Carbide create -extra characters to get 15 - (strange)

(mike) #1

Am I the only one that is having major issues with this software? The software crashes or I get the message “not responding”. Also, the font sizes are not consistent between words. The size is the same value bit the actual words are different heights. Another issue is that the location X/Y values change by themselves. You can type in say “12” and it will change to 11.9.

This is very poorly written software and it does not need to be. Was it written with a crayon?


(William Adams) #2

Carbide Create is intended to be as simple as it can be, and arguably is simplistic to a fault.

The font sizing is unusual in that the actual size of a given text is measured / used. To get consistent sizing set all the text in one string, then convert to geometry using a Boolean operation, then position things as desired.

Alternately, set the text in a 3rd party tool such as Inkscape, convert it to paths, then import that.

The dimension issue is most likely a rounding error — if you can provide step-by-step instructions for reproducing this, we will try to have a developer look into it.

The community has notes on alternative software at:


(mike) #3

I appreciate the response but I purposely purchased a Shapeoko because it was advertised as supporting the machine. As you know the software can be the most expensive part of 3D routing. If the software is useless then the Shapeoko itself is useless. Had I known that CarbideCreate was as poor as this then I would not have purchased the machine. Like the rest of you, I have over $2,000 invested in something that takes more time than it is worth to use. Before you start the accusations I can draw in other programs including 3D but I do not have the thousand dollar support versions of the software.

This machine was advertised as being able to take simple concepts and create routed out versions. This has been anything but that… If they offered me my money back for the machine I would take it.


(William Adams) #4

Carbide Create is freely available for anyone to test and download before committing to the machine, and we do accept returns:

You do not need to draw in 3D (though you can if you wish), nor use expensive software — there are many free / opensource programs which will work quite well as front-ends to Carbide Create making up for the ways in which its interface don’t match how you wish to work.

Alternately, one can work around the limitations with a bit of patience (set all text on a single line as described, or set all lines of text to begin with an ! (or the tallest character in the font) and end with a y (or the character with the longest descender), then duplicate all the lines, convert the duplicates to paths, delete the extra characters, make note of the lengths of each line and then edit the text versions to match).

If you simply wish to set text, a free option is F-Engrave:

If you have difficulty with a file or project, please let us know the specifics at and we’ll do our best to help.


(mike) #5

The replacement is only good for 30 days so I am out of luck. It takes longer than that to learn this system.

The company is called “Carbide 3D”. Am I confused about what I bought? You are referencing 2D for some reason.

The other software packages you mention do not seam to have toolpaths. Do they readily support this Shapeoko platform? Please do not say “import into Carbide Create” because that only locks up your software faster.


(William Adams) #6

The company was named when the Nomad 883 Pro was the only product — the Shapeoko was added afterwards. Note that both machines use the same controller and the Shapeoko is capable of full 3D motion provided the correct toolpaths. You can check w/ the principals, @robgrz @Jorge and @edwardrford for further information on that.

If you wish, you could hand-code G-Code using a text editor: — this will afford total machine control.

Carbide Create is a 2.5D program, and is what is bundled with the Shapeoko, and what you started the discussion on.

Inkscape creates SVGs which import into Carbide Create fine, I believe GraviT will create files which will import as well. Cenon requires that one export PDFs, then use a second tool such as Inkscape to re-save as an SVG — they offer a CAM tool, but that’s a commercial option. If you have a file which locks up Carbide Create on import please send it in to us at and we’ll try to have a developer look into it.

F-Engrave is a stand-alone CAM tool which makes toolpaths — it’s rather limited, but some folks find it quite useful (I used it to engrave the dial on my locking register calipers back before Carbide Create was available).

Please post a sample file, or send one in to and we’ll do our best to work through this with you.


(mike) #7

you are missing the point.
I don’t need to contact the principles as I am the customer, not them.

I am not going to hand write G-Code and to suggest that indicates a lack of understanding on your part. I did not purchase this machine to learn programming. I purchased this machine to make simple parts.

I don’t actually need a 2D/3D (whatever this is) router. I can easily do these tasks the old fashioned way. Woodworking has been around for a while. I was only hoping for an easier way to accomplish my tasks.

Where on the Carbide3D website does it say I have to learn programming? I have no problem with 2D or 3D drafting. By the way, the phrase 2.5D was coined as a derogatory phrase for software packages that could quite cut it…

Make me a reasonable offer on returning my machine and I will listen.


(William Adams) #8

Please send in any files or projects which you wish help with in to (or post them here).

If you wish to try to work out a return, please contact the folks who sold you the machine directly, for Carbide 3D that’s


(Neil Ferreri) #9

@m_g You’ve been presented with a number of options to create designs and generate gcode by @WillAdams. The Shapeoko 3 is a machine, and it is a good one. Carbide Create is a very basic CAD/CAM program to help let anyone get started. Many users never use Carbide Create and many users make money using Carbide Create.
What else have you tried?
What tasks are you trying to make easier?
If you ask for help here, you will get it.

If you can’t return the machine, and you don’t want it, someone will buy it. Or, if you can, consider donating to a school.

1 Like

(mike) #10

neil. please read the original question before responding.
the later messages were in response to bad answers from will, nothing more

how much will you pay me for the machine, plus shipping?


(mike) #11

further, it appears that every concern that I have has been asked for a number of years now! the answers are the same, we will ask the designers to look at this,


(Neil Ferreri) #12

I did.
I don’t think Carbide Create was written in crayon.

I have not experienced the same issues with Create. Have you tried other software?
What are you trying to accomplish with the machine?


(William Adams) #13

For 3D software there are a number of free/opensource options:

For 3D CAD there is:

  • Solvespace

For 3D CAM there is:

  • pyCAM
  • FreeMill

Again, if you’d let us know the specifics of what you are having difficulty with, we’ll gladly try to help.


(mike) #14

for those who are confused about what I purchased. This is what I was sold!

“Shapeoko Comes with Everything You Need”
I even bought the router so there would be no misunderstanding.
Now you are telling me it is everything I need “except”…


(mike) #15

make me a reasonable offer and I will sell this to you.


(William Adams) #16

Please explain in which way Carbide Create isn’t able to do a design which you wish to do.

Please post a file or project which you are having difficulty with and we will work up step-by-step instructions on how to do it.


(mike) #17

I want Carbide Create to stop (not responding)

I want Carbide Create to stop shutting down unexpectedly.

I want Carbide Create to make all the fonts the same size

I want to be able to import a DXF from Autocad that contains text and ovals

I want Carbide Create to not change my dimensions that I type

I want to be able to change a toolpath setting and be able to save the result.

My PC cost over $1500 and has a high end graphics processor running the latest window updates.

I can design with this software it is just “janky” as though it were written in crayon

I can draw with fusion 360. but this is not the fusion 360 forum.

for me to follow your advice I would need to learn multiple different software packages. Which part of “Includes All that I need” is that?


(mike) #18

i can also draw with sketchup. your advice to someone a year ago about a plugin to create g-code is bad advice as the link to that is no longer available. of you spend an inordinate amount of time searching the internet you will find a version that is supported of 2007 sketchup. I actually have 2019


(William Adams) #19

Please post a file which locks up Carbide Create and instructions on how to cause the (not responding) message or which causes it to shut down.

I’m afraid that fonts are inherently different, based on how they are designed on their em square — there aren’t any programs which make all fonts the same size — and admit that how Carbide Create sizes fonts is a bit unusual. There are several work-arounds which have been provided for this. If you would post the file which you are having difficulty with, we will gladly provide step-by-step instructions for your specific case.

The community has the following notes on importing from AutoCAD:

  • it may help to use the OVERKILL command to eliminate any overlapping or intersecting paths before exporting from AUTOCAD
  • if lines have different elevations, use FLATTEN [17]
  • PLINES are intrinsically joined, and should be used where appropriate [18]
  • AutoCAD 2000 DXF format (model geometry only, base model scaling) export from the desired face (not isometric view)
  • 2004 Lines

If you will post any problem files or send them in to us at and we will do our best to help.

Please provide step-by-step instructions on an example of a dimension being changed and we will try to have a developer look into it.

Please provide step-by-step instructions for changing a toolpath setting and not being able to change it. Please see: and for further information

If you have a drawing in Fusion 360, then you can generate 3D G-Code for it using its CAM tool:

If you would rather use SketchUp, please try the following links:

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(mike) #20

your wiki to PhlatScript does not work.
Since it is not native to carbide 3d i would not expect it to work either… sorry but that is bad advice…
the only issue with fusion 360 is that the toolpaths are cumbersome

look at all your previous responses that say “we will try to have a developer look into it”. you say that a lot. all of my issues would be solved by those actually being answered.

if you would like me to spend a couple of days working on these issues then please have shapeoko issue me a purchase order. i will gladly offer suggestions to repair their software