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How to make a feature request for a new Operation type? (WCS Translation/Offset)

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edautodesk69XS4
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How to make a feature request for a new Operation type? (WCS Translation/Offset)

Hi, can someone point me to how I can make a feature request proposal to the Fusion 360 manufacturing team?

 

The proposal is a feature to translate WCS coordinates. This is fairly similar in UI (but quite different in outcome) to using probing where you click the "Override deriving WCS"

 

The purpose of the request is that many manufacturing shops will use a fixed reference point as their WCS origin to increase setup speed for many manufacturing jobs, for example the zero point location, point on a vice, corner of a jaw, etc. For example, in my case I use the top-left/bottom-right of the bed of each vice as a fixed reference point

 

However, this is inconvenient at the machine in as much as I much prefer the g-code coordinates to be relative to some point on the part itself, for example an underside face is generally my preferred reference. This has benefits in that I can quickly observe (at least in 3 axis machining) that Z axis references are all than xx millimeters above the zero plane, meaning I won't hit the jaws or whatever. Basically WCS relative to some distant point is hard to sanity check on the machine itself

 

On first inspection, the "Override deriving WCS" looks to do what is needed. However, it leaves the WCS based on the original WCS, so whilst it can correct for deviations between the CAD model and actual machine setup, it can't easily handle doing something like swapping out for a different set of vice jaws or moving the setup to a different vice altogether.

 

I can of course do what I need through a manual NC operation, but this is error prone if I change the CAD/CAM, then the changes don't flow through to the manual NC operation

 

The proposal is for an operation, which will need machine specific post support. It will assume that the user has created their setup with their desired on machine WCS, for example centred on the part. The operation will take a source point on the model and the source WCS that defines that point. This will work very similarly to how the probe UI looks today, except only points or planes would be selectable. The post will be responsible for setting the destination WCS to be equal to the source WCS, except shifted by the offset as measured from CAD.

 

The flow through the post would look very similar to the current probing code path

 

Opinions?

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Thanks for correcting the location of this

 

Since posting here I've had correspondence outside of the autodesk forums and I've had considerable interest in this general concept. I think it's challenging to convey that to autodesk in a forum, I think also the concept is a little subtle to explain as it's quite a non standard usage in the industry. So I hope you will give this proposal more than a few seconds and consider that it might be quite transformative, even if non obvious on a first read?

 

There is some motivation for the proposal in a Practical Machinist forum in the CAD/CAM section a few weeks back. The question as asked was whether to set the WCS zero on the part or a fixed point on the table and there were many pages going back and forward. Very roughly the proposal above allows you to have *both* at the same time. So you can simultaneously make use of a fixed point on the machine + having the WCS set to a point on the part.

 

However, I would like to widen the proposal slightly. Further correspondence has shown that it would be very helpful to have "manual NC" operations be able to reference points on the model. So this would facilitate being able to pass coordinates to a manual NC op. This could solve my request, but would also add other powerful features to Fusion

 

One (admittedly complex) use case I have is that I need to probe a point on a part and then run a macro to figure out the deviation/rotation of the part and this is then used by the rest of the operations in the setup. I use a manual NC op, but I need to pass the point to probe as a hard coded param, which obviously won't update if the model changes. It would be an improvement if I could connect the params to a point on the model and have the points flow

 

Another example I saw from a manufacturer needing to run a complex drill operation (it was a backchamfer op with a special tool). They had written their own cycle to handle the operation, but there is no "backdoor" in Fusion to be able to point to places on the model and run that custom cycle with the point details

 

I can certainly see that there are potential challenges here in that one can invent cycles that need a single param and others that need X/Y/Z, rotation, depth, blah, blah. However, I hope that the basic goal to get an escape hatch and be able to connect custom cycles with points on the model is clear and that you could consider solutions in this space.  It seems to me that 3 directions could be fruitful: 1) to offer connecting simple X/Y/Z points to custom NC ops, 2) extend the post processing capabilities to be able to push custom extra ops into things like the drill or probing cycle types, 3) custom or semi-custom operation types in the manufacturing workspace, perhaps customisable via the standard plugin system.

 

However, the original op requested was more specific that this and it's to offer a way to "translate" WCS systems, simply by pointing at two points on a model. Broadly this is a similar UI to how the current probing cycle works (if you click the right boxes).

 

Thanks for listening

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