I have used the free version of Fusion 360 for 3D printing for several years and feel comfortable working under the “DESIGN” tab creating sketches, using extrudes, and exporting mesh files.
I am now considering ordering a OneFinity CNC Router and want to use Fusion 360 to design projects and generate Gcode. Just for practice, I modeled a 6 cup coffee caddy. Thanks to many YouTubers and Forum posters, I was able to figure out how to make tool paths for surfacing, contouring, and pocketing under the “MANUFACTURE" tab and generated my first Gcode. To my surprise, I see this message within the Gcode:
(WHEN USING FUSION 360 FOR PERSONAL USE, THE FEEDRATE OF)
(RAPID MOVES IS REDUCED TO MATCH THE FEEDRATE OF CUTTING)
(MOVES, WHICH CAN INCREASE MACHINING TIME. UNRESTRICTED RAPID)
(MOVES ARE AVAILABLE WITH A FUSION 360 SUBSCRIPTION.)
How big of a limitation is this? Please understand that I have never used a CNC router, and am on the fence about buying one. Would I be better off with other software? Any insight would be much appreciated.
@DaveM , it ranges from unnoticeable to a mildly annoying. when it’s annoying, I take solace in fusion’s cam being generally awesome and adaptive paths being amazing… successful making aluminum chips this weekend, my first time with metal.
This is one of the reasons I have moved away from Fusion 360. I am purely a retired hobby user and have no intention of selling any of the things that I make so I can’t justify paying for a subscription software. The free version used to have a LOT more features than it does now. They keep taking things away from the free version in hopes of getting people to pay for a subscription. I don’t want to invest time learning a software that I may not be able to use next month because I used a function that they took away.
Looks like that’s correct. I expect one of the add-ons I use was itself an OS project.
I do metalwork making tanks and such for motorcycle and short-track car racing. I have a plasma CNC to cut out parts for subsequent bending & welding. Fusion has a sheet metal feature that allows you to design the 3D part and then unfold it. It takes the material’s K-factor into account to adjust the sizing so material stretch is accounted for. That way the part when bent on a brake is the correct size without manual calculations.
DS has the same capabilities. When I decided that Fusion was just paying lip service to their “commitment to hobbyists” by changing the license every few months and reducing the feature set, I looked for another CAD package that could do the same thing. So I picked DS.
I haven’t even noticed the rapid moves being reduced all that much. the only time you’ll notice it is with your machining time that Fusion tells you vs. what 1F actually estimates. For several of my carves I’ve seen fusion estimate 40min cut time and when I upload it to the 1F its closer to 50 mins. Not super annoying especially when you consider the CAD power of Fusion and price you pay for it. There are other options for CAD software, Like TinkerCad or the like, but if you’re comfortable with fusion, I’d say stick with it.
My one complaint with fusion is it struggles with Text (in my experience). Especially fancy calligraphy type text. Other than that, no issues.
Not too bad. I think what makes learning CAD apps hard for some folks is the way you have to think. You’re dealing with 2 dimensions trying to mimic 3 and a lot of people can’t “see” inside 3 dimensional objects so it’s hard for them to draw that out in 2D and work around a 3D model on a flat screen. It kind of twists your mind. I’ve met folks who never get it. I’m married to one in fact
I really appreciate everyone’s comments on my question. I am retired and do hobbies for fun, not profit. In my 3D printing play, I have always had an underlying fear that Fusion 360 could be taken away. When that day comes, I would look for a cheaper alternative than paying for a Fusion 360 seat. Now I want to expand my woodworking play to include CNC routing. After digesting everyone’s comments, my fear of losing Fusion 360 has doubled. However for my initiation into CNC routing, I plan to stick with Fusion 360. One of my early projects will be pocketing some text to fill with epoxy for an address number sign. At the moment, I feel like I can do this using Fusion 360. I won’t know for sure until I actually buy the CNC and try to run the Gcode. Getting this far has been fun. Thanks again for everyone’s comments.
I’m in the same boat as you, a retired hobbyist using Fusion 360 and Onefinity. In my case, I purchased the annual subscription at the reduced locked in rate. In my opinion, Fusion is an incredible value and one of only 3 subscriptions I keep going. It easily rivals Solidworks in 99% of all cases and keeps increasing the quality and quantity of offerings. In my case, the relatively recent ability to integrate printed circuit boards into a design and then us the same tool to select one of many production flows (laser cutting, 3D printing, CNC milling, etc.) makes an enormous difference. I use Fusion now for almost any design I do, whether it uses the CNC or not.
In the short term the movement issue probably won’t matter, especially with the design you’ve shown. But, with more complex designs that require milling angled faces or many instances of a single operation (like a mounting board) you’ll really notice. Time may not be as critical of a factor for you now, but being able to crank out the projects is extremely pleasing.
Dave. Buy the machine. you will love it. After you have it a few weeks. Buy VCarve. Its the best around for doing the projects your doing. F360 is good too. But Vcarve is basically made just for doing this exact thing. And it does it really well. You can even continue to design in F360 and just use Vcarve for Gcode. There is even a Post processor for OneFinity. Not sure about F360.
That said. F360 is really the only package capable of doing it all.
I use Solidworks, F360, Vcarve, Lightburn. Simplify 3D. really i could use F360 for most of this stuff. But I guess I’m just used to using these other apps. And for CNC vcarve has to most funtionality. My $.02