CNC Foam Cutting – Complex Foam Shapes
Whilst a simple square foam cushion might be easy to cut with less advanced machinery, sometimes complex shapes require CNC foam cutting machines.
These computer-controlled machines have the ability to interpret technical design files. This allows them to produce products that would be difficult, or otherwise impossible to reproduce manually.
This is especially the case if a foam product needs to be reproduced multiple times and to a highly consistent standard.
Here at Foam Direct, we can utilise our state-of-the-art CNC foam cutting machinery to create complex foam products for your business.
What is a CNC Foam Cutting Machine?
CNC stands for Computer Numerical Control. A CNC machine is an advanced piece of hardware that does not require a manual operator to directly carry out any machining operations.
Instead, these functions are carried out by a piece of computer software designed to interpret specialised design files.
Designs are originally constructed as CAD files and are then converted to CAM files; a specific format that the computer can understand.
Understanding CAD Files
CAD stands for Computer-Aided Design. A foam product that requires CNC foam cutting must first be designed in CAD software.
There are many types of CAD software available for people to use. Some are free and some require a license. Just a few examples of paid-for and free CAD software include – AutoCAD, CATIA, OpenScad and Solidworks.
Software such as this allows an individual to design a specific object in a manner that can be properly visualised. The 3D model will contain physical properties that will be of use when the file is converted into a CAM format.
Understanding CAM Files
CAM stands for Computer-Aided Manufacturing. CNC foam cutting machines cannot read CAD files; they need specific instructions (called G-code) to be able to make a finished product. That’s where CAM comes in.
Some pieces of CAD software (but not all) come packaged with the ability to convert a CAD file into a CAM file. Other pieces of CAD software will require a separate piece of CAM software to make the conversion. Examples of CAM-only software include – ESPRIT, CAMBAM, GibbsCAM and EdgeCAM.
CAM software turns CAD design files into G-code that a CNC foam cutting machine can read. It can outline linear moves, specify tool types and instruct on spindle speed; amongst other things.
About Our CNC Foam Cutting Services
We’ve been converting foam for more than 40 years and our UK factory is fully equipped with a range of advanced pieces of cutting machinery. If you’ve got a foam product in need of CNC cutting, we can help.
It doesn’t matter if you’ve already got a file that you’d like us to work from, or if you need us to build your foam product, in 3D software, from the ground up. We can accept .cad, .dxf or .dwg file types if you would like us to work from a pre-existing design file.
From design to inception, our team of experts are at hand to help you every step of the way. Contact us today and see how our CNC foam cutting services can help you!