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ArtCAM JewelSmith now handles complex designs as a series of layers

Delcam will demonstrate the latest release of its ArtCAM JewelSmith software for the design and manufacture of rings, broaches and other jewellery at the Spring Fair to be held at the NEC, Birmingham, from 4th to 8th February.  Version 9 includes enhancements for data import, design creation and machining of models.  ArtCAM JewelSmith is already established as the main design and manufacturing software for the jewellery industry and the new features in this release seem certain to consolidate its leading position.

The most important enhancement in the version 9 release is the ability to create and edit designs as a series of layers, rather than always having to work with the complete model.  The use of multiple layers is most advantageous when working on a design made up of different types of relief, for example a combination of a 3D shape, a texture and some lettering.  Placing the elements of each type onto separate layers makes it easier to edit the individual parts of the design and to manage the complete model.

The ability to switch layers on and off makes it easier to create a series of designs based on a common template.   For example, class rings could be prepared for a number of colleges or universities, using a common design with separate layers for each of the institution’s logos.  To create a ring for an individual student, the basic design would simply be scaled to the required size and the layer for the appropriate college switched on.

In a similar way, the use of layers also makes model management simpler when different elements of the design intersect with each other.  It is much easier to change the positions and relationships between overlapping elements, allowing a series of complex design variants to be developed more quickly and easily.

Dividing a model into layers can also speed calculation times, especially for complex models.  This is possible because the relief can be edited layer by layer, rather than having to undertake a re-calculation for the whole model after every change.

The range of data translation options has been extended by adding the pdf format to the image types that can be brought into ArtCAM JewelSmith.  All the bitmap and vector pages within the pdf document are converted automatically into separate layers within the ArtCAM file.

The resolution of any artwork and the related reliefs can now be adjusted during the design process.  This means that low-resolution artwork, from the Internet for example, can be imported and then the resolution increased to improve dramatically the quality of the resultant relief model.

Finally, two new wizards have been added to make machining easier.  The first covers index machining and allows machining at a series of fixed angles on rotary equipment.  Typically, the model will be aligned such that machining of any areas with fine detail can be undertaken with the cutter as close as possible to a normal angle to the surface.

The main benefit will be in the production of items like rings and bangles that feature a number of separate reliefs around their circumference.  Index machining will also make it easier to produce vertical walls in tension rings.

The second wizard can be used to develop mould designs automatically from product designs, generating the parting line and the two mould sections from a user-specified block of material.  Runners can be added using the software’s normal modelling tools.  The complete mould can then be manufactured using ArtCAM JewelSmith’s full range of machining strategies.