A few weeks ago I joined the club of Shapeoko owners too :-) Got

A few weeks ago I joined the club of Shapeoko owners too :slight_smile:
Got mine from myhobby-cnc here in Germany. I started with some plotting using a pencil.
It took me a while to find the right cnc tools to generate the toolpath.
Most cnc tools (CAM) require Windows but I only have a Linux pc in my workshop. Pycam worked but crashed when reading a SVG file. I ended up using FlatCAM for Linux (meant for PCB milling) to do the plotting. Can anybody recommend a good toolpath generator for Linux ?

My plan is to develop a CNC edition of #GCodeSimulator and #GcodePrintr. I was surprised how different the cnc controls and gcodes are compared to 3D printers. I made several fixes to the code to be able to parse cnc gcodes.

First I need to start cutting something, where is a good place to find some examples ?

I’d recommend you to start with #Estlcam you can use it for free while you figure out whether it works for you or not. It is a nice Windows-only software.

For drawings you can just use gcodetools from Inkscape.

Inkscape, FreeCAD, Chilipeppr (I only recommend this if you have stock firmware for the arduino) might work. Inkscape and FreeCAD have a bit of a learning curve. Their is a G+ community for FreeCAD. There might be one for Inkscape.
I have software of my own that might be interesting but frankly is not production ready and makes big files. The paths are not efficient enough either.

On Linux, heekscad/cam and cncjs are worth checking

For Freecad make you use daily builds if you want to use the Path module

I have a smoothieboard controller so I’m not sure it it is too much different, but I recommend the following:

2D: http://Easel.com OR inkscape with gcodetools (built into the plugins now I believe) or makercam and I use pronterface to send the gcode to my machine

3D: Autodesk Fusion 360 which is free to use (even commercially as long as you make<$100k/year using it) and intuitive to learn (especially with youtube vids) and does 3D design as well as CAM stuff, then again I use pronterface to send the gcode to my machine.

Use freecad make sure its 0.17 it has a dedicated pathing workbench for creating your tool pathing takes a bit to figure it out, but its quite powerful. Its what i use with my router on linux

I use CamBam on Linux. It is no free, but it costs not much. It uses mono.

I tried Easel and I like it. Its good for quick & simple projects.
Unfortunately it does not support importing a STL file.
Next I will test with Freecad to see if it can do better with complex designs.

My command line software supports STL files for what it is worth. PyCAM does too. I think Chilipeppr and Laserweb do.