PathWorkbench FeatureArea tool and Reversing a Step file to create tool paths

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CoderMusashi
Posts: 39
Joined: Mon Nov 19, 2018 8:26 pm

Re: PathWorkbench FeatureArea tool and Reversing a Step file to create tool paths

Post by CoderMusashi » Thu Dec 19, 2019 9:17 am

I can't speak for what is under the hood of Path Area or how it creates the objects it creates. I understand what it wants from me to achieve what I want from it. FeatureArea has nothing to do with a Job because it is not a tool path or any type of Path. Using the type(youwanttoknowstypehere) function in python can go a long way to answer those kinds of questions. As far as using scripts you don't need a single script to do what I did. As shown in my video but not used you can use the fromShape to create a tool path from a FeatureArea. In the pathworkbench click on Path menu at the top and go down to Supplemental commands. As far as having to cut and paste there is no need for that either. I did not show how that if you created a job the inspectGCode menu when you right click on a tool path is unGhosted. As a Reverse Engineer working with all kinds of data and equipment to produce and object I can tell you that a tool is a tool. My wire EDM code needs hand edited for a few minor changes every time I post code for it. That is the nature of the beast. The dxf or iges files I create with CMM Manager from Nikkon does not give me workable 2D / 3D models but enough data to recreate a real full 2D / 3D model of what I am reversing. If you don't use a 3D scanner and have never had to take that model and make it more user friendly for CAM use then you are just an end user who can only do what you are allowed.

Think of it this way. Every button or menu you click on just ran a script and every time you input something you are basically cutting an pasting data. The tools are there and it is the users job to use them more effectively and efficiently no one else/
chrisb
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Joined: Tue Mar 17, 2015 9:14 am

Re: PathWorkbench FeatureArea tool and Reversing a Step file to create tool paths

Post by chrisb » Thu Dec 19, 2019 9:37 am

I may have not been clear about my aims in my post. I did not want a general discussion on usage of scripts or import of other file formats. And I absolutely did not want to debase your work, it is important to make FeatureArea less obscure. I only wanted to make clear what can be expected from a FeatureArea. The reason is that it was unclear to me and I expected something rather different. And I would guess that others are in a similar situation.
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freman
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Joined: Tue Nov 27, 2018 10:30 pm

Re: PathWorkbench FeatureArea tool and Reversing a Step file to create tool paths

Post by freman » Thu Dec 19, 2019 9:45 am

Every button or menu you click on just ran a script and every time you input something you are basically cutting an pasting data.
Yes, that's the way it works under the hood and finding solutions like you have by pasting code is a valid pragmatic solution when a tool does not exist or produces defective results. I can see this comes from your professional need to "get the job done". If such code pasting solutions can be generalised in a reliable way, it may lead to a tool in the future.

It gets the job done when there's no other way but it is complex and laborious. I'm not attacking what you've done, it's great that there is this flexibility inside FreeCAD to allow leverage of other useful facilities even when the automated tools can't go the full mile.

As someone with a good understanding of this tool, it would be helpful for clarity if you could reply to each of Chris' points, which I think he designed to get a clear idea of what this can do and how it needs to be driven.
CoderMusashi
Posts: 39
Joined: Mon Nov 19, 2018 8:26 pm

Re: PathWorkbench FeatureArea tool and Reversing a Step file to create tool paths

Post by CoderMusashi » Thu Dec 19, 2019 6:41 pm

- FeatureArea is based on sketches or wires

I believe it is based on the an Area and the objects in the Area can be faces, points edges and all kinds of fun stuff.
I can not really answer this because I don't know but the way I see it it is based on a given Area.

- it works basically without a job. If a job should be used it needs some scripting

FeatureArea works without a Job and no scripting is not used to put it in a job.
What you put in the Job is a Path not a FeatureArea they are not the same thing.

use the type function in the Python Console to get a better understanding

>>> c = App.ActiveDocument.FeatureArea
>>> type(c)
<class 'Path.FeatureArea'>

>>> c = App.ActiveDocument.myPath001.Path
>>> type(c)
<class 'Path.Toolpath'>

>>> c = App.ActiveDocument.myPath001
>>> type(c)
<class 'App.DocumentObject'>


- the user is responsible for heights and depths

FeatureArea has nothing to do with either it is not a toolpath

- he is responsible for radius compensation, e.g. by using the machine's G41/G42 commands

I have not used radius comp at the machine in years and the answer is no unless you are creating
your paths for using G41/G42 in that case yes

- to create a path it needs a script
No you can use the FromShape option located in the Path menu under Supplimental Commands

- the paths are not post processed (not sure about this after job creation)

Depends on what you mean by post processed but generally no they are not because the post
is set up when you create the job.

Do you really need somethng to process something to then process somethng just to load some code into a
CNC machine. I just need the GCode created when I create a Path::Toolpath.
chrisb
Posts: 21407
Joined: Tue Mar 17, 2015 9:14 am

Re: PathWorkbench FeatureArea tool and Reversing a Step file to create tool paths

Post by chrisb » Thu Dec 19, 2019 10:32 pm

Thank you very much for these explanations. They really help to shed some light on what a FatureArea is in relation to a ToolPath, and what it isn't.

As for the post processing: I was talking about the post processors which you can select for a job. They convert the FreeCAD GCodes to machine requirements such as special headers, line numbering, arcs using relative or absolute centers, ... From your explanations it is clear how to include them in the process.
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