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Many manufacturers are now using CAD software as a standard practice in the development and manufacturing of their products. In most cases however, CAD (Computer Aided Drawing) software has little or no ability to interface with machinery. For this purpose another type of software package is required which is commonly known as a CAM (Computer Aided Manufacturing) package. This type of package allows the user to import parts designed in CAD and add in machining parameters for machining such as tooling specifications. Another role for CAM software which becomes extremely valuable in large format profile cutting is the ability to optimize or nest the many parts into the material as efficiently as possible, without a lot of effort from the user.

To provide these capabilities, ART has produced ToolShop, a powerful yet easy to use CAM package that is tailored to the needs of businesses requiring fast, efficient and cost effective cutting of multiple parts from sheet materials.

ART ToolShop is a Windows based software package that allows the user to import multiple parts as two dimensional CAD drawings and is able to perform the following functions:
   • Automatic cleanup to repair minor errors in the drawings such as open corners etc.
   • Automatic sorting of inside/outside shapes
   • Automatic direction of cut
   • Automatically nest parts with adjustable gap settings
   • Automatic cut order by rows, columns or shortest distance
   • Manual cut order by simply dragging a line across the parts
   • Manually move, copy, array and rotate parts on the screen
   • Manual interactive nesting - manually move and rotate parts while obeying the specified gap settings
   • Processes optimized for Routing, Drilling, Plasma cutting and Flame cutting
Toolpath features including:
   • Cut width compensation - compensates for cutter or flame diameter for accurate sizing
   • Open contour offset - Allows for single lines to be cut
   • Multiple passes - used for routing thicker materials
   • Multiple lead-in styles including ramping - Avoids damage to the edge of the part - reduces load on router bearings
   • 2D and ramped 3D bridges - keep parts securely in the sheet with tabs - adjustable height and length
   • Moveable entry points - position the start point where it is most desirable
   • Pre-piercing with different tools - pre-drill or plasma cut a hole in sheet for easier starting with a secondary tool
Many more features a continuously being added to ART Toolshop.

The process is as easy as following these 7 steps:
   1) Import each part required
   2) Apply tool path parameters to parts
   3) Specify how many copies of each part are required
   4) Automatically nest the parts
   5) Manually position lead-ins to suit nest or parts
   6) Indicate the cut order by dragging a few lines - or choose a fully automatic strategy
   7) Output file to machine

While ART are committed to producing high-tech solutions, we endeavor to keep the user controls as easy to use as possible. You will find that the simple and direct functionality of ART ToolShop is fast to learn and gives you excellent control over your production.

ART is dedicated to providing the solution to suit your needs. Advanced Robotic Technology is able to provide a comprehensive range of both in-house and 3rd party products to suit your style of manufacturing. If you have any questions or specific requirements, please feel free to ask ART for more information.

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