I recently bought a Shapeoko XXL and assembled it. I purchased the designs for 3 of Brian Law’s wood gear clocks. Unfortunately theses files will not load into Carbide Create. I have tried to use inkscape to change the format and that has not worked. I have 3 DXF files that I am at a loss for editing the format of them. Could anyone be of any assistance in this process. I am trying to design these, but InkScape will not open the DXF file nor will Carbide create.
I have done several smaller projects on this with no problems in DXF. I have used Meshcam and Carbide create multiple times it seems to be just these three files. They are too large for upload here, but would be happy to send them to someone that thinks they can fix them.
If you have the option, export the DXF with 2004 lines. CC opens 2004 DXF no problem.
We do not have the option to export 2004 lines. I just looked into the file. That’s what I was trying to do after hours of reading about this issue. I cannot get it to open in InkScape to do this. Is there another program I can use to open DXF files to change to formatting?
A more-than-I-like occurrence when importing more complex and/or more populous DXF’s, so I empathize with your issue. You might try the ESTLCam download (free trial) and import. I’ve had good luck with larger DXF projects that have otherwise died importing into the Carbide tools.
Do you have access to Adobe Illustrator?
Thank you Illustrator opened it. I have a bit of work to do on it now. I am not as good with illustrator as I am with InkScape so this might take me a bit of time. I greatly appreciate your help.
From Illustrator save out as SVG, then open in Inkscape.
OK, so perhaps a down-version export is the answer… DXF has certainly morphed over the years. Good to know this info for future files.
Thank you Will! That gets me back to a place I am comfortable with. I had illustrator, but haven’t had a need for it for years. I am much more comfortable in InkScape.
Yeah, I’ve been using Adobe Illustrator since v3.2 and I’ve never found it comfortable.
I could retire if I had a nickel for every time I asked an Illustrator aficionado, “how do you accomplish this task which takes X steps more quickly?” and was told, “Oh! I always do it this way, which is way more steps than that, I’m going to start doing it your way.”, where X, is somewhere between 1.25 and 2 times as many steps as Freehand takes for the same task.
That Adobe was allowed to buy Macromedia and keep Freehand 10 years to the day after a judge told them that they were not allowed to buy competing graphics programs for 10 years after buying Aldus and being forced to divest of Altsys is an absolute travesty.
Well now the file I saved from DXF to SVG is different. The lines are all a mess.
Send me your files… I can try a quick open operation in Estlcam
sent them over. Thank you.
I too have a set of plans from this person as well as a set from Clayton Boyer. I tried a couple of cad programs (free ones) along with Inkscape to prep the objects for CC. I found DraftSight very useful. The key with the complex shapes of the gears is to turn them into a single polyline objects so CC can recognize it as a defined closed shape that can have toolpaths on either side of the lines.
I open the plans in DraftSight, Pick the object(s) I want to cut, select and save those objects only to a new dxf file, run the utility built in DraftSight called Editpolyline which allows you to select multiple lines, use the join command and create a single object. Some plans, like the one I purchased from Boyer, had lines that were not close enough in tolerance (I use .001) for the polyline to create automatically and required some additional node editing.
Having done this a while now I found the best way for me personally was to buy the book Boyer has on his website and draw the gears myself. It’s rewarding and allows you to create some really nice low-friction wooden clock gears of the exact size you want. I also to fully disclose my method of making clock parts, I purchased Vcarve. I did this mostly because of the tab feature - too many times had parts break free despite many attempts to stick down the material or other CC workarounds. I love my Shapeoko XL and CC was a nice introduction to creating gcode but in its current state it lacks some of the features I found in Vcarve to be very helpful for wooden clock making.
Hope this is useful
A couple more thoughts came to mind. Personally I have found Inkscape interesting and useful for opening svg files and saving them as dxf’s. I’ve also used it for trying raytracing which was a bit sketchy. I do not see from a technical standpoint it’s attractions. In the case of Brian Law’s plans for example you will need to scale the objects to imperial if you don’t want to go metric (and let’s face how many of us woodworkers want to?) Scaling is easy with a program like Draftsight. Select the objects and scale by the mm/inch ratio.