Tutorial CAD/CAM 3D Diamond-Circle-Square InkScape/MakerCAM

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Initial Setup

InkScape

  1. File | Document Properties --- set the units to mm and make width and height 70 (20mm more than the intended size of 50mm, so as to make the math easier, alternately, one could re-set the origin point)
  2. File | Inkscape Preferences --- under Tools choose the radio button to use Geometric bounding box (this excludes stroke width from the size, making calculation, placement and sizing easier)
  3. Make certain you haven't hidden the Tool Controls Bar (View | Show/Hide --- Tool Controls Bar should be checked so as to be visible)

MakerCAM

  1. Set the units to CM (drop-down menu in the upper right corner)
  2. Edit | Edit Preferences --- SVG Import Default Resolution (px/inch) 90 --- it may also be helpful to set the Machining Tolerance to 0.001

Drawing in InkScape

  • Before drawing an object for milling, draw a rectangle of any size anywhere in the window, change to the solid arrow tool, then set the rectangle equal to the intended working volume, set its stroke to off and x and y origin set to 5, w(idth) and h(eight) to 60

Square

  • Draw a rectangle --- Object | Fill and Stroke, set stroke to off; set units to mm, x and y origin to 10 w and h to 50

Circle

  • Draw a circle --- change its color so it can be more readily seen; set x and y origin to 7.5 w and h to 45

Diamond

  1. Draw a rectangle --- change its color so it can be more readily seen; set w and h to 30; w/ it still selected Object | Transform | Rotate 45
  2. drag it so that it is encompassed by the first rectangle (or set the origin to 1,1)
  3. Object | Align and Distribute set Relative to: Biggest Object, then center horizontally and vertically (that should place the diamond at 8.787, 8.787)

Difference the paths

At this time, if one imported the file, the objects would be randomly scattered across the work-area --- the most expedient way to address this is to combine all the objects into a single compound path (mere grouping doesn't seem to work). One way to do this is to select the top two objects and difference them (Path | Difference or Control-) --- repeat this until you have combined all paths into one compound path.

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Circle-diamond-square-50-45-40mm.svg

Save

  • Save the file as a .svg

Process the file in MakerCAM

We are assuming a 1/8" end mill --- cutting and measuring this will allow one to determine a setup's runout.

Values are suggested defaults, adjust as necessary for your machine and material.

  1. File | Open SVG file
  2. Everything is selected (highlighted in red) so click away to deselect things

Diamond

  1. Click on the first object (the diamond) and shift-click on the outermost / perimeter square
  2. CAM | Pocket Operation:
name: diamond
tool diameter (mm): 3.175
target depth (mm): (negative) -3
safety height (mm): 3
stock surface (mm): 0
step over (%): 40
step down (mm): 1.5
roughing clearance (mm): 0
feed rate (mm): 355
plunge rate (mm): 175
direction: Counter-Clockwise

For the first operation, we start at a height of zero, assuming that we will set the stock surface as zero. For this tutorial, we'll skip doing a roughing pass, and will leave the feed and plunge rate very conservative.

  • Click away to deselect things.

Circle

  1. Click on the second object (the circle) and shift-click on the outermost / perimeter square
  2. CAM | Pocket Operation:
name: circle
tool diameter (mm): 3.175
target depth (mm): (negative) -6
safety height (mm): 3
stock surface (mm): (negative) -3
step over (%): 40
step down (mm): 1.5
roughing clearance (mm): 0
feed rate (mm): 355
plunge rate (mm): 175
direction: Counter-Clockwise

Note that for this second pass, we set our stock surface to be negative, since we're working within the pocket established by the diamond pocketing operation above, so use that operation's target depth for the stock surface.

  • Click away to deselect things.

Square

  1. Click on the last object (the remaining square) and the outermost path
  2. CAM | Pocket Operation:
name: square
tool diameter (mm): 3.175
target depth (mm): (negative) -9
safety height (mm): 3
stock surface (mm): (negative) -6
step down (mm): 1.5
feed rate (mm): 355
plunge rate (mm): 175
direction: Counter-Clockwise
  • Click away to deselect things.

Profile

  1. Click on the last object (the outermost square)
  2. CAM | Profile Operation:
name: profile
tool diameter (mm): 3.175
target depth (mm): (negative) -12 (adjust this to match the thickness of your material)
inside/outside: Inside (should be inside to take advantage of earlier cutting --- if Outside, then set stock surface to 0 and safety height suitably)
safety height (mm): 3
stock surface (mm): (negative) -9
step down (mm): 1.5
feed rate (mm): 355
plunge rate (mm): 175
direction: Counter-clockwise (or clockwise depending on material)

CAM

  1. CAM | Calculate All
  2. CAM | Export G-Code
  3. click all (make sure that the order is diamond, circle, square, profile)
  4. “Export Selected Toolpaths”