MCAM Northwest
(503) 653-5332

Newsletter - January 2011

General News

MCAM NW adds PCC Instructor Phil Eichmiller to team

MCAM NW is proud to welcome Phil Eichmiller to our Autodesk team. Phil is a     longtime user of Autodesk Inventor and is also an instructor at PCC teaching both  AutoCAD and Inventor classes. Call Bobbi Thompson today to inquire about class schedules and rates (503) 653-5332.


Introducing Jim Varco

Several of our customers have already received technical support services from Jim. He has many years of experience in CNC machining, Mastercam, machine simulation, and custom reporting. We are pleased to have Jim's services available to us and our customers.

MCAM NW Events

Register today for the Mastercam X5 Rollout

Learn about the new functionality that makes Mastercam X5 the perfect fit for your work.  We will be offering multiple 2 1/2 hour X5 Rollout sessions for your convenience.  Click on one of the dates below to register for that day.


Tuesday, January 25th - 9:00 to 11:30 AM

Thursday, January 27th - 1:00 to 3:30 PM


Missed the Rollout? Attend a Webinar Rollout.

We are hosting a GotoMeeting Webinar adaptation of the X5 rollout for those of you that can't make it to visit us. The same information will be covered, see what's new in X5 and get installation tips!  For more information on "Go To Meeting" visit their website at: or click on the link below to register for this online event.


Thursday, February 10th - 1:00 to 3:30 PM


Register for a free X5 Mill-Turn Workshop

Come in, visit MCAM and learn how to set up Mastercam X5 for Mill-Turn. We will cover the basic setup for C and Y axis milling, Main and Sub spindle, including stock transfer. Click below to register.

Tuesday, February 15th - 1:00 to 3:30 PM


 Mastercam Tech Tips                                            Autodesk News

Using Zip2Go to protect the Mastercam User Files

When you use Zip2Go, it captures most all of the critical files that are used with a given project. It's purpose is to allow tech support to re-create the environment that you are working in to help troubleshoot. But we have found another use for Zip2Go. It is a simple tool for you to preserve most of your critical files that have been customized such as tool libraries, material libraries, machine, control and posts, operation defaults, .MTB (tool bar file), .KMP (Keyboard Mapping) and the ever so important .CONFIG.


The problem is that in normal use, it would only capture the files that support the machine that you have loaded. But if you load all of the machines that you use (or have modified), it will capture all of those files as well, which would give you most everything you would need to re-build your setup should something disastrous would happen, such as a hard disk failure.

So if you want to try this out:


1.    Start a new Mastercam session and add all of your machines. No need to load the Mastercam default machines.

2.    Save the file with a name such as mastercam_backup_jan_15_2011.

3.    Create some simple geometry, and attach a few basic operations. For similar machine types, such as all mills, copy and paste the operations from machine to machine. For Lathe, create a simple profile on another level and create a few lathe operations to it. Do the same for Router or Wire EDM if you have those licenses. Also, you can add any custom tool geometry you want to make sure you preserve, any fixtures, vises, tombstones, etc. organized on different levels.

4.    Do a final save and then select all and run the post.

5.    The final step is go to Help, Zip2Go and select "Create Zip2Go" - Note where the .Z2G file is placed. You can use the file, manage archive to rename or move the .Z2G to a network location or thumb drive.


Understanding the new x5 folder structure

Mastercam x5 utilizes three distinct locations for program files, shared data files and user data. The idea behind this change is to make it easier to install and maintain Mastercam from an IT standpoint.


The Program Folder

For 32 bit Windows, the folder is [C:\Program Files\mcamx5]

For 64 Bit Windows, the folders are [C:\Program Files (x86)\mcamx5]  AND [C:\Program Files (x86)\Common Files\Mastercam]


Generally, there is no need to navigate to this folder. But knowing where it is located can be helpful.


Items located in this folder:

Mastercam.exe and all related files, dll's etc. - also note the sub-folders shown to the right.


The Shared mcamx5 Folder

XP [C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Shared Documents\shared mcamx5] VISTA AND WIN7 [C:\Users\Public\Documents\shared mcamx5]

This folder contains:

Machine and Control definitions

Post processors

Operation defaults

Tool and material libraries

FBM configurations

Report templates

Nesting defaults


The My mcamx5 Folder

XP [C:\Documents and Settings\<Username>\My Documents\my mcamx5] - VISTA and WIN7 [C:\Users\<Username>\Documents\my mcamx5]

This is your data folder, where MCX-5 files and NC files default to, unless otherwise specified.

These folders are quickly accessible from the "File" menu in Mastercam. The shortcut "Open Shared Folder" and "Open Use Folder" will take you directly to the contents.



Free Trial of Algor Simulation

Inventor and Inventor LT Subscription customers can now download an extended free trial of Algor Simulation. The trial will turn off automatically on October 14th, 2011.


Why try Algor Simulation?

Validate Designs

Optimize Designs

Predict Product Performance


Autodesk Inventor coupled with Autodesk Algor Simulation helps you study designs earlier, more often, and in greater detail.

Log in to your Subscription Portal today and download your extended free trial!



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Subscription Advantage Packs

Autodesk® Subscription Advantage Packs are available for download now by Subscription customers. Get ahead by gaining early access to the latest product enhancements for the 2011 version of your Autodesk® software. Available for select products, Subscription Advantage Packs can include:

Additional product features that expand and improve software functionality

Integrated web services that promote collaboration and support sustainable design

Robust design content such as specialized libraries and other tools that enrich visualizations and renderings


Download Your Subscription Advantage Pack

Ready to get the latest enhancements for your Autodesk product? Visit Subscription Center to download your Subscription Advantage Pack.


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