Read. Learn. Design.

The industry's top engineers, designers, and additive manufacturing experts offer their best advice, research, how-tos, and insights—all in the name of helping you level-up your 3D designs and engineering skills.

Change Management in SOLIDWORKS PDM: Don’t Waste Your Best Work

Change Management in SOLIDWORKS PDM: Don’t Waste Your Best Work

Design changes WILL happen, it’s just a matter of time. As an engineer, wouldn't you rather spend your time coming up with new ideas for the next generation of your design rather than trying to hunt through data to find what you need?

We’ve all been through situations where the wrong revision of a design was sent out for production, or maybe that CAD file was moved to another file location, and now you can’t find it. You can probably think of your own examples that are similar but may have had to do with a need for more powerful product data management (PDM) tools.

SOLIDWORKS PDM can help any organization focus their attention on designing better products instead of manually managing their files or the changes that need to happen with them. Here, we’ll focus on a few key aspects of SOLIDWORKS PDM that help you manage your files and change processes with ease.

June 23, 2022
3 Ways CAMWorks Can Solve Machine Shop Communication

3 Ways CAMWorks Can Solve Machine Shop Communication

In industries that use CNC machining, there can be many team members that contribute to the production of the final product. The process starts with the designer creating the CAD model that is then sent to the programmer for CAM programming. Once the program is complete, the code is sent to the operator to set up and run the CNC machine.

Efficient communication is key to optimal production. If the machine is not producing parts, it is still considered downtime, even during the period when the programmer and operator are tying up the machine with a test of the code. With the levels of communication between all the parties involved, there are many opportunities for information to be lost or misinterpreted.

June 15, 2022
DraftSight: Modern Use Cases for 2D CAD

DraftSight: Modern Use Cases for 2D CAD

While the global CAD industry continues to grow, industry research has consistently shown a trend toward the adoption of 3D CAD software in place of traditional 2D solutions, a trend which shows no signs of slowing anytime soon. So, with all the evidence in favor of the undisputed superiority of 3D CAD, why bother with a 2D drafting and engineering solution like DraftSight? Despite what the data suggests, there are still plenty of good reasons add DraftSight to your toolkit.

June 6, 2022
How to Utilize the 3D Printing ROI Calculator

How to Utilize the 3D Printing ROI Calculator

The Hawk Ridge Systems 3DP ROI Calculator is a powerful tool for understanding the investment and payback period for additive equipment. The tool can also be used to understand the part cost and production estimates, as well as unique geometries. When considering additive equipment, it is key to understand both items to make smart business decisions. This article will explain how the calculator works in greater detail and provide insight into how to create a strong ROI using this tool.

Identify a Geometry that Has Value to Your Organization

Identifying a part file or series of part files for your ROI calculation is critical for creating a strong justification. Ideally, you want to know what it currently costs you to produce this part file, as well as understand the lead times and labor involved. Good candidates for ROI justifications are parts that have been difficult or costly to produce in the past. Perhaps parts are being produced overseas and the lead times and supply chain disruptions are causing production delays. Some parts also lend themselves well to an additive process much better than traditional manufacturing processes. Areas where you see many design revisions or if the design requires custom elements with each unit are perfect for additive manufacturing.

June 6, 2022
5 Reasons to Metal Plate Your 3D Printed Parts

5 Reasons to Metal Plate Your 3D Printed Parts

The practice of metal plating or metallization of plastic parts has been in use for a long time. Many folks do not realize that thermoplastic 3D printed parts can also undergo this same process with amazing results. We have seen firsthand that this process works well with many HP Jet Fusion and Markforged thermoplastic materials.

Metallization allows for targeted metal properties on lightweight and in-expensive plastics that can be printed with complex geometries that are unattainable with traditional manufacturing. In today’s blog, we are going to remove the veil look at 5 reasons to metal plate your 3D printed parts.

June 2, 2022