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When you’re working on a complex project with wood, you can save a lot money by efficiently laying out the pieces, especially if you work with expensive wood. CutList Plus will calculate the most efficient layout for your project, so you have fewer total board feet to purchase, less waste, more useable leftover pieces/bigger chunks, and more money in your pocket. For a Toolmonger, this could also mean more projects — if only they could do this with time!

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Just tell the software the panels you need and the board stock dimensions, and it’ll figure the most efficient arrangement for you. It probably won’t handle a project like Bob the Dinosaur, but this looks like great software if you hate to figure out sheet layout and your projects suffer cost-bloat as a result.

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They offer a free trial download if you want to take a look before you buy. (Sorry, Mac users, you’re hosed again.) The LT version will only run you $30, or you can get more expensive versions for as much as $500.

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CutList Plus [Corporate Site]

 

4 Responses to CutList Plus

  1. Steve says:

    I run this on my Mac using XP with VMware – works great! And saves me money too. My local ply shop only charges me nominally for a big cut order since I can just hand them the cutlist with layout and they don’t have to figure it all out themselves.

  2. Jim German says:

    So for $500 does it cut the wood and make the project for you too?

  3. Dan says:

    Totally free (non-trial, just plain free) app:

    http://www.delphiforfun.org/Programs/CutList.htm

    I don’t think it’s connected to the one above, it just has a similar name, and I suspect it has many fewer features than the one above, but it worked fine for me when I built some bookcases recently.

  4. SuperJdynamite says:

    I used the tool mentioned by Dan on a project. It worked okay.

    Once you start using software like this you find yourself in unanticipated situations, like “this board doesn’t need to be an exact size, so fit it in last around boards that do need to be an exact size.” Sometimes a small adjustment results in a big optimization but you might have to go back in and fudge those for yourself.

    Also, one thing you need to account for (and hopefully it’s accounted for by the software) is material loss due to blade kerf. You may also need to account for kerf when it comes time to choose the order of cuts.

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