We have not used the Wire EDM module of NX, we have been using the software that was sold to us with the machine, it has its limitatoins but is OK for most jobs. Does anyone use it full time and how do they find it and what about cutting conditions, how are they handled?
Curious to hear how people find it!
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We are using the interface on the machine tool. We export a .dxf file to the machine and have a completed program in about 10 min including cutting conditions, power settings etc.. We gave up on the NX - Wire EDM as it was only 1/2 of the soultion without a LOT of customization.
Somewhat sad to say, but even though we already had Wire EDM licenses for NX, we bought another CAM system just to do Wire EDM rather than figure out how to use NX...
Production: NX10.0.3.5 MP16/TC11.2
I'd rather be e-steamed than e-diseaseled
We got an off-line system from Sodik our EDM supplier. We can create a 2-D wire program in about 10 min and a 4 axis program may take a little longer. Tough to beat in any system.
We used NX for WEDM for several years. In hind sight that was a bad choice. Siemens has not done anything significant to improve WEDM. We turned in several enhancement requests which was a wasted effort. Minor changes are insufficient. It needs a complete overhaul.
We switched to Opticam - WEDM. (previously PEPS) It works well. NX files come in directly. The capabilities are night and day to NX. It is extremely fast when using feature recognition. We were told by Optisolutions that they are working on an interface that runs in NX. So far we have not seen anything materialize.
It is very disappointing that Siemens is not commited to a valid WEDM solution. We run NX due to it being an integrated solution.
Kind of late to the party, but for what is worth...
"... Minor changes are insufficient. It needs a complete overhaul...."
Couldn't have said this better myself. The concept of WEDM was somehow good, accept it never worked as intended. There wasn't many in support that really understood the concept of this WEDM application accept for Ed Gordon (RIP). When WEDM was originally introduced, the one thing that never worked right from day one unfortunately were the "Markers" (Star of Path, In Path & End of Path Markers), the most important things necessary. And it was hard for the support to understand why do I have to cut the wire before the rapid move.
The customized Templates were the door that allowed to bypass the Markers mess and get a bit better control. I created a generic template for each internal pass that controlled the Wire Thread and Wire Cut M-codes, Power Setting & Feed Rate Variable call, Rapid moves and Offset Variable associated with this particular operation along with the limited functionality of the Markers that worked. So every Internal Wire EDM operation created was associated only with single opening cut - single pass settings.
Let say I wanted to cut a Dowel hole with 3 pass cut- rough and 2 skims. I'd create 3 separate operations based on 3 different templates. While this was absolutely time consuming and not economical at all, it let me retain and maintain the association of my programs with the original assembly files. I created 2 Axis programs for Tool & Die work & at the busiest time (sadly years ago) when a dozen of Designers were cranking overtime every day, I had a "real time" notification of changes being done before anyone could notify me , or if they simply forgot to do so. Also, I knew exactly what has changed in the profile without overlaying those files to see the changes.
Prior to Unigraphics I had very nice & powerful stand alone Wire EDM program that required me to import in a DXF files. With constant changes to the part many times I had several flavors of that job before we finish building it & few more after troubleshooting it. At the end I had no idea what has changed in which file and it was a disaster when replacement part had to be made,
So, once I created all those operations I exported them out to CLS and used a GRIP program to do an open heart surgery inside that file. The GRIP was looking for specific variable used in each particular pass and was changing & adding code where the template could not create in the very specific location. It also collects all those specific variables used to control Offsets, Power Settings and Feed Rate and writes the nicely on top of the program so the operator can simply fill in necessary data used in the program. After that I posted the NC Program using GPM postprocessor. take a look at the attached NC code to see what changes does the GRIP program do. WinMerge app is great for this.
As noted before, this programming style was and still is very time consuming and not economical at all, but I can look at the program I made 10 years ago and know what, in what order and what the latest changes are.
All those emails and call to support ended up just simply bouncing of the wall, not enough users calling and requesting the fixes necessary to fix this semi- functional extension. For most it was cheaper to purchase stand alone Wire EDM application that functioned straight out of the box.
While still hanging on to NX 7.5 dearly, I do have the "End is Near" sign in front of my eyes and not sure what will happen when I move on to NX10 later this year. And I don't have as much time to customize it anymore like i used to as well.
That is a mind boggling effort! And thanks for the insight as to what is needed to make it viable to use as well.
My employer has complted a new deal with our provider and I will bring this topic up.
Keep in mind, it was done long time ago and just maintained as needed to accommodate for every new release bugs and changes. I work with UG / NX for 20 years now.
And since my job crossovers with with another department now for the past few years, need to see what does Post builder brings to the table. I'm pretty sure I could eliminate the GRIP and replace it with TCL action. But left it alone since all those templates and operations are getting a major makeover.
Wish Wire EDM could be one of them, but it's hard for NX to justify all that $$$$$ spending on a module that no one wants to buy. And why is that? Because no one wants to pay for a broken / not working module. The infinity loop cycle...
And that's why IMO the Wire EDM module will never get a makeover. Too bad.
Which version of NX is everyone using for Wire EDM? I have been using NX10's wire edm and found it to be pretty customizable.
What are some specific features you would like to see in NX10's wire edm module? NXOpen now allows you to basically create your own module.