Dec 02 2020

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Tool Paths – Bike Party 12-01-20

Bike Party – 12-01-20
Bike Party – 12-01-20.zip

Below are some thoughts on the tool paths used to cut the Bike Party 12-01-20 file.

[T2] Score all parts

Tool: 1/4″ Down-spiral
Top height: Stock top
Bottom height: Stock top – .15

Why: We are using 1/2″ Baltic Birch as our stock. This plywood has a thin veneer of nice-looking Baltic Birch on both the top and bottom. To preserve the veneer and cut as cleanly as possible, we score all parts with a down-spiral tool. Additionally, this path locates all pieces for further work which is helpful for machines without a vacuum table as it allows the operators to pay extra attention in securing smaller pieces.

[T7] 2D pocket

Tool: 1/4″ Up-spiral
Top height: Stock top – .15
Bottom height: Selected contour(s)

Why: Creating pockets using up-spiral tool allows cut material to be cleared away from the pieces thereby reducing potential fires. Using a down-spiral, especially if the tool is moving slowly, can be dangerous if a lot of material is removed.

[T7] Holes

Tool: 1/4″ Up-spiral
Top height: Stock top – .15
Bottom height: Stock bottom – .015

Why: Cut through stock by an extra .015 allows the up-spiral tool to create a clean finish on the bottom veneer.

[T7] Cut-Thru

Tool: 1/4″ Up-spiral
Top height: Stock top – .15
Bottom height: Stock bottom – .015

Why: Extensive use of tabs keep the pieces from “flying” away as the tool separates them from the stock. Tabs work best when they align with a tab from another piece forming a bridge between two pieces.

[T3] Tab breaking

Tool: 1/8″ Up-spiral
Top height: Stock bottom + .1
Bottom height: Stock bottom – .015
Radial offset: .01

Why: This optional step is only recommended for use with a vacuum table.

Limit the energy exerted on the piece by utilizing a tiny up-spiral tool to break the tabs of the larger pieces. The tool only touches the pieces at the tabs because we offset the tool path radially by .01. This further reduces the likelihood that a piece will “fly”.

Only used to cut tabs on the larger pieces where the vacuum will keep the pieces secure.

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