Alexsys V4 Mill Operator Manual

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Overview

 ALEXSYS is a programming system for CNC machining centers. That combines features of CAD / CAM systems with typical features of conversational programming.

It is not necessary to be experienced with CAD/CAM systems to use this software.

Alexsys Features

This features below are in every Alexsys package.

Part Origin(Part Zero)

The reference point or part origin is where you zero the part offset on the machine. New setups in Alexsys by default have the part zero set in the middle of the stock.  Sometimes, it makes it easier to get an accurate touch off if you move the reference point to a corner or edge of the stock.

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To alter this, adjust the reference coordinates to match your setup. Below are compare and contrast shots to show how the reference point will move.

Example of Default settings, part 0 set to center of stock/part

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Here is an example with part 0 moved to the corner. 

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Face Milling

Safe Z : It's the z coordinate where the tool is safe , where it can't collide with anything ( fixture , stock , ..)

Reference Z Plane : Is the reference z coordinate. Usually it's the zero part Z0

Parallel strategy ( traditional ) :

Direction Auto : The direction is calculated automatically

Direction Horizontal : The direction is parallel to X axis

Direction Vertical : The direction is parallel to Y axis


Child operations available

1) Roughing

It process multiple passes in z direction to remove all the material to remove.

The passes depth is determined by the tool cutting data parameter. ( Max Cut Height )

Material to remove : Measured from Reference Z Plane to Z+ direction

Roughing Mode : It's the selected strategy

2) Finishing

It perform the last finish pass on the part face.

Finishing allowance : It's the material left by the roughing operation

3) Chamfering

Contour and Pocket operations

Under the Mill menu, you can find Contour and Pocket operations.

This 2 machining operations are identical except the fact , by default ,  contour will work the outer area of selected profiles, and pocket will work the inner area of selected profiles.


Switch profile side

Is possible switch the side of selected geometry.

You can both click on the double sided arrow in geometry list box or click the yellow arrow in viewpoint . When you hover the yellow arrow with mouse cursor , the arrow will turn red. Click on it to change working side.

The highlighted area in viewpoint , will be the area machined away by the operation.


Open Profiles

Contour and Pocket operations need a closed profile to work with.

If you select an open profile instead, Alexsys will try to close it with the outer stock profile.

See image.

Also in this case you can switch working side .


Z Levels

Safe Z : is the Z Plane where the tool approach in rapid movement

Start Z : Is the z plane where the tool start remove material

Depth : Is the thickness of material to be removed , measured from Start Z

By default these values are applied to all associated geometries.

But if you enable the " DEFINE Z LEVELS FOR GEOMETRY" , these value are applied only to current geometry. The current geometry is highlighted with red strokes in viewpoint and active in geometry list box


Groove Width

With a 0 value in WIDTH property , the region area is filled .Like this

But if i set a value in WIDTH the working area is created by offseting the source profile , like this.

This property is set just to the selected profile in geometry list box.

You can insert negative values to the offset direction in opposite side. Or just invert direction with arrow.

Overhang

Overhang feature is useful to create the side slots with this tool.

You need to enable [Is Overhang Active] and set the [Slot Height]

The bottom part of the slot is determined by the [Start Z] and [Depth] values. The Slot height is measured from the bottom part to Z+ direction.

By default , the outer overhang area is defined by the stock outer contour. 

You can set the [WIDTH] property to edit overhang area. You can set a negative value to determinate if selected profile is the outer or the inner part of the area.
When the [WIDTH] property is defined, the stock profile will be ignored. So be sure to verify with simulation that the tool plunge in a clear machined area and not into stock.

Roughing plunge points

To force plunge point position for roughing operation, enable "Select Plunge Point" to pick to position with mouse.

If plunge points are defined , the plunge mode will be disabled . Be sure the plunge point positions are in a stock free area.

Use [Clear Points Selection] to remove all defined plunge points.


Finishing Start Points

Is also possible define finishing start points. Use [Define starting points] under finishing operation.

Use [Clear Points Selection] to remove all defined plunge points.


Keep Tool Down

By default, after every pass in Z direction, the tool move to [Safe Z] level . The reason is to keep the maximum safety in toolpath creation.

But if you see there is no issue with stock collision, you can enable [Keep Tool Down] . In this way the tool goes directly to next z level , without moving to [Safe Z] after every pass. 

You have 2 different [Keep Tool Down] options, one under roughing operation and one under finishing operation. So you can have active in one operation and disabled in the other.


Finishing Offset

Is possible apply a negative or positive offset value to profile. With this you can remove more or less material from stock with finishing tool.