New version of CAM software for laser machines increases design possibilities

Laser machining
New version of CAM software for laser machines increases design possibilities



Source: GF Machining Solutions

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GF Machining Solutions CAM software version 1.12.5 has been designed for texturing, engraving and micro machining of laser machines. This version includes two major new features: 3D curves and Flexi Blast, integrated into Laser Design.

Flexi Blast can increase watch part design capabilities with better detail display.

(Source: GF Machining Solutions)

The first of three new features added to the latest version of GF Machining Solution’s CAM software is called 3D Curves. It allows users to dramatically increase design capabilities while eliminating potential unwanted optical effects on laser etched parts. 3D curves allow for a new approach when creating fine line patterns and textures. Users no longer need to go through a typical hatching process based on a grayscale bitmap, but thanks to 3D curves they can etch directly with a single continuous laser path following each individual polyline.

This new technology is of great interest for the production of textures with lines requiring high precision, for example for plastic parts used in ICT or automotive, or for directly engraved parts in watchmaking or jewelry. 3D curves allow designers to create unprecedented designs applied in 2D with GF Machining Solutions’ Laser P range of machines. It also offers the ability to virtually create curves on complex 3D parts and molds with the Laser S range of machines. The technology uses polylines and not images, which are limited by their bitmap resolution, to orient laser vectors in the local coordinate system.

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Flexi Blast leverages GF Machining Solutions’ signature blasting capabilities by combining them with a grayscale image, allowing control of its intensity. For each individual pixel, 216 shades of gray can be applied, each corresponding to a specific blast intensity. This feature provides the ability to render high definition photo-realistic images on any material. Additionally, it gives users the ability to increase depth perception with very shallow textures, which can significantly reduce production time without any hardware modifications. Texture fading and morphing can be achieved without altering surface geometry. Flexi Blast can be used to apply a top coat to complement Laser Design textures.

Flexi Blast offers benefits such as high definition with photo-realistic rendering, creation of very fine textures with high depth rendering and shallower textures for easier plastic release and faster machining times. Cleaning the mold after plastic injection is effortless because less plastic remains on the mold after the injection process. There is therefore a significant productivity gain.

The new software release from GF Machining Solutions gives customers a new perspective on the laser toolpath and the definition of their machining strategy and allows them to use optical properties to create textures, instead of cutting the matter. Ultimately, gains in productivity and texture uniformity can be achieved. Upgrading from software version 1.11.X or 1.12.0 to software version 1.12.5 is free for customers.

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