Cyber Week Sale on DATRON Tools! Use Code CYBER22 For 15% Off

Toolpath Filter Achieves a Perfect Surface Finish

Looking to Get A Perfect Surface Finish?

There are many factors when trying to achieve the perfect surface finish on a machined 3D part . This post will focus in on the toolpath filtering options available for CNC machines and CAM software.

Toolpath Filter in CAM Software

In many CAM systems you are able to set a tolerance for how accurately you would like to follow the surface with the tool. If you have a large tolerance set in your CAM you will lose detail or tolerance in your part. On the other hand, if you set the tolerance too low you will have more code, processing time increases along with the risk of vector points being visible on your surface. Filtering and smoothing options exist in the CAM software and work by shifting and removing points.

A toolpath filter in the CAM is based on shifting and removing points.

Toolpath Filter in CNC Milling Machine Control Software

But what about the option of using a smoothing feature on the milling machine itself? In the case of DATRON’s HSC Pro software, there is a proprietary smoothing toolpath filter that works on a totally different basis. Instead of removing points and losing tolerance on your part as with the smoothing in CAM, this toolpath filter adds points within the tolerance set in the CAM. The machine also calculates to five decimal places (metric) giving a more accurate surface. By adding points and increasing the read ahead of the machine, you don’t have to worry about losing detail while creating a smooth finish. The DATRON smoothing toolpath filter also monitors the jerk. Monitoring the jerk of the motors ensures a smooth machine motion while eliminating excess stress on the machine at high feed rates.

The results (above right) of using the PefectCut toolpath filter within the DATRON HSC Pro control software.
The PerfectCut toolpath filter or smoothing function within the milling machine control software has a significant effect of surface finish.

So in conclusion, running a smoothing toolpath filter in the machine you are able to have faster calculation time from your CAM along with a more accurate part requiring less optimization in the CAM software.

Recommended Products

Prototype intricate metal parts and small production runs in-house with the CNC system that fits through a standard doorway. Designed for precision prototyping in metal and perfect for a lab environment.
520 x 420 x 220 mm (20 “ x 16.5 “ x 9 “) (XYZ)
40,000 RPM machining spindle
approx. 700 kg (1,543 lbs.)
What if you could shorten your entire workflow with quick programming and setup for faster machining? Remove degreasing and deburring from the equation, and you’re really saving time. It’s not a pipe dream – it’s the M8Cube.
1,020 x 830 x 245 mm (40” x 33” x 10″) (X, Y, Z)
Up to 60,000 RPM machining spindle
approx. 1,300 kg (2,866 lbs.)
In a world where adaptability and floor space are equally important, you shouldn’t have to choose one or the other. Ideal for milling long aluminum extrusions, sheet material, large parts or machine nested small parts.
1,520 x 1.150 x 245 mm (60” x 45” x 10″) (X, Y, Z)
Up to 60,000 RPM machining spindle
approx. 2,500 kg (5,512 lbs.)

DATRON Dynamics Is Your DATRON Partner in North America

Our DATRON experts help many customers bring manufacturing in-house. Reach out to our team to see which machine and accessories are the right fit for your parts.