How to create 3D Relief in Artcam with Shape edit tool


In this tutorial new beginners in Artcam I’m going to show you how to create 3D reliefs.

   Artcam very powerful software in term of preparing a file for CNC and similar operation but it has limited ability in 3D. Of course, Artcam has enough tools to prepare 3D files to cut in CNC but don’t wait for something special from it. You’ll not able to freely create 3D models like in other 3D software.

   In another side, you don’t need a full 3D model, of course, if you are not using 3D CNC router. In this case, you can import 3D models from other 3d Modeling software.

   Well, let’s begin. To create any 3d relief in Artcam you’ll need shape as there are no any standard 3D geometric figures like in other 3D software. Also, there are no tools that will allow you to create and modify the 3d object with different views. To create new 3D models in a form that you wish you’ll need to first create or import vector and only then extrude it from to create relief.

   However, to create models with the textured surface you’ll need spend a lot of time and use a different tool to get the result as you want.

   In the first step, we need to import vector that we need. To do that go to Project panel and click right mouse button on Vector layer.

B2ap3 Large Importing Vector Shape

   After importing be sure that your vector closed vector. To extrude vector I’ll use Shape editor. Artcam has other 3D editing tools but to extrude simple shape you need to use Shape editor tool.

 Artcam Shape editor

   Select your vector and click shape editor icon on top menu. After clicking on right panel you’ll see Shape editor tool panel where you can find all features of this tool

Now let’s see what kind of features you can find here.

First section here  is the form that calls Shape profile

B2ap3 Large Shape ProfileAt the top, you can see 3 different profiles.

a) Round – this profile extruding shape with rounded corners

b) Square – this profile extruding shapes in pyramid style.

c) Plane – is default profile and it’s a none extruding.

By slider, you can control the angle of extruding. You can enter angle into angle field as well.

Below slider, you can see 4 different options.

No limit – here no limitation and if you’ll set slider to the maximum then extruding will reach maximum height that’s possible

Limit height – With this option, you can set maximum height into Height field below to limit the height of shape.

Scale to height – in limit height you can create a 3D relief with a flat top but with this option, you can create not flat top relief. Height can be controlled in Height field as well.

Constant height – With this option, you can set height and angle of relief. Enter Relief angle into field Corner Angle.

B2ap3 Large Artcam Shape EditorWith Start height you can control from which height angle will start. The amount that you’ll enter into the field will be a straight wall.

Scale - Select to apply a scaling factor to the shape in its Z axis, then enter the scaling factor in the Scale field.

In section Relief Combine Mode you can combine different reliefs. I’ll go deep into combining in another tutorial.

At the end of Shape editor, you can find some options of Node editing tools.

You can learn about them in Free Artcam video Course

If you want to go deep into Artcam and learn more about it then you can subscribe to the Full Video course About ArtCAM 2D video course.


Well, with the shape you can create simple Reliefs and combine them to get more difficult objects.

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