1. More efficient CAM manger

1.1 Easily drag and drop operations

The ZW3D 2013 CAM manager has been improved greatly. It also provides drag and drop functions to help users conveniently manage objects. It can be executed under those nodes:Geometry, Component, Frames, Operations, Output and so on. It provides folders for feature management. Folders can also be moved with drag and drop. In the folder, drag and drop also is available. All operations become more flexible.

At the same time, the work flow is changed with the manager:

  • Double click the icon of operation to show the tool path.
  • Double click the text of operation to show the parameter form.

  • Support to copy selected objects with Ctrl key
  • Support to select multiple objects with Shift key

1.2 Simultaneously display the feature associated with the operation

In order to quickly get clear information about the exactly location of each feature in the part, users can click any geometry on the manager tree, then it will be highlighted in the graphical area. 

1.3 New feature select manager

A uniform table for feature management is available when you define the machining feature of the operation.

1.4 Flexible NC outputting mode

Engineers can output the NC code selectively by outputting “all the operation” and outputting “individual operation”. It will also record the statue of each operation such as calculated or not.    

2. Enhancements of milling strategies

2.1 Higher reliable and bigger step over

A large step-over is very useful for roughing to improve machining efficiency. ZW3D 2013 allows the most appropriate Quick Mill Operations to support a step-over as high as 85-90% of the tool diameter. Tool path calculation is enhanced in the Smooth-Flow algorithm to ensure that the material is not left in corners between cuts and that cutter loading is as uniform as possible.
The following roughing operations are enhanced in step-over:

  • Smooth-Flow, Offset 2D, Lace operation

2.2 Flexible strategy combines Z-level and lace characteristics

(It will be integrated later)
Lace operation is suited for machining shallow areas. Z-level operation is suited for machining steep areas. For some complicated machining areas, programmers need to do several operations to finish it. But now it is easier with new operation which is combination of lace and Z-level operations. It greatly increases the programming efficiency. Another important thing is that it gives higher quality machining surfaces with uniform parameters.

2.3 Explicit step down definition for Z Level

For some parts with deep and complicated pockets, it is possible to cut it to different depths with the Z-level operation in ZW3D 2013. Specify different cut layers and assign different step sizes for each layer.
Programmers machine the part with different step values in terms of different situations to ensure the uniform surface quality with one operation which will be achieved by several, in order to improve the work efficiency.

2.4 Contact point containment

ZW3D’s existing containment functionality supports limiting the whole tool movement or the cutter location inside or outside the containment boundary. To get better machining surfaces, more applications of containment are added, including tangent to open edges, tangent to silhouettes, and tangent to face curves. 
These new types of containment can limit the region of the tool motion by contact with curves which lie on the part. So it is needed to provide one or more closed containment boundaries which lie on the part surfaces being machined.
Using this type of boundary would make completingmachining the desired surface much easier.

2.5 Run-out extension

Create a tangent sheet extension of the outer surface boundaries. That could be done to provide tool path “run out”. This would enable users get run-out of a small amount to ensure the tool has cleared the part material when moving from part face contact to “air”. 

3. Flexible lead-in and lead-out

To enhance tool-path flexibility, five new types of lead-in and lead-out are added, including Line, Arc, Ramp Line, Ramp Arc and Along tool-path. These new features are applied to all 2.5 X operations (except for the Helical operation) and 3X Quick mill operations (except for the Plunge and Bulge).

This new lead in/out module provides several lead types as following:

  • LINE:

  • ARC:



And there is a new function to copy parameters b between the lead in and lead out.

The third improvement is that the gouge check feature and two solutions for lead in and lead out. If the gouge check is checked, the system will auto apply the second solution when over cutting happens or it fails to get tool path with the first one.

4. More safe gouging check detect

The new gouging checks detect function was added into ZW3D2013, which helps user detect collisions and gouges between tools, stocks and tables clamps and so on. 
Also it helps to quickly check the rest material for each operation.  

5. Optimized tool manager

Clear workflow can make work easy and increase efficiency. So many improvements are made on tool manager.

  • There are four tables: Main Parameter, Material, Tool Holder, Speed and Feed, which help users understand and define it quickly.

  • Visible and dynamic tool holder definition supports multi-layer tool holder. Definition and edit operations also very convenient.

  • Available to associate the speed and feed rate with tool in the Speed and Feed Tab

6. Enhancements of 5X milling

6.1 Enhance the Auto retrace function and make it safe

In ZW3D 2013 the auto retract of 5X has been improved a lot and the entire Auto retract paths are safer than before. All the retraces strictly retract according to the parameters set in the 5X machine definition form above.  

6.2 Added the Relation frame for datum-shift

The new Relation frame option helps user create the relationship between the reference machining coordinate system and the sub-coordinate system. Every coordinate system you create in ZW3D can be used as the reference coordinate system. Once you assigned the relation frame, the system will calculate the tool path for each sub-machining system based on the assigned coordinate system. If you changed the reference system, the relationship also will change correspondingly. 

7. Upgraded Solid verify kernel (Machine works V7.1)

Solid verify kernel is updated to the latest version (Machine works V7.1). It gives a better verification performance. The simulating process is more smooth, precise, and stable.