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Feb 13, 2017, 07:35 PM
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Success With Producing a CAD Cut File


This has been a long time in the works for me. It has been said that CAD has a steep learning curve. Whether or not that is true for anyone else, it had been certainly true for yours truly. Last spring, I sent Charlie Bice at Manzano Laser a test cut file, but it was embarrassingly newbee-ish, as I didn't have my units and boundaries designated. Charlie was kind enough to tweak everything into shape without charging me for his design services. But this time around, I wanted to make sure that the cut file was ready to be read by the laser cutter. Tom Jacoby was at the helm now, and he informed me of the good news that my latest test cut file was A-OK! So, below is the picture of the laser-cut 1/16" balsa sheet with my images on it. Now that I've got that down, the door swings wide open for me to make my own parts from plans or my own designs. I still draw everything in Photoshop first before transferring the "cut files" to CAD, where I trace over them. That's because I've used Photoshop for 15-plus years, and even though I'm sure it's clunky compared to CAD, at least I know how to take a design from beginning to end with it. In CAD I would just be fumbling and fuming because I'm not that far along yet, and I would really rather dispense with the anxiety right now. Maybe later things will get easier, and I'll look back and laugh, but right now my baby steps have brought me to an exciting entry level in the world of CAD!
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