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Makerspaces - Onshape and Cam programs

patrick_sheapatrick_shea Member Posts: 24
I am part of a Makerspace group in the Shuswap area (BC).  We are promoting Onshape as our 'Go To' 3D Platform, and are doing some training with it.  I love it, and I transitioned from a  Solidworks environment. 
So - we need to come up with a CAM program to tie in with our machine centres ( 3D Printing, CNC Router, Laser cutter, and Shapeco Handheld CNC).  The Kirimoto option seems challenging (I am over 65, so frequent Brain Farts).  We use Cura for the 3D Print, Easel for the CNC router, and I export DXF to the laser (through Lightburn), and the new SHAPECO uses SVG Files.  I would like to find a 'SIMPLE' CAM program to get people going, and then also have a more advanced option - like Mastercam, for more serious users.  Of course it is mainly Volunteer, and funding is limited.  We have a lot of high tech industry in our area (Multi axis cnc, plasma, laser, and waterjet tables) so we would like to do what we can to stimulate interest in these areas.  It  would be idea to a seat or two of Mastercam at a deep discount!! 

Any ideas - please speak up 



  • nicholas_radzykewycznicholas_radzykewycz Member Posts: 5 PRO
    I have never found a good universal hardware connection software. My setup would involve this software stack:

    Repetier-Host for the 3D printer (more advanced and less user friendly than Cura, but gives you more machine settings)
    Inkscape for the laser cutters (It's great because it has a nice convert bitmap or jpeg to .svg or .dxf routine which is useful for most images)
    MasterCam is the industry standard for CNC milling as I understand, so if you are trying to train people for careers it would probably be best to have this.

    A lot of 3D print shops I have found are now running these order to production end to end software automation packages that handle things like machine scheduling. So if you could get a hold of one of those it would probably useful to anyone looking to start a 3D printing career.

    It really depends on what the focus of your makerspace is going to be on between providing career resources and training to your community or being a lower budget place to get parts made to support small businesses and startups in the area.

  • dirk_van_der_vaartdirk_van_der_vaart Member Posts: 155 ✭✭✭
    edited January 6
    Why not use Carbide Create, it's free
    Import's DXF an SVG.
    And learning to be creative with a CAM program is the same experience.
    This one is very good and not that expensive.

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