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Virtual bend sequencing and bend simulation software

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article image Products can be drawn as a 2D-profile or directly in a 3D-view.

VBEND software from Advanced Sheetmetal Technologies facilitates both product development and testing in an offline environment, so as not to interfere with regular production.

Therefore, VBend allows bend sequence calculation and 3D real-time simulation when already in the design stage of product development.

The major gains are fast product development, short production set-up times and a reduction in tooling, bend sequence and collision, which normally consumes many machine hours for testing prototypes.

VBend's bend sequence calculation includes automatic tool selection, tool optimisation and special bends (flattening, large radius etc).

The Tool Optimisation Module optimises the placement of tools in the machine before bend simulation is started.

Bend simulation is carried out on a virtual machine that is a carefully modeled representation of a real machine. During simulation, all movements of product and machine parts are simulated and checked, allowing the study of collisions and handling of the product.

Collisions of a product with machine parts and even within the product itself will be detected during the whole bending process. In the past this was only possible on the machine itself.

If simulation proves successful, the CNC program can be transferred to a control for execution on a machine. Using the VBend software will reduce significant machine-down-time with a maximum of optimisations such as product accuracy and handling considerations.

To suit the different market requirements, the VBend software can be supplied as a complete offline programming package (including a fast product drawing facility) or as a CAM bending module including DXF converter facility.

A CAD program can be used to prepare the sheetmetal products and the result can be imported in the VBend program. The most common and standard drawing file format is the so-called DXF-file.

For this reason the Delem DXF converter module has been created. A DXF-file can be converted automatically or by layer selection, thus eliminating layers unnecessary for the bending process.

Product outline, bend lines and additional text strings will be detected and used to create the correct product for the bend process. All kinds of modifications can simply be made to optimise it for VBend.

A DXF drawing can either be delivered as an ideal product shape with projection dimensions or as a precise production shape with cutting dimensions. In the case of cutting dimensions, VBend will take this into account when calculating a CNC program for production.

Features of VBend include:

* Automatic conversion

* Manual conversion using layer selection

* Conversion of DXF-file with projection dimensions

* Conversion of DXF-file with cutting dimensions

* Possibility to use and store several configuration settings

* Editing operations to fine-tune a converted product.

For the bending preparation of many standard sheet metal products it is not required to have a separate CAD program. With the VDraw software module a customer can easily construct their own product.

The product can be drawn as a 2D-profile or directly in a 3D-view. The product can be optimised on overlap of flanges and required bend radius.

The final result will be a 3D product that can be loaded in the VBend program to determine the bend sequence, including collision check and CNC program.

To construct a simple product drawing for VBend, VDraw can work a lot faster than a separate CAD program.

Should the need arise to obtain a separate drawing of the metal sheet with cutting dimensions, VBend could still export a DXF drawing of the unfolded metal sheet with precise cutting dimensions.

Other features include the defining of surface overlap, unfolding of 3D product, the creation of hemming bends and tolerance on bend radius.

System Requirements are as follows:

* Pentium min. 200Mhz

* Pentium II recommended

* Windows 95/98/NT/2000/ME

* Min. 15MB free disk space

* Open GL graphics accelerator recommended.

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