Spotlight: Mastercam Wire

Spotlight: Mastercam Wire

Here are the top 7 features of this Mastercam product that make programming in wire EDM easier and more efficient.

By Callie Morgan
Monday, February 28th, 2022, 10:00 AM PST

 

What is Wire EDM Machining?

Wire EDM machining cuts material via electrical pulses between a wire and an electrode or workpiece (conductive material) on a CNC machine. The main difference between Wire EDM programming and other CNC programming types is that wirepaths (the wire version of toolpaths) require a thread point, which is where the CNC machine will thread the wire, often through a pre-drilled hole in the part.

 

A white/blue beam cutting through a block.

An example of wire CNC machining.


The work that you do in Mastercam Wire is done entirely in 2D (unless you are doing tapers or angled cuts). Mastercam Wire makes programming Wire EDM CNC machines, fast and simple, with its assortment of 2-axis and 4-axis wirepaths. 

 

1. Easy Navigation

The interface updates that came with Mastercam 2022 make accessing the tools and features of Wire much more streamlined. The functionality of Wire is very similar to Mastercam Lathe and Mill.

A purple toolbar for a web application for Mastercam 2022. With icons on the left that say "contour", "4 axis", "now core", "point" and "canned" with other options on the right side.

Ribbon bar in Mastercam Wire.

2. Data Management

You can move a single part file between machines. Wire libraries save your preferences for power settings and rough and skim passes. Also, you can import virtually any CAD file type.

 

3. Mixed Machine Environment

In a Mastercam Wire programming session, you can also include other machine types such as mills or lathes connected to the same model. This provides the programmer with a smooth workflow when the workpiece requires both milling and/or lathe operations combined with wire EDM operations.

 

4. Tabs

Adding multiple tabs to any piece of geometry in Mastercam Wire is very fast and efficient.

A grey and white applications menu titled "Wirepath - Contour", with "Cut Parameters" highlighted in blue on the left side.

Mastercam Wire features flexible tab creation and non-core cutting.


The Tab setting in the Cut Parameters allows you to leave space around your part, so the part doesn’t drop out and jam your machine. Tabbing parts is important in wire EDM machining to prevent damage to the part, and the wire, by giving the core of the part material to hang onto until it can be knocked out with a tool, like a hammer, after machining.


5. Taper

In the Taper settings in the Wirepath Contour settings, you can customize the Taper direction and angle and control the corner type. 

A white and grey applications window with an orange bar at the top with text titled "Wirepath - Contour". There is a list f text on the left side of the window with "Taper" highlighted in blue, and "taper heights" options with yellow fields on the right side of the window.

Taper Settings window in Mastercam Wire.


6. 4-Axis Wire EDM

With Mastercam Wire EDM, synchronizing lower to upper complex boundaries is easy, using one of several synchronization types.

 

A cube part with a rigid hole in the center with a dialogue box on the left side of it reading "Chain Manager" with a dropdown list of options. "By Branch" is highlighted in blue.

Chain Manager in Mastercam Wire 2022.


7. Wire Posts

Many wire posts became available for GFMS Cut Series 4-axis machines (formerly known as AgieCharmilles) and other types of Wire machines with the release of Mastercam 2022. This list is still expanding. To view the full list of machine posts for wire, visit the Mastercam Tech Exchange.

An image of a white, grey and black CNC EDM machine with orange detailing by GF.

Generic post processors are available for the AgieCharmilles Cut P550 Pro CNC Machine, and more Cut series machines by their parent company GFMS on the Mastercam Tech Exchange.

 

Mastercam Wire’s easy data management, quality wirepathing options and no-core cutting make it a great option for wire EDM machining. Also, having the same straightforward interface functionality as other Mastercam products, makes this software very easy to learn. If you are interested in Wire EDM Programming with Mastercam, reach out to our Sales Team at (503) 653-5332 or email at sales@mcamnw.com.

 

A GIF of a metal snowflake shape sinking into a metal block.

A GIF of snowflake shape made from a wire EDM machine from an article on Wired.com.

 

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