How SolidCAM developed the most powerful advanced Mill-Turn and Swiss solution
SolidCAM had 3 SolidCAM Product Managers through the long 35 years of R&D development. Michael Vinetsky, our 3rd and current VP of Product management, made a visit in 2015 to Ivan Cimr, from SolidCAM CZ, to develop a post processor for a Willemin CNC machine.
Michael realized that with the kinematic functionality of SolidCAM at that time, there is no way he could develop a working post processor for this complex dynamically-changing machine-kinematic mill turn machine. So he decided that we need to make a major development in SolidCAM, to make it the best in the support of Advanced Mill Turn and Swiss Multi-channel, Multi-spindle, and Multi-turret CNC machines.
A main task that had to be done was to develop an updated machine engine, that automatically calculates the kinematic machine configuration, after every operation. This was released in 2017.
A completely new Multi-Channel synchronization had also to be developed, replacing the current one then. Michael studied all the synchronization needs and the solutions offered by our competitors, and designed a true state-of-the-art Multi-Channel synchronization functionality, that could best handle all complex mill-turn and swiss CNC machines for a decade to come. And to execute it the best, he worked with our amazing programmer, Ronen Shma-Zion, and they together completed it in 1 year of extensive effort and was released in 2018.
We had also to update significantly our VMID and MCO capabilities, to adapt them to complex multi-channel machines. The Channel definition was completely revamped to support Swiss type machines. Our other programming contributors were Avi Zolti, Sofi Efros and Gennady Goldgammer. It took 2 years, and the functionality was finalized in SolidCAM2019.
In SolidCAM 2020 the tool orientation function was enhanced and we added the important Machine Preview function.
In the latest SolidCAM 2021 version, a completely new tool table, that is essential to support Mill-Turn and Swiss-Type tool needs, was released. This new tool table could import from the manufacturers’ tool data in the cloud, the different components (holder, cutting tool) and build up a 3D model of the tool, to be used in collision checking and simulation. The new tool table also provides advanced tool management capabilities for the machine shop.
A new fantastic SolidCAM simulator was also launched, with multi-channel simulation capabilities. This new simulator combined all the previous SolidCAM simulation modes, into one single user interface and added nice new functionality. This important project was the result of powerful collabration of Anthony Calderone, our SolidCAM US CTO, and Mark Fershtein, our SolidCAM’s most advanced system programmer.
The end result of this 6-year intensive development effort, was the absolute worldwide-best advanced mill-turn and Swiss type CAM solution, that provides all the functions needed for programmimg these complex CNC machines, with the typical ease of use and amazing simulation, that characterises all of the SolidCAM different modules.