Autodesk’s Inventor HSM Express is a free CAM solution that is seamlessly integrated inside the design environment of the company’s Inventor 3D mechanical CAD software.
The software offers full association between the model and machining; any changes to the model are automatically reflected in the tool path. Toolpath strategies for generating milling, drilling, counterboring and tapping operations are designed to minimize tool travel and overall cycle time. After a tool path is generated, it can be inspected with an integrated backplot simulation tool that simulates tool speed and direction; visibility of the tool, shaft and toolholder; and coloring of rapid, lead and cutting moves. Customized post processors convert the generated tool path into a format that can be understood by the CNC machine control. Adaptive clearing/roughing enables the user to generate tool paths inside closed curves, both with and without islands.
The software also features a robust CNC program editor that includes NC functions, file compare, CNC templates, backplotting and serial communications for RS232 DNC transfers.