TabGen: A new add-in for Fusion 360

If you’re using Fusion 360 (and, hopefully, the excellent Glowforge Colorific Post Processor) to design things with simple tabbed finger-joints you know how tedious adding finger-joints to your model can be. To make the job easier, I wrote an add-in for Fusion 360 called TabGen.

Basically, TabGen lets you select one or more faces that form the edges of the material into which the finger-joints are to be cut and adjust parameters like tab length. Like this:

And then click Ok to create the tabs and gaps that make up the finger joints. Like this:

If you’d like to try it out, here’s a zip file with everything you need to install it. (442.2 KB)

See the file readme.html (in the zip file) for installation instructions and the file help.html for usage information. Since this is a first release, I’m sure there are bugs. If (when) you find one, please let me know.


Wow! That looks super useful. Thank you for contributing this!


Cool! Matrixed! :smile:


Yay. Super excited to try this.

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You beat me to it. I was working on a plugin for this as well. I’d be interested in collaborating with you on some enhancements, based on the work that I was doing. Let me know.


OOoh… very very cool. Thank you for doing this.

Are the tab parameters parametric?

I.e. can I change the # of tabs on the side via a parametric value?

That is currently one of the nasty stumbling blocks with every online tutorial out there. The step for “cut this body from that body so both have matching tabs” invariably involves a manual selection step that renders all prior parameterization potentially invalid.

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I’d be happy to collaborate on improvements. To help with that I’ll put it up on github and we can take it from there.

I’m curious what sorts of enhancements seem most important to you. From my point of view the most important thing to improve is how in works with fully parameterized models. I’ve done a good deal of exploring, but haven’t figured it out yet. There are some steps I know how to do to prepare for this, but I’ve hit a technical dead end that I haven’t been able to crack. There’s some information on it at the end of the help file.


The way it works now is that you set the width of the tabs (and gaps) in the tool’s dialog box and tell it whether edges should start with a tab or a gap. You can, of course, specify the width of a tab with a user parameter or formula. The tool cuts the maximum number of tabs that will fit along each edge when you click the “Ok” button.

What doesn’t (yet) work is being able to arbitrarily update the model by changing user parameters and having the cut tabs automatically adjust.

I’ll get on stress testing this thing just as soon as possible!

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Yes, please!

This is what I was focused on, as well as having a few variations for how the joints would be created.

I’m super stoked about this. I’ll run it when I have a chance. Is there a way to adjust Kerf?

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No, not really. The idea is to use Colorific for that. Not just for the finger-joints but more generally.

Colorific lets you move kerf adjustments to the CAM phase of things, decoupling the design from that (important) detail. Make sense?

I haven’t used colorific.
I did some work with parameters and parametrics earlier.
I even go it so I could adjust the pins, Kerf and tab length.
I found Boxes.Py and walked away from using Fusion to design boxes for a while.

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This is great!

Only getting started on Fusion 360 … This looks like a nice addition! Thank you!