Need testers: TabGen (Fusion 360 Plug-in) improvements

EDIT: See below for information on the current alpha version.

All,

I’m working with @dehne1 on improvements to his TabGen plugin for Fusion 360 that allows you to easily create finger joints in your designs. The current version that I am working on includes parametric functionality. We need some folks that are willing to test some of the enhancements being made.

My current (unofficial) development version allows you to create fingers of either automatic or user-defined width, and will allow you to easily place fingers on both sides of a body. It also creates user parameters in the model to allow for parametric functionality.

50%20PM
52%20PM

If you’ve watched any of my YouTube videos, you’ll see very similar formulas used to create and place the fingers.

Please let me know if you are interested in testing.

20 Likes

If no one else with better skillz volunteers to take a look at it, I can give it a shot next week. (Still kinda beginner level though, so it’s not gonna hurt my feelings if you need someone else to look at it.) :wink:

3 Likes

Any testing would be helpful. I want to make sure the functionality works and that it’s relatively easy to understand how to use it.

1 Like

Okee-doke. Just hit me up tomorrow. :slightly_smiling_face:

2 Likes

Wish I could call myself a beginner. :pensive: A couple of months ago I started working through some videos, and life got in the way.

This would be awesome.

1 Like

Truth be told, it’s @jbpa who’s doing all the work. I’m just doing repository sitting and starting to dream up nasty tests with which to torture the new functionality. :crazy_face:

2 Likes

I probably shouldn’t scare people with how many times I’ve crashed F360 in the last few weeks.

5 Likes

I don’t know how I missed this when I was first posted but I’d be happy to try it out. I have to warn you though I’m plug-in challenged ,if it’s automatic installing, great if it’s not ,I may never get it to work .
Looking at the dialogue box, is there kerf compensation ?

@Jules, why didn’t you flag me on this? you know I get giddy over things like this !

4 Likes

Oh, sorry, I figured you were already signed up somewhere. :smile:

I will happily test as well. I’ve been making my own by hand in illustrator if I can’t get what I need from auto generators. And all my 3d designs begin in fusion 360.

2 Likes

Thanks everyone. There are a couple of bugs that I’m working to resolve and test with @dehne1, and I’ll write up some instructions for folks to look at.

Right now, kerf compensation isn’t part of this, since there are a couple of other ways to do it. But, I can look at adding it once we get the basic parametric functionality nailed down.

It’s been a while since I had to code anything for other people’s use, so it’s taking a little longer than I anticipated to test everything.

3 Likes

No problem at all here. Whenever it’s ready. :slightly_smiling_face:

1 Like

I consider myself rather computer savy and I couldn’t get the auto-installer for the shaper plug-in to work…sometimes it isn’t you.

1 Like

I see your point and that is a possibility as in most things computer I do very well.

I’m looking forward to being able to use this!

3 Likes

I’ve had work commitments this week, so I’m a bit behind on getting this out to @dehne1 , but the update is almost ready for folks to start testing.

Here is the plugin cutting automatically sized fingers in two faces, one face where the fingers start with a tab, and another face, where the fingers start with a cut.

And here’s another where the user-defined width is used for the fingers, and the offset from the margins is calculated automatically.

And fingers can be resized after the fact.

9 Likes

Hopefully I have not missed the boat for this but id really like to try this out if you are looking for people still. I’m relatively experienced with Fusion. This weekend I have been making a knife box in fusion. I used the dimension from the basic box in fusion in makercase.com to do the tabs but I would much rather do it all in fusion.

IMG_5854

I see you say the Kerf is not in the plug in yet as there are other ways to do it. What way would that be ?

Cheers

4 Likes

:heart_eyes: :heart_eyes: :heart_eyes: Ummm can I get in on this action? I’m sick of making them manually in 360.

1 Like

This is a very alpha version of the plugin, and may be prone to strange bugs. This version has been tested on a total of 1 machine, so the usual caveats of using this on backup copies of your projects applies. Please let me know if you run into any issues–especially error messages–either here or as an Issue on @dehne1’s Github page.

Fair warning: this is a pet project, please be reasonable in support expectations.

Also, keep in mind that if using the parametric features: You can define the parametric features more efficiently by doing things by hand. This plugin has to create parameters for each face–at the moment–so you will see more parameters defined using it. If you have other user-defined parameters that you want to use, you may have to manually update multiple plugin-defined parameters to get everything in sync. I leave this as an exercise to the reader right now.

You can download the latest at: latest post
EDIT: If you downloaded this earlier today, I botched the version release, so it will not run. The currently linked version should work.
EDIT 2: There is a current bug when using the plug-in on a design that has not been saved. Please save first, before trying to use it. If you experience a problem, save the design and restart the plugin.

  1. Download the ZIP file from github and extract it to a known location. I put it in the Fusion360 Add-ins folder which is located at “~/Library/Application Support/Autodesk/Autodesk Fusion 360/API/AddIns” on a Mac; I don’t know where it’s located on Windows.
  2. Click on the Add-Ins menu from Fusion 360.
  3. Select the Add-Ins tab from the Scripts and Add-ins dialog.
  4. Click on the green + next to the My Add-ins folder.
  5. Find the location where you uncompressed the ZIP file above and select that directory.
  6. If everything works, you can now select TabGen from the Add-Ins list and click on Run to start it.
  7. Now you should see a Generate Tabs option underneath the Add-Ins menu.

TabGen-install

The options available so far are (see image below):

Fingers Type: Can be user-defined or automatic.

  • User-defined will use the tab width to calculate the number of fingers on the face, and offset the first and last finger from the edges to make sure that all fingers are the same size.
  • Automatic will use the tab width to calculate the number of fingers on the face, but size the fingers up or down to make sure that they are all the same size; including the offsets from the edge.

Placement: Will allow you to place fingers on one face, or on two faces

Face: The face where fingers should be placed. If an edge has already been selected in the next box, then you should only be able to select parallel faces to that edge.

Duplicate Face: The edge where the second set of fingers should be placed. This should only allow you to select edges that are parallel to the primary face.

Tab Width: The width of the fingers for user-defined tabs, or the target width for automatic tabs. This can be a numeric value, or the name of a user-defined parameter that has already been setup in F360.

Material Thickness: The depth of the tabs cut into the face. This can be a numeric value, or the name of a user-defined parameter that has already been setup in F360.

Start with tab: If enabled, the the edges of the face will have a tab, if disabled, the will start with a cut.

Make parametric: If enabled, will define a number of formulas that will be used to automatically change the finger settings when the corresponding length, distance or tab width parameters are changed.

Length parameter: The length of the face along which the tabs/cuts will be placed. This value will be initially calculated based on the face selected. This can be a numeric value, or the name of a user-defined parameter that has already been setup in F360.

Distance parameter: The distance from the primary face to the secondary face. This value will be initially calculated based on the face and edge selected. This can be a numeric value, or the name of a user-defined parameter that has already been setup in F360.

TabGen-options

7 Likes