SUCCESS!! A toolpath cut normal to a cylinder (cylindrical cam)

What a wonderful discussion, thanks folks this is very entertaining and educational.
A DUMB QUESTION, though...
I can't claim to be a SW guru, so perhaps I'm just missing something and
somebody here can *_edumacate_* a goofy Southern boy with wa-a-ayy too much *_edumacation_*. I read, and re-read, the posts, and didn't see anything addressing my question.
Consider this:
Since the cam follower path is explicitly defined by a function of (x, theta) where 'x' is the distance of the path in the direction of longitudinal axis of the cylinder and 'theta' is the rotational component of the path on the cylinder
Then why is it not possible to: (a) program a Visual Basic macro of API calls that creates 3D points around the cylinder (on surface or at a depth...no matter) (b) create a 3D spline through the 3D points (c) put a plane normal to the endpoint of the spline (d) put a cutting profile sketch on the normal plane (e) sweep-cut a path along the spline?
I played around with this concept briefly, manually creating abitrary 3D points through a solid object, 3D spline, planes, sketches, 3D sweep. I couldn't figure out how to sweep-cut, though, even though the Help says I can do this (getting too old & lazy, need more coffee). Once upon a time I had done something very similar with Alibre Design and THAT's where I got the idea.
It seems like this would be straightforward to do this. I can't say if the geometry would be accurate, tho.
The original idea that I had was to program a VB macro to create a kazillion 3D points around the surface of the cylinder, create a sketch plane at each point, then extrude-cut the cutter shape all the way around the cylinder as if it was an actual machining process. But I figure that method would have created a monster part file, so I dropped that idea.
Comments?
Kev
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Where's jb? Hr's always pretending to be an expert .....
--
Cliff

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