Category Archives: General

General musings and information.

Kentech Offers Pay Over Time Option for Kipware® Software

Kentech Inc. is pleased to partner with SEZZLE and PAYPAL to offer our U.S. and Canadian clients pay-over-time options for software purchases through BuyKipware.com. Here are the details :

SEZZLE is a BUY NOW – PAY LATER – INTEREST FREE platform that allows users to spread their software purchase over 4, interest free payments, over 6 weeks. Making a purchase with payment through SEZZLE allows users to get their software now and mitigate the financial impact in these difficult times. Some additional details :

  • Get what you need now … pay in 4 over 6 weeks.
  • Instant approval decision
  • SEZZLE is offered in over 47,000 online stores
  • No Credit Impact … shopping with Sezzle won’t have any effect on your credit score.
  • SEZZLE is the highest shopper rated pay-over-time solution.
  • Get individual Kipware CONVERSATIONAL CAM or QUOTING & ESTIMATING titles with payments as little as $123.75.

Kipware - Pay Over Time Option

Like SEZZLE, PayPal’s Pay in 4 is a feature that lets you split your purchase into 4 payments, with the down payment due at the time of transaction and 3 subsequent payments made every 2 weeks thereafter.  If you choose Pay in 4 as your payment method when you check out with PayPal, you will be taken through the application process. You will get a decision instantly but not everyone will be approved based on our internal checks. Some additional details :

  • Get what you need now … pay in 4 over 6 weeks.
  • Instant approval decision
  • No Credit Impact … shopping with Sezzle won’t have any effect on your credit score.
  • Get individual Kipware CONVERSATIONAL CAM or QUOTING & ESTIMATING titles with payments as little as $123.75.

We realize that times are challenging. Kipware® software offers game-changing solutions that mean fast ROI and will make immediate positive impacts in your manufacturing environment. We are pleased to offer our clients the ability to mitigate financial impacts yet get the solutions they need through SEZZLE and PayPal Pay-In-4 options.

To take advantage of these options … just select SEZZLE or PayaPal as your payment method at checkout through BuyKipware.com

Kenney Skonieczny – President
Kentech Inc.

The DUMBING DOWN of the CNC Machine Shop

Many people believe that the rise of CAD/CAM has also meant the dumbing down of the machine shop. CAD/CAM operators do not have to be chip making machinists … the only requirement is to know how to operate the CAD/CAM system. As result whatever method the CAD/CAM system comes up with is the method of production. Speeds, feeds, process … it’ all set by the CAD/CAM system and your production and machining are at it’s mercy … whether right or wrong.

Analogy : Sure the pilot uses auto-pilot to fly … but the pilot also knows how to fly the plane manually if needed. Does your CAD/CAM programmer know G code? Can he intervene if necessary?

READ the FULL ARTICLE HERE

It’s time to RISE UP … time to make your shop smarter and more efficient. Time to enhance the HUMAN FACTOR … and KIPWARE® can help.

CLICK HERE to explore Kipware® in detail.

Kenney Skonieczny – President
Kentech Inc.

Why Using a CAD/CAM ONLY Model Puts Your CNC Programming at Risk

It may seem that your current CNC programming is comfortable with your CAD/CAM system and can “whip up” new G code in no time. But think about the long term … think about these points :

  1. Your CNC programming is at the mercy of your CAD/CAM system. You need to pay any monthly / yearly fees to stay current and stay supported. You are locked in.
  2. You need to find personnel to hire who are familiar with, at least, CAD and CAM and at best YOUR CAD/CAM system. This limits your candidate selection and ability to get the best person for the job.
  3. You have good chipmakers on the shop floor who could lend valuable assistance to the creation of the simpler, everyday G code creation … but they don’t know CAD, CAM and struggle to create G code from scratch. Kipware® is a tool where G code experience is not even required … good chipmakers make GREAT Kipware® programmers.
  4. The ability to hand off the everyday programming to a Kipware® programmer and keep the “CAD/CAM guy” focused on the more complex programming opens up a whole new world of efficiency for your shop.
  5. A lifetime license for Kipware® conversational ( 2 seats ) is equal to (1) year of Fusion 360 !!

CAD/CAM was never intended to be a primary G code creation tool … it is a design tool first and foremost. Everything starts with a drawing. If you’re not designing … DUMP the CAD … KEEP the CAM and increase output with Kipware® conversational.

Create G code FASTER and EASIER with Kipware® Conversational … CLICK HERE TO LEAR MORE

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 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.

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.

Product Review / Comparison — G-Wizard Conversational vs Kipware® Conversational

If you do a google search for “conversational cnc software” … one of the displayed option is for a product from CNCCookbook called G-Wizard Conversational CNC. OK then … if you’re taking up market space then you are fair game … so let’s see what it is.

Conversational CNC is part of the G-Wizard Editor package. The editor is a G code creation / editing / plotting application and the conversational “wizards” allow you to create snippets of G code to be inserted into the editor as you build a G code program. It truly is what I would call a “wizard” … quite limited in scope with only a very few simple operations available for G code generation. CNCCookbook touts that “conversational CNC is free during beta testing” … you can see why. The product hasn’t changed much in over two years and seems to be something that has lost the interest of the developer. However … as I stated above if you’re taking up market space … you are fair game for an honest and thorough review.

Here’s a quick video of our review of the TURNING wizards …

A couple of other annoying / unprofessional “features” :

(1) It outputs TONS of lines of code … most simply messages … but if your control has limited memory capacity … it’s an issue.

(2) There doesn’t  appear to be any way to go back and edit code that was already created through a wizard … you have to start all over again in a new instance of the wizard. KipwareT® allows for complete recall into the conversational menu or direct edit of the cycle G code created.

(3) Roughing and finishing are always done … doesn’t seem to be any way to select ROUGH only or FINISH only … both are independently selectable in KipwareT.

Overall … the look and feel of G-Wizard conversational is that of a “wizard”. It will generate snippets of G code but is very limiting and without many options if you are trying to use it as a replacement for complex CAD/CAM for simpler workpieces … and there is no DXF import if the shape you are programming has some non-standard features.

DUMP the WIZARDS …
GO PRO with Kipware® Conversational

Kenney Skonieczny – President
Kentech Inc.

Product Review / Comparison : CAD/CAM vs. Kipware® Conversational [ Fusion 360 vs Kipware® Conversational ]

FACT : Using a CAD/CAM system to program the simpler, everyday workpieces is costing you money.

FACT : CAD/CAM OVERKILL is real … and is costing shops in labor hours and dollars.

FACT : CAD/CAM was NEVER designed to be a G code generating tool first and foremost … it is a design tool first and foremost. If you’re not designing … DUMP the CAD and KEEP the CAM with Kipware® conversational.

FACT : Fusion 360 may be cheap … but even FREE software can disrupt efficiency and productivity if you can’t produce G code … and chips … in a timely manner.

Here’s the proof :

Get the low down on real world software that can save you time and money … Kipware® conversational … at our website : www.KentechInc.com

Kenney Skonieczny – President
Kentech Inc.

True Conversational Programming for a Tormach CNC Mill and Lathe [ Kipware Conversational CAM for Tormach ]

Did you know that KipwareM® and KipwareT® will allow you to program your Tormach PCNC Mill and / or Slant-Pro Lathe completely conversationally?

It’s true. KipwareM® (milling) and KipwareT® (turning) are 100% compatible for programming your Tormach mill or slant-pro lathe RIGHT OUT OF THE BOX !! No “post processor” or anything additional is required.

Now some user will say that Tormach already includes “conversational” programming … but the fact is it is not TRUE conversational programming. It is what is more commonly referred to as a programming “wizard”. It allows you to create simplistic G code for simplistic shapes … not true robust conversational CAM like Kipware® conversational. Why limit yourself? … and your potential? … and for that matter, the type of work you can produce?

Simply put Kipware® conversational allows users to do more … kick your programming up a notch … be real world … such as :

(1) Create multi tool programs that can machine a workpiece complete with multiple operations.

(2) Import DXF files and create G code for non-standard shapes.

(3) Use professional programming and “best programming practices” like cutter compensation … canned cycles … and more.

We have hundreds of Tormach users who found the standard Tormach wizards too confining or limiting … and have graduated to real world programming with Kipware® conversational with great success.

If you are a Tormach owner or thinking about a Tormach purchase … we invite you to contact us at any of the options below to discuss in detail how Kipware® conversational can take your Tormach mill or lathe to the next level.

Want a Kipware® conversational crash course … click the link below to view our in-depth Kipware® conversational videos on our YouTube channel :

Milling : https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLQjgskQuLfsSSOaztXUfV7Namy7iGoT8M

Turning : https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLQjgskQuLfsS8j4Wb72o_fRGloXIIPzDw

Contact us by voice in the USA : 508.754.1198

Contact us via email : Sales@KentechInc.com

Kenney Skonieczny – President
Kentech Inc.

New Fusion360 Pricing … Here We Go !! [ If you’re not designing, DUMP the CAD … KEEP the CAM with Kipware ]

As of this writing … end of September 2018 … the eventual has become the norm. We all knew this would happen … and the constant uptick of pricing has begun for  Fusion 360 users.

An announcement has just been made the pricing level of Fusion 360 for the will jump from $310 to $495 … and that is PER YEAR !!  That’s not a forever, buy it once and your done price … that is $42 / month or $495 per year.

We all knew this would happen. Once they got users hooked using their “cheaper”, introductory pricing  … got you to do all your drawings and store all your data in their environment … that they would eventually have to increment up pricing to keep making profits and stay ahead. And it is happening. And as any business owner knows … it will keep ticking up little by little … forever.

If you’re not designing …

DUMP the CAD … KEEP the CAM !!

Look let’s be honest … if you are designing and creating new products … Fusion 360 is probably a good deal. IF ON THE OTHER HAND … YOU ARE LOOKING TO GENERATE G CODE FOR MACHINING … KIPWARE® CONVERSATIONAL IS A MUCH BETTER ALTERNATIVE … PERIOD. CAD/CAM was NEVER designed to be a G code generating tool first and foremost … it is primarily a design tool … made especially for users designing and creating new products on a constant basis. Thus … everything starts with a drawing. If you are looking to primarily create G code to machine a workpiece … why do you need to start with a drawing. It is time consuming (wasting) and requires CAD skills which may preclude some good chipmakers from even getting involved with the programming process. For a shop owner … limiting the people who can create CNC programs means limiting efficiency and limiting output … limiting profits !!

Take a look at the video below … agree ??

Go Simple … Go Real World … Get Productive !!

One of the things that Fusion 360 touts with this new pricing is that the new subscription will include ALL Fusion 360 “features”. Great … they just added MORE COMPLEXITY to the package. If you are trying to create G code for say a simple turned part … you’ll have to weed through menus for live milling, Y axis, and others. WHY ??

If the video above makes sense to you … we encourage you to think twice about jumping on the Fusion 360 ever-increasing bandwagon and to take a deeper look into what “shop floor programming” and Kipware® conversational can mean for your shop … your productivity … your profits !!

Get more info HERE at www.KentechInc.com

Kenney Skonieczny — President
Kentech Inc.