Free Online Solidworks Tutorials
Not so long ago, companies had massive drafting departments. Workers hand created detailed technical drawings that concisely conveyed all the specifications to convert an idea into a physical form.
Cairo (I-Newswire) August 27, 2013 - Not so long ago, companies had massive drafting departments. Workers hand created detailed technical drawings that concisely conveyed all the specifications to convert an idea into a physical form. But, about twenty years ago Computer-Aided Design (CAD) software programs debuted on the market. Training a CAD operator could eliminate a handful of drafters.
As the use of personal computer increased, eventually engineers, designers, and architects began doing their own drafting work. Today anyone involved in any kind of design work from cars, perfume bottles, and even students, use Computer-Aided Design programs. One of the best known packages on the market is SolidWorks.
Introduced in 1995, SolidWorks is a three dimensional mechanical CAD program that runs on Microsoft Windows. This year SolidWorks sold its one millionth license, making it one of the most popular products in the 3D mechanical CAD market. With its Windows-like user interface and use of standard conventions, such as toolbars, menus, and icon command buttons, SolidWorks feels familiar and is relatively easy to use considering its complex nature.
Work usually starts with a two dimensional sketch. At first it looks like a geometric sketch consisting of points, lines, and arcs. Then dimensions are applied to define the size and location. Relations are used to define attributes - for example if certain parts are to be parallel or perpendicular. The set dimensions and relations drive the geometry which is why it is known as parametric feature-based approach to creating models.
Prior to programs like SolidWorks, designs were sketched on paper and then prototypes were created to test ideas in the real world. Things often didn't work out and it was back to the drawing board, literally. SolidWorks allows users to do all the testing and simulating virtually. The virtual prototype behaves as it would in the real world because users input all the characteristic of the real thing.
This has dramatically changed the way products are designed. Multiple changes can be quickly made and tested. SolidWorks was the first to offer users the ability to roll back through the development of the design to make changes and add additional features. With parametric software changes made to one area are propagated to all other areas of the design automatically. The result is a dramatic reduction to the amount of time devoted to design and testing.
Solidworks offers another tremendously beneficial feature allowing users to put together components - creating a virtual assembly. Each piece is individually designed and then one can see how parts interact together. Tests can be run to make sure components assembly properly and don't interfere with each other as they move. With this application both pieces and a final product can be designed and tested without even setting foot in the factory.
When a design has been virtually tested and assembled, SolidWorks offers several different tools that automate the drawing process. Using the information in the three dimensional design, SolidWorks creates drawings that are needed by manufacturers to provide quotes and determine proper manufacturing processes.
In short, software applications such as SolidWorks have revolutionized the manufacturing industry as well as many other design industries. While mainly used for commercial applications, even the layperson can have fun tinkering with SolidWorks. There are endless applications and many user groups that meet regularly.
About Solidworks Tutorials
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Published On:August 27, 2013
Print Release:Print Release
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