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New Toolpath Workflow for tool selection

Message 1 of 9
275 Views, 8 Replies

New Toolpath Workflow for tool selection



Looking for help with one of my biggest frustrations in Fusion:

When making a new toolpath, Fusion defaults to the tool and cutting parameters of the last operation in the setup. Often times I'd like to create an operation in the middle of the setup with the tool being used there. Is there a workflow improvement that will make a new tool path with the currently selected tool?

Right now my workflow is to duplicate a toolpath with the tool I'd like, drag it down to the bottom, and then select the new toolpath. It's cumbersome and forces regeneration of any adaptive toolpaths but I still prefer it vs having to go through the tool library every time

Message 2 of 9

Hi @cahustonFPZWB, can you say more about why you would prefer to avoid opening the tool library during tool selection? What's the main driver for using this workflow (which seems much more cumbersome!) over the typical tool selection process?


One other thing you can try, since it seems you are mostly interested in reusing tools that are already in use, is opening a toolpath that uses the tool you want to reuse, selecting the tool item in the list, and dragging it and dropping onto the toolpath you want to use that tool. This is not foolproof – it will let you do this with tools that aren't suitable for the toolpath you're trying to propagate to – but seems like it should work in your use case. 



Marti Deans
Product Manager, Fusion 360 Manufacturing
Message 3 of 9

Thanks for the reply, mainly I really struggle with the tool library dialog. Its slow, inefficient for sorting, lags at every menu change, and creates so much risk for getting tools out-of-sync due to local and cloud level tools.


Let's say I have a contour tool path with specific parameters that I know work for the cut. Down the road I decide I'd like to cut a different contour with those same parameters and tool. 

If I take your approach I need to 

1. Create the operation

2. Select the tool from my cloud library which is large and takes time to sort (I don't use the tools from within the operation because it creates a huge risk for duplication and out-of-sync tools). Plus the tool library interface is anything but zippy when it comes to load time. 

3. Select the contour I want machined

4. Use compare/edit to find the differences between the two operations and sync them

5. Generate the operation


If I take my approach I:

1. Drag the operation to the bottom

2. Create a new operation

3. Select the contour

4. Generate

5. Drag them both back


What would be great is if whenever I make a new operation is automatically starts with the tool used in the highlighted operation and places the new operation under the highlighted one. I'm sure you have a good reason for avoiding such a simple workflow so I'm all ears

Message 4 of 9

Note: I know that I could either add the contour to the original tool path or duplicate the original tool path. Let's assume for sake of explanation that those won't work here
Message 5 of 9

I think this is a good canidate for "Create Derived Operation"


As long as your toolpath is still 2D / 3D (but cannot cross between), it will allow you to transfer a significant amount of parameters like tool etc and then select geometry etc without needing to duplicate / copy / regen data you don't want to use


So right click existing toolpath, "Create Derived Operation", select desired toolpath, and go


I use it alot when continuing to use the same tool for operations, or transferring existing Tool Orientations to new operations


Edit: or created Toolpath Templates for repeat work which I use extensively

Message 6 of 9

@cahustonFPZWB wrote:

Thanks for the reply, mainly I really struggle with the tool library dialog. Its slow, inefficient for sorting, lags at every menu change

While I'm not going to make any claims that the tool library is the snappiest piece of UI in the world, it should not be unusable while doing the tasks you point out. How many libraries do you have? How many tools are there (approximately) per library? (This is kind of a legacy question but asking anyway) what format are those libraries in? If you have very large libraries that you aren't using consistently, have you turned them off to prevent loading the data each time?


creates so much risk for getting tools out-of-sync due to local and cloud level tools.

There are definitely reasonable concerns with knowing which "version" of a tool you're using since there are no relationships between user library tools and tools that are already in the document. But your phrasing and word choice here doesn't make me think that is actually what you're running into. Can you expand on this? Why would you store a tool in both the local and cloud libraries? Once a tool is in the document library, why not just select it from there? This prevents duplication of tools and needing to work out which one is the "right" one, or worse yet, needing to reselect a single tool for each operation you meant to use the same tool in. 

Like @dwilliamsFM6K4 suggested, based on #4 in your workflow list, it seems like Derived Operations might be what you're after. This directly maps parameters, reducing the likelihood you need to Compare and Edit. Or, you can just Duplicate the operation (effectively a one-click copy and paste) if you want an operation of the exact same type with the exact same tool. Then you just need to change the geometry selection. 
Here is a quick tip on Derived Ops: 

Marti Deans
Product Manager, Fusion 360 Manufacturing
Message 7 of 9

Looks like I'll spend some time working with derived operations and see if that solves the issue. 


Just timed the operation, getting to the tool I need takes 15s. Doesn't seem like much but it's quite a few clicks and quite a few loading screens

open library

wait for document library to load

select cloud library

wait for cloud library to load

select side scroll bar to give scroll wheel control to the window

scroll to tool

select tool


Your initial assumption about document level vs cloud level is the main concern for me. When I edit a tool in the document, those changes don't apply to the cloud tool. I've had so many situations where I've updated or edited a tool only to find that those edits remained with the document.

Message 8 of 9
in reply to: cahustonFPZWB

Could you share some additional info about your Tool Library? 15 seconds seems like a LOT of time, but I'm only seeing 2-3. Could you capture your steps in a screen recording so we can see everything in detail. From that, we may be able to offer you some pointers on how to make this smoother for you

Seth Madore
Customer Advocacy Manager - Manufacturing
Message 9 of 9

Thanks Seth, I'll work on getting a video. There's just a lot of loading time (with the round icon spinning) between screens for me. Not sure what could be causing that, feels awfully nitpicky but it's slow enough to notice and try and find a different option.


I have been using the derived toolpaths and it's a really helpful tool for this and other workflows. 

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