Long Projects? using the shapeoko

Hello im new to the shapeoko and im wondering why sometime when i put in a toolpath it can say like 200minutes, is there anyway to speed that up why is it going to take so long to do a toolpath

Could be any number of things - a large area to machine, a slow feed rate or depth of cut, small bit, etc. The time estimate in carbide create can also be off from the actual runtime in carbide motion, sometimes significantly. Might be best for you to post your c2d file, or at least a screenshot here of the toolpath screen for better critique.

An example would be surfacing something the size of a cutting board with an 1/8 or 1/4 inch end Mill versus a 1-in surfacing bit. You can do it a lot faster with a larger bit.

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Well i just dont understand everone says use vcarve for detailed work but when i do mine it doesnt work or is going to take like over 200minutes which makes no sense to me

What program are you using?
If carbide create, the advanced v-carve option can save a lot of time by making sure you enable pocket tool, which basically does a clear of the larger areas, and then the vcarve does the smaller areas.

Also if you have a lot of details that can add up.
Also if you have the proper speeds set. V-carving something in aluminium is going to take quite a bit longer than in some hardwood.

If you wouldn’t mind posting a picture of what you’re trying to do we might be able to offer better advice.

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It wont let me upload the file im trying to send through carbide create can i email to you

Vcarve can result in a lot of moves, including a lot of retracts. Setting an appropriate retract height can help reduce a lot in that case, but you should really post your file so we can see the details. Zip it or change the file extension.

Try saving the carbide create file. The .nc file sent to the machine isn’t as friendly to help troubleshoot with.


this is the picture i want to do i am putting name underneath which i dont have an issue with its the curves of this which seem to be the problem, i wont let me load c2d program says its to big

How did you convert this for machining, like to an svg? It might have overly complicated paths (the lines are made up of a lot of nodes) that are making it harder to solve efficiently. otherwise unless you are making a really huge pattern out of this I don’t see any reason why it would take near that long, it’s not overly complicated. I second that using pocketing operation in Advanced V-carve would probably look nice for this particular design.

Yeah it does have alot of nodes the file size is 8000kb, and thats what i mean i dont see how it would take this long

I used image vectorizer to convert to svg but why would it convert it to be so complicated

So I hadn’t actually zoomed in on this image previously, but the lines are not as clean as I thought they were from the zoomed out version. There’s also the color differences, though most vectorizers can handle that just fine. You want your source image to be as high resolution as possible so that the vectorizer has good input. if it’s fuzzy, or even has anti-aliased edges, the vectorized result may be suboptimal.

The other solution is to take what you get from the vectorizer and spend some time cleaning it up. That could be using some automated tools to simplify nodes or redrawing portions that didn’t come out cleanly. @WillAdams has posted some workflows I believe that might be helpful. There are also some for pay online vectorizers that are more advanced and may be helpful.

One thing to note is retract height has a lot to do with carving time. Also for me I have noticed that Carbide Create estimates are usually twice as long as Carbide Motion estimates. When Carbide Motion estimates it actually takes longer start to finish because I think the cutting time may be correct but CM does not take into account retracts, bit changes and other things that are not directly related to actual bit in wood cutting.

So make your file and load into Carbide Motion and see what it says.

Above there are many good suggestions to optimize your cutting but some projects just take time. My last Aztec Star Wars calendar tool 12 Hours to actually cut.

Converting bitmaps requires a little bit of care.

The SVG you’ve come up with is trying to emulate the shading in the original image. I don’t think this is what you want to have in your Vcarved version. I also suspect you don’t want the Design Studio logo in the corner of your cut version either.

The answer to your question is that it takes a long time because the SVG you created is overly complicated. You need to make a simpler one.

Here’s one where all the paths you have have been unioned and the corner logo is removed. It’s 115kb. It will probably take less time to cut, though I haven’t generated a toolpath for it so I don’t really know.



How did you change it like that so it was less easier for the program to run, it is a massive time difference

Hopefully it’s been changed it so it is more easier to run, not less easier to run :slight_smile:

I ungrouped the vectors and deleted several layers of duplicates, then selected them all and unioned them. This was simplest using the SVG you posted.

There are alternate ways, some of which can be done when you convert the image the first time by using a different strategy. You can also edit the image in a bitmap editor so it is clean and only has two colours, then convert that instead of the complicated one.

These are just plain old skills that can be developed by doing this sort of thing several times.

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