FastCUT® saves time and materials, speeds up production
and controls waste. Many customers tell us it's the most cost
effective tool they've added to their business!
FastCUT® is available in industry versions to suit Metal
- Glass- Wood, is a multi-lingual program (English, Spanish,
Italian, Russian, Dutch, Thai, Hungarian, Chinese) and supports
inch and metric.
Fast optimization of sections/lengths and plate/panels minimizes
scrap and gives you a quick estimate. Calculates price of material,
return to stock values & gives you a summary of all Costs
within minutes. Printed Cutting Lists & Graphic Layouts
for the Operator mean it's cut the way it was estimated! Quick
3 Step Operation and automatic installation on Microsoft Windows
98/2000/XP/ME, Vista. FastCUT® v6.02 now has DXF Output
for use with automatic saws/sheetmetal shearing machines.
Q. During the 'CAD Compress' process, there was a prompt for
"Max line length to round" with a random number. Does
it mean that all the entities with a corresponding length of
less than the number will be joined together as single entity?
What about the 'Max. shape divergence?' I don't quite get it.
A. Cad Compress: FastCAM will check for connected entities and
attempt to combine or reduce them into one long entity to improve
Max line length to round: This setting tells FastCAM the maximum
total length of connected entities it is permitted to compress
to one entity. This length should be set relative to the part
size and the mean entity length in the part. In general, a larger
part with longer entities will benefit from a larger length
limit. Note that the number that FastCAM generates automatically
as a default is based on the overall part size and a fairly
Max. shape divergence: When compressing and replacing multiple
entities with one long entity it is unlikely that it will cover
the exact path of all the old entities, so this value sets a
margin of error. If the replacement entity is too far away from
the original, it won't be added in. The larger this number,
the more likely a set of entities will be compressed, but the
more deformed the shape will become. As with Max line length,
divergence should be proportional to the part size.
Q. After running 'CAD Clean' and CAD Compress', there was a
prompt to 'check against original'. When I select 'yes' the
pointer (mouse cursor) showed that it was processing. When I
left-clicked I discovered a drop down list with a blue message
that said 'Plot'. When I left-clicked again, another drop down
list with a blue message said 'Satisfactory'. How do you define
A. Check Against Original: Once the software has completed checking
the entire drawing and decided on which entities to compress,
it will overlay the original on top of this compressed shape,
as 2 different colours. You can view the shape through FastPLOT
('Plot'), a simulator that allows you to visually inspect how
much deviation has taken place by allowing you to zoom in to
different places closely before you cut.
Satisfactory?: You are asked to confirm because compression
may sometimes deform the original shape. Meaning you will lose
some of the original details. The definition is subject to the
customer's requirement as to the size and finer cut quality
of the part. This can range from a large shipping panel 5ft
long becoming one inch longer on one end due to compression.
Hardly a problem therefore this is satisfactory. A small jagged
leaf cut out that has been compressed into an oval would be
Q. When trying to match DXF layers to machine processes, I noticed
a duplication of a layer name. Do I need to delete the duplicated
A. The duplicate DXF layers do not interfere with FastCAM's
layer matching. If you want, you can remove the duplicate layers
by deleting the file in your FastCAM directory C:\Program Files\FastCAM\DXF.DAT.
Q. I followed your figure on CAD layer shown on page 142 (FastCAM
Reference Manual, Revision 6) and noted that DXF layer name
at the left column (under the heading 'Drawing Analysis') is
defined with 'OUTSIDERPROFILE' AND 'INSIDERPROFILE'. Also, there
are two machine processes available Op#1 - Plasma1 and Op#2
- Plasma2 under the heading 'DXF LAYERS PREDEFINED'. I have
parts that also need to be cut inside and outside the line.
My question is should I define the 2 DXF layers each for the
inside cut and outside? The Plasma1 and Plasma2 as shown in
the example, are they referring to two plasma torches or just
one plasma torch but two operations?
A. Some torches are very flexible. There are setups where 2
different torches are used to cut inside and outside separately
or alternatively the same torch might have multiple settings
or profiles where it is used for a variety of job types. However,
if you are using the same torch with the same settings to cut
insides and outsides, there is no need to separate it into two
Q. I tried to place some text (not to be marked on plate) on
the part and then tried to move it around. I couldn't do it.
Also, is it possible to include text for scribing onto the plate?
A. Once you have added Text to the screen it is now a 'Text
Entity'. This is useful for part identification within a nest.
If you click on the 'red cross' show control point button on
the toolbar, you will see that on the bottom left of the text
there is a control point. This is the text reference point.
To move the text, go to the Text Menu and select 'move' item.
Select a text reference point (you can click on the Show Control
Point button again to help you find it and select a new point
to place the text again).
It you want to convert the text to machine movements for part
marking it is simple enough to do but it is sold as an add-on
function and costs $495.00. Once you install the TextMarker
option you can create text marking code in both FastCAM and
FastNEST, depending on the Marking tool you want to use. FastCAM
can then convert the text into simple lines and arcs to make
use of marking tools. We also support printer heads that use
their own format and accept a string only as input from the
The ability to quote a 'nested' CAM, DXF or DWG file is almost
complete, and should be available mid Feb. 2007 will also bring
with it several User-requested changes to QE. Here are just
some of them you can expect soon:-
Importation of a group of single CAM/DXF files, then assign
materials, thick, qty etc ready for processing.
Minimum Quote Price adjustment.
Duplication of one line item to another within a quote.
Ability for Estimators to add Customers.
Ability to read/import DWG files.
Discounting Line Items by percentage.
FASTCAM QE FEEDBACK
We have talked a lot this year about QE in terms of an integrated
business system in larger service centers however note that
QE suits 95% of what processors do without the need for integration
and customization. FastCAM® QE(TM) is available as a multi
user database system ranging from 3 to unlimited users. It is
simple to use, affordable and very effective.
IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT 'VISTA' - MICROSOFT'S NEW WINDOWS
We are in the process of testing FastCAM® products on Microsoft
Windows Vista. At present we do not support Vista and warn against
migrating software to the new Vista 32 bit until it has passed
Customers on FastCAM® Service Maintenance Agreements can
download the latest FastCAM® 5.9.1248 version which has
- Support for Wide screens (the Nesting looks a treat as the
nest plate is usually much longer in x the in the vertical
- FastNEST logic has been improved for Large nests - they
are now completed up to 10 x faster.
- FastPLOT will produce 1:1 plotting again (this was disabled
in a previous version).
- We have added TRIBON compatibility (please contact us about
- We can now deal with very small detail ideal for font cutting
FastCAM® 5.9.1248 - Widescreen
FastCAM® now supports widescreen formats. This can be especially
useful for NESTING which will better fit the longer aspect ratio.
The setting is made in the Setup file but for some screens
you may need to contact us with the exact dimensions of your
monitor so the display is correct for your aspect ratio. Some
laptops and newer 'Cinema type screens are optimized for the
display of video & movies so we may need to tweak the settings
so there is no stretching of the image. (19 inch monitor)
You will need a recent version of software to implement this
If you are on service we can edit your SETUP.DAT file for you.
Send an Email to FastCAM service and include the dimensions
of your monitor. We will change the file and email it back.
The default physical screen size is 17 inch. This is 17"
320 x 245. Exact scaling can be changed in the SETUP.DAT file
in the \Program files\fastcam directory as (E.g.) :SCREEN,375,300
FASTCAM® MULTIPLE SCREENS
Another better visual method is using multiple monitors (as
supported under Windows XP). Many of our customers are using
this feature to great effect running the FastCAM® System
on one screen and correspondence such as Outlook on the other.
Once again contact FastCAM Service for detail on how to setup
Q) When running FastCAM software it errors with - "Run-time
error '340'", "Control Array element (x) doesn't exist"
A) This is an issue with using the newer version of software,
being installed as an upgrade over an older version. The solution
is to Delete any "fastcam" txt file in the FastCAM
folder that contains a bracket in the filename, eg "fastcam_Chinese(PRW).txt"
In response to demand from users, FastCAM® will no longer
exit when NC code needs to be verified in FastPLOT. (FastCAM®
was designed to shut down to enable maximum memory allocation
for customers using older PC's however this should no longer
be an issue).
Improved manual pathing ability. Manual pathing has been improved
in complex situations where there are many choices. E.g. If
a single choice is straight ahead at an intersection and the
layer is the same, it is chosen automatically as this is the
most likely for flame or plasma cutting.
Uses XP Theme. This eliminates the scroll bar on the screen
which some users find a nuisance when only part of a drawing
is displayed on the screen. (This could be changed manually
in the Setup.Dat file but it is now automatic).
Inverse Window Erase. Users can now choose to erase entities
inside or outside a window.
Load Changed Entries allows you to store changed entries if
an entry of a part has been changed in a saved nest. This means
when you are loading a nest which has entries of a part that
have previously been changed manually, you don't have to manually
change it again. The new software will give users an option
to load the manually changed entry when that nest is loaded.
Printer settings can now be saved.
The User Interface has been improved.
This upgrade is available to Customers on a Service Maintenance
Agreement that specifically includes FastSHAPES®.
FastTRACK® v3.1.49 for Windows starts at US$1,995.00 (Single
User Version). Upgrade Pricing depends on what version you are
upgrading from. Please Call. SQL backend with improved database
functionality for data storage, Reliability & Speed; Multi-user
capabilities; reporting and compatibility with other software
programs including connection to FastNEST® for Remnant Nesting.
(Note: FastCAM users need to be running the latest FastCAM v5.9.1070
to be able to intergrate FastTRACK into FastNEST).
Redesigned user interface for overall improved ease-of-use.
New Auditing functionality. Tracks who creates, edits, deletes
plates. (Stores all data changes and pictorial history of the
Editing of plates now done with full FastCAM® Editor.
1. Open FastPLOT
2. Click NC Utilities
3. Click Convert to CAM (or Convert to DXF)
4. Save the file to any location.
Air quality issues
Gas quality is an extremely important issue and one that affects
performance, operating cost, and safety. A number of recent
problems related to oily air suggest that certain issues involving
gas quality need to be addressed. Please note the following
and ensure that all persons involved in the installation or
operation of plasma cutting systems are aware of these issues
and that appropriate measures are recommended or implemented.
Following is an excerpt from a current InnerLogic User Manual:
Oxygen and nitrogen should be supplied with a purity of at
least 99.5%. A potential fire hazard exists when cutting with
oxygen. Flashback arrestors must be supplied to prevent a possible
fire from propagating back to the gas supplies. Compressed air
must be clean, dry, and oil-free and may be supplied from compressed
cylinders or from an air compressor. Be aware that shop air
systems are prone to oil and moisture contamination. If shop
air is used, it must be cleaned to ISO 8573.1: Class 1.4.1.
Specify dry air when using compressed cylinders. Breathing quality
air contains moisture and must not be used.
While these recommendations are important for operation of
InnerLogic systems, it should be noted that gas quality affects
virtually any plasma cutting system in the same way, regardless
of manufacturer. The following points are worth special notation:
-Poor gas or air quality can have a detrimental affect on
-Poor gas or air quality can increase operating costs (decreased
-Poor gas or air quality can destroy a torch
Basically, compressed air used in a plasma cutting operation
must be clean, dry, and oil free. While we claim no expertise
in the area of air compression or filtration, there are many
companies who specialize in this field. Proper preparation for
an installation and regular maintenance of the air supply will
pay dividends, ensuring optimum performance and safety.
Mike Corbett – InnerLogic Tech Support
Previously Retrofitted ESAB with a Burny 5 CNC Control.
This machine ran for 5 years in a high volume manufacturing
operation until it was purchased, dismantled and sold to one
our customers. We were contracted to install & tune and
noted the following
to square the machine, the rail axis would not always return
to the starting point of the part.
kept us busy for a while! The encoders were swapped between
the X and Y axis and the part checked again. The machine would
sometimes return to zero and other times would be a full .375
of an inch off. The problem seemed to bounce from the X to the
Y axis. (It is worth noting at this time that this machine ran
“flawlessly” for 5 years before we relocated it!)
The back panel of the Burny 5 was removed and the encoder inputs
verified on the back wall board. All of the signals seemed to
be making it into the control and all of the power supply voltages
were clean and within limits. It was then noted the position
of the DIP switches. They were set for single ended input. That
would have been fine if we indeed had single ended encoders!
The switches were reset for differential and the problem vanished.
Sonoma Automation Inc.