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4 Axis Swarf Finishing - Not possible with 90degree Angle head Tool in PowerMill

Message 1 of 7
697 Views, 6 Replies

4 Axis Swarf Finishing - Not possible with 90degree Angle head Tool in PowerMill

Hi Guys, 


I am currently working for a PowerMill prospect for their 4 Axis Machining requirement using their YCM machine. 


Requirement : Groove Machining in 4 Axis Table Rotation (C-Axis) Machine. Note that this machine does not support tool and table tilting. 


The prospect currently is using a 90 degree angle head tool shown in the image below. 




Instead of the Machine Z-Axis , the X-Axis engages here for cutting. 


While trying to generate the toolpath for the groove as shown below we are currently facing an issue. Also I have kindly attached the PowerMill project file. 






1. The Swarf Strategy is not working while the Gouge Check is turned On. (Refer Image Attached Below)



2. Also To achieve this using a 4 Axis Table rotation machine. The Y-Axis is needed to be locked here. Only using Z-Axis, C-Axis and X-Axis this groove is to be machined (Currently this is what our prospect is doing). 


Looking forward for some suggestions to achieve this groove machining using PowerMill. 

Labels (3)
Message 2 of 7
in reply to: Aadithya01

The swarf strategy isn't working with gouge checking turned on because the groove is "inside" of the part.  PowerMILL is always looking down the Z axis (Toolpath workplane).  In this case, it sees the back side of the tube "in the way" of the groove you are trying to machine.  To calculate this toolpath, you either have to turn gouge checking off completely, or ignore the surfaces on the back side.


Rotating the table instead of moving the Y-axis will not work with the swarf strategy.  The swarf strategy always wants to maintain contact with the side of the tool and the selected surface.  If you started rotating the table instead of moving Y, the side of the tool would be moved away from (or into) the surface.  Unless the machine is capable of rotating the 90 degree head as well...  In that case the machine would have co-linear axis (uncommon)

Message 3 of 7
in reply to: cfastNJWK6

Hi @cfastNJWK6 


Thanks for your reply. I can now understand why I cant limit swarf to 4 Axis. 


The groove shown is machined at the prospect site, where they have locked the Y-Axis, only then they were able to achieve the profile (as shown in the photo above). 


In the case of PowerMill is there any other strategy that can do the machining of this profile using the Z,X and C Axis and by locking the Y-Axis ? 

Message 4 of 7
in reply to: Aadithya01

You could potentially use pattern finishing with "Machine Axis Control" set to "Polar".  There you will have the option to lock the X or Y axis.  This issue is still going to depend on how the post processor is setup.  You may need to customize the post to get the output you desire.

Message 5 of 7
in reply to: cfastNJWK6

Yes we were able to create the toolpath using Pattern Finishing like you have mentioned. To avoid the gouge and to achieve the groove is where we would like to lock the Y-Axis. And that's how the groove has been already machined at the prospect's end by some other programmer (Not sure who programmed it?).


Like you said @cfastNJWK6 even I had a feeling that this can be achieved only through the post-processor. If so, can you give me some suggestions for an approach in editing the post-processor. 




Message 6 of 7
in reply to: Aadithya01

I am not an expert when it comes to editing posts, but the first thing I would try would be to set the axis limits for Y axis to 0.  This should force the post processor to find a different solution, or it won't work at all.  Difficult to point you in the right direction without looking at the post myself. 

Message 7 of 7
in reply to: Aadithya01

There is no way you can use the C Axis.

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