To machine sculptured surfaces, ball end mills are mainly used to reach the final surface finish requirements. During machining, the cusp height is one of the major factors defining the final surface finish smoothness. A cutter path that maintains a high cutting efficiency as well as a constant cusp height is desired. Spiral curves, with the property of not requiring extra linkage segments between two adjacent arms can be used to generate a smooth cutter path. In this paper, a geometric algorithm for generating spiral cutter paths for ball end milling in machining sculptured surfaces is presented.

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