Nesting software

Optimize material usage and minimize waste to achieve cost savings and maximize productivity with the advanced nesting and fabrication capabilities in Fusion 360 that can revolutionize your manufacturing process.

What is nesting software?

Nesting software refers to the process of arranging and optimizing 2D or 3D shapes on a flat sheet of material to maximize utilization and minimize waste. It is particularly useful in industries such as woodworking, sheet metal fabrication, CNC programming, CNC machining, and cutting operations. Nesting software analyzes the shapes to be cut and intelligently arranges them on the material sheet, ensuring the highest material efficiency possible.

Benefits of nesting software

Maximize material utilization

Nesting software intelligently arranges parts within a material sheet, optimizing their placement to minimize waste and maximize material usage. This leads to cost savings by reducing the amount of material required for production.

Improve efficiency

Nesting software streamlines the nesting process, saving time and improving overall production efficiency. By automating the arrangement of parts, it eliminates the need for manual placement, resulting in faster nesting operations and increased productivity.

Optimize cutting paths

Nesting software analyzes the geometry of parts and generates optimized cutting paths. By arranging parts in an efficient manner, it reduces the distance the cutting tool needs to travel, minimizing cutting time and improving machine utilization.

Enhance quality and accuracy

Nesting software ensures the precise placement of parts on the material sheet, reducing the risk of errors and improving part quality and accuracy. This is especially important for industries where precision is critical, such as aerospace or automotive manufacturing.

Features of nesting software

fusion 360 design

Automatic nesting algorithms

Nesting in Fusion 360 employs advanced algorithms that automatically arrange parts within the material sheet, optimizing material usage and minimizing waste. These algorithms take into account factors such as part geometry, material type, and nesting constraints.

fusion 360 cam

Intelligent part placement

With automated nesting, you can save time by eliminating the manual effort required to arrange parts on a sheet. Fusion 360 analyzes the geometry and automatically generates the most efficient layout, freeing up your valuable time for other critical tasks.

fusion 360 simulation

Support for various material types

Nesting in Fusion 360 supports a wide range of material types, including metals, plastics, composites, and more. It adapts to the specific characteristics of each material, allowing for accurate and efficient nesting regardless of the material being used.

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Integration with design and manufacturing workflows

The Fusion 360 Nesting and Fabrication Extension is accessible directly within Fusion 360. This integration enables a smooth transition from the design phase to the nesting process, ensuring data continuity and eliminating the need for manual data transfer.

Nesting in Fusion 360

Interactive nesting previews

Fusion 360 provides interactive nesting previews, allowing users to visualize the placement of parts on the material sheet in real-time. This feature helps users make informed decisions and optimize the nest for maximum efficiency.

Types of nesting

Autodesk nesting tools and software can optimize a variety of nesting types, streamlining your projects.


Automatic nesting

Autodesk Fusion 360 amplifies the benefits and efficiency of automatic nesting while delivering nuanced control and customization options for projects.


Intelligent nesting

Optimize material usage and reduce programming time by using Autodesk Fusion 360 nesting software for intelligent nesting projects to produce complex layouts with speed and accuracy.



Manual nesting

Autodesk Fusion 360 nesting software allows you to automate manual nesting to reduce cost and time. It optimizes multi-sheet and multi-material nests to prepare them for CNC machine cutting.


Fusion 360 Nesting & Fabrication Extension

Fusion 360 Nesting & Fabrication Extension

The Fusion 360 Nesting and Fabrication Extension enhances material utilization and optimizes cutting processes with advanced algorithms, simulation capabilities, and comprehensive reports. It offers customization options, a material library, and constraints to accommodate specific manufacturing needs. By leveraging this extension, you can maximize efficiency in your manufacturing workflows.

How to use the nesting software in Fusion 360

To start using nesting software in Fusion 360, follow these simple steps:

  1. Design your parts or import existing designs into Fusion 360's CAD environment.
  2. Prepare your sheet material and define the cutting parameters.
  3. Access the nesting workspace in Fusion 360 and import your parts.
  4. Configure the nesting settings based on your priorities, such as material utilization or cutting time.
  5. Let Fusion 360 automatically generate the optimized layout.
  6. Review the generated layout and make any necessary adjustments.
  7. Export the nesting results to the CAM environment for further toolpath generation and cutting.

“Previously we were using a different program for nesting to make the cut lists, but that’s still susceptible to human error,” Ganas says. “You type one number wrong and now you have 200 sheets that are 1/16 of an inch off. Fusion 360 has eliminated those kinds of errors. Now we know it’s 100% correct, and that’s a game-changer.”

– Richard Ganas, CEO, GANAS MFG

Common applications of nesting

Nesting software finds applications in various industries and manufacturing processes. Some common examples include:


Nesting software plays a crucial role in optimizing the placement of components for cutting or machining in automotive and aerospace industries, maximizing material utilization, and reducing production costs.


In the woodworking industry, nesting software ensures efficient use of wood panels, reducing material waste and improving yield.

CNC Machining

Nesting software is a valuable asset in the realm of CNC machining. By optimizing material usage and generating efficient toolpaths, nesting software greatly enhances the CNC machining process. It helps minimize waste, reduce setup times, and improve overall productivity.

Sheet Metal Fabrication

Nesting software helps optimize the layout of sheet metal components, minimizing waste and maximizing the utilization of expensive materials.

3D Printing

By optimizing the placement of 3D printed objects within the print bed, nesting software maximizes print volume, reduces support material usage, and shortens print times.

Laser Cutting

By arranging parts intelligently, nesting software reduces material waste, minimizes production time, and enhances the overall efficiency of laser cutting operations.

Cloud-based 3D CAD / CAM / CAE / PCB software for product design.

Unlock endless possibilities with nesting software in Fusion 360

Embrace the power of nesting software in Fusion 360, and propel your manufacturing workflow to new heights.

Nesting software resources

Learn more about nesting software with the following resources from Autodesk.

Learn more about how nests are linked to the design and material settings when making changes and recalculating the nest.


This list features a collection of informative and educational videos that provide insights, tips, and tutorials related to nesting and fabrication extension in Fusion 360 software.


Save time, reduce errors, and optimize material utilization with Nesting Software in Fusion 360.


Learn how to effectively use features, with guided tutorials, of nesting software in Autodesk Fusion 360.


Learn how to create customizable, printable labels for easier part tracking using the Nesting & Fabrication Extension in Fusion 360.


Create optimized and associative multi-sheet layouts for sheet metal and non-sheet metal with the Fusion 360 Nesting & Fabrication Extension.


Nesting software frequently asked questions (FAQs)

How does nesting software work in Fusion 360?

Nesting software in Fusion 360 intelligently arranges parts within a sheet based on predefined parameters and constraints. It utilizes advanced algorithms to optimize material usage and enhance manufacturing efficiency.

Can nesting software be used with different materials?

Yes, nesting software is compatible with a wide range of materials, including metals, wood, plastics, and composites. It adapts to the specific requirements of each material type to ensure optimal nesting results.

Is nesting software suitable for small businesses?

Absolutely! Nesting software caters to businesses of all sizes. Small businesses can benefit from improved material usage, reduced costs, and enhanced productivity by implementing nesting software into their manufacturing processes.

How much does nesting software cost?

Autodesk offers the Fusion 360 Nesting & Fabrication Extension, for $200 per month or $1,600 per year. Free trials are available for both products. Note - a base subscription to Fusion 360 is required along an extension.

What is 2D nesting?

2D nesting is nesting done on flat materials to create 2D parts and shapes. Examples include sheet metal fabrication and carbon manufacturing.

What is common cutting?

Common line cutting is when designs for one or more parts share the same edge, reducing material waste. It may speed cutting times of nested sheets and reduce heat-related distortions.

What is fly cutting?

A fly cutter is a single-point rotary cutting tool that moves across the surface of flat materials. Fly cutting uses this tool to make a shallow cut or to level a material's surface.

What is bump nesting?

Bump nesting is the act of manually dropping shapes or part designs onto the sheet layout. It can be used in conjunction with automatic nesting to fill in spaces left after automatic nesting.

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