V4 - New Slice Command

on Thu, May 13, 2010 in development

I’ve always disliked the slice command in MeshCAM until now; it’s ugly, unclear, and inefficient. The Customer Experience Program showed moderate usage even in this sorry state so I figured it might get real use if I made it better. The new slice command is not just a trick of defining the stock to only machine one slab (like the old command), it will instead save a batch of STL files- each one representing one slab of the model that can be loaded and machined separately. An example of one of the STL slabs is shown below.

There is only one problem- parts with undercuts look funky. I am taking some geometric shortcuts to generate the slices that make the system as robust as possible. Undercuts end up with big planes above them that, while technically correct for a 3-axis mill, are ugly. I’ll be curious to get feedback on that part after release. I’d post a photo of that but I’m in the middle of a rebuild and the blog post gives me something to do while waiting.


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