Vctor Costas

Parametric design options in SW

Discussion created by Vctor Costas on May 22, 2015

To begin with, my apologizes about possible mistakes with the language.


I start this discussion to speak about something that probably worries about to many users of Solid Works.


Solid Works is working on adding options to generate parametric models using derived parts, and they have improved on this area noticeably on last versions, but nowadays these options are still too poor.


The options to configure parts and how properties are managed probably are the best of the different programs of 3D design, and this software offer a full integrated management of components. Also we can speak about how Solid Works manage the multibody parts, with an automated cut list that is perfect for structures and welded components.


But, if we speak about parametric methodologies, we can find that there are some uncomfortable problems that are shown below:


Typical parametric design methodologies is having a base part where all common information and geometry is generated and then use this base part for generating each components.


When you create a component and insert a base part for generate it as derived part, you can select what you need to import. But SolidWorks allows you only to select between different kinds of information (properties, sketches, bodies...). In this aspect, I think that Solid Works should add the possibility of selecting exactly what you need, because normally you only need to import one sketch and some properties.


An example of this is how "Inventor" manages the creating of derived parts. You can select exactly what you need, what avoid to have plenty of geometry unneeded that is very annoying. Also what is perfect, is that you can generate a component from the base part and select in this moment exactly what you want to export to the new part (sketches, planes, etc...) . On Solid Works when you save a body in a new part, you don´t have many options to select the information that you want to send to this new part, so normally you have to insert always the base part on it for having the needed information.


Also, there are still some problems with the entailment of properties, and sometimes they are not able to being updated. For example, if you insert a base part into a component and link one numerical property, it converts this numerical property into text and it doesn´t works properly on equations. This is very annoying because sometimes you need to apply this numerical information combined with a local property, and you have to import with the base part a sketch with the value of this property and manually generate the equation.



Conclusions: With this discussion I am not trying to say that Inventor is better software than Solid Works. Speaking about the whole options, Solid Works is probably the easier program for designing and the most complete software to adapt its use for each sector. However, as suggestion, Solid Works shall work hard on improve the options for parametric design methodologies, making easier for the users the automation of the designs.