New workflow

Do you have a question you want to ask an existing QCAD user about QCAD and what you can do with it? Do you want to know if a particular feature exists? This is the place to ask.

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Joined: Mon May 28, 2018 8:03 pm

New workflow

Post by elstunk » Mon May 28, 2018 8:51 pm

Hello. So I recently took over our HVAC plasma table for our HVAC company. All the software, machines and everything are 15+yrs old...other employees just know how to cut out simple ductwork but no idea how any of the software or setups work. I'm a bit of a nerd so I've jumped in and got interested in updated software, processes, etc. But even after a couple of weeks of research...I haven't gotten to far. Looking for some guidance.

Currently, to make a custom part, I need to do the following:
1. Sit down at very old desktop, running windows vista, and open up ShopData System Version 2.0
2. Open the Shopdata 'drawing' program
3. Import my (.dxf) or draw the part, let's say a "12x6 gusset"
4. Add a 'toolpath', add/modify my leadins
5. Export as .DRW file
6. Open up the Shopdata 'Job Manager' program, import my .DRW file as a part
7. Select my sheet size and nest my parts, program saves the nested sheet as a .cnc file type
8. I transfer the .cnc file to a 3.5" floppy disc!
9. Take the floppy disc to the Koike Arson Millennium series table, Wescan Profiler Plus controller, 3-phase power plasma machine
10. load the .cnc file, cut the part (It looks like the gcode starts with G70 G91 if means anything)

I would like to simplify this process and get it all(most) of these steps onto my laptop. I have the Qcad/qcam, I'm fine with the drawing part....but I'm clueless on setting up my Tools and toolpaths correctly and the correct file exports. I would love to draw, toolpath and nest in Qcad/cam and go straight to the plasma machine, but don't know if that's possible.

Any help or advice is super appreciated.

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Re: New workflow

Post by andrew » Tue Jun 05, 2018 2:15 pm

Please refer to this brief tutorial to get an idea what you can do with QCAD/CAM:

The G-Code output can be adjusted using ECMAScript (JavaScript) but this does require at least basic programming skills. A brief introduction is available at:

However, since post processors are written in ECMAScript and have full access to the Qt and QCAD API, the possibilities are endless.

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