Approach: The tool path optimization was accomplished by applying science-based machining optimization technology and utilizing Third Wave Systems’ (TWS) AdvantEdgeTM Production Module 3D (PM3D) software. Milling operations in the tool paths were optimized based on prediction and analysis of machining performance, including tangential cutting force, spindle power, and tool temperature by using TWS PM3D. The procedure for the machining performance analysis using TWS PM3D is as follows:
• Machine Setup
• Tool Setup
• Workpiece Setup
• Local Coordinate System Setup
• Tool Path Setup
• Run Force Model
• Tool Path Optimization

Tool path programs of two machining operations for the cam part were simulated and verified in PM3D and optimized by adjusting feed rate and cutting speed to balance chip load of tools, which reduced machining time.

Results: Machining time was reduced by a 50% savings in machining time in Operation 1, more than 70% saving in Operation 2, and more than 60% saving in total. Additional benefits as a result of this project included:
• Balanced chip load
• Simulated machining process
• Prediction of machining performance
• Prevention of fatal damage