Testing, Testing: Run XY test without Z activity?

Howdy all.

So i’m now using screws with washers to secure my foam otherwise it has a tendency to warp / buckle.

i have my cutting area pretty well mapped out, and i’ve used control geometry in RhinoCAM to limited where the milling should occur. Even so it would be nice to do a quick test just on the XY to make sure the job is starting in the right place.

can this be done with a macro command in CM? i don’t see it in the interface. Also - is it possible when setting 0,0,0 to have the machine go back to that place later on.


none of this is super crucial - but it would be nice, and i know from the MultiCAM i’ve used at school that these types of functions are a thing.

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I haven’t seen a reasonable way to do so. CM will show you the extents I think, but that’ not much help. The best I’ve been able to do is always put the zero in the same place if you can (I use bottom left) and I can run a few measurements from there to be sure everything is going to fit. It’s not a great solution.

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It’s hacky but could you set the steps/mm to like 1 so it would barely move on z?

I have been “air cutting” until I am sure. I zero my Z axis to maximum cutting depth + 5mm above the material (assuming your clamps are not thicker than 5mm. If they are, just add more to the Z height and then zero.).

I am able to clearly see the X & Y movements without worrying about impacting the material or any clamps. I can run a full “cut” before I turn on any cutters. It’s simple and I don’t have to mess with changing speeds. Your mileage may vary.


that makes sense.

i am cutting 2 inch thick foam, and i have added an extra ~1" waste board to bring the tool as close as possible to the 2 inch depth. so zeroing at the max cutting depth is not really possible.

i am thinking maybe i’ll just add a profile cut at a really high pass first using the same control geometry as the milling only i’ll do this one on the outside of the curve. then post both the profiling and the milling in one go. that way i won’t need to re-home it.

the profile cut will tell me if the milling job is going to be in the right place.