The Milling program setup dialog box specifies the transformation of coordinates from the panel’s coordinate system to the coordinate system of the milling machine. These include machine specific coordinate parameters, placement of the panel within the machine space, z-axis parameters, and other settings and options.
Machine specific coordinate parameters
Machine table dimensions: The width and depth of the milling table. These values are used to display the milling space in the dialog box, and to center the panel fixture within the milling space.
Machine space origin: The location of the coordinate origin in the machine space. Top is farthest from you when facing the machine.
Axes: Normally, the machine axes will be the same as the (unrotated) panel, i.e. X is X and Y is Y, or X is left-right and Y is front-back. If necessary, they may be swapped.
Machine X-axis and Machine Y-axis: Normally, the positive direction of a machine axis is the same as for the panel. If necessary, the direction may be inverted.
Placement of the panel within the machine space
Panel offset from machine origin: Th is the offset from the machine space origin to the panel origin. This may be adjusted as necessary to place the fixture at the desired location on the milling table.
The Center button sets the panel offset so that the fixture is centered on the table. This is useful after having made changes to the machine specific coordinate parameters which may have moved the fixture outside of the milling space.
Rotation of fixture on milling table: The placement of the fixture on the table may be rotated, if desired. This rotation is added to any rotation of the panel that was specified in the Depanelization module.
Z-axis: The Z-axis is normally positive in the upward direction. If necessary, this may be inverted.
Offset to Z-axis origin: This is the distance from the bottom edge of the depanel fixture to the Z-axis origin. If the origin is above the fixture bottom, and +Z is upward, then this will be a positive value. If you make use of a tool homing device to set the Z-axis origin, then this offset should be equal to the thickness of the homing device when it rests on the same surface as the depanel fixture.
Offset to panel top: This is the distance from the bottom edge of the depanel fixture to the top of the panel. By default, this offset is calculated from the fixture dimensions and the panel thickness. However, it may be adjusted, if necessary.
Clearance above panel: This is the maximum height of any components on the upper side of the panel. The cutting tool will retract to this height before moving from one cutting point to the next.
Other settings and options
Feed rate: The speed at which the cutting tool travels through the material being cut.
Time in milliseconds: If checked, the spindle spin-up delay is specified in milliseconds. Otherwise it is specified in seconds.
Activate coolant pump: If checked, the program will turn on/off the machine’s coolant pump.
Include registration holes and milling data in same file: If checked, only one file will be generated. Otherwise, two files will be generated – one with milling data and the other with alignment holes.
Machine specific parameters
Upon closing the dialog box, machine specific parameters are saved for re-use the next time a milling program is generated. These include: machine table width, depth and origin, axis swapping and inversion, z-axis inversion, feed rate, coolant, and time in seconds or milliseconds. The option for separate or combined output files is also saved.