29 Replies Latest reply on Dec 5, 2007 4:42 PM by cachaulo vanlaanen

    Solidworks surfacing capabilities or lack thereof???


      Nice to meet ya master !!

      I got a call into my congressman right now. Your message has inspired me to take this surfacing issue all the way to Capital Hill if nothing is done about it. It's those damn Republicans who insist we use "Solid Models" who are to blame.

      FIGHT THE POWER !!!!!!!!!!!

        • Solidworks surfacing capabilities or lack thereof???
          Steve Calvert
          QQ, I haven't been to this 'Surfacing Forum' in a while and your thread caught my eye first thing. I have to ask the question, though. What is the problem? I can't call my sales rep and say, "Hey your surfacing tool sucks" without some kind of problem or lack of features or something else wrong. Come on give us some specifics don't just slam the tool.

          Chris, are you making fun of us Republicans who want you to follow the rules or was that just a shot at the mass media because we get blamed for everything else?

          Steve
            • Solidworks surfacing capabilities or lack thereof???

              Steve Calvert wrote:

               

              QQ, I haven't been to this 'Surfacing Forum' in a while and your thread caught my eye first thing. I have to ask the question, though. What is the problem? I can't call my sales rep and say, "Hey your surfacing tool sucks" without some kind of problem or lack of features or something else wrong. Come on give us some specifics don't just slam the tool.



              Chris, are you making fun of us Republicans who want you to follow the rules or was that just a shot at the mass media because we get blamed for everything else?



              Steve

              Hi Steve , I was just being sarcastic. The only one I was taking a shot at (so to speak) was "Master" Quartus . Hopefully my comment didn't offend anyone else. If so , I apologize.

            • Solidworks surfacing capabilities or lack thereof???
              Matt Lombard
              Wow, that's quite a statement.

              SolidProfessor is coming out with a surfacing training course. Maybe it can help you get a handle on a few things that you are having trouble with.

              While I'm not a "master modeler" in any package, I've managed to get a few things done in SolidWorks surfacing.

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              Maybe like Steve said you could be more specific about what you are having difficulty with. If you provide an example or something concrete, I'm sure someone can give you a hand.
              • Solidworks surfacing capabilities or lack thereof???
                Steve Calvert
                Now that's funny - I don't care who you are...

                For those who might be out of our country, that was a quote from a comedian.

                Steve
                • Solidworks surfacing capabilities or lack thereof???

                  Wow! Thanksall for providing feedback. I'm really surprised to find all of itnegative. I can see you are all die-hard SW users. I of which useto be before using Catia, Pro/E and UG. First off the mastermodeler comment was more of a joke, like the congressman comment.The point was that I am extremely proficient in numerous surfacingpackages and I find Solidworks at the bottom and wish it couldimprove because I do find other parts of the program are down well.Of course it helps if you are only looking to design a simple platewith a couple holes in it. :-) To my knowledge there has not beenany significant improvement over the last several releases. As forproblems I have with surfacing in SW, here are a few long with somefeatures I find extremely powerful in my favorite package,Catia.

                  1. No conic creation. This is huge!!!
                  2. Mutual trim is inherently unstable. Keep selections often flipon and off after modifying earlier surface features. For examplechanging an offset value.
                  3. Solidworks surface files consume far too much memory, whichleads to performance issues when you have 500 part assemblies. Minegenerally contain 2000 parts.
                  4. No law definitions, i.e. mathematical formulas to representchanges in amplitude versus a given parameter.
                  5. No healing operation when SW leaves gaps from a trimoperation.

                  6.One positive that I can think of for SW is it's surfacingevaluation tools such as deviation analysis and undercut detection.They're visually much more appealing.
                  7. As for Catia functions, here is an example of some ofthe various types of sweeps possible:
                      A. Explicit with 2 guide curves
                      B. Explicit with pulling direction
                      C. Implicit line with two limits
                      D. Implicit line with ref surface
                      E. Implicit line with draft direction
                      F. Implicit line with two limits
                      G. Implicit line with tangency surface
                      H. Implicit line with two limits
                      I. Implicit circle with three guides
                      J. Implicit circle with center andradius
                      K. Implicit circle with limit curve andtangency surface
                      L. Implicit circle with center and twoangles
                      M. Implicit circle with two guides andtangency surface
                      N. Implicit conic with 2 to 5 guidecurves

                  I could go on, but there really is no point, because when it comesdown to it, there really is know comparison between Catia and SW. Icould care less if the same company makes them. One is meant tomake toy cars, and the other makes real products like the samples Iattached. Sorry I don't have any others, but they are allproprietary. And unless you've used one or more other packages,please don't respond.
                    • Solidworks surfacing capabilities or lack thereof???
                      Kevin Quigley
                      I've got to say I agree with you on the conics QQ

                      But we have to get realistic here don't we. The surfacing you aredescribing in CATIA is not in the core system but in the variousadd on modules. There is no question in my mind that when it comesto true technical surfacing CATIA v5  - in the higherspecifications - is the market leader. Imagine and Shape is a trulyoutstanding piece of software - but at a very high cost.


                      As you so succinctly say, SW is ideal for designing toy cars(surfacing wise) - and what is wrong with that? Fact is most the SWcustomer base are component designers. SW is not aiming at theautomotive or aerospace market - Dassault would pull the plug onthat.

                      I for one have used many of the top end surfacing systems on themarket - mainstream and lesser know - like Think3 and VX forexample - we still use VX alongside SW. I find it kind of funnythat CAD companies spend so much time pontificating about A classsurfacing and g2 and even g3 curvature when in reality many of theparts are made by hand or 3 axes CNC, driven by 5 year old CAMsystems. Especially true in some areas of aerospace.

                      Who knows what will happen in 5 years. Maybe SW will be phased outand merged with CATIA? Maybe SW will move to the CATIA kernel.Maybe Autodesk will buy out Dassault!

                      All I know is that for the time being SW does the job for consumerproduct design for me and a lot of others - and yes - conics wouldbe great, but then we've been there before!
                      • Solidworks surfacing capabilities or lack thereof???
                        Matt Lombard
                        I'm not sure what kind of a reaction you expected, coming into a moderated SW forum, posting with an alias, putting yourself on a pedestal, and with no background other than a couple of simple questions posted in other areas, just start ripping at the software for no reason, and with no explanation.

                        If there is no comparison, then why are you comparing the two softwares? How much did you pay for that functionality in Catia? Why would you try to do Catia type work in SolidWorks?

                        It is easy to see that you are impressed with your own abilities, but it looks like you have a few things out of whack when it comes to SolidWorks. If you were "extremely proficient" in SolidWorks, I think you would have a different view of the situation. First you would see that there are different ways of doing similar things in SW. I don't think anyone would argue that Catia allows more control over surfaces than SW, but they are different tools intended for different purposes. There's a reason why you don't see Boeing standardizing on SolidWorks, but you also don't see Rubbermaid standardizing on Catia.

                        "not been any significant improvement over the last several releases"

                        You must be living under a rock. Freeform, Boundary, improvements to spline, Fill, Loft, etc.

                        "no conic creation"

                        Yeah, that's true. Spline controls do most of what you want to use conics for.

                        "mutual trim is inherently unstable"

                        I've seen the selection flip, but it isn't "inherently" unstable.

                        "no law definitions"

                        Macros and partner software exist which can help you drive things like that for people who need it.

                        "no healing..."

                        if you're not getting clean trims, there is a problem somewhere. Catia plays pretty loose with tolerances.

                        As for the different kinds of sweeps, you're being petty. SW has a single sweep feature with many options, as well as a fuzzy line between certain types of loft and the sweep, in addition to boundary features that sometimes can work like a sweep. I think before you shoot your mouth off about SW, you need to do a bit more homework. I'll agree with accurate criticism, but I don't think you are as informed as you believe you are on the topic.

                        Anyway, I wish you luck with your surfacing endeavors, wherever they lead you.
                        • Solidworks surfacing capabilities or lack thereof???
                          Mark Matthews

                          Quartus Quartus wrote:

                           

                          I'm really surprised to find all of it
                          negative.

                          What did you expect, the bowing masses? Forgive us for placing arrogance where it belongs.

                          Now that you have declared yourself a mere human you see you are getting some more considered feedback, though it puzzels me why you even bothered to post to this forum to begin with. You obviously have a superior surfacing package to use that has cost your company countless thousands of dollars to do work that that requires it.

                          Like Kevin and Matt say, SW makes no claims to work in those areas. I however work in Product Design and don't need to be creating high order surfaces and curves. I used to use Pro-E almost exclusively (after starting with Alias), but find that for concept work and presentations, SW is faster at creating what I need. Do I miss conics? Yes, for the occassional times I needed them. Do I miss Variable section sweep? Yes. But SW has made huge gains in surfacing ability since I started using it V2003. Then, if there was any surfacing work to be done I used Pro, but since 2006 there have marked improvements to splines, lofts, and now a true boundary blend surface. No package I have used has anything approcahing the N-Sided surface capability of Fill Surface. This tool alone has saved me boatloads of time in acheiving blends that in Pro would take 8 or more features with more patches. Yes will still have Pro-E in house too.

                          SW makes good business sense for our consultancy, and they are only going to improve surfacing down the road the competition in this market is substantial.
                          • Solidworks surfacing capabilities or lack thereof???
                            Paul Salvador
                            The answer is simple,.. Don't expect it to be like the other tools you have used!
                            SolidWorks functionality is limited and evolving so, you are going to have to buy a 3rd party surfacing add-on or a separate modeler if you want to stay working in or with SolidWorks.

                            Otherwise, you seriously have to think different in how you approach your modeling using SolidWorks. It is not going to be easy and it may even become overwhelming... that is,.. in how well you manage or work around the data and understanding it's limitations. If you're not already bald,... consider your future..

                            BTW, the arrogance thing is/was your downfall,.. and I'm not a loyalist like some of the people here but,.. the examples you showed are not that complex and I'm sure I or someone here could replicated these in SW.

                            Anyhow, I would NOT use SW to build a aircraft or car... Pro/e, Catia or UG are designed for working with and managing those data sets.
                            Honestly, it is insane or irresponsible to use SolidWorks for working with and managing large or complex data sets.

                            ..
                          • Solidworks surfacing capabilities or lack thereof???
                            John Ferguson

                            Quartus Quartus wrote:

                             

                            I am a master modeler in every package known to man.

                            Bwahhahahaha.... That's the funniest thing I've ever heard in my life.

                            BTW, genius, in your follow up thread, I think you meant to say that you COULDN'T care less.

                            Muggs
                            • Solidworks surfacing capabilities or lack thereof???
                              CJ Goodrich
                              "I am a master modeler in every package known to man"

                              Apparently you never worked in Inventor, Ironcad.... I can go on but who needs to.

                              I agree with 90% of what the others have posted here. There is no single base CAD package that will do everything at the most elite level.

                              Matt said it best "There's a reason why you don't see Boeing standardizing on SolidWorks, but you also don't see Rubbermaid standardizing on Catia."

                              I work in consumer products, the leading Multi-Tool manufacture in the world and I design allot of our new product primarily with surfacing for plastic injection molding highly complex and extremely tight tolerances. We have not had a single issue with SW model with gaps, false surfaces or ghost surface, I cannot say the same for Pro-E.

                              We output neutral models for our vendors and sense switching from Pro-E and Inventor we have not had neutral model body errors.
                              For examples check out http://leatherman.com/products/knives/default.asp
                              • Solidworks surfacing capabilities or lack thereof???
                                Roland Schwarz
                                SW's surfacing toolbox is considerably more limited than those of UG or Pro/E (which I've "mastered") orCATIA.  This hasn't stopped me from producing models with endresults rivaling those I achieved in UG or Pro/E.  It justtakes more thought and attention to model structure.

                                The greatest limiting factor almost always resides about 12-18inches from the monitor.
                                • Solidworks surfacing capabilities or lack thereof???
                                  cachaulo vanlaanen
                                  Hard drive space is not the issue. The models get large and complicated and eventually bog down solidworks and make it impossible to use.
                                    • Solidworks surfacing capabilities or lack thereof???
                                      Paul Salvador
                                      Exactly, the data, and I mean SIMPLE DATA in my humble experience, becomes very difficult to use, rebuild times or regenerations become cost prohibited.

                                      And it's very obvious that this is a core programing issue which will not go away,..

                                      As a independent designer for over 15 yeas,... there is no win-win... it's always been about hardware upgrade-upgrade-upgrade,.... and the need to overly manage the data to get it out the door.

                                      The majority of users work for companies which pay for the users salary/health insurance/office/coffee/air conditioning/heating/software/hardware/training,.. so.... SolidWorks relative software performance issues are not going to change.

                                      .. it's that simple, oh well.
                                    • Solidworks surfacing capabilities or lack thereof???
                                      cachaulo vanlaanen
                                      Paul-
                                      Sometimes you have no choice as the customer is the one who decides what software package to use. If we all had our way we would use the CAD package that best fit the project, this is not realistic. I think to some extent we all share QQs frustration, we just articulate it in a way that doesn't offend the SW loyalist.