51 Replies Latest reply on Jul 25, 2017 12:57 PM by Deepak Gupta

    Switching to SolidWorks from Creo

    Kevin Hansen

      In a couple of months, my company will be switching from Creo to Solidworks. I've been here using Creo/Pro-E for 20 years. So... what can you tell me about it? What should I be aware of? What will I need to know or do?

       

      I'm leaving this a little vague, because I don't want to influence everybody towards a certain kind of answer. But I will say we haven't used PDM with Creo, but will be on PDM with SolidWorks. At our division, we have two engineers and four designers. A couple of us use FEA, but mostly the designers just model parts and make assemblies and drawings.

       

      The decision was made at the corporate level to (1) save a boatload of money, and (2) bring most of the company onto the same platform. I have my frustrations with Creo, but I've been hearing rumors about functionality that I'm going to lose, and it's making me nervous.

        • Re: Switching to SolidWorks from Creo
          Glenn Schroeder

          What functionality have you heard you're going to miss?  I'm not familiar with any CAD software other than SW, but there may be something that will work as well with a different workflow.

           

          And the best advice I can give you from watching this forum for almost 10 years is this:  Don't get frustrated when SolidWorks doesn't work the same way Creo does.  Keep an open mind, and learn what works and what doesn't.  I firmly believe that SolidWorks (and probably other similar software) is easier to learn if you don't have any preconceived ideas about how it should work.  I know at least one of the former AutoCAD users here swore up and down that it was better than SW when he first started learning it, but he eventually changed his tune.  And he still doesn't know 25% of what it can do.

            • Re: Switching to SolidWorks from Creo
              Kevin Hansen

              Someone told me not to expect to have pattern tables. But then he wasn't exactly a power user of SW. I use tables to control the location of components in a pattern when they're not spaced on regular intervals.

               

              Is there an equivalent to Pro Program? I use that quite a bit. I use relations to turn features on and off.

               

              How is family table functionality for assemblies? I make some really extensive ones. I specify which components go in which locations, and how many of them in patterns.

              • Re: Switching to SolidWorks from Creo
                Doug Seibel

                I used Pro-E from 1999 - 2001, Solidworks for 2002, Pro-E again from 2003-2005, and then back to Solidworks...were I have remained thus far.

                 

                Best advice I can give you is this:

                DO NOT try to do everything in Solidworks the same way you did it in Creo.  This rule applies when jumping from any CAD program to a new CAD program.  Learn what the new CAD program can do, and how to accomplish the same/similar END RESULT in the best way using the new CAD program.  Sometimes the same end result will require a significantly different method in the new CAD program, but once mastered is every bit as quick & easy.  Whereas clinging to the methods used in the old CAD program may result in complete frustration in the new CAD program.

                 

                Solidworks does have pattern driven tables, but they are not nearly as powerful/versatile as the pattern driven table capability of Creo.  Yes, you will miss the pattern tables in Creo.

                 

                Parametrically driven text (using "single line" fonts) as datum curves on surfaces...forget it.  (My single BIGGEST frustration in Solidworks.)

                 

                "Family Tables" in Creo are "Configurations" in Solidworks

                 

                Workflow is slightly different.  In Solidworks, you sketch and THEN use the sketch for a feature...instead of selecting the feature you are going to create first and then sketching.

                 

                Solidworks does not have "on the fly" datums, and it doesn't really allow you to define your sketch view like Creo (sketch plane will be normal to the screen, but you don't get to specify the left/right/top/bottom...you just take what Solidworks give and run with it).

                 

                For the most part, kiss "circular reference" hassles of Creo good-bye.  While Creo is a sequential, relational solid modeling program...Solidworks is a relational solid modeling program.

                 

                Say hello to more versatility in coloring...have BOTH opaque AND translucent surfaces/features in a single part, even different degrees of translucency in a single part.

                  • Re: Switching to SolidWorks from Creo
                    Alin Vargatu

                    Doug Seibel wrote:

                     

                     

                     

                    Solidworks does have pattern driven tables, but they are not nearly as powerful/versatile as the pattern driven table capability of Creo. Yes, you will miss the pattern tables in Creo.

                     

                     

                    Take a look at Variable Patterns. Would allow you to use a table to pattern sketches, planes, axes, points and features, while being able to vary any dimension defining any of them.

                     

                    Is less of a typical pattern and more of a feature generator.

                    • Re: Switching to SolidWorks from Creo
                      Glenn Schroeder

                      Doug Seibel wrote:

                       

                      In Solidworks, you sketch and THEN use the sketch for a feature...instead of selecting the feature you are going to create first and then sketching.

                       

                       

                       

                      For some features you can select the feature first.  Pre-select a plane, then choose "Extruded Boss/Base".  That will open a sketch on the selected plane.  When you close the sketch you're immediately taken to the feature's Property Manager.  It works for some other features also.

                        • Re: Switching to SolidWorks from Creo
                          Dan Pihlaja

                          Glenn Schroeder wrote:

                           

                          Doug Seibel wrote:

                           

                          In Solidworks, you sketch and THEN use the sketch for a feature...instead of selecting the feature you are going to create first and then sketching.

                           

                           

                           

                          For some features you can select the feature first. Pre-select a plane, then choose "Extruded Boss/Base". That will open a sketch on the selected plane. When you close the sketch you're immediately taken to the feature's Property Manager. It works for some other features also.

                          Also, (and I can't remember who originally suggested this, but it is a time saver) add the Extrude drop down menu to you sketch "S" shortcut bar.

                           

                          That way the difference is as follows:

                          1. Sketch complete
                          2. Exit Sketch
                          3. "S" key - Select Extrude command (or select sketch, then select extrude command, depending on whether or not your sketch is pre-selected when you exit the sketch).
                          4. Define parameters
                          5. Exit extrude command.

                           

                          With the extrude command in your Sketch "S" key shortcut bar:

                          1. Sketch complete
                          2. "S" key select Extrude command
                          3. Define parameters
                          4. Exit Extrude command.
                            • Re: Switching to SolidWorks from Creo
                              Glenn Schroeder

                              Dan,

                               

                              I've never really gotten into using keyboard shortcuts  I prefer Mouse Gestures (but I have a mouse gesture to bring up the S-key menu for some functions).  As I said above, I select a plane, then use the mouse gesture to select "Extruded Boss/Base".  A sketch is started on the selected plane.  When I'm finished I use another mouse gesture to close the sketch and I'm immediately taken to the extrude property manager.

                                • Re: Switching to SolidWorks from Creo
                                  Alin Vargatu

                                  Glenn Schroeder wrote:

                                   

                                  Dan,

                                   

                                  I've never really gotten into using keyboard shortcuts I prefer Mouse Gestures (but I have a mouse gesture to bring up the S-key menu for some functions). As I said above, I select a plane, then use the mouse gesture to select "Extruded Boss/Base". A sketch is started on the selected plane. When I'm finished I use another mouse gesture to close the sketch and I'm immediately taken to the extrude property manager.

                                  Glen you should assess the effectiveness of Mouse Gestures versus Context Toolbars here:

                                   

                                  Win up to 43,000 Points: The 9th SOLIDWORKS Weekly Power User Challenge (August 13th, 2017): Interface in Your Face

                                   

                                  Still waiting for your entry.

                                    • Re: Switching to SolidWorks from Creo
                                      Glenn Schroeder

                                      Hello Alin,

                                       

                                      I don't doubt that the numbers say keyboard shortcuts are faster, but I just don't like going back and forth between the keyboard and my 3d mouse any more than I have to.  I have one button set to the F-key and the other one to Ctrl, so that works well for me.

                                       

                                      And I haven't entered because to be honest I don't expect I'd do well.  I get stuff done, but have no illusions about being fast.

                                        • Re: Switching to SolidWorks from Creo
                                          Alin Vargatu

                                          Glenn Schroeder wrote:

                                           

                                          Hello Alin,

                                           

                                          I don't doubt that the numbers say keyboard shortcuts are faster, but I just don't like going back and forth between the keyboard and my 3d mouse any more than I have to. I have one button set to the F-key and the other one to Ctrl, so that works well for me.

                                           

                                          And I haven't entered because to be honest I don't expect I'd do well. I get stuff done, but have no illusions about being fast.

                                          Glenn, the way I know you, you are not one to shy away from a challenge.

                                           

                                          Plus, the challenge itself is just a pretext to learn from each other different techniques for interacting with SOLIDWORKS.

                                          I would be extremely interested in watching a workflow using just the 3D mouse and the 2D mouse. Please?

                                          • Re: Switching to SolidWorks from Creo
                                            Dan Pihlaja

                                            Glenn Schroeder  wrote:

                                             

                                            Hello Alin,

                                             

                                            but I just don't like going back and forth between the keyboard and my 3d mouse any more than I have to.

                                             

                                            I have a button on my 3d mouse set to "S".   So my finger doesn't touch the keyboard.

                              • Re: Switching to SolidWorks from Creo
                                Steve Calvert

                                IMHO, SW is just easier to use.  I used Wildfire and Intralink for a year or two, it has it's special things that were neat.  Most features are sketched base, just right click a face or plane and start a sketch, simple.

                                 

                                You'll do well...  and welcome to our user forum

                                 

                                Steve C

                                • Re: Switching to SolidWorks from Creo
                                  John Stoltzfus

                                  Welcome to the Forum Kevin Hansen - don't know if this is the right one

                                   

                                   

                                  Put some time aside to read a bunch of posts here on the forum....

                                   

                                  Have you ever been given a SW tip that you didn't know existed?

                                   

                                  What are your most impressive tricks of solidworks, Please spread.

                                   

                                  What do your co-workers do with SOLIDWORKS that makes your blood boil?

                                   

                                  If you can get through those and most of the referenced posts then you'll be up and running...

                                   

                                   

                                  • Re: Switching to SolidWorks from Creo
                                    John Frahm

                                    Use Solidworks with the notion that you will have to think differently. I went from Solidworks to Pro/E and back to Solidworks. The move from Solidworks to Pro/E was difficult. Myriad of reason from large company, improperly configured workstation, imho a not so intuitive interface.

                                     

                                    This forum right here is a huge leg up on Pro/E. I could not find any similar tool with Pro/E.

                                    • Re: Switching to SolidWorks from Creo
                                      Robert Randolph

                                      I use PTC products for 10 years before we switched over to SW.  We had another guy that had used SW, anther who had used SolidEdge and a facility in Mexico that had one seat of Inventor.  We wanted all of us on the same system and be able to have additional people have access to the software.  SolidEdge was quickly eliminated due to its non-parametric nature.  Creo was eliminated from consideration due to its "clunkyness".  I would be the one to teach new users and after test driving SW and Inventor I realized I would much rather learn one of them and the teach it than have to teach someone Creo.  SW and Inventor were pretty much a tie for me, others felt SW was a bit better so we went with it.

                                       

                                      Things I miss about Creo:

                                      1. Not being able to select a reference plane when creating a sketch.
                                      2. A single command for each of shape commands(extrude, revolve, sweep, etc)  In SW there is one for each of these for solid creations, cuts and surfaces
                                      3. The behavioral modeling extension

                                       

                                      Essentially everything else I prefer in SW.

                                       

                                      Some tips for SW

                                      1. Use the S key
                                      2. Use the D key
                                      3. Set tangent edges as phantom lines
                                      4. Customize, Customize, Customize (the UI can look exactly how you want it)
                                      5. Watch as many you tube tutorials as possible, there are some really good ones from previous Solidworks Worlds.

                                       

                                       

                                       

                                      If you ever get stuck and know how you would do it in Creo but just can't figure it out in SW, message me and I will see if I can help work it out in SW.

                                      • Re: Switching to SolidWorks from Creo
                                        Jaja Jojo

                                        Hehe 20 years on Pro-E i bet when you use SW you will feel the curse of switching CAD unable to do what you want, nagging your head, deep breath, touching your head, and finding your self seeking for answer. But that's OK it will just a couple of days.

                                         

                                        THEY SAY ONLY FEW GET PASSED ON THIS BOUNDARY I'm just Kidding

                                        • Re: Switching to SolidWorks from Creo
                                          Kevin Hansen

                                          Thanks for the welcomes and the tips so far. Sorry I didn't make it back here to reply.

                                           

                                          I assume that I can do anything in SW that I could do in Creo, it just might be a more complicated way, though I'm sure some will be simpler.

                                           

                                          What about working in PDM Pro? I've never used a PDM system before. Anything I should know ahead of time?

                                          • Re: Switching to SolidWorks from Creo
                                            Steven Mills

                                            I'll tell you the same thing I once told to a interviewer thinking of switching from AutoCAD to SolidWorks or ProE at the time. Which she wants to invest in more, better computers or more training for people? Solidworks is easier to learn, but needs better hardware to run, and is more unstable with complicated models. ProE takes two to three times the time to learn to the same skill level in SolidWorks, but is more stable and able to do complicated geometry more easily.

                                             

                                            This was a little before the Wildfire update of ProE I think.

                                            • Re: Switching to SolidWorks from Creo
                                              Kevin Hansen

                                              Is there an equivalent to Pro Program?

                                               

                                              There are two aspects of it. One is that I can create questions that appear when the model is regenerated. I then enter the answers which drive parameters or dimensions, which can reshape the model.

                                               

                                              The other aspect is that I can use relations/forumulas to turn features or components on or off. It's a much cleaner way of doing things than using the family table or configurations or whatever you call them.