Vectric Aspire v11


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What's New in V11?

Upgrade today to version 11 and push the boundaries of your imagination with ease. The new and improved features released include; custom brush sculpting, 3D segmenting, multi sheet support for easy management of multi material projects, improvements to the custom shape creation tools, spell checking, 3D rest machining for reduced machining times and much more!

Here you will find everything you need to know about how Aspire has evolved through the past iterations and also everything included in the latest release – version 11!

To upgrade your software from a previous version or to Aspire from one of our other products (Cut2D or VCarve), simply click on the ‘Upgrade to V11’ button below to be redirected to your V&CO customer portal. Once you’ve logged in, follow the instructions within your account to upgrade your software.

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Custom Brush Sculpting

Gives you the option of using any model as a sculpting brush.

3D Segmenting

Interactively segment the model into parts to minimize the loss of detail.

Multi Sheet Support

Organize your work through the new sheet management tab.

3D Rest Machining

Uses multiple tools to optimize machining time, material removal and tool lifespan.

Click on the versions below to find out what new features have been added:

Custom Brush Sculpting

The sculpting tool has been improved to include the option of using any model as a brush for sculpting, giving you an unlimited selection of brush styles that suit your needs. The component brush option can be used as part of the deposit and remove tools, where the brush will leave an impression in the composite model that simulates the pushing of the component brush through the surface. You can also use the dynamic rotation option that intelligently rotates the brush in the direction that you are sculpting. The custom brush allows you to easily add texture and detail to your composite model.

3D Segmenting

When importing 3rd party 3D models we’ve added the ability to segment the model into parts to help minimize the loss of detail (undercuts) that can occur upon import. You can interactively segment a model all from within the 3D view where you can control the position and angle of the segment plane. The parts can be easily visualized individually and in a layout format so you can view how the models will be imported as a relief prior to import.

Multi Sheet Support

We have introduced the concept of sheet creation and management to organize your work, where you can create sheets yourself and control them through the sheet management tab. Each sheet can have it’s own dimensions and settings making it an ideal solution for when you are working on a project that requires multiple materials. The new sheets tab lists all of the current sheets and allows you to create, update and delete them. You can create sheets of different sizes and thicknesses as well as having the ability to control the material appearance for each sheet to better visualize your toolpaths as part of the overall project. All sheets within a project can be managed individually or collectively, making it simple to resize or update a specific selection of sheets. When nesting parts you can choose to nest to specific sheets all within the nesting form.

3D Rest Machining

Rest machining is a technique which uses multiple tools to try and efficiently optimize machining time, material removal and tool lifespan. Within the 3D finish toolpath you now have the option to use more than one tool, with each tool removing any remaining material that the previous tool was unable to machine. The rest machining technique can be controlled by specifying parameters which determine what areas are worth machining with the smaller tool.

Shape Creator – Custom Profiles

Custom profiles can now be used to create shapes from within the create shape tool. This custom profile will behave similarly to the existing profile options, allowing you to control how the created shape is built up, allowing for an unlimited set of profile options.

3D Roughing – Avoid Machined Areas

The 3D raster strategy in the 3D roughing toolpath now has the option to avoid machined areas. This will mean that if an area has already been machined by a previous pass, then the current pass will try not to re-machine this area. For some types of 3D models this will result in shorter machining times.

Shape Creator – Sweep

The new sweep option in the create shape form takes the chosen profile (either one of the pre-provided or a new custom profile) and sweeps the vector inside of any selected closed vectors. When used in conjunction with the custom profile options it can be used to create complex custom shapes with decorative boundaries.

Variable Thickness Relief Slicing

The relief slicing feature now gives you the option to choose the thickness of individual slices, where they can be tweaked and visualised in the 3D view to give you maximum control of how your model is sliced for machining. This helps to ensure that there are no thin slices that can be problematic from a machine and assembly point of view.

Resize Vectors Individually

We’ve introduced a new option in the set size tool to allow you to resize vectors within a selection on an individual basis. Allowing you to resize multiple vectors to a specified value or percentage, which would be useful for projects where geometry requires specific size changes e.g slots and circles.

Spell Checker

In various text entry fields within the software spelling errors will be underlined in red, where you can locate the correct spelling from the right click menu to automatically replace the incorrect word, with the ability to add words to the software’s dictionary too! Ensuring that the software corrects you before you notice the mistake whilst machining!

Re-Import 3D Models

When you import 3rd party 3D models as standard components in the software you can right click on the component(s) to take you back to the model orientation form where the software will remember the last settings used making it easy for you to make those fine adjustments ready for import.

Swap Sides in 2-Sided Jobs

When working in a two sided project you can now take advantage of the new option to swap sides from within the edit menu, where the software will swap all of the content that is on one side to the other.

Online Post Processor and Machine Management

V11 significantly improves the management of your CNC machine, its capabilities (for example rotary or laser add-ons), associated post-processors and default tool cutting feeds and speeds for a selection of materials. As always our software is fully customizable for those who want to have full, low-level, control but Vectric’s new ‘Kickstarter’ wizard can also help you get started with a set of tools with reasonable initial settings using our constantly updated online list of the most common machine brands and models. The ‘Kickstarter’ wizard not only ensures that you have the right post-processors and machine configurations straight-away, but the new management system also allows you to optionally stay up to date if relevant newer post-processors for your machine are released in the future all from within the software.

Nesting Components and Vectors Simultaneously

It is now possible to nest components and vectors simultaneously within your job using the nest tool.

Text Kerning – Whole Line

When using the edit text spacing tool you can now adjust the spacing between all characters for the entire line in one go. To do this simply press the Alt key whilst clicking with the left mouse button, this will bring all the characters in the line closer together, and to increase the spacing simply hold Shift & Alt whilst clicking. This spacing also works for whole line text that is on an arc or aligned to curves in your projects. This enhancement makes it quicker and easier to kern all of the characters all at the click of a button.

3D Roughing – Raster Angle

When using the 3D roughing toolpath there is now the option to specify a raster angle that no longer restricts you to the X or Y axis. Helping to avoid scenarios where there is excess material left for the finishing toolpath.

Pocket Rest Machining Time

When pocketing regions using multiple tools, the software is now much more likely to skip the areas that have been machined with the larger tools. This helps to ensure that we don’t cut more than we need to and the smaller tools only machine away in places the larger tool could not get to, helping to reduce tool breakage and in some cases this will result in faster machining times.

Chamfer Toolpath – Overcut and Cut Direction

In the chamfer toolpath we’ve introduced a new overcut option which enables you to use the side of the tool to make the final cut along the edge of the chamfer. This helps to ensure that the tip of the tool stays off the finished part. For example, if you were using a v-bit tool that doesn’t quite have a pointy tip then by over cutting we can help to eliminate the unsightly witness marks that would otherwise have occurred from the flat end of the tool. We’ve also added the ability to specify the cut direction for your chamfer where it can be set to either conventional or climb machining, helping you to achieve the best possible results with your chamfer projects.

Moulding Toolpath Vector Selector & Templates

In the moulding toolpath form you can now make use of the automatic vector selector options allowing you to automatically select the rail and profile vectors for machining. This also means it is now possible to save moulding toolpaths as toolpath templates, making their creation easily automatable for a much quicker workflow.

Ramping on all VCarve End Mills

The VCarve Toolpath allows you to use a series of area clearance tools to help remove excess material. It is now possible to ramp plunges moves for all end mills and other types of clearance tools for which the corner sharpening option is unchecked. Helping to reduce the chance of your tools breaking, and can reduce wear and tear on the tools.

Undo Polyline & Draw Curve

When creating vectors using the polyline and draw curve tool you can take advantage of the undo shortcut to be able to easily undo the last span.

Delete Empty Layers

It is now possible to delete multiple layers from the right click menu within the layers menu. Where you have the option to delete this layer, visible layers, invisible layers and empty layers! Providing you with plenty of options to quickly erase unwanted data from your layers list, at the click of your mouse.

Drag Snipping

You can interactively snip overlapping vectors by simply dragging your mouse along the intersections you want to remove! This means you no longer have to click on each individual span, making the process much smoother where you will be done trimming in no time!

Improved Polyline Tool

We have improved the way in which the ‘draw polyline’ tool works, where you now have the added option to draw in bezier spans interactively, allowing the overall drawing process to be done much more efficiently.

Dynamic setting of Rectangle Corner Radii in the 2D View

The way we create radiused internal and external corners has been vastly improved to allow you to dynamically set the radii of the corners in the 2D view, allowing you to visually set the radius of the external or internal corners.

Improvements to Sharp Corner Offsetting

We’ve made improvements to the way that we handle sharp corners when we offset vectors to give results which are more correct and visually pleasing.

Improved Level Clipping Workflow

Where level clipping is concerned we have made some improvements to the overall workflow. It is now much easier to adjust your clipping boundary and change how your model is clipped. We have added three options allowing you to “apply”, “update” and “remove” a clipping effect making it more intuitive and much easier to update changes to your clipped vector boundary.

Two Sided Machining: Copy to the other side in 3D View

When working with 3D items in a double sided job, you can now copy and move components to the other side directly from within the 3D view, ensuring a much quicker workflow.

Shape Creation: New Profiles

We have added in two new shape profiles to increase the profile selection available. With the option to create a concave profile and an “s”-shaped smooth profile. Both of these profiles make for the easy creation of dishes or raised shields in conjunction with the limit to height option.

Shape Creation: Blend Mode

We have added a new final height option from within the create shape form, this option is called “blend to inner vectors”. This new option enables you to create a shape where the selected profile blends from the outer contour to the inner contour where it’s closed off with a flat surface at a height that you specify in the form. This allows for the creation of some really interesting shapes at the click of a button!

Thread Milling Toolpath

We’ve introduced a brand new toolpath to our selection, this is the thread milling toolpath. This toolpath enables you to machine holes for standard size screws in metals and acrylics, and is also useful for the creation of decorative wood fasteners.

The thread milling toolpath has the option to create both internal and external threads, for example if you wanted to create a cavity to screw something into or if you wanted to create an exterior thread on something like a bolt!

Chamfering/Counter-Sinking Toolpath

In this release we have introduced a brand new toolpath: The chamfer toolpath. This toolpath allows you to easily create chamfers using v-bits or ball nose tools to create decorative edges and is also a great way to create counter-sunk holes.

Multi-Tool Pocketing

The pocket toolpath and the female Inlay pocket toolpath now support multiple clearance tools for more efficient area clearance. Using multiple tools means that you can use a much larger clearance tool for clearing moderately large areas as well as progressively smaller tools to remove smaller areas making this process as efficient as possible.

The largest tool in the list will always display first and will remove as much material as it can and any subsequent tools that follow will only machine areas where the previous tools could not fit.

Using multiple tools with this strategy can help shorten machining times and improve the life of your tools.

Toolpath Group Improvements

We’ve made improvements to the functionality of ‘toolpath groups’ making them much more useful! We’ve made it more convenient to create toolpath groups where you can create them from an empty list to help start the organisation of your toolpaths right from the get go! We’ve also added the ability to create groups from visible toolpaths in the list, which is useful when you want to organise your toolpaths by different materials used, tool types or grouping the toolpaths by part, however you like to organise your toolpaths we’ve made it very easy to do! We have also included the ability to save groups within a toolpath template, ensuring that jobs you create at a later date get done quicker now they’re organised the way you want them! On top of this we can also toolpath preview a group by checking the visibility of the group, and using the option to ‘preview visible toolpaths’.

Toolpath Tab Auto Placement

10.5 sees some nice enhancements made to automatic tab placement in the profile toolpath. By default tabs will be positioned to avoid corners and curved regions, minimizing the need for manual adjustment.

Toolpath Batch Saving

We’ve made it easier than ever to save out your toolpaths! Now you have the ability to output multiple visible toolpaths to separate files in just one click! Along with the ability to output toolpaths together so that you can save your toolpaths in as few files as possible!

Stopped Repeated Retracts and Plunges in Profile Toolpaths

In the profile toolpath we stopped repeated retracts and plunges when cutting on open vectors to reduce machining times and make the whole process more efficient.

Optimise Link-up Moves Between Open Contours When Cutting Direction Doesn’t Matter

We have optimized the link up moves between open contours when the cutting direction doesn’t matter allowing for more efficient machining with reduced machining times.

Ctrl + Drag in Tool Database

For ease of use we have added the ability to copy tools in the tool database by simply selecting to the tool along with the CTRL key and dragging your new tool into position ready for editing.

2D Preview for Moulding Toolpath Roughing

We’ve made a minor enhancement to the way we preview the moulding toolpath in the 2D view, where we are now able to visualise the clearance toolpath as well as the finish.

Calculate All Visible

We have now added in a further right click option to calculate all visible toolpaths allowing you to update only the required toolpaths.

Saving Merged Toolpaths in a Toolpath Template

We now have the ability to save a merged toolpath within a toolpath template ensuring that all template jobs that you create retain the parameters originally set out, enabling you to get the next job done efficiently.

Save and Restore Last Vector is Nest Boundary Option on Nesting Form

The software will now save and restore the check box “last vector is nest boundary” option within the nesting form.

On First Toolpath Save, no post-processor is selected

On first toolpath save, no post-processor is selected, allowing you to select a post processor from the post processor menu.

Job Templates

We have introduced the “job template file” concept allowing you to set-up template files that use common settings you may want to reuse for similar jobs in the future.

Node Editing

Node editing can now be performed on multiple vectors selected at the same time. Making it easier to access all the nodes and spans in your job for multiple editing, without having to access each vector individually.

We have also added the ability to transform your vectors directly from the span itself allowing you to drag individual spans and change their shape in the case of arcs and Beziers, or moving the whole span in the case of lines for a much easier, intuitive workflow to get you to the shape you want.

In cases where you have two open vectors, you can select the end points of each vector and join them together whilst remaining in node edit mode using the right click menu, you can then join them with a straight line, a curve or the mid point between the two.

Maintain Object Rotation

When rotating and scaling objects, the original bounds are now maintained. Allowing you to scale rotated objects along their axes more easily and intuitively. When we scale the size of a rotated object we can now scale the part in line with the rotated bounds of a selected object.

To accommodate this enhancement, we’ve also updated various transformation tools to include the rotated bounds when making transformations to a rotated vector, For example;

In the move tool we can now move objects relative to their rotated bounds.

In terms of rotation you can now rotate objects to an absolute value as well as a relative value to the current bounds.

When working with rotated objects in the mirror tool we can check the option to use rotated bounds and all mirroring applications will be relative to the bounds of the rotated object.

When working with the distort tool on a rotated object we can now edit the envelope within the rotated bounds making it much easier to control the shape of the distortion.

Bitmap Improvements

When importing bitmaps you now have the ability to rotate it directly in the software using the rotation handles on the corners of the image.

Font List Favourites

The font list in both the ‘create text’ and ‘create text within a vector box’ form will now save the 5 most recently used fonts at the top of the list to allow quicker selection of frequently used fonts, that way you save time searching for your favourite fonts.

The number of recently used fonts displayed can easily be edited in the program options form to a number you are happy with.

Welding Text

The welding tool includes the welding of text objects all at the click of a button! Which is perfect for overlapping style fonts.

Simply select your text, use the weld option where it will keep all of the internal regions of the text characters.

You also have the option to keep or replace the original text object.

Dynamic Text on a Curve

When text is placed on a curve, its anchor can now be freely moved, rather than being limited to the standard three predefined locations of left right and centre, we can now move the anchor to give us much greater control of the position of the wrapped text.

Another enhancement we have made is that the wrapped text can be detached from the original curve and still be re-worked in the wrap text form, where it remembers the original settings of the wrap if you wanted to make further changes.

Add Side Length to Polygon Tool

We have added an extra option in the draw polygon form where you are now able to create a polygon by specifying the length of a side. For example if you want to create an equilateral triangle where all the sides are 2 inches long you can simply specify this in the form and the software will create it.

Shape Editing Shortcut

We have added a shortcut to quickly get you into a shape form for further editing. If a vector is selected which is able to be modified using one of the shape drawing tools, (circle, ellipse, rectangle, polygon or star) then by simply pressing ‘E’ on the keyboard the software will now automatically open the correct shape creation tool for the selected shape.

Space Selection Behaviour

The space selection controls in the alignment tools form will now maintain the X or Y ordering of any selected vectors and space them between the top and bottom or left and right items in the selection, regardless of what order we selected the vectors in.

Nesting & Double-sided Nesting

When nesting parts it is easy to see what parts will be nested before applying the nest command. When you select your vectors for nesting, the software will indicate what it believes to be “parts” and you will see that represented by the thick black outline, any vectors that overlap an outer boundary will be included in the outline for the “part” and any vectors that lie inside the bounds of the outer vector will be highlighted with a brown colour (if the “allow parts inside other parts” option is checked) and this is to represent areas that the software identifies as “holes” in the work piece.

With the addition of displaying the outer boundaries for parts to be nested these outlines will be used during the nesting process and so parts will be nested in a much more space efficient way.

When working in a double-sided job the nesting form will automatically switch on the nest two sided parts option, allowing you to nest vectors on both sides of your material. Again the visual indicators are handy so that you are able to visualise whole parts where vectors overlap each other on both sides.

Design & Make Bundle Selection

When upgrading or purchasing version 10 you are entitled to select one free model project worth $55 courtesy of our sister company Design & Make that you can use in the software.

At the point of purchase you have a one time opportunity to purchase any of the full collections at a discounted price. Where there are four themed model collections to choose from that have been professionally created and are ready to use on your CNC.

New Clipart

We have added over 40 new pieces of 2D clipart to help you get started with all sorts of projects. You will find game layouts and moulding profiles for use with the moulding toolpath.

We have also included vector rotary profiles that you can use to model spindles in a rotary job.

There is a selection of stylized words which would be perfect for VCarving and we have also included 40 texture fill tiles that have been carefully created from the existing tile clipart using the texture area tool, so all you need to do is drag the tile out and it will fill out with the pattern it was created from.

Copy Dragging of Components

Easily copy components into other levels of your job by simply holding down the ‘Ctrl’ key on your keyboard whilst dragging the component into a different level ensuring that your assembled part.

Replace Below

We have added a new model editing tool which replaces the “replace below” gadget. This tool allows you to trim or flatten the bottom of a component(s). For example if you’ve imported an STL model that has a lot of thickness, which can be quite typical of 3D scanned data, this tool will allow us to simply trim away the unwanted thickness. Another scenario could be that you have created a negative area in your model for example when sculpting or combining a component with a deep subtracted model, this tool will easily remove anything below a given height.

This height can be manually typed in or you can simply double click on an area of the model itself that we want to remove and the form will update according to the Z value of where you have clicked.

Simply select if you would like to replace this with transparency or a plane.

The final option also allows you to drop the component by the value we are removing to, to help keep your models to standard relief heights.

Sculpting Enhancements

If you have a favourable setting for a particular sculpting tool and application you can save the settings as a pre-set that you can name and access in later sessions from a drop down list to quickly reinstate those settings.

We have also added the option to overlay a bitmap image over the component you are sculpting, this is perfect for when you are sculpting areas that require you to refer to the original image you are working from to help you get the model to a finished state, for example faces and animals.

To help achieve this you have the ability to alter the image opacity, to reveal as much or as little of the bitmap as you would like.

Level Clipping

The level clipping mode makes it easy to constrain the model you are creating to a chosen boundary. Use vectors to define your boundary and the contents of your level are dynamically clipped so that only what lies inside the vectors is kept. This makes it simpler to assemble different models and allows you to rearrange your components and see the results of clipping in place.

Photo VCarving Toolpath Strategy

Use the PhotoVCarving toolpath strategy to convert photographs and images into toolpaths producing stylised engraved designs. The created toolpaths engrave a series of lines at different depths to produce the desired image.

Tool Database

The tool database has been given a significant overhaul. You can now add parameters relevant to different machines or materials.

For example if you use the same tool, but want different speeds and feeds for different materials, you can now adjust the parameters based on the material you’re using.

Once your materials are set up and you are ready to machine, you can filter the tools so that you only see the ones that are compatible with the material you’re using.

Use the new tool naming mechanism to consistently name your tools. Ensuring that the tool name always matches the tool dimensions. It even supports displaying inch tools correctly.

You can now view the chip load on the tool from within the software.

Online Tool Database

It is now easy to share your tool database across the machines you use. The new tool database can be synced with your online V&Co Account so that changes made to the tool database on one machine are reflected across your other running instances.

Optimizing Clearance Tools in VCarve Toolpaths

The VCarve toolpath now supports multiple clearance tools for more efficient area clearance. This can help shorten machining time and reduce tool wear. Using multiple tools means you can use a much larger area clearance tool, and intermediate V-Bit tools to ensure that the fine detail tool only needs to remove the smallest amount of material possible.

Lithophane Preview

The lithophane preview mode provides a simple way to visualize the lithophane effect on your simulated toolpaths. Just enable the mode from within the simulation and use the slider to adjust the brightness to suit.

Depth First Roughing

The roughing toolpath strategy has been enhanced to add an additional ordering type. The ‘depth first’ option can now be chosen. This strategy machines regions to the desired depth and then moves onto the next region rather than machining all the regions to a fixed level. For models with distinct separate regions this can be much quicker and result in significantly fewer air moves.

Toolpath Groups

Toolpaths can now be grouped within the toolpath tree. Organize your toolpaths into logical groups to make managing complex jobs more straightforward.

Apply Templates to All Sheets

Loading a template will now ask if you want to apply that template to every sheet in the job. Any toolpaths generated will be prefixed by their sheet number and grouped in the toolpath tree.

Toolpath Merging

Toolpath merging is a powerful tool for combining separate toolpaths into a single more efficient toolpath. It has been enhanced by allowing you to edit and modify all the original toolpaths whilst still maintaining the merging information.

The operation now produces a parent toolpath and contains all original toolpaths as a sub toolpath. Each sub toolpath can be modified, and the merging is automatically updated.

Rotary Toolpath Projection

Toolpaths in rotary jobs can now be projected even if they fall outside of the job. This allows for easier creation of spiral toolpaths.

Material Importing

New material textures can be easily added to the software. If you have a picture of the material you want to add you can just select ‘add new texture’ from within the appearance drop down menu to use that image for the material texture.

Tab Resizing

The toolpath tab is now resizable. Expand it to fit even the longest of toolpath names.

Default File Dialogs

You can now use different settings for default file locations. Choose to have the software remember specific locations for specific actions, e.g. always open images from my `pictures` directory. Or you could choose to always open the file dialogs in the folder of the current project.

VCarving Text & Intersection Detection

Text is welded automatically with the Welding Tool before being V-Carved without it actually affecting the text object. Making the process quicker, this also avoids issues arising when characters intersect with each other.

Another improvement that we have added to the VCarve Toolpath is the ability to detect and warn users about the presence of intersections within the selected vectors, where the software will prompt you on calculating the toolpath to run the Vector Validator to help locate problematic areas. Within the Vector Validator the software will automatically put you into VCarve mode where the software will ignore the intersections that would be welded by the toolpath itself. And focus on areas outside of the VCarving mode, helping you locate the issues before the toolpaths are simulated.

Post Processor List Favourites

When you save out toolpaths we have made it easier to locate your favourite posts where the post processor list will now save the 5 most recently used post processors at the top of the list allowing for quicker selection of frequently used posts!

Integrated Help

Help for all forms can now be found using the integrated help function, which can be found if you click on the question mark icon on the top of each form to get the help for that specific function.

Wrapped Rotary Machining

Enables the use of a rotary axis (also called a 4th axis or indexer). Where you can create rotary projects and visualize your job in a wrapped environment, with the ability to create and simulate the toolpaths in an auto – wrapped simulation.

Picture Editing & Cropping

With the ability to import bitmaps into the software, you can further edit imported images using the ‘Edit Picture’ tool, this allows you to adjust the visual properties of a selected bitmap, enabling you to adjust the contrast, brightness and gamma of any selected image.

Borders of different sizes and radii can also be added to bitmaps for aesthetic purposes. Bitmaps can also be made black and white. The software also has the ability to crop images to any given vector allowing you to remove parts of the image you are not interested in.

Helical Arc Support

Output helical arcs in a way that your machine understands. Makes for smoother cuts and smaller file sizes.

Helical arcs are like regular arcs when viewed in 2D but where the start z and the end z differ. They are typically found in toolpaths where ramping occurs.

Online Clipart Access

We give you access to the online clipart that comes free with your purchase. This clipart can be downloaded directly from your V&CO account in the running software. The software comes with previews of the clipart you’re entitled to in the clipart tab so that you can see all of the options available to you and download the items of interest,

In order to get the latest entitlements, click the refresh button. To import the clipart from the clipart tab into your job, simply drag and drop your desired model onto your part.

In-place Text Editing and Transforms

See live feedback of the text that you create and edit. Text maintains formatting, allowing you to easily make edits after the text has been created.

Job & Material Setup

In the Job Setup dialog, you can pick whether you want to create a single-sided, double-sided or a rotary job. You can change that, retrospectively.

Define how you want to flip the material for double-sided projects from the Job Setup dialog. This influences the positioning of the vectors and models so that geometry on each side is created in the appropriate positions relative to the opposite side.

Multi-Sided View

You can view the opposite side’s geometry using the keyboard shortcut ‘=’, or through the ‘View’ menu.

In the 2D view, you will see the opposite side’s vectors as if you were looking at them through the material block.

In the 3D view, you will see the entire merged model as if it was simulated.

Importing STL Model

When importing an STL model (with the ‘Import both Sides’ option enabled) into a double-sided project, each side of the model will go onto a side.

You can import the entire model on each side by sliding the slicing plane all the way to the bottom. This is useful when importing models which contain non-convex surfaces, such as, a plate.

Smart Snapping

This allows you to snap to lines and extensions, which don’t necessarily exist as geometry. It reduces the need to create construction geometry, and would be helpful in aligning vectors or nodes.

Quick Keys

This allows you to add more precision to your shape creation and editing process more easily by allowing typed values while creating geometry. This is supported for creation of circles, ellipses, rectangles, polygons, stars, polylines and when in editing nodes or transforming vectors.

For example, while dragging to create a circle, you could type ‘3R’ to create the circle with a radius of 3. Or, also while dragging, you could type ‘3D’ to create one with a diameter of 3.

Turn & Spin

Create spun profiles easily using the Spin & Turn Modelling Tool.

The turn tool takes a profile and turns it, like a lathe or a potter’s wheel, to create a rounded symmetrical component. To use the tool you require only the profile that you want to turn. This profile should represent the outer boundary of the shape you wish to create.

Mirror Mode

This feature allows you to define a component level so that it mirrors all of its components in a certain way, based on the mirror type. This allows you to build pleasing symmetrical arrangements with ease.

Create Texture Area

This feature lets you create a repeating pattern or texture. It requires a single “tile” component and optionally one or more closed boundary vectors which define the region in which the tiling should take place.

The create texture area form lets you specify the spacing and overlap of each tile, enter a “shift” for every other row or column of your pattern and control the “symmetry” or reflection of the tiles. This provides powerful control to make an incredible number of variations to your pattern and create some very interesting effects. The pattern dynamically updates as you make changes, you can even adjust the size and position of your original “tile” at any time

40 models have been created specifically for use with this new tool and are supplied with the software as part of the included clip art. In addition to these pre-created models you can also create new components or edit existing ones to use with this function so the potential for creating architectural panels, sign backgrounds, decorative textures or any other applications are endless.

Moulding Toolpath

This function generates an efficient and smooth toolpath to cut 3D shapes such as mouldings, arches and frames that have a constant cross-section. The shape is specified by selecting two vectors; the first will represent the Drive Curve of the shape and the second defines the Cross Section that will in effect be extruded along the Drive Curve to create the swept shape when machined.

The Moulding Toolpath function allows you to specify two tools, one to in effect “Rough” out the majority of material with a larger tool and then the other to do the “Finishing”.

The Moulding Toolpath has some clever options to further improve finish and efficiency. For the “Finish” tool you can opt to “Vary Stepover”, this can be used to improve finish on shapes that have a lot of steep angles or curves on the cross-section. For the “Rough” tool you can choose to have it pre-finish any flat (horizontal) regions on the cross section, which are common on a lot of Moulding shapes. Using this option also allows you to avoid creating a “Finish” toolpath in those flat areas further increasing time-savings when machining.

Create Job Sheet

The create set-up job sheet command allows you to create a summary sheet that details all the important information you will need at your CNC machine when you come to run the toolpaths. This can be used as a reference to ensure you have the setup correct, have loaded the correct tool etc. It can also be used to archive with an old job as a quick reference file to see what the job the looked like and the machining that was involved for that project.

You can also edit this to change the logo to an image of your own choice, adjust the header, footer and border colours and even customize which sections of information to include.

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