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New KipwareM® Release : O.D. Boss Contouring Menu

Kentech Inc. recently released version 20.0.0 of our KipwareM® – Conversational CNC Programming CAM for Milling.

This new release includes a new contouring menu for O.D. square / rectangular bosses. The new menu allows the user to describe any chamfer, at any angle, or any radius on any corner of the boss. The chamfers / radii can all be different … or all be the same … some / all corners can also be left square … and the description is quick and easy to configure as the screenshot below illustrates.

Climb and conventional milling is configurable with the click of a button and the boss can be rotated at any angle with a single input.

Below is a video presentation with additional details :

Kentech Inc. continues to add innovative and ground breaking options to KipwareT® and KipwareM® … maintaining Kipware® conversational as the GOLD STANDARD in PC based CNC conversational CAM.

Please visit www.KentechInc.com for more information, pricing and purchase options for the complete line-up of Kipware® – Real World Machine Shop Software.

Kenney Skonieczny – President
Kentech Inc.

New KipwareT® Release – Auto-Tool List Generation

We are pleased to announce the release of our auto-tool list creation feature for KipwareT® – Conversational CNC Programming Software for Turning.

As the name describes, this feature will create a tool list for tools used in the currently developed program and includes for every tool in the program :

  • Tool #
  • Offset #
  • User’s note for tool description

This information is critical in set-up and users have the ability to have that tool list created :

  • And inserted directly into the G code program as text blocks at the start of the G code
  • Displayed in the KipwareT® EDITOR where it’s contents can be edited / added to directly in the Editor and also to have the ability to print the Tool List from within the Editor.

Below is a video link that illustrates this new feature in action :

Auto tool list creation is now shipping standard with all new KipwareT® orders … and is available in all KipwareT® UPGRADE purchases.

Kenney Skonieczny – President
Kentech Inc.

Covid-19 … CNC Machine Shops … and Kipware®

I think we have all heard this more than enough … “these are unprecedented times,” We all know it … because we are all living it. Unfortunately.

First off … we salute everyone for their efforts from staying at home to social distancing to the most needed front line workers. You have our gratitude for fighting the good fight … without all our efforts we, the fortunate ones, would not be here … surviving. And we remember the ones we lost. The numbers are staggering but we remember that each one was a mother, father, son, daughter, brother, sister … each was a vital member of a family that will never be the same again. Each one will be missed … and forever remembered.

As business … including machine shops … begin “opening up” … the workplace looks much different than it did at the start of the year. Kentech Inc. is an internet based company and we have been up and functioning throughout … but now we are hearing from a different clientele.

Machine shops are functioning in a different light … smaller workforce with oftentimes a limited skill level … or smaller workforce just due to the financial consequences of limited work and trying to make the most with what you have. Everyone is being asked to do anything … and sometimes a little help is all we need.

BUT … Kipware® Was Made for THIS !!

Since our birth in 1986, Kentech Inc. and Kipware® software was built from the shop floor up. Built by real world machinists, engineers, chipmakers and shop foreman and leaders. We know that not everything is rocket science … not everything requires a bachelors degree … sometimes all we need is a simple tool to give us a leg up … and that is Kipware® software.

For CNC Programming …

We all know it … not EVERY job requires complex CAD/CAM nor a programmer well versed in CAD/CAM. Kipware® conversational was made to help good chipmakers become good G code generators … and that takes the burden of the CAD/CAM programmer and opens up the programming capability of any size machine shop. And that means increased efficiency and increased output.

Agree? CLICK HERE to explore Kipware® conversational for milling and turning.

For Winning PROFITABLE Work …

Now more than ever margins are tight and the work you win has got to be WORTH WINNING. Kipware® ESTIMATING software was created on the shop floor and has been proven in the trenches since 1986 !! KipwareCYC® will ensure that your machining cycletime estimates accurately reflect what happens on your shop floor … the ABSOLUTE KEY to real world estimating. KipwareQTE® will, ensure that you are not only winning work … but winning PROFITABLE work.

CLICK HERE to check out our Kipware® REAL WORLD ESTIMATING software.

For Ending CNC Control Incompatibility …

With time constraints and more … moving jobs from machine to machine is more and more common. Re-posting or manual editing is NOT AN OPTION !! Kipware® CONVERSION software makes the machine and CNC control incompatibility simply go away !! KipwareXC® and CNC XChange can make all your shop machines … all your CNC controls … run seamlessly. And that means moving that job from the DMG Mori to the Okuma or the Fadal to the Haas can be done in seconds … not hours.

CLICK HERE to check out how Kipware® cam make your shop floor run seamlessly !!

And We ALL Need a Good ROI !!

And Kipware® can accomplish ALL of the above without breaking the bank. Kipware® has simple interfaces to get you up and running quickly. And priced for the REAL WORLD … a Kipware® purchase means a fast return on your investment. That’s a WIN-WIN for productivity and profitability.

CLICK HERE for Kipware® Pricing and Purchase information.

So Sure … Times are Different

But Kipware® is here to help.
And we’ve been here since 1986 … creating tools for the Real World.
So grab some Kipware® and let’s discover the “new normal”. Because now more than ever … it’s REAL !!
Oh ya … it’s REAL !!

Kenney Skonieczny – President
Kentech Inc.

New Release – Mutli Sided Conversational Menu for Pentagons, Octagons … any -OGONS !!

While performing an online demonstration the other day, a client asked if KipwareM® had a menu to perform multi sided milling of shapes other than a hex. Of course, the hex shape is a standard feature. KipwareM® can also mill square, rectangular and round bosses using the conversational menus and non standard shapes through the SketchPad. But his question got us wondering about easily programming the milling of pentagons, heptagons, octagons and so on. We thought the answer would be to create a conversational, fill in the blank menu that can quickly and easily create G code milling for a figure with any number of sides, so we did.

The video below will illustrate the use of the newly released multi sided milling menu, now a standard menu in KipwareM®

The form allows the user to define a shape with any number of sides, by just entering the diameter of the circumscribed circle and the required number of sides. The user can also input the radius of the cutter along with all the machining parameters required to machine the shape to the desired depth.

At Kentech we are innovators and pioneers. This new menu illustrates not only the constant innovation being done on Kipware® software, but also the level of real world development being poured into Kipware® to ensure that it continues to be the gold standard for PC based conversational CNC cam software.

Kipware® conversational is a powerful and easy to use tool for anyone’s CNC programming arsenal. Click HERE or visit www.KentechInc.com to put Kipware® conversational to work for you.

Kenney Skonieczny – President
Kentech Inc.

Real World Machining Cycletime Estimating & Why It Matters

The phrase … the guess … “That should take us about 2 minutes to machine.” … is costing you  money … plain and simple.

I would say that most of our clients who request an online demonstration of our KipwareCYC® software answer the question “So how do you estimate your cycletime currently?” in a similar fashion. Inevitably most pass it on to the machinist on the floor or the production manager or the manufacturing engineer … and they provide the machining time estimate. And when we push a little harder … it turns out that most usually use the scientific form of GUESSTIMATING to arrive at their times based on their 30+ years or so of machining.

The fact of the matter is that even with all that machining background … their cycletime estimate is still a guesstimate … and cost estimates produced from that will be incorrect. No matter what you are using for cost estimating … if the cycletime estimate is incorrect it could lead to winning work … but work that just loses money.

The other side of the coin is the “feature recognition” software that claim they can produce a cycletime estimate based on a solid model. So now we go from a free guess to a very high priced software application … but the result is probably the same … inaccurate times. Why? That high priced app probably can figure a machining cycletime estimate based on that 3D model … but the key is will the machining process it determines be the same process that will take place on your shop floor? Will the speeds and feeds it calculates be the same speeds and feeds that will be produced on your shop floor? Probably not … and that means the time it calculated is no better than a guesstimate.

The key to accurate cycletime estimating is simple … make certain that the machine specs, cutting process and parameters used accurately reflect what will happen on your shop floor. Period.

Our KipwareCYC® is real world cycletime estimating software that was developed in the real world over years of providing time estimates for machine justification and time estimates for high volume production. KipwareCYC® will provide you with consistency … and most important accuracy … in your cycletime estimating process. The real world design and features of KipwareCYC® will insure that machine specs and cutting parameters utilized in the estimate will accurately reflect what happens on your shop floor. In fact … the design insures that the more you use KipwareCYC® … the more accurate it becomes !!!

Want to learn more … we invite you to visit www.KentechInc.com and explore KipwareCYC® in more detail.

Better yet … why not arrange for a personal online demonstration and let us show you how we can back up our claims … click here to set one up.

Kenney Skonieczny – President
Kentech Inc.

New Enhanced Kipware® ONLINE MANUAL and VIDEO TRAINING Sites Up

Over the last months we have been hard at work enhancing and updating our video training site and adding a new OnLine Manual site that covers all Kipware® titles. We have updated and enhanced the internal, behind the scenes structure that will make it easier for us to add and update content on a more regular basis.

Both sites will forever be a work in progress … but that’s what it means to provide our clients with the most up-to-date content for training.

You can access the new Kipware® OnLine Manual through this link :  https://www.kentechinc.com/Kipware_Manual/index.htm

You can access the updated Video Training Site through this link : https://www.kentechinc.com/Kipware_Video_Training_Catalog/index.htm

In addition … most Kipware® software titles have direct access to these sites directly from the software by clicking the VIDEO or MANUAL links in the menu bar of the software.

Both sites are browser based but follow the same structure as most Windows HELP applications. They are extremely easy to navigate through the menu on the left side of the screen. In addition, a new SEARCH function is available to help users find content faster and easier.

As mentioned, we will be constantly adding and updating content as needed …. so check back often.

Kenney Skonieczny – President
Kentech Inc.

New Release : Unlimited Grooving Options in Conversational OD ID Grooving Profiles [ Conversational CNC CAM for Turning ]

Creating corner chamfers and radii on OD or ID grooves can be a challenge. Whether programming these profiles manually or through a complex CAD/CAM package … hitting the correct dimensions and tolerances is a tough task.

That’s why we have invested considerable time, effort and testing in the newest feature of our KipwareT® – Conversational CAN Programming Software for Turning … OD and ID GROOVE PROFILING.

Through a simple conversational or fill-in-the-blank form … users can easily describe any chamfer or radius on the outside corners … any radius on the ID corners …  any tool nose radius on the grooving tool … and have KipwareT® auto-generate the profiling toolpath in seconds … all the math, all the calculations are done automatically in seconds. The best part is if actual cutting conditions cause an out-of-spec part … changes and revisions can be made in seconds … all done conversationally … and sent back out to the machine for prove-out.

Now we all know that “ideal” numbers don’t result in an “ideal” part, Cutter deflection … cutter pressure … cutting conditions can all cause a deviation from desired specs. This new feature in KipwareT® makes any alterations or edits to bring the actual dimension into spec quick and easy.

This new feature in KipwareT® will make anyone … novice or beginner programmer … a grooving master in no time.

Here is a video with additional details :

You can check out all the features of KipwareT® conversational by :

(a) visiting our website HERE
(b) visiting our YouTube channel HERE

Kenney Skonieczny – President
Kentech Inc.

New Release : Backturning Options in KipwareT® [ New Turning CNC CAM Conversational Features ]

Kentech Inc. is pleased to announce the release of Version 21.0.0 of our KipwareT® – Conversational CNC Programming Software for Turning.

This version release includes (2) new backturning menu options for both STRAIGHT and TAPER turning. 

STRAIGHT Backturning Menu

TAPER Backturning Menu

As with all KipwareT® conversational menus, these new menus offer the user multiple options to create powerful G code programs. The user has the ability to select from the following :

  • Rough and / or Finish cutting … create separate operations or combine roughing and finishing with the same tool.
  • Turning ( cutting along the Z axis ) or Facing ( cutting along the X axis ) type cutting … and these can be different for roughing and finishing.
  • Any configuration with any taper can be defined in the menus.

Version 21.0.0 is shipping standard as of 12/10/2019 with these new backturning menus options a standard, included feature.

Kenney Skonieczny – President
Kentech Inc.

Musings of an Artisan … Have Manufacturers Summoned the Demon?

I recently came across an article highlighting the thoughts of Elon Musk … one of my heroes … regarding artificial intelligence as he was addressing a symposium at MIT. In the article he compared the use of AI to the “summoning of a demon” and called it one of the “biggest threats to humans.” “With artificial intelligence” Musk states, “we are summoning the demon. In all those stories where there’s a guy with the pentagon and the holy water, it’s like yeah he’s sure he can control the demon. Didn’t work out.”

I’m not sure I fully agree with Mr. Musk … but it certainly got me thinking about manufacturing and the path it’s taken and what we have lost along the way as manufacturers summoned their own demon. I have already written about how the term “hobby machinist” disgusts me personally … read the article here … and has cheapened the artisan known as a machinist. The more I thought about where I started in manufacturing and where manufacturing is headed now … the more frightened I became not only about manufacturing but about society in general. How generations are losing the ability and skills so needed by the world to “make things” … and how they are missing out on all the human emotions that accomplishing those tasks bring to life.

No one can deny that the pure art of making things is certainly a dying trade. We can go back to say something like a sword in medieval times … where the blacksmith heated up the metal and used a hammer and his inspiration and skill to create beautiful works of art that were not only beautiful to the eye but functional to the highest extent possible. Can the generations being raised today fix anything? … build anything with their own hands? In today’s throw-away society … if something breaks, the first thought is to replace it … and often times the way they are designed, that is the only option … they can’t be repaired. But even if they could … today’s generations do not have the skills to make those repairs … those skills only belong to today’s fathers and grand-fathers.

Thoughts of my own world … becoming a machinist … where I used manual machinery to create gears, shafts and other parts. Using my hands and skill to work with simple tools like a scraper to fit parts together by hand. And even the evolution to CNC programming … where I created G code by hand to make the CNC machine move as I desired to create even more intricate parts that were otherwise impossible to machine using a manual machine. But for me … here’s where the problem really begins.

With the advent of CAD/CAM … the whole art of making things started to slip away. Instead of creating the G code manually … we could simply tell the computer through the CAD/CAM system … basically make a program to machine this shape I drew. The computer decided everything.  Creating G code manually still kept the machinist in control. Choosing the machining process … knowing what operation to perform before the others … knowing speeds and feeds and being able to adjust those factors during the cutting by hearing and seeing the chips being produced. The artist was still involved.

Manufacturers began summoning the demon.

With CAD/CAM … the skill level and the artisan aspect became less and less important. One could argue that their was still skill involved to design the part … but for me that just illustrates where the artist was being stopped … his influence and experience required removed from the process. As CAD/CAM grows in capabilities … even the design input by the artist is gradually being removed. The computer performs more and more of the tasks automatically … and the human interaction is less and less.

Now we are moving to 3D printing where the artist is being pushed further away from the art of creating things. No machining is involved … no skill set required … the computer is virtually in complete control. For me … this is the last act before the demon is completely unleashed. You can almost see the demon being created inside the 3D printer.

I believe that those that are not skilled … not versed in the art of making things … who are advocating for these types of processes in ALL things … are truly summoning the demon. They are depriving generations to come of the many powerful human emotions that the art of “making something by hand” truly brings to life. The cries for things that are “natural” and “organic” need to move beyond just what we eat … it is also needed in many other aspects of life. 

Why are we not creating things that can be repaired … instead of just discarded. If the vacuum cleaner breaks … why can’t we fix it? … why can’t it be designed so we can fix it? If the toaster breaks … why can’t we fix it? why can’t it be designed so we can fix it? Think of the vast amount of “junk” we could reduce … and thus the positive environmental impact we could have. Moving back to metal and away from the scourge of everything plastic. Bring back the shops where repaired household items are bought and sold. And bring back the artisan that repairs those items … those that make the replacement parts for those items. And bring back the many human emotions linked to it all. Just starting with household items … vacuums, toasters, irons, lawn mowers, stoves … we can imagine the positive impact we could have on the earth. And move that to other areas … WOW !!

Unfortunately, the journey ahead is being charted not by the artisans … but by amateurs, non-skilled people who have never experienced the joy of making something … what I call the demolishers. Little do they realize what they are removing from society as they remove the many types of artisans from the world with their various forms of AI.

It is certainly something to think about. But is it all too late to put the demon back in the bottle? To teach our new generations the art of making things? Only time will tell. This is my call to all the artisans out there … the artisans called MACHINISTS. Let’s call the younger generations to join our ranks. Teach machining at every opportunity. Bring light to the trade wherever you can. Fight back the “hobby machinist” and bring the dignity back to the vocation of machinist. SLAY THE DEMON … at every opportunity.

Kenney Skonieczny – President
Kentech Inc.

KipwareXC® VS Re-Post VS Reposting

If you are in a real machine shop … with multiple CNC’s with multiple controls … you’ve run up against it. Control Incompatibility. The fact that G code formatted for one machine and control will not function on another machine with another control … and it causes havoc.

G code has to either be re-posted … re-programmed … or manually edited.

Most shops invest heavily in multiple CAD/CAM post processors to insure they can get G code created from their CAD/CAM system that will work in all the machines in the shop. Some try to even write their own CAD/CAM post. But CAD/CAM companies make the post processor language so cryptic and hard to figure out that eventually you buckle in and pay the price for a custom created post.

THE FACT IS … AND YOU KNOW IT … CAD/CAM COMPANIES ARE ONLY INTERESTED IN MAKING CUSTOMERS KEEP PAYING. Whether it’s yearly maintenance fees … post processor and post creation charges … THEY HAVE YOU HOSTAGE.

IT’S CALLED CORPORATE GREED !!

At Kentech Inc. we believe that EDUCATED CONSUMERS ARE OUR BEST CUSTOMERS. So we devised better ways to beat the control incompatibility issues through INNOVATIVE and PIONEERING G code conversion software like our KipwareXC® and Kipware® CNC XChange. Designed with clean user interfaces … with plain English menus … Kipware® conversion software is designed to have that educated consumer become their own boss … to take control on their own … and to succeed.

We have worked with customers all over the world including Okuma and many of their world wide distributors to add innovative and real world features to Kipware® to insure that we cover every kind of G code from CAD/CAM generated code to all-over-the-place manually created G code. And when a client needs “special” treatment for something specific they are doing … we got their back with custom development. And … if we feel it’s something that many people might need … we even code it for free … cause we know it just makes our software better.

Fed up with post processors and their cryptic languages that make it impossible for the average person to configure? Watch the video below … DUMP old school and GO new school with KipwareXC®. 

Now some people post in the forums on the net … “Why would you convert G code … just run it through your CAD/CAM system with another post.” The anonymity of online forums never ceases  to bring out the ignorance in people … so let’s set some facts straight.

Reason #1 for G Code Conversion – Converting Legacy Programs

Programs that were created years ago might not even have a CAD drawing to go back to … but most importantly ( they would know this if these people were real machinists ) … speed and feeds and even toolpaths were probably altered due to real world cutting conditions  or workholding issues or whatever. These are called “proven programs” … and are gold in a real world shop. Reverting back to the CAD/CAM system puts you back to starting-all-over-again. You lose any of the real world changes made … and more importantly time … and profits.

G code conversion makes so much more sense because nothing in the original program is changed … just the program format.

Reason #2 for G Code Conversion –
Eliminating Costly Posts

Kipware® allows users to create an UNLIMITED number of “profiles” … the definition of what-to-convert-into-what. This means that one purchase of Kipware® conversion software gives users the power to convert any G code format between multiple machines and multiple controls. You do not have to make a separate purchase for every machine in the shop. AND … because of our real world design you are in control. Make any changes or tweak the output to your liking at any time … FOR FREE !!

Reason #3 for G Code Conversion –
Unclog the Shop Floor Bottlenecks

If you live in the real world … you’ve been here. A program was created for one machine and control but because your client pushed up the delivery date or one of a hundred other reasons … you need to run that program in another machine with another control. In the CAD/CAM world you need to go back to the “CAD/CAM guy” and have him re-post it or edit it. In the Kipware® world … you simply run the program through the conversion software and BANG … ready to go.

… and we could go on and on.

But if you live in the real world and are a real world machinist … you can see and know the benefits from your own experiences.

So … is it time ???

Is it time to break the chains of the CAD/CAM company? Is it time to free your shop floor and let your productivity flow?

If so … we invite you to visit www.KentechInc.com and check out KipwareXC® and Kipware® CNC XChange. Arrange for a live, free online demonstration with one of our engineers and let us show you the real world design … and results … that you can achieve as you blow out control incompatibility in your shop.

Kenney Skonieczny – President
Kentech Inc.

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