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Tolerance Setting or Adjustment to Recognize a Sheet Metal Punch Outline for Auto-Tooling

Question asked by Ed Cyganik on May 24, 2013
Latest reply on May 29, 2013 by Ed Cyganik


First of all, I apologize if this is the wrong place to post this message. This is also posted on the EngTips forum. Other suggestion would be welcomed.

I am a mechanical designer by trade but I have been forced into solving this particular problem.

I have a SolidWorks (2012) sheet metal part (double break panel) that has several sets of numbers on it for panel identification. The numbers are created as features and as sketches using a font that I created. Basically, the font is nothing more than rectangles arranged vertically and horizontally to represent numbers. Once a part is complete, a DXF is generated of the flat pattern, for manufacturing. Up to this point, everything is okay.

The problem occurs after importing the DXF file where the rectangles are supposed to auto-tool in the CAM
software. Manufacturing uses an old Amada Press with AP100 (US) Software (Version 7.0 MetalSoft Corp.) The "auto-tool" process works on some of the rectangles but fails on others. The difference between success and failure to auto-tool is a discrepancy of tens of thousands of an inch (.00014).

Rectangle tool; .375 x .063. DXF imports some rectangles as .37511 x .06357 and others as .37528 x .06372 because of the difference in numbers, only some of the rectangles auto-tool.

Is there a
solution to this problem?

help would be greatly appreciated,

Best regards,