Posted by SainSmart on

For many, it is a natural progress within the Maker community to move from 3D printing to working with CNC's, but it can be a difficult process with some growing pains for the unprepared.

In our prior tutorial, we covered the general workflow that users have to go through to go from an idea, to a finished project, as well as what software they might need to use along the way. The guide that was attached introduced you Autodesk Fusion 360, a combination CAD & CAM suite that is free for hobbyist and educational purposes.

For most from a 3D printing background, the CAD (Computer Aided Design) portion involved in CNC projects is fairly recognizable compared to what they are used to, but we find that some customers struggle with the CAM (Computer Aided Machining) stage where the user must decide on feeds, speeds and machining strategies.

While this too is covered in our prior guide, we wanted to go more in dept this time with our latest guide: Fusion 360 Guide to Understanding CNC Roughing & Finishing Passes. This guide covers a popular machining strategy where you cut your project out twice with different toolpaths.

In the first tool path, called the "Roughing Pass" is meant to cut out almost all of your project, leaving it just a little bit thicker than it is supposed to be. This is then followed up by a "Finishing Pass" which cuts away the remaining material with much less effort. This lets your bit or end mill cut more true, leading to a nicer, more dimensionally accurate finish than you would get if you cut it in one.

Interested in giving this machining strategy a shot? Take a look here for the full guide and let us know what you think in the comments below!

Things you may need to utilize this guide:

  1. Genmitsu PROVer or 3018 Pro CNC
  2. Autodesk Fusion 360

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