camInstructor Video Blog

Chaining Direction Control in Mastercam

11/21/18 5:00 AM / by camInstructor Mike

This video is taken from a QnA session during one of our Teacher Training Courses and here we're looking at how to control the direction of your chain when creating toolpaths.

The question: Does the order in which geometry is created affect the direction of the chain when creating the toolpath.

The short answer: No.

To expand on that answer, this video will show how careful selection in the creation of the chain can lead to having your chains direction set correctly every time, from the beginning.

The key to controlling the chains direction is to focus on where you click on the entity. Every entity, whether its a line or an arc, has a mid point. Which ever side of the mid point you click on, Mastercam will interpret that as the side of the entity to start the chain on. So, if you had a single horizontal line and you clicked on the left half of that line, the chain will start on the left end of the line and end on the right. Conversely, if you clicked on the right half, the chain would start on the right side and end on the left.

I guess it's not a bad idea to point out how to tell the difference between the start of the chain and the end. Once you've selected a chain, the Green Arrow represents the start and the Red Arrow represents the end. The arrows will be pointing in the direction of the chain.

If you did select the wrong half at the start of your chain creation, no need to start over. You can use the Reverse button found on the Chaining Manager. It's always easiest to get that chain going in the right direction from the get go but sometimes when you need to start your chain on a really small entity, selection can be difficult. Here, make your selection as close as you can, and if it's going in the wrong direction, just flip it with the Reverse button.


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Topics: Mastercam Tips

camInstructor Mike

Written by camInstructor Mike

camInstructor Mike is Mike Wearne, an avid machinist, cnc programmer and overall connoisseur of all things machining. Mike is one of camInstructor's resident cad/cam/cnc experts and works part time at his local college teaching aspiring machinists how to program CNC Machines of all types.

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