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dxf to laser cutting

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I'm having problems exporting DXF/DWG to a laser cutting company. They can't read the files I've exported from 2011.

They use AutoCAD Lt and CADCAM.

Just wondering if anyone else has had any issues?

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All paths/lines are exported as polygons and I'm exporting as DXF 2009.

I have had trouble with STL export as well, although if I export to VW2008 and then export the as STL everything is fine.

I wonder if the new 2D/3D stuff in 2011 is something to do with it.

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It's possible that 2011 is not exporting properly, I have not tried it yet. But I would look at some other possibilities, too. If you and your cutter are patient, try a test and ask some questions.

In a new fresh VW drawing, draw a single path with a few straights and curves likely to occur in your cutting file. Often, the cutter's software can only read circular curves (arcs and circles). Bezier and spline vertices may not compute, may seem like file corruption. Ask your cutter about this.

Ask the cutting shop which version(s) of AC is in use. Some shops keep an old one humming along and never upgrade. I have seen rev 14 still in use.

Export your test to several of the "likely to succeed" formats/revs including dwg. Import your export back into VW and see if it all looks right. Sometimes nearly flat curves get exported as infinite radius and can mess up the software. You may notice other problem vertices, stacks for example - delete them. Re export the cleaned up file and reimport to VW again to check.

When all is good at your end, send the test files to the cutter.

Look over their shoulder while they upload and open your test dwg. Take your laptop and a thumb drive to revise on the spot if nec.

If the tests files read ok, and you move on to the cutting job, look at your paths on their screen (personally, with your eyes, every drawing) before any sequencing, kerfing, pierce setups or cutting takes place. Redo your files as nec. Things can go bad at any step.

Once you and the cutter understand the other's needs, future jobs may not need all this supervision, although you should at least approve a pdf proof of the paths before cutting.

Post back if you can't get it to go.

Best of luck.

-B

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Thanks Benson,

I have a feeling that it may be to do with 2011 as when I export from 2008 all is fine.

I wil endeavour to get to the bottom of this as you have suggested.

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