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Autodesk Inventor/CAM/CNC Workflow - Part 1: Creating the Assembly and Parts
Inventor Screenshot 1Inventor Screenshot 2Inventor Screenshot 3Inventor Tutorials Graphic
In this tutorial series we will be exploring how to use Autodesk Inventor along with CAM software (CAMBAM) to create CNC parts.


In this video tutorial we will show you how to use Autodesk Inventor to design two parts using a CAM program (CAMBAM) to apply machining operations to create the cutting profiles and drills to fabricate these two parts on the greenBull CNC machine. During the Inventor portion of the video series you’ll learn a ton of advanced topics including: using properties from parts of the assembly to provide dimensions for a particular part, or using Excel to provide the dimensions you need so the assembly and parts are fully parametric. These videos can also serve as a good primer if you are deciding to get into using Inventor for your projects.

We’re going to make a Z axis assembly for the blueChick to hold a Porter Cable 890 router. We want to select “Create” and name it under “New Component Name”. We will then place it somewhere on the screen. We are now faced with a blank screen, so we need to start a 2D sketch. You can pick whatever plane you want from here because it doesn’t matter. When you select that plane you are now “on” that plane. We select a rectangle and that will be our “back” for now. We set the dimensions. When the shape is green it means it is not fully constrained. It does not need to be fully constrained. In the video you can see how we can move and constrain the shape. When it becomes blue, it is concrete. We now use the “e” key to extrude the shape. It can be extruded in many different ways. Symmetric, Asymmetric, Direction 1 or Direction 2. We want it to be the thickness of the wood, so we’ll make it .75”.

Now that we have the back we want to create the mounts. We press “Return” to get out of the part. Now we are outside of the back and we want to put something protruding out of it. Now we select “Create” and name the part. This one is named “TopRouterMount”. Start a new 2D sketch and select the plane. We select “Circle” and make a circle the size of the router using “Dimension” and entering 3.5”. We then draw another circle around the first circle and make the space between the two circles .75”. Press the construction line to create the clamping area. Next we draw a couple of “real” lines. Next we close the lines and create constraints. The construction line and the line from which we are trying to dimension is not parallel, so the dimension you see is an angle, not a length. This is not intuitive, but it is eventually figured out. This part is important to understand so you are not caught in the same situation.

We will continue the process in Part 2.

Click Here for the Next Part in the Series

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