Fusion 360 to Shapeoko

Does anyone have a link to a tutorial on how to take a 3d stl file all the way through the process to get it running on the Shapeoko? It’s a steep learning curve. I wish I could afford the Xcarve, but for now, I’m not willing to give up and learn!


OK, I’ll bite, what does the XCarve have to do with this? The Shapeoko 3 is a better machine than the XCarve, it is more rigid and powerful and would not make that process any easier since they both use GCode.

Learning F360 is a steep learning curve for many of us. I would recommend that you take on-line courses. You can learn the basics from excellent YouTube series:

Learn Fusion 360 or Die Trying LESSON 1: Introduction tutorial for Absolute Beginners from Paul McWhorter

And from Fusion 360 Makes https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCZe_JwWMlHBYaUgP_RnbtWQ/videos


Sorry, I meant the Vectric software. X carve was in my head for some reason.

If you’re willing to get MeshCAM, we have a tutorial on this (for the Nomad, but same principle) at: https://docs.carbide3d.com/tutorials/2-meshcam/ buy MeshCAM from GRZ Software: http://www.grzsoftware.com/

Alternately, you could use pyCAM, which is free/opensource and works well: http://pycam.sourceforge.net/

As noted, Autodesk Fusion 360 is free for some folks, we have an article on the Shapeoko-specifics at: https://docs.carbide3d.com/software-faq/fusion360/

Another free option would be Freemill: http://www.mecsoft.com/freemill.shtml


Don’t forget Estlcam (https://www.estlcam.de/) which has a free trial and is only $59 to purchase. I’ve only barely tried it, but I did manage to create 2-sided (top and bottom) gcode for a 3D model with it in a few minutes. I need to play around with it more before I could recommend it though.

Also Lynda.com has some good tutorials on the CAM tools in Fusion 360. If you get a library card from a major city library you can often get free access. However, it sounds like you need to learn how to create the 3D model first.

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In general, it’s not too difficult. If you post an STL file, we can walk you through it.

Also, what is your background? Do you know about parametric modeling CAD programs? Do you know what a toolpath is? I can explain this process at different levels depending on what you best understand.


Hey there Jonathan, thanks for your reply. I have been using CC for the past several months, and want to move more into 2.5 d from stl files like this guy does https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5HhWZdCrAkc&t=56s. He’s a bit scant on his details, and I’m fairly certain he uses V-carve. I find the other tutorials great for awhile, then they click on something that I can’t find on my version of fusion or it goes so fast, I miss a crucial step. I’m happy with any STL file, for practice for now. Designing in CAD programs is new to me, but I am computer savvy that being said, and can move fairly quickly, if what I am being instructed on is in front of me, rather than having to search for it. I find many of the programs not as intuitive as others, and get stuck trying to figure out the next step. Thanks again for your time, I really appreciate it.

Looking at his other projects, I think this guy uses VCarve, in fact, he may be a member here under another name or the Facebook group and may chime-in but this is the type of projects that VCarve excels at, it is also more geared towards artistic projects than F360. He mentions the price barrier which makes me think it is VCarve as F360 is free for hobbyists. Here are some of the 2.5/3D stuff I’ve done with VCarve.

You are having issues with F360, I can relate, IMO, unless you are very familiar with CAD, it has a much steeper learning curve than VCarve. VCarve is closer in look and feel to Carbide Create but much more powerful. Did you look at the intro videos I posted on F360 above? Before you get into 2.5 or 3D, you have to learn the basics of the software that is explained in these videos.

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@Andrew827 If you’re importing an STL, you don’t really need the CAD skills. No one is using Fusion 360 to model a wild horse relief. As @The_real_janderson said, if you post an STL you’re practicing with it’d be easier to guide you through. Depending on the file, you may be able to import it, set toolpaths and carve.
I did not watch these, but I bet they’re good resources.


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