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When we send some drawings to laser cut operation, they use a proprietary software (usually specific to the laser machine) to duplicate the drawings per request, with the spaces between parts optimized. It's a bit like "panelizing" operation in PCB manufacturing.

What is the name of this optimized assembly operation? (How can we find a proper software to make it by ourselves?)

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The operation is called usually nesting. It is used for almost any type of cutting shapes out of sheets of metal.

One piece of software I used, free (at least at the time) and with very good results (i.e. low slack material) was deepnest.

There should be other though. A quick search yielded this page with :

  • TruNest
  • ProNest 2019
  • SVGnest
  • SigmaNEST
  • MyNesting
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  • $\begingroup$ Seeing how Trumpf calls most of their machines "Tru"-something, they were probably pretty bummed to see Autodesk register "TruNest" :D $\endgroup$ – OpticalResonator Nov 24 '20 at 21:35
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    $\begingroup$ Wow deepnest looks incredible +1 $\endgroup$ – morbo Nov 24 '20 at 22:59
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    $\begingroup$ @OpticalResonator so that is to say they were a bit slow off the mark in registering the name. Happened to others before. $\endgroup$ – Solar Mike Nov 25 '20 at 4:37

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