Autodesk HSM CAM

All-inclusive, integrated CAD/CAM programming solution for Inventor, Fusion 360 and SolidWorks.

CAD-embedded 3-, 4-, and 5-axis milling, turning and mill-turn capabilities, to simplify your machining workflow.

Available exclusively as part of the Product Design & Manufacturing Collection.

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Experienced Inventor and SolidWorks users will feel right at home working with HSM CAM and will be able to create high-quality toolpaths within minutes.


Leverage the power of parametric 3D CAD to improve the performance of your Methods and Industrialization Department and to streamline company-wide business processes. Designed from the ground up to work inside Inventor and SolidWorks parametric 3D CAD. With Autodesk HSM CAM:

  • No switching back and forth between design and CAM through a neutral file format
  • Program directly on the solid model using your parametric 3D CAD interface
  • Parametrically model every detail of your machining setups for greater control and precision
  • Insert your part into templates of your common machining setups
  • Maintain associativity between product engineering and manufacturing processes
  • AnyCAD technology allows you to open virtually any non-native CAD, all-the-while retaining associativity to the original model
  • Design fixtures and custom work-holding solutions around your part with powerful drawing tools
  • Make the Methods department more self-sufficient with the powerful measurement and 2D drafting tools of 3D parametric CAD
  • Communicate dimensions, tolerancing, and instructions with model-based definition

A common CAD/CAM platform makes it easier to manage your software resources. With Autodesk HSM, CAM data is saved within CAD part or assembly files, thereby streamlining data management.

Work with the best tools in the business!
  • “Adaptive Roughing” 2.5D and 3D intelligent roughing technology
  • Rest-machining of leftover material
  • Vast selection of 3D strategies for sloped and organic surfaces
  • Simultaneous 5-axis swarf, contour, and 3D flow strategies

  • Easier to learn than any other CAM
  • Graphical view of operation depth settings
  • Automatic detection of feature depths/heights from the solid model
  • Automatic detection of similar features
  • Regroup features of differing depths in a single operation
  • 3+1 or 3+2 axis indexing as easy as picking hole axis or feature floor
  • Intuitive programming of simultaneous 5-axis toolpaths
  • Several ways to reduce repetitive tasks and to capture best practices
  • Powerful stock removal simulation and collision detection
  • Automatic HTML-based set-up sheets
  • G-code review with the licenced CIMCO Edit code editor
  • User-editable post-processors written in ubiquitous JavaScript


Included support for most types and configurations of CNC machines:

  • 3, 4, and 5-axis vertical or horizontal milling centers
  • 2-axis horizontal or vertical lathes, single or dual spindle and turret
  • 3-axis+ live-tooling turning centers / mill-turn machines
  • Routers, laser cutters, plasma cutters, waterjet cutters

Included tool path technologies:

  • 2.5D milling toolpaths
  • 3D milling toolpaths
  • 2.5D intelligent roughing
  • 3D intelligent roughing
  • Rest machining

  • Contour tabs
  • 3+1/3+2 axis pre-positioning
  • Simultaneous 5-axis milling
  • Probing
  • Nesting for sheet material

Technical Resources

About Post Processors
A “post-processor” is required to translate CNC tool paths created by HSM CAM into G-code-based machine instruction sets that are compatible with the user’s CNC machine. This includes respecting the user’s machine configuration and respecting the G-code idiosyncrasies of both the manufacturer of the user’s CNC controller and the manufacturer of the user’s CNC machine. Moreover, any non-standard codes required to manage special options of the user’s CNC machine need to be implemented in the post-processor in order for HSM CAM to control these options. Finally, any user requirements concerning the formatting, commenting, and sequencing of G-code must also be incorporated in the post-processor.

Generic HSM CAM post-processors for a variety of machine types (milling, turning, sheet material cutters) and a variety of machine controllers are included with your installation of HSM CAM. Consult the Autodesk HSM Post-Processor website here: to download the latest versions of these posts, and other newly-developed generic post-processors.

Users may also wish to try the highly-flexible and well-formatted SolidCAD Generic FANUC Post-Processor, freely-downloadable here.

Note that all HSM CAM post-processors are compatible with Inventor HSM, HSMWorks for SolidWorks, and Fusion 360 CAM.

Note also that all HSM CAM post-processors are human-readable and user-editable. With some knowledge of JavaScript, and with the help of the “HSM Post-Processor Training Guide” published by Autodesk and downloadable here, the user can adapt generic post-processors to output G-code according to his/her company’s best practices. The HSM Post-Processor Forum is also a vast repository of knowledge.

In most cases, however, users will ask SolidCAD to develop a post-processor that is specific to their machine and to their needs. For information about this service, please consult the Post-Processor Customization Service Page.

About Setup-Sheets

Included with HSM CAM are setup-sheet templates that, like post-processors, are designed to be user-editable and adapted to the user’s best practices.

Of these, the HTML setup-sheet template is perhaps the most interesting. It is the default template applied when creating a setup-sheet through the “Generate Setup Sheet” shortcut command (right mouse button). This template captures an image of the model as displayed at the moment of setup-sheet generation, creates a tool list, and creates an operations list. Additional notes concerning the machining setup can be inserted through the “Edit Notes” command. Upon generation, the setup-sheet opens in a web browser. It can then be printed to PDF for archiving.

With some knowledge of Javascript and HTML, this template can be easily adapted by the user.

However, users may wish to first try the streamlined and well-formatted SolidCAD Generic HTML Setup-Sheet, freely-downloadable here along with its companion style sheet and read-me file.

About Training
HSM is very likely the easiest CAM to learn. Autodesk also helps in this regard by publishing hundreds of short instructional videos on its HSM CAM YouTube Channel.

For those wishing to become maximally-efficient with HSM CAM in the least amount of time, SolidCAD offers HSM CAM training in the form of a formal 3-day class (see curriculum), or in the form of individualized coaching, online or on-site anywhere in Canada. Please contact Sales for more information, and a member of our HSM Team will reach out to discuss your needs.

Automating HSM CAM
Most fields in HSM CAM can be driven by equations in order to reduce repetitive manual entries. For example, lead-in and lead-out feed rates can be automatically determined as a percentage of cutting feed rate, using the parameter “tool_feedCutting” as the basis of a simple equation. A complete list of available parameters with which to build logic is available here:

On a higher level, many actions in HSM CAM can be automated through iLogic, going beyond simple reuse of machining setups. Also, HSM CAM now features its own API. Contact our specialists to discuss the possibilities that this affords

Feeds and Speeds

Running CNC machines profitably depends to a large extent on the selection of optimal cutting parameters. To minimize the guesswork of choosing speeds and feeds that are compatible with new machining strategies (i.e., Adaptive Clearing), unfamiliar tools, or unfamiliar materials, we recommend the FSWizard Pro app by Zero Divide.

Adaptive Clearing/Intelligent Roughing
Anyone not starting their machining operations with Adaptive Clearing is leaving money on the table. It’s that good! For a deep dive into how to get the most out of this revolutionary milling strategy, please read our article here.
Additional Resources
Autodesk publishes a number of good resources for CNC technology in general. Please have a look at these:


PDF Chart that compares HSM CAM to other CAM Solutions