28 Replies Latest reply on Jul 11, 2012 7:17 PM by Lenny Bucholz

    GibbsCam not opening the latest SW file version

    Misty Ratzlaff

      The problem

        A SW sheetmetal file is modified

          Yes - I have verified the flat pattern configuration works properly

          Yes - The print with the flat pattern is correct and saved

          No - The SAVE button is not hit while in the flat pattern configuration but it has been hit in the default configuration

        Next we open the file directly in GibbsCam

          If we choose the default configuration when we open the file - it shows the current part

          If we choose the flat pattern configuartion the part that loads is before the change

       

      Our temporary solution has been to open a configuration hit save - open the next configuration and hit save again...this works fine when we remember that we have to do it.

       

      Does anyone know

        a) Why this is happening

        b) How to make it so we dont have to save each and every configuration.

       

      Thanks

       

      Misty

        • Re: GibbsCam not opening the latest SW file version
          Anna Wood

          I would talk to the GibbsCAM people.

           

          Cheers,

           

          Anna

          • Re: GibbsCam not opening the latest SW file version
            Misty Ratzlaff

            Gibbscam is blaming SW and SW is blaming Gibbscam...I can't seem to get help from either

              • Re: GibbsCam not opening the latest SW file version
                Anna Wood

                Get someone to write a macro that cycles through all the configurations and saves.

                 

                But then you will need to remember to run the macro.

                 

                Cheers,

                 

                Anna

                • Re: GibbsCam not opening the latest SW file version

                  It is very common when you don't use fully integrated CADCAM from one vendor that the CAM vendor will blame the CAD vendor and vise versa: 

                   

                  http://cadcamtechnologyleaders.blogspot.com/p/fully-integrated-cadcam.html

                   

                  Jon Banquer

                  San Diego, CA

                  • Re: GibbsCam not opening the latest SW file version
                    Ryan McVay

                    That's why I like NX....only one company to point a finger at when you have integrated CAD,CAE, CAM, ect.

                      • Re: GibbsCam not opening the latest SW file version

                        NX is a true CADCAM system.

                         

                        Unfortunatly running CAM inside of SolidWorks doesn't give you a true CADCAM system because you have many parts that aren't like using SolidWorks at all and are unique to each CAM system that runs inside of SolidWorks. How you set up work coordinate systems, how you copy and  paste machining operations, how you define and manage stock, etc. The sad fact is that every CAM system that runs inside of SolidWorks creates their own unique (and often bizarre) ways to manage these tasks. Most CAM vendors who run  inside of SolidWorks do their level best to hide the exact details of how these parts of their CAM program work because it contradicts their claim that running their CAM inside of SolidWorks is just like the SolidWorks experience. This is especially true when you are dealing with Assembly approaches to machining  multiple different parts.

                         

                        The only true fully integrated CADCAM that I've ever seen is when one vendor creates both the CAD and the CAM programs. This makes a huge difference because then the CADCAM vendor can create unique Assembly type files for CAM and for Stock that act just like their regular Assembly files.

                         

                        No CAM program I've even seen that runs inside SolidWorks creates its own unique Assembly type file for CAM and instead they all appear to run on top of the SolidWorks Assembly file. When this happens CAD and CAM integration is severely disrupted!

                         

                        Creating CAM programs for multiple different parts really taxes the capabilities  of a CAM system running inside of SolidWorks and nowhere is this more evident than when you are trying to do serious production machining on tombstones or where you wish to program multiple setups for multiple different parts and machine them all at once. While the tools you get with a CAM system that runs inside of SolidWorks are much better than legacy code CAM systems like Mastercam, Surfcam, FeatureCAM, Gibbscam,  etc. they still aren't anywhere near ideal or good enough compared to what I've seen in CADCAM systems where one vendor is creating both the CAD and the CAM parts of the program.

                         

                        Jon Banquer

                        San Diego, CA

                        http://cadcamtechnologyleaders.blogspot.com/p/fully-integrated-cadcam.html

                          • Re: GibbsCam not opening the latest SW file version
                            Lenny Bucholz

                            Funny NX has nothing to with the OP's question about Gibbs and SW configurations.

                              • Re: GibbsCam not opening the latest SW file version

                                Ryan's point, which is valid, is that if the OP's company was using a fully integrated CADCAM system they wouldn't have a problem. Unfortunately most machinists and CADCAM programmers don't really understand just how important fully integrated CADCAM is or what it really means. I have made a serious effort to change this by creating a blog page devoted to explaining how critical fully integrated CADCAM truly is. It contains the kind of information that you don't find on advertising driven machinist and CADCAM forums. In addition, you won't find the truth about the huge benefits of fully integrated CADDCAM on a CAM company forum like eMastercam or the Gibbscam message board. Should anyone dare to post the truth about the huge benefits of fully integrated CADCAM on a CAM company web board count on it being censored/removed.

                                 

                                http://cadcamtechnologyleaders.blogspot.com/p/fully-integrated-cadcam.html

                                 

                                 

                                Jon Banquer

                                San Diego, CA

                                  • Re: GibbsCam not opening the latest SW file version
                                    Lenny Bucholz

                                    No it wasn't and did nothing to help the OP out with her issue.

                                     

                                    As for fully intigrated CAM, yes it's awsome, but the cost of those softwares are out of reach for most companies that need more than one seat.

                                     

                                    Then there is the cost of changing all the legacy data $$$$$, why do you think Boeing in Seattle uses Catia and Boeing, Mesa, AZ uses NX, was McDonald Douglas?

                                     

                                    I've been machining for 30 yrs, CNC and CAM for 25 of them and believe that intigrated CAM isn't the fix all because there are to many small shops that do the load of the production work out there that would never need the native format to machine the parts, hence only the big boys, Boeing, MD, GM.................................... use NX, Catia and ProE from start to finish.

                                     

                                    As for the CAM that runs inside of SW, which is the standard Solids software currently, are getting better buy the day, all it take is time on the board to become proficent with any of them. Sometimes even the old standalone CAM will run circles around the intigraded CAM software because they aren't tied to the smarts lets say.

                                      • Re: GibbsCam not opening the latest SW file version

                                        "As for fully intigrated CAM, yes it's awsome, but the cost of those softwares are out of reach for most companies that need more than one seat."

                                         

                                        Not true. The cost is the same or less for some fully integrated CADCAM systems versus purchasing separate CAD and CAM systems.

                                         

                                        "As for the CAM that runs inside of SW, which is the standard Solids software currently, are getting better buy the day..."

                                         

                                        In many areas CAM that runs inside of SW isn't improving at all. All of the CAM programs that run inside SolidWorks run on top of a SolidWorks Assembly and none of them can create their own CAM assembly file.

                                         

                                        None of them do a great job of managing stocks (part blanks) when many different parts are being machined at once.

                                         

                                        None of them have the proper tools for managing the kind of production machining I specify below.

                                         

                                        When it comes to production work on horizontal machining centers with pallet pools, which are set up to do short runs of different parts that can change at the drop of the hat, fully integrated CADCAM with built in PDM is a huge time saver. Trying to manage work like this with separate CAD and CAM systems and external PDM is a absolute freaking nightmare that is prone to many mistakes and wastes tons of time.

                                         

                                        Direct modeling tools are badly needed by small machining job shops. Programs like NX CADCAM have the needed direct modeling tools that SolidWorks doesn't.

                                         

                                        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pxwdoRIMSpI

                                         

                                        There is a reason Dassault has choosen to create an all new SolidWorks with SolidWorks V6. You can read about some of those reasons here:

                                         

                                        http://worldcadaccess.typepad.com/blog/2012/07/gal-raz-on-why-dassault-had-to-kill-solidworks.html

                                         

                                        More people everyday seem to think it's long past time to hit the reset button on SolidWorks:

                                         

                                        http://www.3dcadtips.com/hitting-the-reset-button-building-the-next-generation-of-solidworks/

                                         

                                         

                                        Jon Banquer

                                        San Diego, CA

                                        http://cadcamtechnologyleaders.blogspot.com/p/fully-integrated-cadcam.html

                                          • Re: GibbsCam not opening the latest SW file version
                                            Lenny Bucholz

                                            Jon from what you are writting and links you paste here, seems you don't like SW at all.

                                             

                                            We are here to help other SW users with what they need to do, not ...you know XYZ is better and you should get that, here look.

                                             

                                            Not all here here believe that direct modeling is the only way, would be nice for ID and concept, but when you want somethinfg to change with one or to dimension changes and all want the fixturing change also because of the parametric links, to save time.

                                             

                                            small shops will use whatever they have, be it 15 year old software\machines, to get the work done, why? because it's paid for!

                                             

                                            remember the average age of a technical trades person as of today is 55 yrs old, most are even computer literate, just enough to get thru the day, hard sell to get them to buy new software yet learn it!! took them long enough to learn SW, which is easier then most.

                                              • Re: GibbsCam not opening the latest SW file version

                                                Lenny,

                                                 

                                                "... from what you are writting and links you paste here, seems you don't like SW at all."

                                                 

                                                I see no value in being a fanboi of any CADCAM program.

                                                 

                                                "Not all here here believe that direct modeling is the only way, would be nice for ID and concept..."

                                                 

                                                I'm sorry but you don't understand why a machining job shop needs direct modeling tools. Unfortunately you refuse to watch the videos in the links I provided which clearly show exactly why direct modeling tools are needed. At this point there is really not much more I can say.

                                                 

                                                "small shops will use whatever they have, be it 15 year old software\machines, to get the work done, why? because it's paid for!"

                                                 

                                                Speed Machining in Phoenix had all their old Matsuura's and Nakamra's paid for... they are out of business. I can name several other Phoenix area shops that had all their old equipment paid for that are no longer in business but I seriously doubt it would change the way you think.

                                                 

                                                "remember the average age of a technical trades person as of today is 55 yrs old, most are even computer literate, just enough to get thru the day, hard sell to get them to buy new software yet learn it!! took them long enough to learn SW, which is easier then most."

                                                 

                                                That's a serious problem in our trade but you never see anyone discussing what the solution really is. For sure that answer isn't short training programs like the NTMA and SME favor.

                                                 

                                                 

                                                Jon Banquer

                                                San Diego, CA

                                                http://cadcamtechnologyleaders.blogspot.com/p/fully-integrated-cadcam.html

                                                  • Re: GibbsCam not opening the latest SW file version
                                                    Lenny Bucholz

                                                    jon,

                                                     

                                                      I have and use NX ST, SE ST, SpaceClaim....But still SW is still the easest to use, teach and understand for most users as well as a great VAR that holds seminars and classes to help the users. Phoenix does have a great SW users group, were are the user groups for NX, SE, SpaceClaim as well as courses them, there's not and because of that it'll be hard to knock SW and the CAM software that runs in them out of the pricture anytime soon.

                                                     

                                                    I know a handfull of shops that everything is paid for, older machinery, software, some DOS even and have to turn work away.

                                                    This is because they don't want to over extend themselvse and charge a fair price. That is why they are still around, not because of lastest greatest, but smart business practices.

                                                     

                                                    Been here in AZ since 92 and have seen shops come and go, very few because they didn't have intigraded CAM, but because they did poor work or lost work to the fact that Motarola is gone, once the largest employer in AZ! also to work going to other countries.

                                                      • Re: GibbsCam not opening the latest SW file version

                                                        "I have and use NX ST, SE ST, SpaceClaim....But still SW is still the easest to use..."

                                                         

                                                        That's purely subjective.

                                                         

                                                        Even though it's purely subjective, I fail to see how any of the programs you listed could be easier to use than SpaceClaim. SpaceClaim has no history to manage, no parent child issues and everything is kept on one file rather than seperate files for parts, assemblies and drawings. Its easily got the best user interface I've ever used in any CAD or CAM program and I've never even had to crack the user manual. It's so easy to use that it doesn't need user groups and their forum only see's limited questions. SpaceClaim has done many training videos showing exactly how to use it and it's all available for free to anyone. SpaceClaim is also no where near as powerful or as full featured as SolidWorks at many tasks. Most machinists I've shown SpaceClaim to pick most of it up in under an hour.

                                                         

                                                        I've seen plenty of Phoenix area shops go out of business because they refused to upgrade their older equipment that was paid for and they couldn't compete with those quoting who could run lights out. I named one. I can name plenty more. It's no longer long part runs. If you don't have the equipment or the proper CADCAM software to runs lights out, short run, varied part and try and compete with old paid for equipment you end up going out of business. Old, paid for equipment and CADCAM crapware drive labor costs sky high. Companies that stay with old, paid for equipment as their mainstay usually are running repeat jobs they have done for years. When new jobs come in to quote they usually lose their ass. When the old jobs they were doing dry up they go out of business.

                                                         

                                                        Jon Banquer

                                                        San Diego, CA

                                    • Re: GibbsCam not opening the latest SW file version
                                      Lenny Bucholz

                                      Do you have the latest update for GibbsCam, this is not a SW issue, CAM companies have to get you updates for new SW files.

                                       

                                      That being said, are you on maintenance with your Gibbs Software? If not you maybe SOL!!

                                       

                                      With surfcam, I have to refresh and then save all my configs in SW to surfcam to see the changes made.

                                       

                                      open SW, fire each config, then hit save after you get thru all of them, close SW and reread into Gibbs, hopefully it fixes the lost configs.

                                       

                                      What does Gibbs say on their websit about configs, surfcam explains this on their site.

                                      • Re: GibbsCam not opening the latest SW file version
                                        Misty Ratzlaff

                                        I have found one discussion on the Gibbs Forum http://forums.gibbscam.com/showthread.php?t=2361&highlight=solidworks+configuration...Here is what they claim

                                         

                                         

                                        In order to open a configuration in a SolidWorks file it must be an active configuration. When the configuration is inactive the solids data is not included in the SolidWorks file.

                                          • Re: GibbsCam not opening the latest SW file version

                                            You don't have to be on maintenance to ask questions of the Gibbscam forum. The older version of Gibbscam I occasionally use can only import the active SolidWorks configuration. Suggest you ask on their forum if anything has changed.

                                             

                                            Gibbscam 2012 was hyped as being all about optimized for SolidWorks:

                                             

                                            http://www.gibbscam.com/news_events/index.php?page=press-releases&con=343

                                             

                                            Jon Banquer

                                            San Diego, CA

                                            • Re: GibbsCam not opening the latest SW file version
                                              Lenny Bucholz

                                              Misty Ratzlaff wrote:

                                               

                                               

                                               

                                              In order to open a configuration in a SolidWorks file it must be an active configuration. When the configuration is inactive the solids data is not included in the SolidWorks file.

                                               

                                               

                                               

                                              This Isn't so! If it was Surfcam wouldn't be able to bring in all the configuration like you want Gibbs to do.

                                              This is a Gibbs issue, basiclly they haven't gotten it to work so they are blaming SW. I use configs every day with part and assembly file and opening in Surfcam and when I change the SW part\assembly I just make sure I resave at each config in SW, then all is good.

                                               

                                              Remeber to be a CAM partner with SW, they (the CAM software companies) must be able to read SW files directly and se the changes that happen to the SW file, so it's not an SW thing!

                                               

                                              Now that said, Surfcam isn't always perfect either....but pretty damn good.

                                               

                                              Anna, how is the link with configs with MasterCam?

                                               

                                              opening configs in SW.jpg

                                                • Re: GibbsCam not opening the latest SW file version

                                                  There are lots of legitimate points made by this vendor about the perils of seperate CAD and CAM from different vendors:

                                                   

                                                  http://www.cimsolutions.com.au/main.asp?p=4

                                                   

                                                  Jon Banquer

                                                  San Diego, CA

                                                    • Re: GibbsCam not opening the latest SW file version
                                                      Lenny Bucholz

                                                      Jon Banquer wrote:

                                                       

                                                      There are lots of legitimate points made by this vendor about the perils of seperate CAD and CAM from different vendors:

                                                       

                                                      http://www.cimsolutions.com.au/main.asp?p=4

                                                       

                                                      Jon Banquer

                                                      San Diego, CA

                                                       

                                                       

                                                       

                                                      man that picture is exactly how I fell about topsoilds! just kidding!

                                                       

                                                      good and bad to both sides, ok for the bigger shops that can buy multible seats so the machinist have their own seat and designe has theirs. but a small shop usally has one cam and one design on seperate computers so they can work at the same time not sharing one computer to do both because that is all the can afford.

                                                        • Re: GibbsCam not opening the latest SW file version

                                                          You can't produce CAM programs quick enough if the CAD part of your CAM system is always limiting you.

                                                           

                                                          Most legacy CAM programs started with wireframe geometry and many years later they added the Parasolid kernel for solids. In legacy CAM programs like this you constantly have to tell the system what you want to pick before you pick it and you have to waste massive amounts of time extracting wireframe geometry from the solid. Even worse are systems like Surfcam that don't offer any solid model support and convet your solid part or assembly to surfaces.

                                                           

                                                          If a CAM system can't make full use of a solid model by using all the information that solid model contains the user is being deprived of many of the benefits of having a solid model to work with.

                                                           

                                                          When you combine powerful solid modeling with continuous stock management and use an underlying logic you have the ability to remove the need for chaining in most situations. This can be seen in Missler TopSolid where you rarely have to chain anything and instead just pick a face.

                                                           

                                                          Powerful CAD solid modeling gives you an assembly mode. Assembly mode is a much easier and smarter way to create and manage CAM programs than copying and pasting between Layers (also called Workgroups and Levels)

                                                           

                                                          Mating is a very powerful and useful tool.

                                                           

                                                          If the CAM integration is done right you end up with the look and feel of just one application rather than having two distinct and separate applications both with entirely different looks and feels.

                                                           

                                                          No wasting time going back and forth constantly from CAM to CAD.

                                                           

                                                          No file translation problems.

                                                           

                                                          If you are working with a naive CAD file when a customer makes changes to the CAD file it's quicker and easier to make the needed CAM changes when you are using fully integrated CADCAM.

                                                           

                                                          Using PDM in a fully integrated CADCAM package makes it much easier to manage your files.

                                                           

                                                           

                                                          Jon Banquer

                                                          San Diego, CA

                                                          http://cadcamtechnologyleaders.blogspot.com/p/fully-integrated-cadcam.html

                                                      • Re: GibbsCam not opening the latest SW file version
                                                        Anna Wood

                                                        Lenny,

                                                         

                                                        We do not use MasterCAM.  We have CAMWorks and Esprit.

                                                         

                                                        Esprit reads the configurations, all of them, not just the active (last saved) version.

                                                         

                                                        Cheers,

                                                         

                                                        Anna

                                                      • Re: GibbsCam not opening the latest SW file version
                                                        Anna Wood

                                                        Actually that is not true....

                                                         

                                                        Our guys open SolidWorks files in Esprit for wire programming.  They are able to select the SolidWorks configurations in Esprit to bring in the data they need.

                                                         

                                                        GibbsCAM has chosen not to build this functionality into their software.

                                                         

                                                        Cheers,

                                                         

                                                        Anna

                                                          • Re: GibbsCam not opening the latest SW file version

                                                            This is a product built for DP Technology Esprit. It was built because many people in Russia understand the value of poweful fully integrated CADCAM. This product is unique in that it puts solid modeling inside Esprit rather than what we are use to seeing which is CAM running inside of CAD.

                                                             

                                                            http://www.espritextra.com/about/products/Extra_CAD/

                                                             

                                                             

                                                            The need is there because Esprit has some of the worst CAD I've even used. It can't even modify a solid model. They expect you "smash" a solid to surfaces and wireframe. On the CAM end, Esprit is an extremely powerful, well written program. This new solid model CAD add-in for Esprit is built with the Russian C3D monolithic kernel:

                                                             

                                                            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PtYsCuRW6bU

                                                             

                                                            The Russians who created this solid model CAD add-in sell DP Technology Esprit. They all use to sell Mastercam. I cover what happened in Russia to Mastercam here:

                                                             

                                                            http://whymastercamisthewrongchoice.blogspot.com/

                                                             

                                                            Jon Banquer

                                                            San Diego, CA

                                                              • Re: GibbsCam not opening the latest SW file version
                                                                Anna Wood

                                                                We do not purchase this module from Esprit.

                                                                 

                                                                We do no solid modeling in Esprit.  Just bring in our CAD data to set up wire paths.  We only have the wire modules from Esprit.

                                                                 

                                                                Cheers,

                                                                 

                                                                Anna

                                                                  • Re: GibbsCam not opening the latest SW file version

                                                                    I don't think the CAD solid modeler add-in for Esprit is even available yet and I seriously doubt DP Technology will sell it as they don't believe in fully integrated CADCAM. However, this new CAD solid modeler add-in for Esprit was shown at the Esprit World Conference in San Diego, CA a few weeks ago by their main Russian reseller who developed it. Also shown at the Esprit Word Conference was Esprit 2013 which now has a ribbon bar and solid cut part verification of actual G code. DP Technology is able to provide this because a few years ago they purchased a German company called Binary Spaces.

                                                                     

                                                                    http://www.binaryspaces.de/profile.html

                                                                     

                                                                    I believe the next version of CAMWorks will also be able to solid cut part verify actual G code. CAMWorks head developer Bruce Wiener strongly believes that doing solid cut part verification on actual G code is the way to go and Binary Spaces is willing to license their technology. CAMWorks has actually been interested in doing this for years but needed someone to work with. My guess is they finally found someone in Binary Spaces.

                                                                     

                                                                    The market for this solid modeling CAD add-in for Esprit is for those who want a fully integrated CADCAM solution with Esprit as the base product. There is no other way to achieve fully integrated CADCAM with Esprit because for many years DP Technology has had zero interest in running inside of any CAD product. They can get away with this for now because their main markets are wire EDM CAM (Esprit is easily the best CAM for wire EDM because of DP Technologies close relationships with wire EDM machine tool builders which other CAM companies don't have.) and programming machine tools that other systems like Surfcam and Mastercam can't program. In addition DP Technology has a very unique relationship with Mori-Seiki. When you buy a Mori-Seiki included is a version of Esprit that runs in the control and on a PC that will only post for the speicfic machine tool you buy from Mori-Seiki.

                                                                     

                                                                    Jon Banquer

                                                                    San Diego, CA