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Old 04-18-2012, 08:33 AM   #1
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Default How?

I am just researching this for now but as a complete beginner with no knowledge at all about cnc/cam/cad. if i wanted to make extra parts from my helis, how would that be accomplished. would i need to measure every single part of one piece then put it into auto cad then cam then mach3 and that would cnc the part for me? is there something i could simply take a picture of the object and then i would put dimensions into and cnc it? totaly new dont know anything about this so i would appreciate any help.
i have access to getting autocad so im going to start learning about it through utube videos if i can find some just to start.

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Old 04-18-2012, 09:04 AM   #2
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Unfortunately you gotta do the steps. Measure. Cad. Cam. Then mill. It's time consuming that's why there isn't a lot of people doing it. Then there possibly mounting fixtures and jigs to be built depending on part and how it needs to be machined etc. One off parts on CNC can be real time consuming and not worth it. If you plan on making lots then it's the way to go

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Old 04-20-2012, 06:22 AM   #3
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I make parts for my helis starting from the CAD to the finished part on cnc machines. I guess the best way to look at this is that we do it because we enjoy designing and making the parts not because we need a replacement part .

You can sometimes buy replacement parts cheaper that the stock material cost

For simple parts its much easier just to program in gcode as a .txt file through mach3. In most cases you wont exceed the 500 lines of code so you can use the free version.
Even a simple part modelled in 3D will have lots and lots of gcode just because thats how the CAM program does it. gcode uses lots of "shorthand" which keeps the code down. But if you design curvy parts then 3D is the only way.
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Old 06-07-2012, 09:20 PM   #4
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I know maker bot has a 3d scanner so you could try that.
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Old 09-06-2012, 05:20 PM   #5
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Yep... no easy way around (well that is affordable for us hobby guys). You could get something like this where you touch the part and it "draws" it out for you. Very neat but $$$$$$$$$$$.

Other than that, yep, measure twice, draw once, re-measure, mill. It is time consuming but you do it for the accomplishment, not to save money. I have stuff on my site below if you are interested in learning more.

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Old 09-06-2012, 06:07 PM   #6
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You could also get an all in one package like mastercam, surfcam, or rhinoceros 3d to do all your drawings and post your gcodes.

I'm not familiar with autocad, it may have a cam plugin to post gcodes as well?
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