Edgecam 2019 from Vero includes additive module

In response to the increasing use of hybrid manufacturing, the latest release of Edgecam from Vero Software introduces an additive module. Supporting the direct energy deposition method, Edgecam now offers a dedicated manufacturing cycle which guides a laser as it deposits material to form a shape. After, the shape is machined using Edgecam’s milling cycles to create the final component.

Edgecam brand manager John Buehler says the newly developed additive lace cycle is designed to construct geometry on a layer-by-layer basis, depositing a continuous molten bead of material that adheres to the parent material.

“Using the same intuitive dialog interface as all other Edgecam cycles, additive lace not only offers the ability to work with various CAD entities but empowers the user to determine numerous control types, such as lace angle, amount of finish passes and undercut mode,” he explains.

In total, Edgecam 2019 R1 includes around 30 individual enhancements. For instance, mindful of the need to generate quick toolpaths to reduce production costs, Edgecam 2019 R1 introduces three modifications to its machining engine, benefiting both turning and milling operations. Here, regeneration time has been reduced by around 20% when editing the move angular/index commands.

“Responding to customer feedback, the Waveform machining algorithm has been enhanced to reduce processing time,” says Buehler. “Previously, performance bottlenecks were detected when small step-overs were used, or on components with narrow channels and heavily curved regions. Manufacturers will now notice average time savings ranging between 15 and 60%, depending on the complexity of the component and its cycle parameters.”

And, due to improvements in the way Edgecam’s machining engine generates data, machining large complex components is now considerably quicker, an outcome achieved by the way that the software calculates prismatic geometry within the toolpath.

A newly developed parting-off cycle is available for turning customers, satisfying demand for a single cycle to not only perform the parting-off toolpath, but to deburr the back edge during the same operation.

Again, for turning customers, an up-cutting function has been added to the finish-turning cycle. This enables high productivity finishing to be achieved in conjunction with Sandvik Coromant’s CoroTurn Prime tools and inserts. Located alongside the down-cut modifier, the up-cutting function reverses the direction of the toolpath to utilise the CoroTurn Prime insert geometry.

Found in the rough-turn cycle, the stock runout function has been enhanced to give greater toolpath control when exiting the cut. The inclusion of runout angle and runout length means toolpaths can be trimmed to user-specific demands.

“Both the thread turning and finish-groove cycles now benefit from functionality found in other turning commands,” says Buehler. “Safe distance modifier has been added to the thread-turning cycles, giving more accurate control at the start position of a threading toolpath. In addition, finish-groove toolpaths can be more tightly controlled with newly developed start and end extension modifiers.”

Buehler says that although Edgecam Inspect is less than two years old, it continues to grow fast, and Edgecam 2019 R1 adds to it with 13 enhancements.

“Firstly, the mathematical brain behind the product is being switched to use the PCDMIS fit libraries supplied by our parent company, Hexagon,” he explains. “All geometry fit calculations, such as measurement deviations and GD&T values, now use a higher level of certified and approved algorithms.

“And, we’ve introduced more customisation,” continues Buehler. “In the past, users had to accept the standard measurement report, but now they can develop their own software plug-ins to personalise it, along with developing their own probing canned cycles, usually in Renishaw or M&H format.”

Probing features can be managed more easily, as all commands are automatically created on separate layers.

“Furthermore, where either the solid model geometry is incorrect, or the model isn’t available, the new manual feature means it’s still possible to inspect a region,” says Buehler.

Through user feedback, specific probing features now work with rotary solid faces, and the feedback can also include the evaluation of axis deflection.

“The final enhancement to this area provides two new output variations in the work offset function: type and axes,” he says. “These give greater control and a more detailed inspection routine, while communicating to the machine tool via the NC gateway.”

The hole cycle now has additional collision checking. Although stringent detection has been in place for a number of releases – such as a toolpath being redirected to avoid a clamp – Edgecam 2019 R1 now checks if a hole is obstructed by any part of a fixture. Where such a collision exists, the system removes the drill position and alerts the user.

Last but not least, ‘gouge check gap’ has been added to the chamfering cycle to give even stricter control over the toolpath. Specifically, neighbouring features which could potentially come into contact with the flute of the taper tool, can now be excluded.