How to program slot(s) same width as cutter?

Trying to use Carbide Create to program some 1/4" wide slots with a 1/4" diameter cutter. Neither contour nor pocket operations seem to work (I get no toolpath showing or material removed in the simulation). Do I have to draw in the center path of the slots in my DXF and do those as no-offset contours or is there some other way I’m missing?


A No offset contour should work:

If not, post the file.

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Thanks Will - that worked:

I designed a battery storage tray with 12 spots for AA batteries and decided to try a mini 4-spot version in Dow blue polystyrene foam board first. I didn’t cut the outside all the way through because the foam was taped to a piece of 1/4" tempered glass and I didn’t want to find out what happens when a carbide cutter tries to machine glass at 60 IPM. So I freed it with an X-acto knife.

Regarding the contour and pocket operations failing for the 1/4" slots, is that because it would create a zero radius when it tries to offset the ends of the slots to find the centerline path of the cutter?

Here it is cut out with batteries in it:


1/4" carbide 2-flute upcut from Carbide Tool Source (found them through their eBay shop).

Makita on speed 5, 60 IPM plunge and feed, 0.125" stepover on the pocket. Everything cut at full depth (0.313" for pocket, 0.375" for slots, and 0.470" for outside). The foam is 0.595" thick. Here is a DXF with each set of features on its own layer. I had to scale it by 25.4 in Carbide Create since it thought it was metric (despite the DXF being in inches).

AA_battery_tray_4X_overhead.dxf (35.0 KB)

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If anyone was curious about the official dimensions of an AA battery:

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P.S. You can sand polystyrene foam. I just went back and blended in where I cut it from the stock and knocked off the sharp corners / fuzzies from the top outside edge. Obviously, don’t want a super-agressive grit or much pressure.

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