I’m sure there are a few Inventor users who are itching to get their hands on HSM Works’ free CAM utility that SolidWorks users have had access to, particularly now that Autodesk own the technology.
Here’s the good news. Anyone that can create a 3D model and save out a .SAT or .SMB file, can now use this technology in the cloud….yes the cloud, and for free!
Autodesk’s 123D Apps, which have been aimed at the Maker market, have just had a little overhaul. 123d APP now has a cloud version, see http://www.123dapp.com/design
Once you have set yourself up an account and downloaded your plugin, you can get started by opening an existing file.
Save the file, and you can then “Send to CNC Utility” this pushes the file to 123D FAB
You can now set up your work piece and start looking at which tools you want to use for each pass.
Once you have generated the tool path's you can simulate the tool running and if you click on save "Shopbot" files, it even saves out your G code!
This is a perfect tool for the maker market, and while it's quick and easy, I think you need a robust tool like InventorCAM (As used by Carl Bass himself) if you want to do any serious machining!