PartMaker software for automated development of NC programs

Modern worldwide tendencies of machine-building are characterized by ever-increasing level of production automation and flexibility with the opportunity to realign the equipment for manufacturing of new goods. Russian enterprises more and more frequently CNC machine-tools, which realize the "two in one" or "three in one" concept - when one machine-tool combines functional features of milling and turning machining centers. Certainly, for the development of NC-programs for such multi-tasking centers it is necessary to use the software of the appropriate level.

PartMaker Software by American company IMCS is designed for the automated development of NC-Programs for modern CNC machine-tools, capable of processing of workpieces in 2 spindles, with several tools, and along several axes.

PartMaker Modules

  • SwissCAM - for swiss type automated lathes;
  • Turn-Mill - for multi-tasking turning/milling machines;
  • Turn - for lathes;
  • Mill - for milling centers;
  • Wire EDM - for EDM (electrical discharge machines).

PartMaker module structure allows acquiring only those software tools that are currently relevant for the enterprise and updating the software with new additional modules and options as and when necessary.

User-friendly Interface

  • Fully Russified product
  • Easy mastering of the software
  • Graphical and verbal hints, as well as visualization means, which accompany the whole process of NC program creation at every step
  • Fast development and monitoring of the program
  • The opportunity for inexperienced programmers to create high-quality programs

Means of Geometry Creation

  • Built-in part geometry editor
  • Creation of mathematical models of objects with the help of graphic primitives: dots, lines, curves, chamfers, roundings, etc. Standard Windows commands like "Copy", "Cut", and "Paste" help to modify part geometry. The software also gives the opportunity of actions like "Rotate", "Move", "Reflect", "Zoom In/Out", etc.
  • Import of mathematical models from Pro/Engineer, Unigraphics and other systems on the basis of ParasolidTM nucleus, as well as *.DXF, *.CADL

Production Processes Data Bases

In order to use the accumulated production knowledge of experienced specialists at work, PartMaker uses various data bases, such as data base of cutting tools, cutting modes, CNC machines. Besides, the software uses the data base of hole machining operations with user cycles.

Cutting tools data base combines the information about various cutting tools for turning and milling processing. It allows saving the geometry data of the tools applied in a specific production. It also enables the user to control the tools position in the turrets or magazines, in tool spindle depending on part processing in the spindle or subspindle. Besides, it automatically sets up the optimal cutting modes and tool offsets.

Materials data base allows collecting the experience of machining various materials and choosing the right cutting modes according to the tools specifications and roughness of processed surface requirements. It also gives the opportunity of manual mode correction, as well as setup of correction, factor for cutting feeds and rates.

User cycles data base contains the information about the repetitive hole machining operations, including centering, drilling, boring, reaming, countersinking and counterboring, rigid tapping and thread milling.

The cycles data base and tools data base are interconnected directly. You can save the user cycles and use them for other parts processing. The program estimates the machining depth automatically, according to the specified hole characteristics, and guarantees the visual control of the expected outcome at the stage of machining programming.

CNC machines data base stores the information about production-applied metal-working equipment. It enables the user to monitor processing programming accuracy, taking into account the design of each specific machine. Thus, it allows considering the work envelope size, the presence of subspindle and magazines, tools positioning accuracy, etc.

Creation of Operating Steps

  • Turning: outside diameter roughing or boring - turning of inside diameter along cross or longitudinal direction; finishing with the opportunity to choose different tools for rough and finishing turning within one cycle;

  • Contour turning, including machining by grooving tool; cutting tool width compensation while calculating the tool path
  • Groove turning of any shape (outside, inside and end grooves) with grooving tool or contouring;
  • Thread cutting of various types: one-and multistart threads, cylindrical and taper, of any profile, with any number of tool strokes, with runout or withdrawal ( );
  • Cut-off operations with synchronization of spindle and subspindle rotation speed during part transfer for reverse side processing;
  • Rough 2-axis layer-by-layer milling with3-axis tool positioning, machining of pockets with any number of protrusions taking into consideration up-cut and down-cut milling and offsets;
  • 3-dimensional finishing surface milling;
  • "Projective" machining, when the plane toolpath is projected to any curved surface;
  • Contour milling along the tool path with left or right tool shift from the processed edge;
  • 4-axis continuous and index part rotation milling;
  • Milling in the system of cylindrical and polar coordinates;
  • Image and title engraving on any surface;
  • Drilling according to user cycles, including centering, drilling, boring, reaming, countersinking, counterboring and tapping operations.

Besides, one can program the operations like:

  • part transfer from spindle to subspindle or clamping device, located in the turret, and vice versa;
  • part rechuck operations (for example, for long parts machining) by pulling it from the spindle with the help of subspindle or clamping device;
  • tailstock center and barfeeder operation programming.

Machining Process Optimization

  • The program automatically creates machining process tables according to the operating steps. Such tables contain part processing plan with indication of all the processing parameters, icons of the applied tools, their location and positions in magazines, spindle rotation speed, tool feed rate, applied coolant type, machining time required for operating steps finalizing. The user can change machining processes sequence simply by shifting them in the table.
  • The software complex sets up machining operations synchronization groups, thus providing the information of various kinds: the amount of tools operating simultaneously in spindle and subspindle; machining types included into synchronization groups; synchronized group numbers. The time diagram allows monitoring tools functioning. If they are idle, machining steps are added to the synchronization groups in order to reduce the total processing time.
  • After this the system automatically sets synchronization and waiting codes, thus excluding the chance of crashes between parts and operating elements during simultaneous multi-axis and multi-tooling machining. 

Machining Process Visualization Programming Errors Detection

  • Visualization is possible both at the stage of operating steps creation and the whole program;
  • Dynamic material removal, dynamic rotation, zooming and variation of monitoring panorama;
  • When the software complex detects a programming error capable of causing tooling or machine-tool breakage, machining demonstration stops, indicating the location of the breakage and showing the process name that caused the breakage.
  • Demonstration of simultaneous machining with several tools, as well as part transfer from spindle to sub-spindle process;
  • Normal visualization mode - only tools and workpieces; monitoring of possible crashes between a tool and a part and crashes between parts; 
  • Advanced visualization reflects the operation of turrets, tool spindles and linear gang tools. The program also monitors the possible crashes between machine-tool working gears and controls the tools travels. If the tool path exceeds the work envelope limits, the warning is displayed.
  • Setup of workpiece translucence and workpiece pockets, which allow monitoring the machining process of inner cavities or closed zones.

Typical Parts Parametric Groups

  • Programming of typical parts parametric groups, which allows reducing the creation time of NC programs for the parts with similar geometry;
  • NC program development for machining of one representative part with the subsequent application of processing characteristics to all typical operation group;
  • Automatic connection of tool path with representative part geometry and creation of new NC programs for all other typical parts processing.

Post processing

  • NC programs generation in G-codes for the specific equipment, excluding manual correction necessity; 
  • New postprocessors development, as well as modification of those which already exist.

Each postprocessor is supplied with a detailed manual describing machine capabilities and a list of available machining operations. It allows a specialist, unfamiliar with equipment features, to realize programming.

Library includes postprocessors for such CNC machine-tools like Hardinge, Romi, Nakamura-Tome, Okuma, Miyano, Haas, Daewoo, Hitachi Seiki, Mori Seiki, Mazak, Index, Eurotech, OmniTurn and others. NC Programs designed for Swiss-type automated turning lathes (like Citizen, Star, Tsugami, Esco, etc.) contain special sync and wait codes.

PartMaker is successfully applied at such leading Russian enterprises like Kalugatransmash, ALNAS, Elektromashi-na, Arzamasskii Pribirostroitelnyi Zavod and others.