To Trochoidal or not to Trochoidal

So I’m going to get into V-Carving for a while, I’m noting that large signs are going to need to have it a pocket and then a final edge carve pocket.

But I’m noticing that the use of Trochoidal paths might make the pocket better, but maybe not the final pass?

In this case, would one set up the same tool in Estlcam, one with Trochodial pathway and then a second one without?

Then do a “tool change” to go between the two set ups?

I’ll leave it here for this. I’ve got loads of tool change nerves I’ve got to deal with yet! Other questions on how that process works within Estlcam that I’ll post in that category for.


I would do gcode file, use it once for bottom pocketing and once for the edge finish cut.

Just to be clear, I’ve not done this yet, but I’ve been planning a similar project. I was planning on using a smaller diameter bit for the pocket cut, and then switch to the v-bit and run it again.

You’ll be cutting air during most of the “pocket” cut but the tapered edges would be the finish cut.


That seems like it would take a long time. Estlcam supports using a different pocketing bit for roughing and then a v but fir carving the details.

But the question remains - which is best to use in large signs - that need pockets? A trochoidal method or not?
And do I set up a 3mm end mill as two tools within Estlcam? One with Troch capabilities and one without? Maybe a better way to ask this; will my 3mm end mill always run in a trochoidal method unless I remove those data points in the tool preferences?

I’m not sure there is much benefit of trochoidal in wood. I have never tried it.

Isn’t estlcam smart enough to use trochoidal when it can and just plow through when it can’t.

Not. Waste of time in soft material. Too many wasted moves.

Maybe in plastic…maybe just to keep chip welding down.

Usually in metal to make sure things go well.

I have the same opinion, but just want to add that I messed with this a while ago. I had to go about 3.5 times as deep for trochoidal to keep up with pocketing.

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That’s what I want to know. But garbage in garbage out, so unless Estlecam has a place to tell it what material it’s cutting, how would it know to use troch or not? Maybe I’m missing a data entry point in Estlcam.

My reason for asking about Trochoidal is not so much about the edge, than it is about the path. When doing a pocket first, there are areas in large letters and certain fonts that the tool won’t touch to pocket, I was thinking if I remove the trochoidal details out, would it pocket better/in tighter spots?

Side note, that word “trochoidal” escaped me for a while. Worry not defenders of good spelling! I have learned and corrected! The only evidence of my error is in a quote by Vicious1

Isn’t a Trochodial a chocolate covered Twinkie?

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I don’t think so but that is pretty easy to check. I think you need a couple test runs to see what works best for you. The built-in Vcarve “change pocket tool” works very well in my experience. The one catch is remembering to select all lines in the case of a large pocket and having a large enough “carve width” to overlap all areas.

I’m pretty sure I spell it differently every time.