We use Surfcam and it doesn't work on meshes. For the mesh/stl jobs, we got a license of VisualMill http://www.mecsoft.com. The basic version for 3 axis milling is around 1k.
I have a Shop Sabre 4896 with a 12" z. It has a 3hp Columbo spindle as well.
My friends that help out with cad/cam setup use Keycreator and Surfcam and they can't work on these files. What I have is several 3d files in STL and various 3d meshes that I need to machine.
Would anyone be available to do some ongoing contract work to help set these up?
download cut3d or aspire demos from the vectric.com site you can test the file for production and purchase if they will (and i know they can) you will not be able to tool path in demo mode.
or you can call and send files with particulars and i will prep the toolpath you can run on a shopsabre- wincnc
803 518 2074
mcgrew 636 (at) msn dot com
James McGrew CAMaster 508 ATC
It has a free demo online that will post code for a month. That should be enough to let you know if milling off an STL file is for you. The program is fast and easy to learn. You can download it from www.deskproto.com . Although the full version is over $1k, if you aren't using a 4th axis the Lite version might do everything you need. It costs much less, and doesn't require shipment.
Are you running a WinCNC? Do you a CAM program with your machine?
Mine came with something called RAMS (very basic program) but I thought it could import stl files.
Do you need file conversion or machine ready .tap file?
If you need machine ready - do you know what tooling, feed and speeds, stock size etc...
MeshCAM can also create the code for you, It has a 30 day fully functional demo.
Mach3 2010 Screenset
(Note: The opinions expressed in this post are my own and are not necessarily those of CNCzone and its management)