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ENTER DATA FOR THE
POLYGON CUTTING ATTACHMENT
Simulation of 'Polygon Cutter' lathe attachments:
to set up default data. Then
These long instructions can be turned OFF using the preference check boxes further down this page. The 'Reset ALL' button should be clicked before your first data entry. This sets all the preference flags and loads demo data. The green help buttons give specific information about each entry. The yellow help buttons provide additional information such as 'How and Why' the program was developed with special thanks to
. The images button provides many links to YouTube videos etc. Polygon_N explains how the number of sides is predicted before the simulation begins.
The number of cutters on the rotating tool.
Most polygon cutter attachments have a tool with 1,2,3 or 4 'cutter' inserts on a rotating assembly. Enter the number of cutter inserts here.
G is the Gear Ratio.
The gear ratio is the number of turns the of the cutter for each turn of the spindle or chuck. If the tool assembly is driven by the leadscrew the gear ratio is determined by the gear train (and gearbox). RideTheGearTrain can be used to design the required gear train (see Help).
Enter C for clockwise, or A for anti-clockwise rotation of the cutters.
W for 'Wiseness' refers to the direction of rotation of the tool as viewed from the tailstock. The chuck normally rotates anti-clockwise (counter-clockwise). If you enter A for 'anti-clockwise', the tool will rotate in the same direction as the work (ie co-rotation). If you enter C for 'clockwise' the tool will rotate in the opposite direction (counter-rotation) to the chuck.
R is the radius of the workpiece being cut.
The radius 'R' of the shaft being cut can be entered in any units: mm, inches, thousandths or cubits. Results will be displayed with the same units. Do not enter the units as text. Just the number eg 1.5.
D is the ratio of radius of the cutter/radius of workpiece (Usually 0.2-10).
The spinning circular cutter is usually 2 to 10 times the size of the workpiece. eg for a workpiece 10mm radius the cutter may be 50mm radius and D=5. 'D' stands for 'Diameter Ratio'. You can use D<1 if you plan to cut unusually shaped holes.
S is the size of the cutter: radius of the tips of cutters (You can use D instead).
The size of the cutter is usually specified by 'D' and 'R'. The program calculates the actual radius S=D*R. If you prefer to enter the actual measurement of the cutter radius, it can be entered as 'S'.
If you enter 'S' leave 'D' blank.
If you enter 'D' leave 'S' blank.
DOC is 'Depth of Cut'. Enter zero for automatic calculation of 'DOC'.
Depth of Cut (DOC) is the distance that the cutter is advanced from the surface of the original workpiece. If it is zero the program calculates DOC by using iteration to calculate the depth required so that the corner (apex) of the polygon lies on the workpiece circle.
FOR THE POLYGON CALCULATOR
degStep is the amount that the angle of the spindle/chuck is increased for each step eg 1 or 0.25 degree.
Small steps when drawing the curves produce smoother curves with more points.
Enter the number of seconds delay between plotting points (optional).
You can control how fast the graph is drawn by inserting a time delay between each point plotted (eg 0.001 to 0.5 seconds).
Enter a caption or name for the graph.
The caption is displayed with the graphs and tables.If left blank, the program provides a standard heading.
Enter a title to be written alongside the x-axis (horizontal)
If no title is provided it is marked 'X Axis'
Enter a label to be written alongside the y-axis (vertical).
If no title is entered here, 'Y-Axis' will be displayed.
The program produces two diagrams showing the path of the cutter.
The first graph is zoomed out to give the 'big picture' and the second is zoomed in to show the shape of the polygon.
You can choose to turn either of the graphs off or on using the checkboxes. The flat faces of the polygon are not actually flat but slightly curved. The purpose of this program is to show and calculate the curvature. This can produce quite a lot of text that can be turned off. It includes finding two of the corners of the polygon. Then the midpoint of a straight line between two corners is calculated and compared with the midpoint of the curve. The distance between these points is a measure of indentation or curvature at the center of the flat.
Show LONG instructions during data input (normally on).
Show calculation of curvature of the faces (normally on).
Show graph zoomed out for the 'big picture' (normally on)
Show graph zoomed in to see the polygon close up (normally on)
Show a circle representing the workpiece diameter (normally on)
Show lines between points to produce a curve (normally on).
Show degrees of rotation at each point. Adjust degStep/degPause.
Show + symbol at each plotted point. Adjust degStep/degPause.
Show a table of (x,y) coordinates. Adjust degStep/degPause.