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Hi Daniel,

It’s been my experience that there can be a lot of truth to your
observations. CAM is not a quick fix. It can be a very useful
tool, but just like any other tool, it’s important to ask
yourself if the piece you want to develop is suited to the
benefits of the technology. Good examples would be If a complex
piece with a lot of serious symmetry issues, an element without
undercuts but reqiring intricate surface detail or even type
characters, or a situation where fit tolerences are critical. In
situations like these, the often considerable time required to
create the required data, can actually be modest compared to the
time required to attempt the same projects in wax or metal. More
significantly, The finished product would be of high and
consistent quality. I wouldn’t hesitate to take advantage of the
technology in situations such as these.

The real time savings however, lie in the ability to quickly
edit or rearrange exhisting models. This can be a real plus in a
production environment.

I should note that my experience with modeling times is my own.
I am primarily a designer, and while I can find my way around a
bench, and have even done things I’m proud of, I am not a
professional model maker. I do know model makers who use this
technology, and they assure me that thier production times are
better than mine.

For me, the real strength of the technology, is as a design and
engineering aid. I can really develop a piece this way, and when
it does go into production, whether via CAM or not, the
is all there.

Thanks for your input,