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Metalcam has launched v16 of its Fikus Visualcam, which provides a user-friendly CNC programming solution for wire EDM, as well as milling, lathe, mill-turn and NC cutting and routing applications.

To speed up the user productivity, v16 supports Spaceball devices for the control of dynamic movements on-screen and two new options for dynamic zoom, centre the cursor or a fixed point, also used by CAD systems such as Solidworks.

The Wire EDM technology is used to cut mould and die components made from hardened steel, where parts are particularly difficult to mill.

As Wire is not affected by constant wear like traditional milling tools, Wire results are always exact, no matter how complex the job is.

Using a range of tools, the Fikus wire EDM module produces two- to four-axis toolpaths easily and quickly, for all types and ages of Wire EDM machines.

Version 16 of Fikus Visualcam supports a new tab in the ‘Conic constant’ parameter form, which enables the definition of different treatments to be performed at the corners of the wire path (slot, circle, chamfer or ‘V’-shaped corner).

In addition, a two-axes advanced strategy enables the definition of one or more two-axes parts with the possibility of different tapers on each face.

The process is handled in two-axes and post-processed as 2X contours with the corresponding angles.

For the two-axes strategies, a new design option allows to define partial clearance in specific sectors of the part and defining the shape and measures without modifying the original CAD geometry.

Fikus Visualcam v16 provides new options for entry points and motions, which are especially useful in case of many geometries.

The entry point for the No-Core-Cut process can be defined automatically when selecting the XY geometry.

Also, the entry motion can be defined automatically when selecting the XY geometry by choosing the ‘Automatic entry motion’ option and setting the values of angle and distance.

The new version enables the automatic definition of synchronisation lines between the XY and UV contours that have been previously generated in the CAD system.

After selecting the XY contour, a new option ‘Detect Synchro’ can be chosen, which selects the UV contour and the synchronisation lines altogether.

Fikus Visualcam v16 supports a variety of data translators such as IGES, DXF, DWG, STL, STEP, Cimatron and Catia.

Solidworks users can directly import the Solidworks geometry into Fikus Visualcam by means of a dedicated API function in Solidworks or by reading the Solidworks native .sldprt files.

Metalcam, already a Solidworks Certified CAM Partner, will implement single-window integration into Solidworks in the next Fikus Visualcam version as well.

Using dedicated, optimised technology tables, Fikus Visualcam v16 supports all major EDM machines such as GF Agiecharmilles, Sodick, ONA, Mitsubishi, Fanuc, and so on.

As a result of the long-term development partnership between Metalcam and GF Agiecharmilles, both companies have signed now an agreement to include a subset of Fikus Visualcam directly on the CNC of the new GF Agiecharmilles CUT20P/CUT30P machines.

The subset, named ‘AC CAM Easy’, includes CAD capabilities, 2X-cutting with conic features, collar wizard for the die makers industry, simulation and G-Code editor.

As an option, also no-core-cut processes, gear design, 3D data translators and text capabilities are available.

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