CumInCAD is a Cumulative Index about publications in Computer Aided Architectural Design
supported by the sibling associations ACADIA, CAADRIA, eCAADe, SIGraDi, ASCAAD and CAAD futures

PDF papers
id caadria2016_569
authors Williams, Nicholas and Dharman Gersch
year 2016
title Developing the Termite Plug-In: Abstracting operations to link 5-axis CNC routers with para-metric CAAD tools
source Living Systems and Micro-Utopias: Towards Continuous Designing, Proceedings of the 21st International Conference on Computer-Aided Architectural Design Research in Asia (CAADRIA 2016) / Melbourne 30 March–2 April 2016, pp. 569-578
summary Since the turn of the millennium, architects and designers have used greater access to Computer Aided Manufacturing (CAM) machines to explore links between design and fabrication. This trend is recently manifested in plug-ins for CAD software packages, which enable designers to program industrial robots and additive manufac- turing machines. However, amongst the array of contemporary tools, few connect CAD packages to commercial 5-axis routers and, as a re- sult, designers are forced to use complex CAM software to operate these machines with limited exploration of the interface with design. This paper reports on the development of a CAD plug-in for driving such routers and targeted at designers. It discusses key aspects in the conception of the software libraries for an alpha release of the tool, a plug-in for McNeel Grasshopper named Termite. Primary considera- tions for the development team include the areas and extent of flexi- bility offered in order to enable non-expert users of such machines to use them to in an effective and efficient manner. Key elements of the tools are discussed, including the definition of machining tools, the creation of generic toolpaths and the subsequent writing machine-code files. A set of example pieces are presented to demonstrate the pro- posed approach for flank-milling, patterning and connecting timber components at a furniture scale. These are compared to plug-ins for industrial robot with similar technical knowledge and experience amongst the target audience.
keywords Digital fabrication; parametric design; architectural proto-types; digital material
series CAADRIA
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100%; open Davis, D. (2013) Find in CUMINCAD Modelled on Software Engineering: Flexible Parametric Models in the Practice of Architecture , PhD thesis, RMIT University, Melbourne

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100%; open Sheil, B. (2014) Find in CUMINCAD High Definition: Negotiating Zero Tolerance, Architectural Design , London, UK, Wiley and Sons

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