When you want a consistant X and Y zero point the best way to do that on the CNC is by using a fence. I've designed a fence to fit into my custom wasteboard. Now you can get consistent clamping and zeroing with large or small pieces.
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I usually design all my things in Vetric. Sometimes, I design in Carbide Create. While it is fantastic FREE software that pairs with the Carbide 3D Shapeoko and Nomad, it does have it's limitations. One of these is the inability to export .svg files for use in other CNC cad programs. So far, i've found 3 ways of doing it. None of them are perfect, but it's better than not being able to do it at all.
Option 1. Convert C2D To SVG : An amazing member of the unofficial Shapeoko and Nomad Facebook group created this simple program wrapped in an .html that works in a web browser. It's worked well for simple projects for me but it technically does not support curves. Click HERE to download
Option 2. Cutrocket.com : This is a website built by Carbide 3D as a way to share projects and download completed projects for free. If you upload the .c2d file to cutrocket.com it will make a .svg preview and you can download it in your web browser (if it supports .svg file types)
Option 3. G Code Ripper : This is a free program. You'd have to create your .nc G-code file with Carbide Create, then open it up with G-Code Ripper and export it to .dxf. Then you should be able to open the .dxf with a compatible CAD application.
I decided to create another clamping option to assist in holding down material. I came up with these L shaped brackets. One has 5 holes that will directly fit my threaded wasteboard file, and the other has slots so you can adjust the fit anyway you'd need to according to what the material needs (I'm imagining its good for round stock). This will work on any branded CNC, but are built specifically for my wasteboard and the Shapeoko 3. Carbide Create is required to open the file, but it will create g code for use on any g code sender (i.e. UGS, Carbide Motion, Easel)
Part 3 of the series, I used some advanced features to design a wooden sign. I go over using multiple bits and toolpaths, importing vectors, offset vectors, v carving, aligning vectors, along with many others. In Part 4, I cut out the sign using the g-code created from this file. I created this video series aimed at the true beginner to hobby CNC's. Although Carbide Create is made for the Shapeoko, it can be used for any CNC because it just generates G-Code. Please leave any info i left out that you want to know about in the comments below. I'll be out with more videos soon.
Here's the file I created so you can check it out for yourself : Cowart.c2d (requires carbide create to open)
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