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Set center option removed from Entry in DP7
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18:18 CEST
As a owner of DP6 Entry I recently tested DP7 with some simple geometries. I had issues to get it to work with my machine a Mimaki ME-650. The issue with sending to the com port was fixed in a quick response by the team. I had to return to DP6 because of time constrains.

When I now open my DP6 projects in my new DP7 Entry license the zeropoint located in the center of the machine (and often the geometry in our cases) is changed to the left front edge of the custom geometry. Recentering in the Transform tab in the parts dialog using the "Ausrichten..." button on the right, results in changed values in the dialog but the zero point in the UI stays.

Also the sended machine data ignores the center.

This change is not reflected as a change in the docs or descriptions of Deskproto. Only in the https://www.deskproto.com/products/comptable.php table you can find / guess in the line "Translation options (set the WP zero point)" that the Entry Edition is not checked (anymore?, no older reference available).

This actually renders all my existing part mounts useless, since I have to manually readjust the zero point of the machine again and again and again. Our workflow builds on working against a zero point in the center of the machine.

Do the Deskproto Developers have a workaround for this?
I keep my mood calm until I figure out that I am not that stupid as I feel now ;-)

11:49 CEST
Dear Acsr,

Can you please email us a sample V6 project that shows this behavior ? Please send it as "Problem report ZIP file", to be made in the DeskProto Help menu. You can send it to the "info@" address.

When we can see what happens we can start thinking is a fix is will be possible.


13:58 CEST
Mail with files sended... (Mail text reflected here below)

Dear Lex,
thanks for the quick response.

Here is the requested dp6 file (created in DP6.1 and the report from the DP7 UI (Version etc.)

In the screenshots you can see the different Zero Points (it is not exactly the same 2D Job but you will get the point. In DP7 I cannot manage to move the Blue Cube to the center anymore. In DP6 it was a snap.

The DP6 file went not in in the DP7 report Zip directly! I do not send the converted DP7 file!
I am not sure if the project works without the source path files. So I include them as well.

Cu Armin

Use Case Details

I use the latest Service Release on a Win7 machine (an old Intel MacMini, running Windows natively, no VM). DP7 and DP6 give OpenGL warnings but it works fine in general.

The Mimaki ME-650 machine is running under HPGL and has a modified bed (portal lifted up by 50mm) and was working very well with Deskproto 6, 6.1 even in 3D. We use a zero point in the center because it is much easier to position the type of parts we machine on the vacuum table using a diagonal cross and a center mark. Another benefit of the center positioning is the symmetrical load on the moving table, evenly distributed over the mostly planar parts

One more thing, Path Selection Experience

I am extending the scope, but it is related.

We use Adobe Illustrator CS5.5 for Vector Jobs and used to export/import multiple files. One for each 2D Job.

We really like the new 2D options in DP7. But in DP7 it seems harder at first sight to seperate loaded files. After import from DP6 you have the path selections properly distributed to the jobs. But in DP7 Entry I am not able to reselect them by hand in the same way as in DP6 without a clever strategy. I now need to discover one. Therefore I have to change/adjust my new workflow until I finally judge, but it is a bad experience.

I may try to move to DXF export with layers from AI since you have now splines support. And then hide stuff during selection. But I have not tested that in deep due to the blocker. I am not sure if layers are supported with AI8 import by Deskproto, they are present in the AI8 format!


Hoerbert_Fraesen.zip (DP6 project)

11:19 CEST
Copy of our email:

Dear Armin,

Thanks for these files, now we could indeed open one of your projects and see what is happening.

The difference in behavior between V6 and V7 is caused by the different program structure for Vector data (and bitmap data).
- in V6 vector data are imported at Operation level, after all Part settings had been applied, so in fact in NC coordinates.
- in V7 all CAD data is (geometry, vector and bitmap) is treated the same way: imported at project level and all Part settings are applied. This means that the Part Translation also is applied, and for the Entry edition the Translation is fixed on "To positive X & Y for material block": the zero point is always located in the left-front corner of the material block. And the Material block by default is sized to exactly include all CAD data.

This translation is applied when writing the toolpaths, so in your case this will override any values for panning that you have set in the part parameters. In the entry edition panning is only useful when combining Geometry and Vector data, when only Vector data is present this setting simply does not have any effect.

In your case a workaround is possible though: the zero point is positioned on the corner of the Material block, so by making the material block smaller you can change the zero point. In your project Hoerbert_Fraesen I found that in part Aussenseite you had set Panning to -129 for X and -80 for Y (which did not influence the resulting toolpaths).
What you can do is select Custom for the Material block, and then enter 129 for X-min and 80 for Y-min and press Apply. The next time you look at these values they will be reset to 0.0 because of this automatic translation, however the block has become smaller, with the zero point where you want it to be (at least I think so).
DeskProto will keep warning that the selected curves go outside the material block, a warning that you can ignore as this is intended.

Your second issue, that selecting the curves is more difficult in V7 than it was in V6, is clear as well.
Displaying layer information would be a nice help. So far we have tested that with DXF files, not with AI files.
Can you email me a sample AI file in which more than one layer is used ?

16:18 CEST
On the Issue

First of all the workaround with the fake center generally works in the UI (I did not any milling until now), but needs always manual calculation and is therefore not "computerish" and looks boring in the UI.

On the AI8 Layered Import

In the related mail you find the requested AI8 with (Top-Level) layers. Also a DXF export of the same data is provided for reference.

After import into DP7 the AI8 file does not expose the layers in the parts material dialog.
The DXF file shows proper layers and keeps splines intact with exactly the same coordinates and offset as the AI8 file imported before. Good job!

Some details on vector data from Adobe Illustrator

AI is a nice tool for artwork oriented stuff (Typography) but simple CAM things as well using parallel pathes etc. Before of the new DP7 features it could do a great job preparing tool pathes with offset and milling holes.

Adobe Illustrator supports nested layers in newer versions than AI8. But in fact these nested sub layers are groups with a special flag. Therefore in AI groups can never span layers like in most CAD software.

As far as I can see you only support top-level layers! I mention this, because if you add this and announce this later just as "layer support works for for AI" you may get support requests, because I think you may have no native access to a current AI licence and user experience. Testing is hard.

The same is with so called "artboards" in versions since CS3. Every artboard is an additional page space that has its own zero point origin and extends (think of a CAD viewport). In the past I tried to export seperate EPS from different artboards but had no luck, because DP only uses the global origin of the main page size. Again using the old "center origin" function of DP6 this was easy to fix.

Helpful things when using Adobe Illustrator etc. as Design Tool for 2D

1. Guidelines challenge (not an issue if you are perfect)
A common issue when importing AI EPS into DP is a forgotten invisible guide line. This guideline is a regular line with a maximum extend and a special flag. It is treated in DP during import as regular line and usually breaks the workspace. It would be great, if in case you refactor the AI / EPS import you can add an option to strip out guide lines.

2. Invisible Layers
Layers set to invisible in AI show up again during import in DP6 (not checked in DP7). It would be great to keep the layer visibility of the source during import.

so far.

Attachment ZIP Content:

15:24 CEST
The original issue won't be fixed, as in this special case it simply is not possible to make DeskProto V7 automatically correct these V6 project files when opening them.
The issue will be solved by upgrading to the V7 Expert edition, as in that edition the position of the zero point can be set.

We will work on making DeskProto also read CAD-layer information ("top-level layers") when loading AI files.

16:33 CEST

The DeskProto V7 bugfix build that was released today contains fixes for the issue described above:
- support for layers in AI files
- vector panning disabled in case only Vector data has been loaded.