Any Lasercad alternative out there?

MicroBill
Posts: 19
Joined: Thu Aug 20, 2015 10:53 am

Any Lasercad alternative out there?

Postby MicroBill » Thu Apr 06, 2017 8:37 am

Well the subject line pretty much says it all. Just wondering.

I finally completed work on the little laser conversion and got everything working. FIrmware is updated and I'm running the latest version of Lasercad. Looking around on this forum and finding that I need to save my Illustrator files as version 8 in order for them to work certainly helped. I'm using Illustrator CC.

I "think" I may be able to work with LaserCad. Right now the only issue I have (other than no working plug-in) is that the window frame covers up the very right and bottom of the window (see attached). Some of the messages could have a little better translation but I can live with that. All in all it works so far.

Untitled-1.jpg


Question - Let's say I draw a box in Ilustrator that I want to cut out on the laser. I want a couple of "bridges" to keep the inside of the box from flying off the sheet once it's cut. I assume that I would need to break the line with a small gap in Illustrator rather than draw a white line across the cut line - right?

Bill
Attachments
Matt Template.ai
Template file
(297.49 KiB) Downloaded 21 times

SWMS
Posts: 127
Joined: Mon Jan 06, 2014 4:28 am

Re: Any Lasercad alternative out there?

Postby SWMS » Mon Apr 10, 2017 6:13 am

Yes. You'll have to break the line. There aren't any alternatives as far as I know unless you get a new controller from light object. Marco has been developing his own software.


Just had another thought... You could create your own custom dotted line in Illustrator ( long lines with a small gap) and this would work without you having to manually break the line.

natemart2
Posts: 2
Joined: Sat Apr 08, 2017 3:11 am

Re: Any Lasercad alternative out there?

Postby natemart2 » Sat Apr 22, 2017 6:37 pm

To fix the window sizing problem, grab the divider bar and drag it to the middle. It will stay scaled if you maximize the screen. I couldn't figure it out for days, then my wife said, "just move the divider". Sure enough, sometimes it is the simple answer.

wmgeorge
Posts: 40
Joined: Sun Feb 16, 2014 6:29 am

Re: Any Lasercad alternative out there?

Postby wmgeorge » Tue May 02, 2017 1:16 pm

I am now on my 4th Laser machine.

MY first machine was a G.Weike, LaserCad here is light years (pun kind of intended ) it was so much better than that software, I thought about ripping out the controller and installing a LO one! I sold that machine and moved to a nicely rebuilt ULS 50 watt but really 60W machine. It used a printer driver that installed with Corel Draw. It was great, but I lost interest and sold the machine. The big issue with that machine is I sometimes did projects that involved AutoCAD, the only way to get those into the ULS was through Corel Draw and DXF or DWG which was scary as I did not want my dimensions changed.

I then purchased a 20 Watt Galvo Fiber laser, it does great work, BUT the software with it is EZCad and trust me... the learning curve on that is way out. The rotary function is Rocket Science!! Did I say it was not Easy CAD. I use Corel X6 for most of that work and import into the program.

So now for my 4th machine and I am keeping the rotary... my latest one is coming from LO and one of the new generation 40 watt machines. I discovered even as the fiber laser was great on metals... I still had a need for a CO2 machine. PS I will turn 74 in a month or so, TYL and have been interested in CAD and CNC since the early 1990's.

So just think of LaserCad as enhanced machine control and a way to do a quick job without AI or CD and from what I have seen there is not at this point in time a better replacement.

My free advice, do your designing in AI like you are now or perhaps a CAD program and import into LC as a AI file, DXF or otherwise. I have a download of LC from here and getting use to the Macro that exports files with layers and colors into LaserCad from Corel Draw I have a ways to go on that right now. But I will figure it out, I always have.

wmgeorge
Posts: 40
Joined: Sun Feb 16, 2014 6:29 am

Re: Any Lasercad alternative out there?

Postby wmgeorge » Tue May 02, 2017 1:26 pm

MicroBill wrote:Well the subject line pretty much says it all. Just wondering.

I finally completed work on the little laser conversion and got everything working. FIrmware is updated and I'm running the latest version of Lasercad. Looking around on this forum and finding that I need to save my Illustrator files as version 8 in order for them to work certainly helped. I'm using Illustrator CC.

I "think" I may be able to work with LaserCad. Right now the only issue I have (other than no working plug-in) is that the window frame covers up the very right and bottom of the window (see attached). Some of the messages could have a little better translation but I can live with that. All in all it works so far.

Untitled-1.jpg

Question - Let's say I draw a box in Ilustrator that I want to cut out on the laser. I want a couple of "bridges" to keep the inside of the box from flying off the sheet once it's cut. I assume that I would need to break the line with a small gap in Illustrator rather than draw a white line across the cut line - right?

Bill

Bill I am looking at your file now.... looks like a cooking grate! Anyway are you cutting the slots first or what is the cutting order? You can set different colors to have cut at more or less power or speed... and maybe you already know that? If so I will bug off.

MicroBill
Posts: 19
Joined: Thu Aug 20, 2015 10:53 am

Re: Any Lasercad alternative out there?

Postby MicroBill » Sun May 07, 2017 6:30 am

Sorry for my not following up on my questions! Thanks for the input and ideas.

From what some friends running Epilogs tell me is to use the cut tool in AI to break the lines. OK, that problem solved.

NEW PROBLEM...

The "cooking grate" file is actually a guide for drawing parallel lines in a little book. That file works fine and I have no problems with it. Now I started a new drawing in AI (basically a lot of rectangles) but when I import it into LaserCad it took the lines from the AI drawing and made them three cutting lines wide. I tried to play around with different line widths in AI but for some reason extra paths appear when I import into LaserCad. The other file (cooking grate ;) ) worked fine and I can't see what's different about the rectangles in the new file. Strange.

Bill

Techgraphix
Posts: 448
Joined: Fri Jan 20, 2012 1:39 pm
Location: Appelscha, the Netherlands
Contact:

Re: Any Lasercad alternative out there?

Postby Techgraphix » Mon May 08, 2017 1:19 am

MicroBill wrote:when I import it into LaserCad it took the lines from the AI drawing and made them three cutting lines wide.

Not sure what you mean... but sometimes there are a lot of duplicated lines in a drawing. Not visible on the screen but present.
When you export your drawing in DXF or any other verctor-format, ALL these lines are exported.
You can check the integrity of the drawing for duplicated lines, loops and disconnected vectors

Exporting in vectorformats doesn't Always work as flawless as you want..

It is NOT LaserCad that causes the problem.. I have it in many other (professional) programs aswell, lika Autocad, ArtCam, Aspire, MKCad etc..

Picture what you get and what you want, then you can pinpoint the problem and solve it..

Kees

SWMS
Posts: 127
Joined: Mon Jan 06, 2014 4:28 am

Re: Any Lasercad alternative out there?

Postby SWMS » Mon May 08, 2017 1:56 am

Importing an AI file never seems to work properly, it either loads it weirdly or doesn't load it at all, stick to exporting to DXF. I've never tried the illustrator plug in as I use illustrator on a Mac.


I find Corel works the best with LaserCad.

MicroBill
Posts: 19
Joined: Thu Aug 20, 2015 10:53 am

Re: Any Lasercad alternative out there?

Postby MicroBill » Mon May 08, 2017 8:08 am

Thanks for the replies.

When I first made the ruling guide template I found there were a lot of repeated rectangles that I had to delete. After double-checking the latest drawing I made I find that it looks ok - no duplicated items on top of each other. After it gets exported (as AI Version 8) then imported into LaserCad the funny stuff happens - as noted by SWMS and Kees.

I've attached a screenshot from LaserCad. When the image is viewed full page it looks fine. I go to cut the file and find that it cuts fine then retraces the cut path two more times. The screenshot shows a zoomed-in version of a couple of corners. Resolution isn't the greatest in the image but I think you can see that there are some extra paths that got thrown into the soup so to speak.

Exporting to DXF causes a different problem - some rectangles/paths get stacked on top of each other and I'm left with something that looks like a Frank Lloyd Wright sketch.

I've attached some screenshots to help illustrate my problem.

The only version of Corel I have at present is the Home/Student X7 version and I believe that won't work - am I correct? Also - I'm not using any plug-ins with LaserCad. I couldn't get them to install (but that's another problem).

Thanks for the help!

Bill
Attachments
Clip1.jpg
AI File to cut
Lcad DXF In.jpg
Result of DXF Import
Clipboard01.jpg
Zoom of AI Import

hodgeac
Posts: 5
Joined: Fri Jun 16, 2017 6:41 pm

Re: Any Lasercad alternative out there?

Postby hodgeac » Sat Jul 08, 2017 8:04 am

MicroBill wrote:Thanks for the replies.

When I first made the ruling guide template I found there were a lot of repeated rectangles that I had to delete. After double-checking the latest drawing I made I find that it looks ok - no duplicated items on top of each other. After it gets exported (as AI Version 8) then imported into LaserCad the funny stuff happens - as noted by SWMS and Kees.

I've attached a screenshot from LaserCad. When the image is viewed full page it looks fine. I go to cut the file and find that it cuts fine then retraces the cut path two more times. The screenshot shows a zoomed-in version of a couple of corners. Resolution isn't the greatest in the image but I think you can see that there are some extra paths that got thrown into the soup so to speak.

Exporting to DXF causes a different problem - some rectangles/paths get stacked on top of each other and I'm left with something that looks like a Frank Lloyd Wright sketch.

I've attached some screenshots to help illustrate my problem.

The only version of Corel I have at present is the Home/Student X7 version and I believe that won't work - am I correct? Also - I'm not using any plug-ins with LaserCad. I couldn't get them to install (but that's another problem).

Thanks for the help!

Bill

Has anyone heard any updates on when RayCam will be updated to support X7/2017 CorelDraw? I can't find much but a few people mentioning they can't get it working when searching the forum. I saw one post of someone saying they somehow manually installed the plugin, but of course they didn't actually mention how they did that...Why would a person take the time to respond to a forum post to say they found a work around but not explain the work around? Sigh.

SWMS
Posts: 127
Joined: Mon Jan 06, 2014 4:28 am

Re: Any Lasercad alternative out there?

Postby SWMS » Sat Aug 26, 2017 10:46 pm

You don't need to use a plugin to run Corel Draw with RayCam, LaserCad or any of those programs. All the macro does is export it as a dxf in the background and open the file for you. Yes it's a bit of a pain to have to manually export it but it works.

If you have Corel Student Ed the macro will never work anyway because the Student Ed doesn't come with vba which enables the use of macros.


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