Newsletter Header
Events | Promotions | News | Email us | (503) 653-5332 |


Click on the event title to register 

When:   Tuesday March 11, 2014

             1:30 - 3:30 PM

Where:  Online

We will explore special considerations and post processing solutions for 5 axis CNC's with Rotary Trunnion or Rotary, Rotary.  Singularity, the bi-stable condition, misc. integers that control the result and machine simulation settings.

When:   Thursday April 10, 2014

          1:30 - 3:30 PM

Where:  Online

Programming in Mastercam MT (Mill/Turn Multi-Tasking).  


Who should attend?: Anybody looking for multi code stream synchronized programming capabilities for advanced CNC Mill/Turn machines

When:   Tuesday May 8, 2014

          1:30 - 3:30 PM

Where:  Online

We will explore the benefits of Verisurf for Lean In-Proess inspection.  We will show the benefits of creating inspection plans as part of the programming CNC process.


COMING SOON: Mastercam for Solidworks Workshop! (watch your email for dates and times)
3Dconnexion: Promotion

Introducing the worlds first Wireless Motion Controller 


For the first time, 3Dconnexion's 6-degrees-of-freedom sensor is combined wireless with 
3Dconnexion 2.4 GHz wireless technology and a rechargeable battery to deliver the reliability of a wired device, without the clutter of cords.
$129.00 plus s+h
With the introduction of the Wireless option the lightweight SpaceNavigator for Notebooks is now available for the same price as the original SpaceNavigator; $99.00 plus s+h
For more information on 3DConnexion motion controllers, visit: or contact Tori for a quote.

Buy and Save


We are happy to extend to you the following SpaceClaim promotional pricing incentives. Buy a license of SpaceClaim now and receive DXI, DXII or PDF translator package at no cost (up to $1,015.00 value), OR buy 3 licenses of SpaceClaim and receive 25% off your order.
For more information on Spaceclaim, visit: or contact Tori for a quote. 

The latest product releases from CNC Software, Inc. are now available for download.
For Maintenance customers only. 
Using the default Mastercam Work Offset 


Mastercam by default uses a "-1" for the work offset. In many cases this will work fine, it will result in the first offset supported by the CNC being used. It does this because to Mastercam the -1 is an un-defined work offset, allowing Mastercam to use the next available work offset it finds. If the work offset is left a -1, you lose control of what work offset is used. As a good programming practice we recommend you always go into the View Manager and set the work offsets as desired. Changing the -1 to a 0 will still result in the controls first work offset being used, however you have control over it. Doing this can help you avoid unexpected work offset changes in your code.
Moving or Renaming Mastercam Machine, Control, or Post Files


If you are working with a word processing program and decide to take some of its system files, move them to a new location and maybe even rename them. Would you be surprised at all if the word processor did not work afterwards?

Yet it is a common practice to do this with the Mastercam machine, Control, and Post files. Mastercam is expecting the Machine and Control files to be in the shared folder under the CNC_MACHINES folder. Posts files Mastercam is expecting to be in the shared folder under (Machine Type)/POSTS. If these files are not located in these folders, there can be consequences. If the Control file is not where it is supposed to be often Mastercam will revert to a default Control file which may not have the correct settings for your control.

Renaming of any of these files can cause problems. If a Control file is renamed, and there are custom cycles for that control, then the Post needs to be updated also. None of these files should be just renamed. If a rename is needed CNC offers a utility to do it, it is available from their website at and is in the section captioned "Add-Ons". There are both a 32 and 64-bit version available, named "" (32-bit) or "" (64-bit). 

The speed and ease-of-use of SpaceClaim Engineer now available for editing STL!

With the 2014 SP1 release on March 3, SpaceClaim provides a new solution to prepare models for 3D printing efficiently and easily. Instead of using numerous products to get a model ready for 3D printing, now engineers can use SpaceClaim's STL Prep for 3D Printing module to quickly prepare models for printing.
The module extends SpaceClaim Engineer's intuitive interface, speed, and ability to work with any major 3D format into the 3D printing world.
With SpaceClaim's STL Prep for 3D Printing Module, you can:

         Work directly with STL files:  Analyze, Clean, Edit STLs; combine STL models with STL models or
          solids; decimate/reduce models

         Shell & Create Connecting Features

         Save & Export STL files


For more information on the STL Prep for 3D Printing Module watch our new video here.
Verisurf: Tech Tip

Feature Alignments 


Some measurement tasks require the operator to use multiple features to control the X, Y, Z alignment of an object; these features can be measured or fitted from point/point cloud measurements as required by the measurement task. In the example below the alignment of the components is based on the X axis origin being controlled by the vertical cylinder, while the Y axis origin and the direction of the X+ axis is controlled by the cylinder that is parallel to the Plane that controls the origin of Z+. 


Feature Alignment Example 

In the following example 8 different Features are used to derive the alignment, while this is a rare application it demonstrates the full capabilities of the Feature Alignment in Verisurf X. 



Holes 1, 2 and 3 are used to control the Primary Plane in this example this is the X+ Plane. From Point 1 to Point2 defines
the Y+ axis. These five features are controlling the orientation
of X+ and Y+ axis, Z+ follows the Right hand rule. These features do not control the Origin of the Alignment in these
Axis' this can be done using additional features if required.  
The Tertiary Point defines the Origin and offset (if any) for X,
Y, Z, these Features do not control the orientation of the axis ONLY the origin of each Axis. In this example, the Origin (0.000) of X is a circle named XOriginPoint, while Plane1 is the origin (0.000) of Y, and the cylinder named Shaft1 is the origin (0.000) for Z. 


As defined in the Feature Align dialog the X+ axis is in the vector direction of Holes1, 2 and 3 with its origin at XOriginPoint, the direction of Y+ is defined from Point1 to Point2 with its origin being on Plane1, and finally Z+ following the right hand rule has its origin in the center of the Cylinder named Shaft1. 

Creating a Reference System from a Feature Alignment 

When measurement tasks require Alignments be performed using "Features" that are not easily measured or may not be measured in the future due to construction a "Reference System" may be established that will provide not only a method to more precisely Align to the object, but a method to monitor movement in components. 

By measuring "Reference" points (points that will NOT move") in conjunction with the Feature Alignment features (or points used to fit features), the Reference Points can be valued relative to the Feature Alignment. By Exporting, these aligned "Reference Points" to a .CSV or Excel file ALL future Alignments may be performed by importing the Reference Points and doing an AutoAlignment in Verisurf X. 


Benefits of using a "Reference System" 

The Feature Alignment process must be completed only once eliminating the need to measure the Features (or points used to Fit Features) each time an Alignment must be performed. 


On structures or machines where the Alignment Features are NOT tied together mechanically, they move independently, when performing Feature Alignments this movement is not easily detectable. However, when using Reference Points and an AutoAlignment the results are shown in X, Y, Z, 3D deviations relative to the "nominal" value, giving the operator the ability to monitor the movement in an object constructed of multiple components.


With proper installation of the "Reference Point" monuments, any subset of the points can be AutoAligned to; this allows work to be performed locally as the entire Object does not need to be measured to perform the Alignment process. 

Increased precision of Alignments - when Feature Alignments are performed they are typically controlled using a 3-2-1 method, with the origin being known in three directions, the axis known in two directions and the plane known in one, this provides a total of six "transformation" parameters to complete the Alignment process. As each of the saved Reference Point is known in X, Y, Z when performing an AutoAlignment Verisurf will utilize these 3 parameters from EACH Reference Point during the AutoAlignment process. Therefore, if 7 Reference Points are measured 21 Transformation parameters will be used to solve the Alignment (7 points, 3 parameters each = 21), giving a much higher precision than a Transformation using only 6 parameters.


Reference System Suggestions 

Place "Reference Points" in high visibility, stable locations to allow measurement from multiple device locations.


If a Reference System will be established it is recommended that, a verification survey is performed following the initial valuing using the Feature Alignment process. This ensures that the repeatability of the Reference Points is within expected tolerances and that the initial Feature Alignment was performed correctly. 


If measuring a large object in an area where the temperature is not controlled, the use of Object Temperature during the initial measurement process is recommended, all following AutoAlignments would use "Scale" when they are calculated. Proper implementation of Scale will provide precise Alignment results regardless of object temperature. 


For more information on Verisurf, visit or contact Mike for a quote.

Streamingteacher: Training    ST Logo marbled


Learn Mastercam online at  Now includes multi-axis and Horizontal Tombstone Machining in our Mastercam X7 Courseware - all for one
low price. 
Learn SpaceClaim on our New No Cost SpaceClaim Channel!

Your place, your time, your pace.