What Machine Simulation Can Do For You – Part 2
First Things First
Choosing the most appropriate simulator for your requirements
Before a shop can enjoy the many benefits of machine simulation and advanced CAM software for multiaxis machining, a number of steps must be taken to ensure that the types of simulation chosen are most appropriate and that the results generated via the simulation process will be accurate and trustworthy. We’ll take a look at the pros and cons of the two types of simulation first.
Choosing between CAM (intermediate code) and G-code simulation
There are two types of machine simulation:
- CAM simulation (such as Mastercam’s Machine Simulation) examines the intermediate code generated by the CAM software in combination with a CAD model of the machine and associated tooling to generate the various components of the machine motion.
- G-code Simulation (e.g. Vericut from CGTech) uses the actual G-code generated by the postprocessor and detailed machine models, including kinematics, to generate an ultra-high resolution simulation of the manufacturing process.
CAM-based machine simulation doesn’t cost a lot and it is easy to implement and use. It can be very effective most of the time. However, since it does not work from the G-code (which is the form of instructions the machine actually operates from) and does not incorporate machine kinematics, CAM simulation is not as accurate or as reliable as G-code simulation. G-code simulation can be quite expensive to implement. However, that cost can be quickly recovered if the simulation discovers program flaws that could break tools, interrupt lights out machining, or create gouges that result in scrapping expensive parts.
Machine simulation benefits discussed in this white paper show examples depicting Mastercam’s CAM-simulation module. These same benefits can also be obtained using Vericut, which can be accessed from within Mastercam and used simultaneously while the user continues to work on other Mastercam programs.
Do you have a game changing machine simulation application?
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