Question about engraving text

I have a quick question for you gurus. I am a newb who hasn’t yet cut a darn thing with sheetcam. Running the eval version (Thanks Les!) and have put together a drawing that has a few features that should teach me how to use this thing. It has holes, engraving of both lines and text and a bit of pocketing.

Most seems straight forward enough. I will actually cut something later in the week but I sure hope I get an answer to one question.

My text are definitely polylines and the toolpaths show that. Here is the problem. The tool paths indicate that the cut will be the outlines of the characters. I can’t seem to find a way to simplify the cut into simply following the character itself instead of the outline of the character?

Any ideas???

If you want to simply follow the line then use ‘no offset’ instead of ‘outside offset’. If you want to cut inside the text, use ‘inside offset’.

Nuts! The bad news is that I thought of that already and it is currently set to “no offset”. It has to be a problem with the dxf. There might be a setting on the text itself. When I explode it and then zoom in and look at it, it IS an outline. Didn’t find another way to explode it into polylines. I’ll keep trying. I suppose I could send you the dxf but I am sure you would agree that I am doing something wrong on the drawing level.

You may get away with using an inside offset but you will have to be careful or you may lose too much detail. The real problem is that TrueType fonts are filled outlines. This makes them pretty on the page or screen but they don’t cut well.

What you really need are ‘stroke’ fonts. These are very simplified fonts, for example the letter T will be made up of two straight lines. The bad news is that Windows TrueType fonts don’t allow you to do this. Some cad packages have built in fonts. In the old days they all did but these days, most have gone over to TrueType fonts. DesignCad from IMSI is one of the few that still include stroke fonts. However it is a bit much to buy another cad package just to engrave some text.