CurvedShapesWorkbench: FreeCAD Workbench has Laser support

I keep learning cool new things about FreeCAD.

I just learned about the CurvedShapesWorkbench which not only has the ability to create notches to connect shapes, but also has the ability to compactly arrange the resulting parts to be laser cut.

alt text Lasercutter Techdraw Export

This tool is derived from the macro LasercutterSVGExport

Do not add the laserbeam width into your design. This export tool will add the beam width.

  • Select several parts in the FreeCAD design
  • Creates outline objects from all selected items
  • Rotate them into the XY-plane
  • Create views in a TechDraw page
  • Arrange the views to fit in the page with minimal gaps

alt text

The tool creates a folder LaserCutterExportObjects that contains an object for each selected part.
There are some parameters which can be changed:

  • Part: Selected part
  • Beam Width: The width of the laser beam in mm
  • Normal: A vector perpendicular to the object
  • Method: How to create the outline auto: find the best method automatically 2D: works for 2D objects 3D: create a 3D outline and then get the biggest face face: find the biggest face and create a 2D offset