If you have followed our Blog … you might know that back in October of 2015 we started a sister company to Kentech Inc. called KÄRV. KÄRV is a woodworking business … is just getting started … and will be producing custom, handmade furniture and unique wood carvings for resale.
We are using the Kipware® software from Kentech Inc. in KÄRV to both create the G code programs for our X-Carve CNC router and to estimate cycletime and costs for the products we will be producing for resale. So we are putting Kipware® to the test in the real world … this time the world of woodworking … for additional in-the-trenches use.
We also wanted to document some of the use of Kipware® in various areas of KÄRV … so this post is dedicated to the cost estimating of a wooden, 3D carved plaque we have for sale on our website.
We wanted to illustrate through the video available below how we used our KipwareQTE® to create the retail price for the plaque considering material cost, tooling cost, labor cost and non-machining costs. Metalworking … woodworking … they both have very similar aspects as they relate to manufacturing … so this video is a great way to see KipwareQTE® in action in a woodworking environment … but with a lot of similarities with a metalworking one.
For additional information on all our Kipware® CNC and Machine Shop software titles … please visit www.KentechInc.com.
Since the early 1990’s, Kipware® software has been assisting varieties of professional machinists and professional machine shops work around the bloated, overpriced, “big name ” software guys by creating and providing a line of what we refer to as “REAL WORLD” machine shop software. Called REAL WORLD software because they were born from what we saw was missing and needed as we worked and gathered our experiences over last roughly 30 years. We are proud of both our contributions and the reputation we have acquired in the thousands of professional machine shops around the world.
But times are changing. CNC is now more available “to the masses” than ever before. And the new MAKER culture is spreading like wildfire. It gives us great pleasure to see people using their “tinkering skills” in various engineering and metalworking endeavors … and qwe salute all the MAKERS and in all forms.
BUT A QUICK NOTE : Please note that while we encourage and support the MAKER community … we have loathe and disgust for the term “hobby machinist”. Having apprenticed and worked many long and hard hours / years to obtain the title MACHINIST … I do not give the title away frivolously. Simply because someone “tinkers” with metal in some hobby or “for fun” project … IMHO … does not thus make them a MACHINIST. Just like the simple fact of brushing your teeth does not make you a “hobby dentist” … or the fact that you replaced a plug-end does not make you a “hobby electrician.” You wouldn’t think of using those terms … being a machinist is no different. OK … Nuf Said … just one of my pet peeves.
Does Kipware® Have a Place in the MAKER World?
We think it certainly does. Are we saying that just ’cause we’re trying to sell you? I don’t think so … and here are a few reasons why but judge for yourself.
Kipware® conversational is a great CAM alternative for bench-top milling machines, all type and sizes of routers and homemade or professional lathes … allowing you to quickly and easily get the simpler, everyday brackets, mounts, couplings and the like programmed and machined in short order … without the need for CAD or even a drawing.
Although CAD may be in the cards for most design work … and there are tons of FREE drawing apps out there … the heavy priced and complex CAM end is a turn-off for some MAKERS. Kipware® conversational … which can be had on a Subscription basis for a little over $200 … will give you all the power without the financial down-side.
We designed Kipware® conversational to output generic and basic G code … so no need to fuss with CAD/CAM type post-processors. The majority of the code output out-of-the-box by Kipware® conversational is compatible with about 98% of the machines out there … home made or professional. Mach3/ Mach4, LittleMachineShop, Tormach, PathPilot, Carbide3D, Intructables, Probotix … and most anything similar.
Many “hobby machines” tout their canned “wizards” and even some external software “wizards” are available for purchase. While the price may make then tempting … don’t be fooled. They are so overly simplistic that given your aptitude for going the MAKER route in the first place … you will outgrow these simplistic tools in not time … or they WILL hold back your potential.
Kipware® is a profesional CNC program creation package that is designed and priced to be easy-to-use … powerful … and will give you plenty of room to grow. We not only handle the “standard” type parts … the included conversational CAD/CAM Kipware® SketchPad can handle almost any type of non-standard shape.
Search the web and you may even find some “we give it away FREE during BETA testing” software … which I find incredible. So … let me get this right … you want me to make junk and get frustrated, delay or ruin my projects because your software is not fully done and …. while I’m making junk you want me to test and report bugs and fix your software also ?? RIGHT !!! In what world is this OK ?? And another reason it’s FREE … it’s a hobby for them too and they don’t want to, can’t afford to or don’t want to be bothered to support the product. Kipware® is our LIFE and we Support all our software 24 / 7 / 365 … Nuf Said.
Decide to try and make some money off your labor? Our cycletime and cost estimating Kipware® titles will fit both your budget and your requirements very nicely. And as above … will give you features to grow into with the bloat.
For these reasons and many more … if you are a member of the MAKER community … we would highly recommend a look at Kipware®. We have made plenty of resources available to help get you the info you need … here are a few :