    T
                                                                         DESCRIPTION OF FUNCTIONS                  751
                                                                          CALCULATE CUTTING PATHS



• Step-by-step control.                                        Click this button to redo all the undone
                                                               changes in the current step one after the
  ...
                                                               other.
   HEAD           CHECK
                                                        When it is not possible to redo any changes, the
                                                        button will appear gray.
   BACK   NEXT    CANCEL
   AUTO   SAVE     SEND
                                                        Online quality analysis
                                                        During Steps 1-4, you can use different quality cri-
View of the cutting head                                teria to analyze the cutting paths.
The cutting head can be shown as follows during
the graphically interactive calculation of the cut-     Online analysis gives you an overview of the fol-
ting paths:                                             lowing during all changes to cutting paths:
• In the wire-frame model,                              • Course of rotation angle,
• In the shaded surface model or                        • Nozzle slope,
• Hidden.                                               • Collisions of the cutting head or
                                                        • Violations of the machine axis' rotation area.
   HEAD          Click this button to toggle between
                 the cutting head's viewing options.
                                                        The analysis results are displayed as small lines on
                                                        the currently selected cutting path:
The help functions and step-by-step control in the
lowest three rows of buttons are identical in all the   Green = within the selected tolerance,
interactive calculation steps. They will be de-
                                                        Red = outside the selected tolerance.
scribed below (➔ “Help functions and step-by-step
control during the calculation”, page 750).
                                                          CHECK       You can click the CHECK button to
                                                                      open a submask that lets you set the
Undo or reset changes
                                                        type of analysis and the desired tolerance.
During Steps 1-4, you can undo all changes one af-
ter the other as long as you do not exit the current      ANALYZE

step. You can also redo undone changes, one after        OFF A/B;C F;S       COLL RNG
the other.
                                                           Angle/path of rot.
                                                                A/B;C    _     7.000
Often this is helpful in showing you how successful
your changes were for the course of the rotation
angle, nozzle slope or collision avoidance.                OK                  CANCEL



       Click this button to undo the changes in
       the current step one after the other.
       When it is not possible to undo any
changes, the button will appear gray.




                                                                                                               T
752 10

   5-AXIS LASER CUTTING



                   Click this button to switch off the online              Click this button to switch on the online
           OFF     analysis.                                      RNG      analysis for checking the axis' rotation
                                                                           areas.

                   Click this button to switch on the online                 Click OK (or press ENTER) to confirm
                                                                    OK
          A/B,C    analysis for the course of rotation an-                   the settings and close the mask.
                   gle.
                                                                             Click CANCEL (or press Esc) to dis-
                                                                 CANCEL
         R Angle/path of rot. [degrees/mm]                                   card the settings and close the mask.
         Enter the maximum permissible rotation angle of
         the axis per millimeter of processing path.            Save calculating operation as NC job
                                                                              Press the SAVE button to save the
                                                                  SAVE
                                                                                                                       n ew
                      Click this button to toggle the analy-                  current calculating operation as an
           A/B,C
                      sis between the two axis, the A/B         NC job in the NC job library.
            A/B       axis or the C-axis.

                                                                                                                       !
              C                                                 Even if you executed some of the calculation steps
                                                                interactively, you can still use the SAVE button to
                   Click this button to switch on the online    save the operation at any time as an NC job in the
           F,S     analysis for the nozzle slope.               NC job library. Your previous individual settings
                                                                that you may have made for calculating this ma-
                     RSlope Ang.                                chining step will be copied.
         Enter the maximum permissible nozzle slope rela-
         tive to the product surface.                           Refer to the chapter “Libraries” (➔ “Save current
                                                                calculating operation as NC job”, page 289) for a
                      Click this button to toggle the analy-    detailed description of this function.
           Total
                      sis between the total slope, frontal
         Frontal      slope (F) or lateral slope (S).           In the chapter “Libraries” you can also find exact
            Side                                                descriptions of the procedures for creating or pro-
                                                                cessing an NC job directly in the NC job library. (➔
                   Click this button to switch on the online    “Generating and changing NC jobs”, page 280)
          COLL     analysis for collisions of the cutting       There you will also find general operating instruc-
                   head.                                        tions for the library functions (➔ “Libraries”,
                                                                page 213).

   W     This collision analysis does not include the first
         solid from the backup model. It thus shows
         fewer collisions than the CHECK function. (➔
         „Check cutting paths for collision with part“,
         Seite 750)




    T
                                                                                DESCRIPTION OF FUNCTIONS                   753
                                                                                LAY OUT JIGS AND FIXTURES



        Step-by-step control                                     The result is planar faces showing the outlines of
                   Click this button to return to the pre-       the elements required. The system can also derive
           BACK                                                  a table allocation for the section. You can use the
                   vious step in the interactive step
        control.                                                 LCONT function to immediately generate the trim
                                                                 programs required. (➔ page 726)
                        Click this button (or press Enter) to
           NEXT                                                  With the interactive step-controlled calculation of
                        go to the next step in the interactive
        step control.                                            the jigs and fixtures, you can change the elements
                                                                 individually.
                      Click this button to skip all other
           AUTO                                                  Proceed as follows to design the jigs and fixtures:
                      steps in the interactive calculation
        and go directly to the simulation of the calculated      1. Enter      the      component information
        cutting path.                                               (➔ page 754). Keep in mind the position of
                                                                    the active axis system.
                      Click this button to end the interac-
         CANCEL                                                  2. Define the stanchions' thickness and base
                      tive calculation. The manual changes
        will be retained as long as you do not exit the func-       height and how far apart they should be from
        tion LCONT and do not select any other elements             one another. (➔ page 755)
        when you start another calculation.                      3. Define whether a base plate should be calcu-
                                                                    lated and how it should be labeled.
                                                                    (➔ page 757)

        LAY OUT JIGS AND                                         4. Specify whether ribs and slots should be calcu-
                                                                    lated for attaching the stanchions to the base
        FIXTURES                                                    plate. (➔ page 758)

        You can use the LSEAT function to lay out complete       5. Press the START button to start the interac-
LSEAT
        jigs and fixtures arrangements consisting of the            tive step-controlled calculation of the jigs and
        base plate and supporting stanchions. To do this,           fixtures. (➔ page 759)
        users only need to define the product and exten-         6. Correct the stanchion positions as necessary.
        sion geometry and the trimmed curves. Some in-              (➔ page 759)
        formation also has to be entered about fixture de-
        sign, e.g. distance between the stanchions, mate-        7. Cut polygons and circles out of the stanchions
        rial thicknesses, etc.                                      as necessary to reduce their weight.
                                                                    (➔ page 760)
        The base plate is a rectangle lying parallel to the      8. Design the table allocation for the jigs and fix-
        active axis systems' X/Y axis. The stanchions are in        tures'   stanchions      and     base      plate.
        planes parallel to the XY or YZ planes of the active        (➔ page 761)
        axis system. For machine tables with the appropri-
        ate hole grids, you can eliminate the base plate.        9. Specify whether and on which CAD model layer

 n ew
        The system will then generate ribs with the grid            the jigs and fixtures' assembly and table allo-
        that was entered.                                           cation should be saved. (➔ page 762)




                                                                                                                       T
754 10

   5-AXIS LASER CUTTING



         After you press the LSEAT button, the FIXTURE          R Extension (option)
         mask described below will appear for you to enter      Select the faces, surfaces or meshes to be cut from
         the component parameters. You can click on the         the component.


                                                                                                                         !
         icons to get into the following dialogs.
                                                                The extension surfaces selected will temporarily
                                                                turn light blue (2).

         ENTER COMPONENT ELEMENTS                               Since the system background generates a single
         AND PARAMETERS                                         topology from all the surfaces to be machined, it is
                                                                a good idea to create this topology manually in ad-
         In this dialog, you can enter information about the    vance. Otherwise, overly long computing times
         component for which you want to generate the jigs      may result.
         and fixtures. The stanchions are recessed at the
                                                                R Wall thick.
           FIXTURE
                                                                Enter the difference between surface constructed
                                                                and the surface on which the stanchions should be
            Part
                                                                located.
           Product       E,_
           Extension     E,                                     K Cont. (option)
           Wall thick.         0.000                            Enter the trimmed curves for which reliefs should
           Cont.         E,E,E,
                                                                be made in the stanchions so the cutting beam can
           Area          E,
                                                                proceed without hindrance to the rear side of the
           Center        E,
               Height          4.000
                                                                component.
           Recess        E,
               Depth           5.000                            The trimmed curves selected will temporarily turn
                                                                turquoise (9).

            START              CANCEL
                                                                K Area (option)
                                                                Enter a closed curve as an area within which the
         contour curves so the cutting beam can be ex-
                                                                fixture is to be generated if the fixture is not being
         tended without hindrance. A closed section curve
                                                                designed for the entire component.
         can be used to limit the jigs and fixtures to a por-
         tion of the component. You can use centers and
                                                                Selected areas will temporarily turn yellow (1).
         cutting depths to raise or lower the stanchions in
         certain component areas.

         R Product
         Specify the topologies, faces, surfaces or meshes
         to be cut.

         The product surfaces selected will temporarily turn
         dark blue (3).




    T
                                                                          DESCRIPTION OF FUNCTIONS                      755
                                                                          LAY OUT JIGS AND FIXTURES



    K Center (option)                                     DEFINE STANCHIONS
    Select closed curves on which the stanchions are to
    be raised, e.g. to position the component on pre-     In this dialog you can enter the information for the
    existing recesses.                                    jigs and fixtures' stanchions to be generated. The

    Selected centers will temporarily turn yellow (1).      FIXTURE




!   The component surface must be closed within the
    curves for the centers. The curves cannot touch the
    milling element boundaries.
                                                             Ribs
                                                            Thickness     _     3.000
                                                            Gap value           0.000
    R Height                                                Corner rad.         3.000
                                                            Base height       150.000
    Enter the desired height for the center.                Excess end         20.000
                                                            Relief              5.000
    K Recess (option)                                        Side form    Inclined

    Select closed curves on which the stanchions are to       Tagging             Yes

    be lowered, e.g. because in this area the shape of       Grid
    the real component does not necessarily conform         Distance X          0.000
    to the CAD model.                                       Distance Y          0.000

    Selected cutting depths will temporarily turn yel-
                                                             START              CANCEL
    low (1).


!   The component surface must be closed within the
    curves for the cutting depths. The curves cannot
    touch the milling element boundaries.
                                                          base height defines the height of the component
                                                          on the jigs and fixtures. The relief provides re-
                                                          cesses in the stanchions under the trimmed curves
                                                          (contour). You can decide whether you want to la-
    R Depth                                               bel the stanchions.
    Enter the desired depth for the cutting.
                                                          R Thickness
                                                          Enter the material of the stanchion raw sheet
                                                          thickness.

                                                          R Gap value
                                                          If applicable, enter the air gap you want to leave
                                                          between intersecting stanchions.
                                                                                                                 n ew

                                                          R Corner rad.
                                                          Enter the corner radius with which the stanchions'
                                                          sharp edges are to be rounded outside the compo-
                                                          nent contour.




                                                                                                                 T
756 10

   5-AXIS LASER CUTTING



           R Base height                                                                Click this button to specify
                                                                        Tagging
           Enter the desired height of the lowest component                             whether     the    stanchions
           point over the base plate. The jigs and fixtures will   should be tagged. To do this, the system generates
           be designed such that the component will lie at the     the coordinates (X/Y) and the sequential number
           height specified.                                       of the stanchion as a clip area.


     !     The lowest possible base height is 20 mm. If            Yes The stanchions will be tagged.
           smaller numbers are specified, the stanchions will
           be designed with a base height of 20 mm.                No    The stanchions will not be tagged.

           R Excess end                                            R Distance X
           Enter the excess end by which the stanchions on         Enter the desired distance between the middle of
           the base plate must be larger than the component        the stanchions in the X direction.
           or the area.
                                                                   R Distance Y

     !     The lowest possible excess end is 20 mm. If smaller
           numbers are specified, the stanchions will be de-
           signed with an excess end of 20 mm.
                                                                   Enter the desired distance between the middle of
                                                                   the stanchions in the Y direction.


           R Relief
           Define by how much the stanchions are to be cut
                                                                   The stanchion grid will start at the origin of the ac-
                                                                   tive coordinate system. If you enter the distance
                                                                   “0”, no stanchions will be generated automati-
                                                                                                                            !
           free (Relief) below the trimmed curves (contour).       cally. But you can still manually position stan-

     !     The relief is in the shape of a hemisphere pressed
           into the stanchion from above until the specified
           relief depth has been reached. For reliefs in steep
                                                                   chions on the jigs and fixtures in the interactive
                                                                   calculation.

           component areas, this may considerably reduce
           the usable application area on the stanchion.

                               Click this button to define
             Side form
    n ew
                               whether you want the stan-
           chions to run vertically down from the component
           edge or area edge or whether you want to connect
           to the excess end with an incline.
           Inclined The stanchions run on an incline
                    from the component edge or area
                    edge to the excess end.

           Even          The stanchions run vertically down
                         from the component edge or area
                         edge.




    T
                                                                          DESCRIPTION OF FUNCTIONS                  757
                                                                          LAY OUT JIGS AND FIXTURES



    DEFINE BASE PLATE                                           Tagging
                                                                                 Click this button to specify
                                                                                 whether the base plate should
    In this dialog you can enter the information for the   be tagged. To do this, the system generates a sym-
    jigs and fixtures' base plate.                         bol for the axis directions and a sequential number
                                                           for the stanchions as clip areas on the edge of the
      FIXTURE
                                                           base plate.

         Base plate
                                                           All          The system generates a symbol for
         Calculate          Yes
                                                                        the axis directions and the sequen-
      Thickness       _   6.000                                         tial number for the stanchions as clip
      Corner rad.         0.000                                         area.
          Tagging           All

                                                           No           The system does not give the base
                                                                        plate any clip areas for inscription.

                                                           Axis         The system only assigns the base
                                                                        plate a symbol for the axis directions
                                                                        as inscription.
         START            CANCEL

                                                           Increm.      The system generates a symbol for
                        Click this button to specify                    the axis directions and a number for
      Calculate                                                         every fifth stanchion as clip area.
                        whether a base plate should
    be generated for the stanchions.
    Yes A base plate will be generated.

    No      No base plate will be generated.


!   If you want to generate a set of jigs and fixtures
    consisting only of stanchions with a fixed grid of
    ribs on appropriate machine tables, the base plate
    cannot be calculated.

    R Thickness
    Enter the sheet thickness of the raw material for
    the base plate.

    R Corner rad.
    Enter the desired radius for the base plate's cor-
    ners.




                                                                                                                T
758 10

   5-AXIS LASER CUTTING



         DEFINING RIBS AND SLOTS                               R Distance Y
                                                               Enter the desired distance between two ribs in the
         In this dialog you can enter information about the    Y direction.
         ribs and slots between the jigs and fixtures' stan-
         chions and base plate.                                R Gap value
           FIXTURE                                             If applicable, enter the air gap you want to leave
                                                               between the ribs of the stanchions and the slots of
                                                                                                                     n ew
                                                               the base plate.
              Ribs and slots
              Calculate           Yes                                             Click this button to define
           Height         _     5.500
                                                                    Crossing
                                                                                  whether at the intersection
           Length              30.000
                                                               points between two stanchions you want to gener-
           Distance X         150.000
           Distance Y         150.000
                                                               ate ribs in both stanchions to mount the stan-
           Gap value            0.000                          chions on a machine table with the appropriate
               Crossing            No                          hole grid.
                                                               No    The ribs will be distributed evenly along the
                                                                     length of the stanchions, separated by the
                                                                     distance entered.
              START             CANCEL
                                                               Yes The ribs will be generated at the intersec-
                                                                   tions between the stanchions. The distribu-
                             Click this button to specify
            Calculate                                              tion will begin with the offset entered at the
                             whether      the     stanchions
                                                                   origin of the active axis system.
         should be given ribs and the base plate slots so


                                                                                                                     !
         that they can be positioned relative to each other.
                                                               The stanchions' offset grid must be an integer-fac-
         Yes The system generates ribs on the stanchions       tor multiple of the total of the offset and the
             and slots in the base plate.                      length of the ribs. The base plate calculation must
                                                               not be activated.
         No      No ribs and slots are generated.

         R Height
         Enter the desired height for the ribs.

         R Length
         Enter the desired length for the ribs.

         R Distance X
         Enter the desired distance between two ribs in the
         X direction.




    T
                                                                             DESCRIPTION OF FUNCTIONS                 759
                                                                             LAY OUT JIGS AND FIXTURES



INTERACTIVE CALCULATION OF                                • Delete stanchions.
THE JIGS AND FIXTURES                                       POSITION


               After you have entered all parame-
  START
               ters for the calculation of the jigs and      Insert
fixtures, you can use the START button to start the           AxisX
interactive design of the jigs and fixtures.                Position _


The following functions are available:                       RESET SHOW       UNDO

• Insert, move or delete stanchions,                         BACK     NEXT   CANCEL

• Cut circles or polygons into stanchions and base
  plate,                                                  The step-by-step control in the lowest two rows of
• Arrange the elements of the jigs and fixtures as        buttons is identical in all the interactive calcula-
  development and                                         tion steps. It will be described below (➔ “Step-by-
                                                          step control”, page 762).
• Save the jigs and fixtures generated as assembly
  and development on any layers.
                                                          ——— Insert —————————————————
Display during the interactive calculation                Click this button if you want to add additional stan-
During the interactive calculation of the jigs and        chions.
fixtures, the following colors (color number) apply
for displaying the jigs and fixtures' individual ele-                 Click this button to specify to which
                                                            Axis
ments:                                                                of the two axis the stanchion should
• Stanchions perpendicular to the X-axis of the           be perpendicular.
  active axis systems are shown in orange (5).
                                                          K Position
• Stanchions perpendicular to the Y-axis of the ac-
                                                          Select a point to define the stanchion's position.
  tive axis systems are shown in green (6).
                                                          The stanchion will then be generated without any
• The base plate is shown in ocher (7).                   further confirmation required. The system displays
                                                          the coordinate value of the selected axis in the
POSITION STANCHIONS                                       command window.
With the following step, you can
• Add more stanchions,                                    ——— Move ———————————————————
• Move existing stanchions and                            Click this button if you want to move existing stan-
                                                          chions.

                                                          R Rib (“stanchion”)
                                                          Select the stanchion you want to move. Then you
                                                          can move the stanchion in 0.5 mm steps by holding



                                                                                                                  T
760 10

   5-AXIS LASER CUTTING



         down the left mouse button. The coordinate value       ——— Polygon ————————————————
         is displayed in the command window.                    Click this button to add polygon-shaped clip areas
                                                                to stanchions or the base plate.

         ——— Delete —————————————————                           R Elements
         Click this button if you want to delete existing       Select the elements you want to cut. Only stan-
         stanchions.                                            chions in one direction or the base plate can be se-
                                                                lected.
         R Rib (“stanchion”)
         Select the stanchion you want to delete. The stan-
         chion will then be deleted without any further con-
         firmation required.
                                                                To select multiple stanchions in sequence, select
                                                                the first stanchion and hold down the SHIFT key
                                                                until you reach the last desired stanchion. All the
                                                                                                                        L
                                                                intermediate stanchions will then be selected as
         TRIM ELEMENTS                                          well.
         You can use this step to do the following to the
         stanchions and base plate:                             K Points
                                                                Click in the display window to create a closed poly-
         • Add polygon-shaped clip areas and
                                                                gon with up to 50 corner points to describe the
         • Add circular clip areas.                             area you want to cut. The command window will
                                                                display the coordinate values of the mouse
           CUT
                                                                pointer's position. The area will be generated from
                                                                a projection of the polygon in the plane of the ele-
                                                                ment you select first. Consequently, component
            Polygon
           Elements E,E
                                                                animation is not possible when the polygon is
           Points     M,M,M.M,_                                 active.

                                                                Immediately after the polygon is closed by select-
            RESET   SHOW    UNDO
                                                                ing the starting point again, the system will cut the
            BACK    NEXT   CANCEL                               selected elements without waiting for further con-
                                                                firmation.
         The step-by-step control in the lowest two rows of
         buttons is identical in all the interactive calcula-
         tion steps. It will be described below (➔ “Step-by-    ——— Circle —————————————————
         step control”, page 762).                              Click this button to add circular clip areas to stan-
                                                                chions or the base plate.

                                                                R Elements
                                                                Select the elements you want to cut. Only stan-
                                                                chions in one direction or the base plate can be se-
                                                                lected.




    T
                                                                               DESCRIPTION OF FUNCTIONS               761
                                                                               LAY OUT JIGS AND FIXTURES



L   To select multiple stanchions in sequence, select
    the first stanchion and hold down the SHIFT key
    until you reach the last desired stanchion. All the
                                                            tion steps. It will be described below (➔ “Step-by-
                                                            step control”, page 762).
                                                              ARRANGE
    intermediate ribs will then be selected as well.

    K Position
                                                               Move
    As soon as the entry focus is on the field                Elements E,E
    Position, a preview will appear of the circle in          Position _
    the position of the mouse pointer. The command
    window will display the coordinate values of the           RESET SHOW       UNDO
    mouse pointer's position.
                                                               BACK     NEXT   CANCEL

    Select the circle's centerpoint. The selection oc-
    curs in the plane of the first element selected. Im-
    mediately after the centerpoint is selected, the se-    ——— Move ———————————————————
    lected elements will be cut without any additional      Click this button to move elements to another po-
    confirmation.                                           sition in the table allocation of the stanchions and
                                                            base plate.
    R Diameter
    Enter the circle's diameter.                            R Elements
                                                            Select the elements you want to move.
    GENERATE TABLE ALLOCATION
    In the following step, you can create a table alloca-   R Position
    tion in the development of the stanchions and the       As soon as the entry focus is on the Field position,
    base plate:                                             the selected elements will be moved by the mouse
    • Move elements to another position,                    pointer. The selection's centerpoint attaches to
                                                            the mouse pointer. The command window will dis-
    • Rotate elements into another position and             play the coordinate values of the mouse pointer's
    • Flip over elements.                                   position.

    The step-by-step control in the lowest two rows of      Select a new position for the elements. Immedi-
    buttons is identical in all the interactive calcula-    ately after a new position is selected, the selected
                                                            elements will be moved to it.


                                                            ——— Rotating ———————————————
                                                            Click this button to rotate an element by any angle
                                                            in the table allocation of the stanchions and base
                                                            plate.




                                                                                                                  T
762 10

   5-AXIS LASER CUTTING



         R Element                                               ——— Assembly ———————————————
         Select the element you want to rotate. Immedi-                        Click this button to specify whether
                                                                    Save
         ately afterward the element will be rotated by the                    the assembly should be saved in its
         specified angle without any further confirmation.       current location relative to the milling elements.
                                                                 Yes The assembly is saved.
         R Angle
         Enter the angle of rotation.                            No    The assembly is not saved.

                                                                              Click this button to open the layer ta-
                                                                   Layer
         ——— Rotate —————————————————                                         ble. Select a layer as a location to
                                                                 save the assembly. The default is the active layer.
         Click this button to flip over an element in the ta-
         ble allocation of the stanchions and base plate.
                                                                 ——— Development ————————————
         R Element
                                                                               Click this button to specify whether
         Select the element you want to flip over. Immedi-          Save
                                                                               the table allocation should be saved
         ately afterward the element will be flipped without
                                                                 in the XY-plane of the active axis systems.
         any further confirmation.
                                                                 Yes The table allocation is saved.
                          Click this button to specify along
           Axis                                                  No    The table allocation is not saved.
                          which of the two axis the element is
         to be flipped.
                                                                   Layer       Click this button to open the layer ta-
                                                                               ble. Select a layer as a location to
         SAVE JIGS AND FIXTURES CONSTRUCTION
                                                                 save the table allocation. The default is the current
         In this step you can specify whether and on what        layer.
         layer the assembly and the table allocation are to
         be saved.                                                            Click this button to save the gener-
                                                                      OK
           SAVE                                                               ated jigs and fixtures as specified in
            Assembly
                                                                 the CAD model. This ends the interactive calcula-
             Save            Yes
                                                                 tion. The FIXTURE mask remains open.
             Layer* 011_before

            Development
                                                                 STEP-BY-STEP CONTROL
             Save            Yes                                 During the interactive calculation of the jigs and
             Layer* 011_before                                   fixtures, some functions will remain permanently
                                                                 available:
            BACK    OK     CANCEL                                • Undo all changes or undo individual changes,
                                                                 • Show or hide CAD model elements not required
                                                                   for calculating the jigs and fixtures and




    T
                                                                            DESCRIPTION OF FUNCTIONS                           763
                                                                            MANUAL TABLE ALLOCATION



• the step-by-step control.
                                                            MANUAL TABLE
                                                            ALLOCATION
   RESET   SHOW     UNDO
                                                            You can use the LNEST function to generate manu-         LNEST
   BACK    NEXT    CANCEL                                   ally table allocations for manually generated or
                                                            changed jigs and fixtures elements. These ele-
              Click this button to undo all changes         ments can also be integrated into an existing
  RESET                                                     metal plate layout.
              made in the current step. The origi-
nal condition defined at the start of the step by the
system for the jigs and fixtures will be reestab-           R Elements
lished.                                                     Select the planar faces for which you want to cre-
                                                            ate a table allocation.
                  Hides the product and extension sur-
   SHOW
                  faces.                                    Press ENTER to confirm your entries. The ARRANGE
                                                            mask then appears to arrange the elements in the
                  Click this button to undo individual      table allocation. (➔ “Generate table allocation”,
   UNDO
                  changes made in the current step.         page 761)


   BACK
control.
                  Click this button to return to the pre-
                  vious step in the interactive step
                                                            Elements not running parallel to one of the three
                                                            main planes are shown in yellow (1) in the table al-
                                                            location during the interactive arrangement. When
                                                                                                                       !
                                                            the newly created table allocation is saved, the
                  Click this button (or press Enter) to     system only lets you specify the layer.
   NEXT
                  go to the next step in the interactive
step control.

                  Click this button to end the interac-     GENERATE A MACHINE-
                                                                                                                      n ew
 CANCEL
                  tive calculation.
                                                            BASED AXIS SYSTEM
                                                            By comparing the measured points on the actual           JUSTIFY
                                                            component with the corresponding CAD points, the
                                                            JUSTIFY function generates an axis system. Its ori-
                                                            entation is exactly identical to that of the axis sys-
                                                            tem defined on the cutting system relative to the
                                                            real component position on the machine table.
                                                            This axis system is required for correct calculation
                                                            of the laser paths.

                                                            The JUSTIFY function provides four different justi-
                                                            fication methods.




                                                                                                                  T
764 10

   5-AXIS LASER CUTTING



         In all the processes, you must select the machine        ments to generate an axis system that moves the
         axis system to which the measurement points will         measurement points to at least the selected toler-
         be determined as the current axis system. The re-        ance to the component elements.
         sult of the orientation will be that an axis system is
         generated and switched to active that shows the          With this method, you should keep the number of
         position of the CAD component relative to the ma-        data points to a minimum, using only as many as
         chine axis system.                                       necessary to limit any freedom of movement or ro-
                                                                  tation. Any wall thickness that needs to be taken
                     Measured
                     points loaded     CAD points                 into account for the component must be entered in
                     as NC path
         Actual                                                   PARAM.
         component
         position
                                                                  4. Combination of methods 1, 2 and 3
                                                                  The pre-justification step with reference points
                                                                  and the fuzzy matches can also be carried out in a
                                                   Z
                                                                  computation run. The pre-justification using refer-
          CAD modell with              Y               Z X        ence points takes place first and is followed by a
          trimmed curve                    Z
                                               Y          X       fuzzy match with data points. In this case, the data
                                      Y            X
              New machine-
              based coordinate       Previous coordi-
                                                                  reference points and data points must have the
              system                 nate system                  same position.

                                                                  K CAD reference points
         1. Justification using three reference points
                                                                  Select three or more points in the sequence of the
         Select three corresponding points on the compo-          running direction of the corresponding data refer-
         nent (CAD reference points) and on a data toolpath       ence points
         (data reference point), which must be aligned in
         the order of priority from point 1 to 3.                 K Measure ref.-points
                                                                  Select three or more of the points calculated on
         This method is recommended for pre-justification.
                                                                  the real component. Keep in mind the order se-
                                                                  lected earlier.
         2. Justification using many reference points
         You can carry out method 1 with more than three          Either enter these points by hand or import them
         points, in which case all points are equivalent, and     from an NC program, using GET/NC and geometry
         a position with closely spaced corresponding             “P”.
         points is determined.
                                                                  R Component
         3. Justification with fuzzy matches between data         Select surfaces, faces and topologies as compo-
            points and component                                  nent elements.
         Data points that are positioned very close to the
         CAD model can be imported as the toolpath. The
         system then uses Alignment to the component ele-




    T
                                                                                DESCRIPTION OF FUNCTIONS                   765
                                                                                TRANSFORM CUTTING PATHS



          R Data points                                         R Toolpaths
          Select toolpaths that will be imported as data        Select the toolpaths (laser cutting paths), their
          points.                                               machine head, calculation axis system or starting
                                                                angle you want to set.
          R Tolerance
          Enter the maximum deviation between the compo-        Press ENTER to accept your selection. The
          nent elements and data points.                        MACHINEPOSITION mask appears which you can
                                                                use to set the parameters.

  !       Specify either CAD reference points and data refer-
          ence points, component and data points or all four
          elements.
                                                                  MACHINEPOSITION

                                                                   Head file        head5y.msn
                                                                  Axis system
                                                                  Vector tol.
          After you press Enter to confirm the entries, an-       Starting angle        0.000
          other axis system appears that corresponds to the       Continuous        Y

          machine axis system and is defined by the system         OK                           CANCEL
          as the current axis system.

          If you are using component and data points for jus-
          tification, press Esc to cancel the fuzzy match.
                                                                If the toolpaths selected do not all have the same
                                                                header file and reference axis system, a warning
                                                                will appear.
                                                                                                                       !
  !       The laser paths must be calculated to the axis sys-
          tem generated with JUSTIFY or transferred to it via
          the LASER/TRANS function. In any case, the axis
                                                                  Head file
                                                                                     Click this button to open an
                                                                                     input field that you can use to
                                                                select files and change the machine head's config-
          system generated via JUSTIFY must be activated to     uration file (e.g. laser.msn).
          export the laser paths via PUT/NC.
                                                                K Axis system
                                                                Select the axis system that the coordinate and an-
                                                                gle information you enter for the toolpaths should
          TRANSFORM CUTTING                                     reference.
          PATHS                                                 R Vector tol.
MACHINE   In many case the machine position does not coin-      Enter the angle below which the vectors should not
          cide with the position in the CAD system. If you      change to maintain optimization and keep the
          have already generated laser paths in an appropri-    head from spinning.
          ate, self-selected axis system, you can use the
          TRANS function to move them to the currently valid    R Starting angle (option)
          reference system after you set up the workpiece.      By specifying a starting angle for the C-axis, you
          Here, new coordinate and angular values are calcu-    can determine which side of the path the C-head
          lated for each NC point calculated on the basis of    will move on in the case of asymmetrical heads.
          the original axis system.                             Since new A/B and C angles are calculated during
                                                                transformation, this is the only way to finally es-




                                                                                                                   T
766 10

   5-AXIS LASER CUTTING



           tablish on which side of the path an asymmetrical      Press ENTER to accept your entries. The system will
           head will actually move.                               then import the NC program and generate the ap-
                                                                  propriate curves, lines and texts.
           R Continuous [Y/N]
           Y The cutter follows the shortest possible path
             from one toolpath to the next.
                                                                  Use the configuration program to configure the in-
                                                                  terface (➔ page 163). This will allow you to set the
                                                                  name of the converter and the filename extension
                                                                                                                            !
           N      The value specified under starting angle is     you want to use (➔ O LASER, page 163).
                  maintained for each toolpath.

                        Click on the OK button (or press EN-
                OK
                        TER) to convert the selected tool-        MANAGING MACHINING
           paths with the corresponding elements and values.
                                                                  OPERATIONS – NC JOBS                                     n ew
                         Click CANCEL (or press Esc) to dis-      After you press the machining management but-           NCJOB
               CANCEL
                         card the settings and close the mask.    ton, the NC job library will open, containing all the


   W
                                                                  saved machining operations (NC jobs). How to cre-
           Following transformation the laser paths must be       ate or execute an NC job has been described in the
           checked again with TSIMU and CHECK. Since no           chapter “Libraries” (➔ “Generating and changing
           new NC points are calculated, flaws may occur in       NC jobs”, page 280), where you will also find gen-
           coordinate angles.                                     eral instructions on how to use the library func-
                                                                  tions (➔ “Libraries”, page 213).


           RE-IMPORTING CUTTING
    n ew   PATHS                                                  SIMULATE CALCULATED
   GET     You can use the GET function to take cutting paths
                                                                  CUTTING PATHS
           generated in Tebis and subsequently changed in         You can use TSIMU to simulate previously calcu-         TSIMU
           the CNC system and import them back into Tebis.        lated cutting paths (toolpaths):
           This will create curves for cutting paths, lines for
           the head orientation, and texts with comments, if      • simulate them graphically,
           applicable.                                            • the machine head and, if desired, the collision


     !
                                                                    model are displayed in a wireframe representa-
           The prerequisite for using this function is an ap-       tion,
           propriate converter that will convert the control's
           NC data into a format that Tebis can read.             • check them numerically for component colli-
                                                                    sions,
           R File                                                 • give them circle interpolations and
           Select the file to be imported.
                                                                  • display their NC blocks in the command window.




    T
                                                               DESCRIPTION OF FUNCTIONS                           767
                                                      SIMULATE CALCULATED CUTTING PATHS



To perform these tasks, you must first specify
• the cutting path (toolpath),
                                                       Since the automated NC system develops a single
                                                       topology in the background from all the surfaces to
                                                       be machined, it is advisable to create this topology
                                                                                                              !
• the milling elements and                             manually in advance. Otherwise, unnecessarily
                                                       long computing times may result.
• the stop surfaces with wall thickness and over-
  size (offset).
                                                       R Wall thick.
Press the TSIMU icon to get the following mask.        Enter the difference between the constructed sur-
  SIMULATION
                                                       face and the surface to be machined in case of pos-
   Toolpath
                                                       itive/negative.


                                                                                                              !
  Element              E,_
                                                       Where available, the wall thickness value is copied
   Milling elements
                                                       from the selected toolpath. To ensure a correct nu-
  Product              E,
                                                       meric check for collision with the component,
  Extension            E,
  Wall thick.     0.000
                                                       these values may not be changed. For toolpaths
                                                       imported using GET/NC, you must make sure that
   Protected element                                   the wall thickness has been entered correctly.
  Elements             E,
  Wall thick.     0.000
  Stock allow     0.000
                                                       ——— Protected element ——————
   OK              CANCEL                              R Elements (option)
                                                       Select the topologies, faces, surfaces or meshes on
                                                       which the numeric check for stop surface collision
——— Toolpath ———————————————                           with the component will be based.
R Element
                                                       R Wall thick.
Select the laser cutting path to analyze.
                                                       Enter the difference between the constructed sur-
                                                       face and the surface to be machined in case of pos-
——— Milling elements ———————                           itive/negative.
R Product (option)
                                                       R Stock allow
Select the topologies, faces, surfaces or meshes on
                                                       Offset on the stop surface to be taken into account.
which the numeric check for product collision with
the component will be based.
                                                                     Click START to accept the settings
                                                         START
                                                                     and close the mask. The machining
R Extension (option)
                                                       surfaces are temporarily colored dark blue and the
Select the topologies, faces, surfaces or meshes on    stop surfaces red. The SIMULATION mask is dis-
which the numeric check for extension collision        played for controlling the simulation and analysis.
with the component will be based.                      (➔ page 768)




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768 10

   5-AXIS LASER CUTTING



                           Click CANCEL (or press Esc) to dis-     SIMULATE CALCULATED CUTTING PATHS
          CANCEL
                           card the settings and close the mask.   The following buttons are used to control machine
                                                                   head simulation.

                                                                            Cutting head jumps back to the start of
         CONTROLLING SIMULATION AND                                         the current area.
         ANALYSIS
                                                                            Cutting head moves back one NC record.
         Use the SIMULATION mask to simulate and ana-
         lyze cutting paths graphically and interactively af-
                                                                            Cutting head moves forward one NC
         ter calculation. You can set spline interpolations,
                                                                            record.
         feed rates and preparatory codes at the current NC


                                                                                                                          !
         point, which is displayed on the bottom line of the
                                                                   These NC points are taken from the parameters
         command window.
                                                                   Tolerance, Angle            error and Max.
                                                                   distance. The NC points the system outputs de-
         You can use this mask to
                                                                   pend on the post-processor.
         • simulate cutting paths graphically,
                                                                            Cutting head jumps ahead to next area.
         • display fundamental cutting path data, e.g. po-
           sitioning, angular and feed-rate values and
                                                                            Cutting head moves back and forth be-
           technology macros,
                                                                            tween starting and end points of the cut-
         • display NC records associated with the cutting          ting path.
           paths in the command window.
                                                                            Continuous reverse travel of cutting head
         • add circle interpolations to the cutting paths
                                                                            to starting point of cutting path.
           and
         • have the system display the course of the rota-                  Continuous forward travel of cutting head
           tion angle for both axis as a diagram.                           to endpoint of cutting path.
           SIMULATION
                                                                            Interrupts continuous travel of the cut-
                                                                            ting head.

                    SHOW                                                    Accelerates continuous travel of the cut-
            CHECK   AREA     VIEW                                           ting head.
            DEF     SHADE    DATA
            FLAG    VEC      ANGLE
            AB       AE       DEL
                                                                            Slows continuous travel of the cutting
                    GEN                                                     head.
            OK              CANCEL
                                                                   At any time during the simulation, you can select
                                                                   any point in the cutting path to reposition the cut-




    T
                                                                   DESCRIPTION OF FUNCTIONS                           769
                                                          SIMULATE CALCULATED CUTTING PATHS



    ting head. Hold down the left mouse button to          DISPLAY A SHADED VIEW OF THE MACHINE
    move it along the cutting path.                        HEAD
                                                                       Displays a shaded view of the ma-
                                                             SHADE
    SHOW ALL ELEMENTS                                                  chine head (➔ page 722) defined in
                  Klick the SHOW button to switch ele-     the machine parameters for visual collision con-
       SHOW
                  ments not defined as product, exten-     trol.


                                                                                                                  !
    sion or stop surfaces to visible or invisible.
                                                           To display the machine head in a shaded view, the
                                                           head files (e.g.: lasera.cnf and laserc.cnf) must
    CHECKING CUTTING PATHS FOR COLLISION
                                                           contain surface models (➔ page 722). You may
    WITH PART
                                                           also use the TRANS function to assign a machine
                  Click the CHECK button to check the      head to the toolpath later (➔ page 765).
      CHECK
                  selected cutting path for collision
    with the part. Collisions with machining and pro-      DISPLAYING CUTTING PATH PARAMETERS
    tected elements are displayed as colored points on     AND NC RECORDS
    the cutting path. The assignment of individual col-
                                                                     Displays toolpath parameters and NC
    ors to given test tolerances and the value of the        DATA
                                                                     blocks in the command window.
    greatest violation of the component is displayed in
    the command window. A mask is displayed that you
                                                           DISPLAY INTERPOLATION POINTS, FEED
    can use to save the points.
                                                           RATES AND TECHNOLOGY MACROS

!   Only component violations greater than the value
    specified in Tolerance are checked.
                                                              FLAG
                                                                        Shows in the current area all circle
                                                                        interpolation starting and ending
                                                           points (AB = Arc Begin; AE = Arc End), as well as
    DISPLAY CUTTING PATHS BY AREA                          the feed rates (G0, G1) and the technology mac-
              Changes the view so that only the            ros.
       AREA
              cutting path's current area is dis-
    played.                                                DISPLAY VECTORS OF THE HEAD
                                                           ORIENTATION
    SWITCH TO NOZZLE VIEW DIRECTION                                      Shows in the current area the orien-
                                                               VEC
      VIEW     Changes the view to show a projected                      tation of the cutting head on the (ac-
               representation of the nozzle.               tual) NC points using symbolic yellow lines.

    DISPLAY COLLISION MODEL
                 Shows the geometric backup ele-
                                                           These NC points are taken from the parameters
                                                           Tolerance, Angle            error and Max.
                                                           distance. The NC points the system outputs de-
                                                                                                                  !
        DEF
                 ments from the file *.def in wire         pend on the post-processor.
    frame model format at the current position.
                                                           ANALYZE THE CUTTING PATH
                                                                        Display the A or B and C angles for
                                                             ANGLE
                                                                        the next 256 path points, starting at
                                                           the current NC point.




                                                                                                                  T
770 10

   5-AXIS LASER CUTTING



           SET CIRCLE INTERPOLATIONS
                       Sets the starting point of a circle in-
               AB
                       terpolation at the current position.

                        Sets the endpoint of a circle interpo-
               AE
                        lation at the current position.

                        Deletes points for circle interpolation
              DEL
                        at the current position.

           SET NOZZLE DIRECTION VECTOR
                        Places a geometry point on the cur-
              GEN
                        rent position as well as a line of
           length 100 in the nozzle direction.

                        Saves the modifications to the cut-
               OK
                        ting path and closes the mask.

                         Click on the CANCEL button (or press
            CANCEL
                         Esc) to reject the modifications to
           the cutting path and close the mask.



           MACRO LIBRARY
   MACRO   You can use the MACRO function to open the macro
           library, where you can use the graphic interface to
           define macros and a table to manage them.


           The macro library is described in the chapter “Li-

    n ew
           braries”. There you will find:

           • the functions of the macro library (➔ “The
             macro library”, page 249), and
           • general information on using the Tebis library
             functions. (➔ “Libraries”, page 213)




    T
DESCRIPTION OF FUNCTIONS   771
          MACRO LIBRARY




                   T

				
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