I am trying to use grasshopper to design woodworking items to be made with a 5-axis CNC router.
We have been using normal CAM software, such as CAMworks, but it isn’t very sophisticated about 5-axis, and it requires lots of manual intervention.
The 5-axis point is a bit frustrating - the machine can clearly do the 5-axis moves, and while creating the Grasshopper definition for my design I know a lot about the geometry that isn’t expressed in the final 3D mode.
The manual intervention point is even more annoying. Then when we make changes and iterate a design, the manual intervention has to happen all over again.
I am told that if my designs were in Solidworks then the update process would be simpler, because it could recognize that it was the same model, but with some dimensions changed.
There may be a way to automate that via Excel - I found a forum post here that discusses that.
RhinoCam is a possible alternative but since it is quite expensive I want to make sure it actually will do what I want.
In particular, I worry about the following - a design done largely in Grasshopper, and then Baked to go into Rhino may not have the same continuity with CAM tool paths as one that was built in Rhino.
The most intriguing thing is that there seem to be several groups that developed Grasshopper plug ins that would directly output toolpaths for a CNC machine.
One promising one is called Termite. The technical paper published about it sounds very good. But Termite was promised to be posted to this site in 2016 and there is nothing else and it’s now 2020.
So, I am open to suggestions!