Planet SolidWorks

April 19, 2018

SolidSmack

This is What Happens When You Turn a Fidget Spinner Into a Machined Pen

Before fidget cubes and fidget spinners were even a thing, man’s best cure for anxiety was the ordinary pen. Ever present in school and work, these cheap writing materials could be spun, flicked, clicked, and in some cases even chewed on to get rid of pent-up energy.

Designer Shin Feng has the same fidgeting problem; but instead of buying a fidget spinner or poking his eye out, he created a pen and pen holder combo to calm his restless hands.

SPECTA Pen and Fidget Ball

The SPECTA pen is an EDC writing tool meant for fidgeting. While chewing on its aluminum body isn’t advisable, twisting the individual metal scales is a satisfying way to pass the time while waiting for inspiration to strike. The pen operates silently; meaning you won’t disturb others who aren’t particular to your pen-clicking rendition of Bohemian Rhapsody.

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From a pure functionality standpoint, SPECTA has all the things a pen normally has.

It has a ballpoint cartridge for writing and sketching:

SPECTA Pen and Fidget Ball

The SPECTA comes available in aluminum, copper, or brass, depending on which color you want or what your favorite metal is—with each weighing roughly 46g:

SPECTA Pen and Fidget Ball

But that’s not all. The accompanying spherical SPECTA pen holder includes a bevy of ‘fidgetable’ features for when it isn’t holding the pen:

SPECTA Pen and Fidget Ball

The aluminum SPECTA ball has a turning top-ring bezel, which can be turned to produce a clicking sound, not unlike a bezel on a watch:

SPECTA Pen and Fidget Ball

It also has a bottle opener which flicks out like a pocket knife:

SPECTA Pen and Fidget Ball

There’s also a silent button you can press repeatedly. It doesn’t do anything in particular, but if you like having a sense of purpose, just imagine this activates an underground bunker for the inevitable apocalypse:

SPECTA Pen and Fidget Ball

And for those who absolutely can’t give up their fidget spinner, the SPECTA ball has two integrated spinners on either side. These are installed with two independent ball bearings, allowing you to keep up with the now-defunct fidget spinner craze:

SPECTA Pen and Fidget Ball

For those who prefer to fidget a little softer, a small silicone nub is also included:

SPECTA Pen and Fidget Ball

The last feature of the SPECTA ball is a hole which accepts ¼” hex bits—essentially transforming it into an easy-use screwdriver for those spontaneous, on-the-spot repairs:

SPECTA Pen and Fidget Ball

Sin Feng went through many design iterations and prototypes before coming up with the final SPECTA pen and ball, but his desire to keep things simple and sleek remains throughout the production process. The metallic nature of the pen and the individual parts underwent few revisions, as the finished product almost precisely mirrors the concept art.

The SPECTA project is up on Kickstarter and has already achieved $8,350 of its $59,000 goal. You can find out more about this fidget writing tool over on the SPECTA webpage.

The post This is What Happens When You Turn a Fidget Spinner Into a Machined Pen appeared first on SolidSmack.

by Carlos Zotomayor at April 19, 2018 01:14 PM

The SOLIDWORKS Blog

Experience What’s New in SOLIDWORKS Simulation 2018

Whether you need to test for structural integrity, fluid dynamics, or plastics manufacturability, the SOLIDWORKS Simulation suite provides an easy-to-use portfolio of analysis tools for predicting a product’s real-world physical behavior by virtually testing your CAD models.

SOLIDWORKS Simulation 2018 delivers actionable results for both the professional designer and engineers as well as for the dedicated analyst, raising the bar for Simulation productivity and user experience. During a special 45-minute webinar on April 24, at 2pm EST, the SOLIDWORKS Simulation field technical managers will take you through a curated selection of the most important features added to our Simulation Suite in 2018. While these new features are impactful and add a ton of power to our Simulation toolset, what we really want to highlight are the direct benefits that further our mission of bringing analyst-level simulation capabilities into the hands of every SOLIDWORKS user. There are reasons for everyone to upgrade right away, so you don’t want to miss this opportunity to see what’s in it for you and your team.

In just 45 minutes, you’ll learn how SOLIDWORKS Simulation 2018 allows you to:

  • Develop innovative minimum mass components in SOLIDWORKS using the New Topology Study.
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  • Have confidence in the analysis results and make the correct design variations using the Singularity Diagnostics tool.
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  • Identify and analyze Noise generators from turbulent fluid flows, and increase productivity in your CFD workflow by making it more scalable with Full Templates.
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  • Mitigate design and injection molding challenges with superior technology and enhanced ways to interact with both design and manufacturability data.
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  • Tackle the most challenging high-end nonlinear problems rapidly and reliably by using the SIMULIA Simulation Engineer product, powered by Abaqus solver technology. Click here to read more about SIMULIA Simulation Engineer.

REGISTER HERE to learn what’s new in SOLIDWORKS Simulation 2018

Author information

SOLIDWORKS
Dassault Systèmes SolidWorks Corp. offers complete 3D software tools that let you create, simulate, publish, and manage your data. SolidWorks products are easy to learn and use, and work together to help you design products better, faster, and more cost-effectively. The SolidWorks focus on ease-of-use allows more engineers, designers and other technology professionals than ever before to take advantage of 3D in bringing their designs to life.

The post Experience What’s New in SOLIDWORKS Simulation 2018 appeared first on The SOLIDWORKS Blog.

by SOLIDWORKS at April 19, 2018 01:00 PM

The Javelin Blog

SOLIDWORKS Subscription Software lets you do more with your CAD files!

Today is a big day! Somewhere in the Great White North, someone (let’s call them Alex) has made the excellent decision to add SOLIDWORKS Professional to their digital toolbox. With Alex’s software purchase he will receive an industry leading CAD experience, allowing him to produce better designs with less effort and more confidence. And that’s not even the best decision Alex has made today!

No, I’m not talking about the ‘Double Double’ he treated himself to at Tim’s this morning, I’m talking about the SOLIDWORKS Subscription Service he purchased from Javelin! SOLIDWORKS Subscription entitles you to a staggering amount of additional content, product support, and continuing access to new releases of SOLIDWORKS. Staying current and having access to Javelin’s best in class tech support are valuable assets to any company, but let’s take a look at the additional SOLIDWORKS Subscription Software tools that are included with your subscription:

  • SOLIDWORKS Visualize Standard
  • SOLIDWORKS CAM Standard
  • 3DXpert for SOLIDWORKS

SOLIDWORKS Visualize Standard

If a picture says a thousand words, what does a photo-realistic rendering say? I’m thinking at least twice that.

SOLIDWORKS Visualize Examples

SOLIDWORKS Visualize Examples

All SOLIDWORKS Professional & Premium license that are current on subscription are entitled to a copy of SOLIDWORKS Visualize Standard. With this powerful tool, designers and non-SOLIDWORKS users alike can import CAD data and produce high quality renderings within minutes. Applying textures, customizing backdrops and adjusting lighting allows users to create powerful emotional impacts in their early marketing campaigns, online content, and design proposals.

SOLIDWORKS CAM Standard

Design for manufacturing is a common use of SOLIDWORKS. This became even easier with the introduction of SOLIDWORKS CAM Standard, available to all subscription customers in 2018. Fully integrated automatic feature recognition and tool path generation let you start machining parts as soon as you’ve finished the design. Setting up the software to work with your existing machines, tool cribs, and company best practices is easy, allowing for push button automation. Furthermore, SOLIDWORKS CAM has full toolpath simulation, letting you check the results before sending g-code to the shop floor.

SOLIDWORKS Subscription Software includes SOLIDWORKS CAM

SOLIDWORKS CAM streamlines the generation of toolpaths for your SOLIDWORKS files

3DXpert for SOLIDWORKS

3DXpert for SOLIDWORKS fills the same niche as SOLIDWORKS CAM, but in the exact opposite way. Creating CAD assets in SOLIDWORKS is a breeze, and now it is just as easy to bring them into reality. SOLIDWORKS CAM provides a solution for subtractive manufacturing users, and 3DXpert for SOLIDWORKS is the answer additive manufacturing.

3DXpert for SOLIDWORKS gives you full control over internal and external lattice structures, support geometry, and tray organization

3DXpert for SOLIDWORKS gives you full control over internal and external lattice structures, support geometry, and tray organization

With simple single click exporting directly into the new tool, users can easily work directly from their CAD data to ensure their 3D print turns out perfectly. With powerful tools for direct editing, creating surface textures, and defining internal lattice structures, this new addition enables SOLIDWORKS subscription users to bring their designs to life like never before.

Alex’s subscription with Javelin ensures that he will always have leading edge software, provides confidence that any issues he runs into will be resolved quickly by Javelin’s dedicated support team, and allows him to take his CAD data to new heights with SOLIDWORKS’ innovative add-on solutions.

Contact us today to learn more about the many advantages your SOLIDWORKS Subscription with Javelin!

The post SOLIDWORKS Subscription Software lets you do more with your CAD files! appeared first on The Javelin Blog.

by Angus Hudson, CSWP at April 19, 2018 12:00 PM

April 18, 2018

SolidSmack

How To Manufacture Your Product as a Bootstrapping Startup

Pretty Knotty Bootstrap Startup Manufacturing

Your product design is ready, your prototype works and you want to hit the store shelves as soon as possible. But how?

Manufacturing looks easy on “How it’s made”, whether it’s a Ferrari FF or Jawbreakers, everything sold to consumers has been manufactured to some degree. While things run smoothly in established factories across the world, it doesn’t start out that way.

For a real-world entrepreneurial example, let’s take Pretty Knotty hair ties and look at the important aspects that allowed manufacturing as a bootstrapping startup. As hard as we have tried, you cannot plant a seed and sprout a tin of hair ties. If you know how to do this (and you’re not Edward Norton from The Prestige), hit me up. So, where did we start?

Mind Your Network

The best way to manufacture products is to find connections through networking. Go to local events, check with your uncle who’s always wrenching on Fiats or email your cousin who’s in a product manufacturing company. In our case, local events were very useful to determine what not to do and my contacts in manufacturing were very industry-specific. In other words, although it’s a modern-day trope, most sourcing can be done through Google for those of us who lack the aforementioned connections.

We had to source manufacturers for our custom hair tie design, and suppliers for metal tins for packaging, and three stickers and a thank you card. Most custom manufacturers don’t want to talk to startups, especially boot-strapping startups such as Pretty Knotty. The reasoning is simple, they want steady customers with large orders, so manufacturers can have reliable money to keep the lights on and a schedule that’s as smooth as possible. Because of this, many manufacturers have vetting processes to dissuade startups, such as requiring their business registration information and/or a high minimum order quantity (MOQ).

Mind Your Manufacturing Process

Before wide-scale 3D printing was as prevalent as it is today, I would say you have to wait until a custom manufacturer takes a chance on you before your product can be produced by hand and/or crowdfund to buy a custom injection mold. In the pre-3D printing days, you could also spend a lot of money to get a prototyper to make a one-off model, which probably doesn’t work or even appear to look the way you would like. Good thing that 3D printing is the most viable option for prototyping nowadays.

With 3D Hubs, Makexyz, Stratasys, Protomold and others, you only need a CAD file and a credit card. Solidsmack can easily help you find a free CAD program to suit your need and there are tons of folks to 3D model your product if you don’t want to yourself. A rule of thumb is this: the more complicated the model, the more high-end the printing will have to be. As you may know, the least expensive 3D printing is FDM (fused deposition modeling), where a layer of hot filament is deposited onto (preferably) a heated glass bed. As it gets more and more complicated, one of the most expensive types of 3D printing for plastic, metal, ceramic and other materials is SLS (selective laser sintering), where those layers are built up in a bed of dust zapped by a laser. There are many great guides to making 3D printing friendly parts. And, the community on 3Dhubs or Makexyz is glad to offer tips or edits for models.

After a lot of hustle by Shelly Nicholas, President of Pretty Knotty, we found a custom manufacturer who was willing to take us on as a client. We were unable to make the shape that we wanted at the quality we wanted through 3D printing. So,  through our manufacturer, we were able to make our hair ties.

Mind Your Manners

One of the reasons we have a great relationship with our manufacturer is that we were upfront with them at the beginning of our needs. They, in turn, were receptive to what we wanted. If we were not specific or inflated our story to get in the door, I’m sure they wouldn’t work with us. On the other hand, if they had strong-armed us into an unreasonable MOQ, it would be a Pyrrhic victory for them as our business would dry up after the first order–if we even placed an order! In terms of supplier relations, manufacturers are doing a huge favor for you if they make your product, they have much more to lose than you do. Make sure to acknowledge them appropriately.

Our tins and paper were a different story. We searched online for what we wanted, talked to a few vendors and voila, there it was. We had been happy to discover that non-custom shelf packaging supplies are easy to find in almost any shape or size. Paper is also very simple. There are tons of printers that suit your every need, from going to the local Fedex Kinkos to Moo.com to the bespoke products offered on Etsy. But through it all, treat them as part of your company who values success for both and seek those with the same mindset.

Mind Your Inventory

The name of the game with products, packaging and paper is very simple, how many do you need? Our manufacturer would love it if we ordered hundreds of thousands of hair ties (and we are sprinting towards that number), the packaging company would love it if we ordered a pallet of tins and the paper company would love it if we bought umpteen pounds of thank you cards. Our bank account would love it too, as the cost per item goes down as the quantity ordered increased. With the success of bulk product stores like Costco, more always seems better, but this is not always the case.

On Shark Tank, entrepreneurs often complain that they have tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars of inventory gathering dust. Most of the time this is due to the profit margin and/or MOQ they needed to have their product made. Unless you can sell $50,000 of product in a reasonable amount of time and have a reasonable payment from your customers, don’t buy $50,000 of product. Many large retailers pay 30, 60 or even 90 days after delivering products, so you could potentially be $50,000 in the hole for 3 months. This outflow of cash wouldn’t matter to a large company such as Hasbro, but for a startup, all cash flow is critical. As long as you are not losing money, be critically aware of keeping as little money tied up in inventory as possible, This is how you produce a product for sale while bootstrapping your startup

If you are going the route of crowdfunding, this is a different animal altogether. I have some experience battling this beast, however, I want to know more about it before I give advice. If you’re looking for more insight into manufacturing as a startup and how we did it with Pretty Knotty, feel free to hit me up.

The post How To Manufacture Your Product as a Bootstrapping Startup appeared first on SolidSmack.

by Jacob Eberhart at April 18, 2018 03:11 PM

The Javelin Blog

3D Printing with the Stratasys Fortus 450mc

Production 3D Printing with the Stratasys Fortus 450mc 3D Printer

Production 3D printers, like the Fortus 450mc, are ideal for engineers that require demanding flexibility to print larger-sized or many parts in an array of engineering-grade materials with high speed and unfailing throughput. Take designs from virtual to real in hours, not weeks. From functional prototypes with exacting tolerances, to manufacturing tools that perform under pressure, the Fortus 380 and 450mc 3D production systems set a high bar for speed, performance and accuracy.

The Stratasys Fortus 450mc is the second largest FDM printer in Stratasys’ Production Series lineup. It boasts a 16″ x 14″ print bed, can print with up to 10 different materials and has the capability to extrude layers as thin as .005”.

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GrabCAD Print Software

Starting a print job on the 450mc starts from the software. Load up your part in GrabCAD Print and set the print settings to your specification. After hitting “Print” in the software, the GCode file will immediately be sent off to the printer (via USB or Network connection, depending on your setup) and will be displayed in the printer queue. Before you can print, however, a build sheet (or foundation sheet) needs to be applied to the print bed. There are multiple build sheets that are used for different types of material, each with their own thickness and heat tolerance.

Applying Build Sheet

When you have the appropriate sheet for your material, place it on the print bed and close the oven door. The sheet must be vacuum sealed onto the surface, and the heat of the oven will soften the build sheet to the point where it will flatten itself against the platen. Heating the sheet does take time, but you can always manually press the sheet in different spots to get it to flatten out.

Time to Print

Once everything is in place, you can go ahead and hit the “Play” button on the printer’s UI. Print times are dependent on a lot of factors, mainly:

  • Infill density – Amount of material that fills the solid portion of the part. The denser the part, the more time it takes for the printer to complete each layer.
  • Part size – The overall dimensions of the part. Larger parts take more time.
  • Material – Different grades of plastic require different melting temperatures. For example, plastics like ASA and ABS take less time to melt than Nylon or ULTEM. The quicker the plastic melts, the faster the print time.
  • Layer thickness – The Stratasys 450mc is capable of extruding layers as thin as .005” and as thick as .013”. As the layer sizes get smaller, the part comes out with more detail. However, the time to print is increased.
Fortus 450mc Part

Fortus 450mc Part

Stabilizing the Printer

It is a good idea to secure the printer against the ground using the stabilizing pads that are underneath. The servos that move the print head in its X/Y directions generate a lot of torque. Pairing that with the weight of the printer generates a significant amount of momentum as the head moves side to side. This can render the printer inaccurate, as the parts could move inside the oven. Avoid this by locking the printer in place and making sure the entire system is level.

Minimize Costs and Lead Times

Printing a low-volume production run with a Fortus machines can maximize sales opportunities while minimizing cost and lead time because there’s no minimum quantity requirement. Plus, part complexity doesn’t add time or cost, so production can begin as soon as the CAD files are sent to the 3D production system.

The Fortus systems provide a fast and accurate means of producing tooling. The efficiency of the FDM 3D Printing process makes it practical to optimize tooling design.

Compared to other additive fabrication systems, Fortus 3D Production Systems are easy to operate and maintain as there are no messy powders to handle and contain. They’re so simple, an operator can be trained to operate a Fortus system in less than 30 minutes. You can install a Fortus 3D Production System just about anywhere. No special venting is required because Fortus systems produce no noxious fumes, chemicals or waste.

Learn More about the Fortus 450mc

The post 3D Printing with the Stratasys Fortus 450mc appeared first on The Javelin Blog.

by Eissa Ahmad at April 18, 2018 02:00 PM

Control Complex Data with SOLIDWORKS PDM and SOLIDWORKS Manage

Join us for a demonstration of SOLIDWORKS PDM (Product Data Management) and SOLIDWORKS Manage Webinar.

Learn how you can automate your repetitive tasks and streamline your everyday functions. The amount of time savings, error reduction and cost savings will amaze you.

Why Product Data Management?

By leveraging a secure vault, you can extend the access to your 3D design environment and associated files, for all participants from engineering through manufacturing. This enables everyone involved in your projects to share information and collaborate on designs, while automatically protecting your intellectual property with the automated version and revision control systems.

What is SOLIDWORKS Manage?

SOLIDWORKS Manage is a unique set of advanced data management tools. This is accomplished by leveraging the file management capabilities and ease of use of SOLIDWORKS PDM Professional and adding powerful projectprocess, and item management capabilities.

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What is SOLIDWORKS PDM?

SOLIDWORKS® Product Data Management (PDM) products manage and synchronize your design data across your entire enterprise with a single, easily deployable solution tightly integrated with all SOLIDWORKS applications.

SOLIDWORKS Manage Webinar

Product Data Management

 

The post Control Complex Data with SOLIDWORKS PDM and SOLIDWORKS Manage appeared first on The Javelin Blog.

by Rod Mackay at April 18, 2018 01:37 PM

SolidSmack

Cool Tools of Doom: ‘The Pushing Points Topology Workbook’

Pushing Points Topology Book

When it comes to SubD topology, having the ability to construct a variety of meshes with clean polygon flows can mean the difference between yelling an obscene amount of profanities at your monitor or having a blast. Thanks to a new book from the renowned 3D artist, writer, and director William Vaughan, getting to that fun place won’t have to be so challenging after all.

Vaughan’s comprehensive 125-page Pushing Points Topology Workbook includes over 60 exercises to train anybody in managing their mesh topology. Even those who may consider themselves “experts” at SubD could certainly learn a thing or two from the master modeler—whose portfolio spans across Nickelodeon and Pixar.

The Pushing Points Topology Workbook — $42.87

About Author William Vaughan:

William Vaughan is an award-winning artist, writer, and director. He has created thousands of original computer-generated characters, including Tofu the Vegan Zombie. William has trained thousands of cg artists throughout the world and authored more than one thousand tutorials and instructional videos. He has been published by major cg magazines, contributed to twenty books, has written and directed several award-winning films, and has created digital art for many top studios, including Nickelodeon and Pixar Animation Studios.

PURCHASE VIA AMAZON

Affiliate purchases help support SolidSmack through a small commission earned from the sale.
Thank you!

The post Cool Tools of Doom: ‘The Pushing Points Topology Workbook’ appeared first on SolidSmack.

by SolidSmack at April 18, 2018 01:16 PM

April 17, 2018

SolidSmack

The COMBAR is the Ultimate Heavy Duty Multi-Tool

Don’t get me wrong; while the tried-and-true Swiss Army Knife is great for opening UPS packages or the occasional toothpick, it doesn’t scream “heavy duty” in times when you might need it for anything beyond that. When faced with an outdoor scenario, chances are the little knife might break under the stress of cutting a tree branch for firewood or sharpening a spear you made to ward off the park rangers.

And yet, the humble Swiss Army Knife is the closest comparison you can give to the ultra heavy-duty COMBAR outdoor multi tool from Aclim8.

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The hammer is made of 44-48 HRC stainless steel and is textured to provide traction and friction. This makes is so hammering tent pegs into the ground won’t result in you accidentally smashing your precious fingers, along with other hammer-related incidents.

COMBAR multi-tool

The axe blade is made from the same stainless steel as the hammer, although it has a higher hardness of 50-54 HRC. The cheek of the axe (the part which doesn’t cleave skulls in half) is made from Titanium 6AL-4V. This particular tool is stonewashed to give it an “I-use-this-axe-for-wholesome-things-and-not-for-murder” look.

COMBAR multi-tool

The spade (or “shovel”, if you like) has the same Titanium 6AL-4V make as the axe cheek and is stonewashed as well, with its main uses being digging out vehicle wheels from mud, crafting fire pits, and creating your own grave when you get lost in the woods.

COMBAR multi-tool

The last two tools in the COMBAR can be found inside its handle. Slip out the bottom and you see that inside this dangerous multi-tool is… another set of dangerous tools (take note the knife and hacksaw are only found in the pro version of the COMBAR).

The drop point knife is made from 420 HC steel with a hardness of 53-55 HRC and is housed in a glass-reinforced nylon handle. The handle and sheath are hollow to make the knife lighter, so it doesn’t add much weight to the already heavy COMBAR.

COMBAR multi-tool

Last is the hacksaw, which has a folding stainless steel saw blade and a textured aluminum, glass-reinforced handle. While the knife is more for cutting softer things like animal pelts and whatnot, the hacksaw seems to be more for cutting trees, rocks, or amputating your arm should you ever get stuck between a boulder and a hard place (just like in 127 Hours). Both the hacksaw and the knife fit into the handle of the pro COMBAR, so there’s no reason to have just one deadly tool inside your deadly multi-tool.

COMBAR multi-tool COMBAR multi-tool

Apart from the five deadly tools, the COMBAR still has space to carry your Trail Mix, Swiss Army Knife, and whatever else you can fit inside its magazine insert. The multi-tool comes with its own belt holster, so you won’t always need to have a hand on the COMBAR whilst in the woods.

COMBAR multi-tool

COMBAR multi-tool

The project went through 3.5 years of development before being brought out on Kickstarter. It went through a number a number of prototypes, different designs, and a lot of punishment to make sure it would survive Mother Nature at her angriest. The COMBAR has already exceeded its $55,000 goal (it currently has a funding of $79,404). You can find out more about this deadly multi-tool there.

The post The COMBAR is the Ultimate Heavy Duty Multi-Tool appeared first on SolidSmack.

by Carlos Zotomayor at April 17, 2018 10:42 PM

Microsoft’s Project Zanzibar Platform Introduces a Portable Tangible User Interface

Project Zanzibar: A Portable and Flexible Tangible Interaction Platform

Seamlessly bridging the physical and digital worlds has proved to be a significant challenge for even the world’s most advanced electronic manufacturers. While HP has made considerable strides with their “mixed reality” Sprout platform, the creative market has grown to favor more portable tablets and laptops over full-fledged desktop platforms.

With Project Zanzibar, the Microsoft Research Team hopes to blur further the distinction between the digital and physical worlds—this time, in a portable implementation that can be rolled up, stowed, and paired with existing tablet computers.

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While their early prototypes focus on expanding toy sets into interactive experiences (including creating animated 3D rendered movies that mirrored how children were playing with the physical toys), it’s easy to see just how far this technology could go in professional applications.

“The physical world is such a rich place, abundant with dimensionality and materiality,” explains Project Zanzibar Researcher Haiyan Zhang in a company blog post. “Our vision is to tap into that richness and imbue it with that digital magic. We hope that Project Zanzibar is a step in that direction.”

Project Zanzibar: A Portable and Flexible Tangible Interaction Platform

In their preliminary research, the team explored traditional Montessori exercises where multi-sensory learning and self-directed activities enhanced traditional learning exercises.

The brains behind Project Zanzibar—the portable mat—is a self-contained operation using scalable NFC coverage. The coverage is capable of localizing tags, capacitive sensing to detect object footprints, touch, and hover input, and includes a tracking system that fuses NFC-based and capacitive-based tracking information to report interaction events.

“(The) moment for tangible user interfaces indeed is upon us,” explains the team in a blog post. “And if the passion of this research can be as inspiring in the outside world, then we may indeed be at a turning point in the realization of natural interactions with computers that lead to the next era of how we think of – or don’t think of – computers when we are using them to create, learn, play and build.”

Read the team’s research paper in full over at Microsoft.

The post Microsoft’s Project Zanzibar Platform Introduces a Portable Tangible User Interface appeared first on SolidSmack.

by Simon Martin at April 17, 2018 10:35 PM

The Javelin Blog

Integrating design validation into the product design cycle to solve multi-physics problems

In the real design world, load effects can come in many shapes & forms

This complimentary session will discuss ways to combine results from the SOLIDWORKS Simulation product line to solve multi-physics problems in parallel with the product design cycle to create better parts.

Attendees will see first-hand how to solve a challenging fluid flow problem using SOLIDWORKS Flow Simulation and transferring those results into SOLIDWORKS Simulation to run a structural simulation analysis on the modified geometry to ensure all stresses are within an acceptable range.

In SOLIDWORKS Flow Simulation 2018 you can reduce the analysis time when analyzing fluid flow (or conjugate heat transfer) in models consisting of axial periodic

In SOLIDWORKS Flow Simulation you can reduce the analysis time when analyzing fluid flow (or conjugate heat transfer) in models consisting of axial periodic

The post Integrating design validation into the product design cycle to solve multi-physics problems appeared first on The Javelin Blog.

by Rod Mackay at April 17, 2018 08:24 PM

SolidSmack

Model of the Week: Bathtub Boat [Arrrrrr, Matey!]

Bathtub Boat 3D printing test print

How many boats does one need? WRONG QUESTION. How many boats can you 3D print, stick in your mouth, and say ‘Bathtub Boat’. Me? 27. But they were small boats and I choked when I realize one could come shooting out my nose at any moment – can you imagine the pain a PLA print squeezed through the nostril cavity produces? Not gonna find out.

These boats are the creation of a one VANDRAGON, or as I like to call him, VANDRAGONY THE SUPREME. So, why does he create these? Well, besides boats being cool, he says,

I like my bathtub and boats, so I’m creating some for the bathtub. I like big ocean liners but unfortunately have little space, so I draw them in scale 1:1000 to have the possibility to compare them with each other.”

Good enough for me. *High fives the computer screen* Vandragon researches and sketches each one of the boat designs before modeling it up for print. Through it all, there’s loads of thought put into each and the detail is just awesome.

Now, these boats may look similar to the 3DBenchy 3D printer torture test print by Creative Tools, but the actual size is larger and print more detailed.

The overall length is 3.93″ (10cm), but the prints you see here are only 3.34″ (8.5cm) in length. Even still, they can be used for 3D printer quality control or used to complete your pond armada to battle those fowl-mouthed ducks. Yeah, I just did that.

Vandragon used a Prusa MK2 to print the boats at a resolution of 0.15 and infill of 0.15 using Fillamentum PLA and the model requires no supports.

You can download the model on MyMiniFactory or Thingiverse. (Bonus! Check out the other boat prints and benchy boats here! YES!) OH, and you can support his boat designing/printing on Patreon here.

Have a model you think everyone needs? Share the link and details with us here!

This post features affiliate links which helps support SolidSmack through a small commission earned from the sale at no extra cost to you! Thank you for your help in moving away from banner ads by delivering better content!

The post Model of the Week: Bathtub Boat [Arrrrrr, Matey!] appeared first on SolidSmack.

by Josh Mings at April 17, 2018 04:52 PM

The Javelin Blog

Important SOLIDWORKS PDM Web2 System Maintenance

I had a support case recently where the SOLIDWORKS PDM Server hard drives were at critical levels and the culprit was the Web2 portal.  To prevent this from happening to any Web2 users, there’s Important SOLIDWORKS PDM Web2 System Maintenance that must be completed to clear space as the Web2 system folders will continue to grow in size as users access the vault.

Web2 System Maintenance

The following folders should be monitored and emptied periodically to prevent the Web2 Server disk space reaching critical levels:

  • tempFiles
    • Default location; C:\inetpub\wwwroot\SOLIDWORKSPDM\Web2\Content\tempFiles
  • Uploads
    • Default location; C:\inetpub\wwwroot\SOLIDWORKSPDM\Web2\Content\Uploads

Additional Information

tempFiles

As users access the vault via Web2, the server caches files from the vault it stores them in the tempFiles subfolder, which is why it continues to grow in size. You can safely delete the contents of the tempFiles subfolder (but not the tempFiles subfolder).

Uploads

As users upload files, this is the folder where the Web2 Server adds files before being copied into the vault.  You can safely delete the contents of the Uploads subfolder.

Need SOLIDWORKS PDM Training?

Learn more about our SOLIDWORKS PDM training courses for users and administrators.

The post Important SOLIDWORKS PDM Web2 System Maintenance appeared first on The Javelin Blog.

by Justin Williams at April 17, 2018 12:00 PM

The SOLIDWORKS Blog

SOLIDWORKS Skills Help Eric Spendlove Make Entertainment Spectacles Come to Life

The Man behind the Magic

As someone who likes building things—he constructed a metal test stand in his backyard and uses it to conduct his own destructive testing—and solving problems, Eric Spendlove has risen from early work as a stagehand to become a top designer for entertainment props, sets, and rigging on the Las Vegas Strip. Spendlove’s journey to becoming a sought-after entertainment venue design consultant is marked by his long association with the Cirque du Soleil Entertainment Group, his willingness to take on the biggest design challenges, and his focus on developing his SOLIDWORKS skills to the highest levels.

Spendlove began working with a friend’s small production company decades ago as just something to do, setting up for bands and other performers at Las Vegas night clubs. That early work involved simple, rudimentary tasks, like putting a bolt through metal plates, but it also exposed Spendlove to the design and fabrication process as he eventually encountered situations that required him to have pieces made and assemblies built.

He learned how to draw and design the props, riggings, and structures required to support smaller shows; obtained his welding certifications; and gradually began working on larger projects. Ultimately, what started off as a hobby has evolved into a successful career as one of the top entertainment venue designers and consultants, not only for Las Vegas-based shows but also across the entertainment industry.

As Spendlove puts it, “There was always a demand, a need, for what I could do, and I was always interested in learning how to use new tools to meet that need. Whenever I encounter an obstacle, I don’t throw up my hands and quit, I look for a solution to the problem, which includes investigating new tools that may have a bearing on the issue at hand.”

From his first assignment as a rigger/stagehand at the MGM Grand Hotel & Casino Las Vegas to his work at Cirque du Soleil, which produces more than a half dozen major shows in Las Vegas at any one time, Spendlove has focused on increasing his design and fabrication skill set. With the establishment of Spendlove’s consulting firm, SA Fabrication Ltd., in 2012 and his decision to learn as many ways to use SOLIDWORKS software as possible, his career has taken off, enabling him to leave Cirque du Soleil as an employee but continue working with the group as a consultant.

Spendlove credits his success to his interest in learning new tools, especially in SOLIDWORKS; his willingness to take on new challenges; and his attitude that no problem is too big. He taught himself how to use AutoCAD® software early in his career and followed the same hands-on approach in learning how to use SOLIDWORKS, when he discovered that SOLIDWORKS was used, in conjunction with AutoCAD, at Cirque du Soleil.

“Everyone was encouraging me to try SOLIDWORKS, and I told myself, ‘I’m going to learn this program to see what all the hub-bub is about,’” Spendlove recalls. “I quickly recognized the benefits of the software—the parametric nature of the model really opened my eyes—and discovered the certification program as my road map for learning and using SOLIDWORKS effectively. As I achieved each certification, I gained skill sets that help me in my daily work.” A Certified SOLIDWORKS Expert (CSWE) in mechanical design, Spendlove has also gained the following SOLIDWORKS certifications: Certified SOLIDWORKS Professional Advanced Drawing Tools (CSWPA-DT), CSWP-WD Advanced Weldments, CSWP-SU Advanced Surfacing, CSWP-SM Advanced Sheet Metal, CSWP-MT Advanced Mold Tools, CSWP-MBD Model Based Definition.

From Criss Angel to the Boss

As a power user, Spendlove has relied on SOLIDWORKS design, visualization, and engineering tools for his work at Cirque du Soleil and SA Fabrication. At Cirque du Soleil, he designed and fabricated the sets, props, and rigging for some of the entertainment company’s biggest Las Vegas-based shows, including the “O” (water), “Zumanity,” “Michael Jackson One,” “Ka,” “Love,” and “Zarkana” shows. But the show on which Spendlove cut his design teeth was the 10-year run of magician/illusionist Criss Angel’s “Believe” show at the Luxor Las Vegas.

“I was the only designer and ran the rigging crew on the Criss Angel show, which involved creating a variety of mechanisms to support the illusions as well as suspended steel catwalks high above the stage,” Spendlove recalls. “All of my work, which requires significantly higher safety factors of 10 to 1, was done in SOLIDWORKS.”

With the establishment of SA Fabrication, Spendlove expanded his work with other entertainment clients. He designed four different types of stilts for Disney Imagineering, including a complex assembly comprising 140 individual parts; dimmer racks, which control on-stage power, for the American nu metal band Korn; and the intricate lighting system that was used on the most recent Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band tours in the United States and Europe.

“In addition to my SOLIDWORKS skills, the one thing that I’ve been able to bring to all of the projects that I work on is experience in building a bunch of different types of things,” Spendlove notes. “From surfacing, sheet-metal, and mold design to simulation, machining, and weldments, using SOLIDWORKS has helped to broaden my areas of expertise, enabling me to take on a lot of different kinds of challenges.”

New Industries, User Group Leadership and Mentoring

While Spendlove continues to design props, sets, rigging, and lighting systems through SA Fabrication, he has also brought his SOLIDWORKS know-how to challenging projects in new industries and to his mentoring efforts to help colleagues who are new to SOLIDWORKS. Once the recognized, go-to SOLIDWORKS expert at Cirque du Soleil, where Spendlove helped craft the company’s internal SOLIDWORKS training program, Spendlove is also the leader of the Las Vegas SOLIDWORKS User Group.

The SOLIDWORKS skills that Spendlove has acquired not only help him in his familiar field of entertainment venue design but also in undertaking projects in other industries. “The most challenging project that I’ve worked on was an automated machine for making gift cards and credit cards,” Spendlove explains. “That was a complicated project, but with SOLIDWORKS skills I can design just about anything, allowing me to shift from industry to industry. In an oddball kind of way, being new to an industry is an advantage because I have a completely different way of thinking about it.” Most recently, Spendlove designed a minimally invasive, orthoscopically inserted knee replacement, which is currently in the U.S. Food and Drug Adminstration (FDA) approval process.

“Although my heart remains with the design aspects of live entertainment venues, and I still enjoy doing shows, I also have a desire to assist with innovative projects and ideas as well as an obligation to help out other SOLIDWORKS users,” Spendlove stresses. “While my career began by doing favors for friends as sort of a hobby, it blossomed because of my continued interest in designing and building things, my experience in supporting shows and performances, and my acquisition of speciality skills, including all the different ways that I use SOLIDWORKS. I now feel a responsibility to help others learn about SOLIDWORKS.”

Author information

Tim Trainer
I am a freelance writer who has written professionally about CAD/CAM/CAE since the early 1990s. I’ve written hundreds of case studies, numerous magazine features, and lots of white papers over the past 25 years, including many focused on SOLIDWORKS. In my spare time, I enjoy fishing, gardening, hiking, cross-country skiing, reading, and writing (fiction). Please feel free to contact me with ideas for case studies or blog posts, or just to say hello.

The post SOLIDWORKS Skills Help Eric Spendlove Make Entertainment Spectacles Come to Life appeared first on The SOLIDWORKS Blog.

by Tim Trainer at April 17, 2018 12:00 PM

SolidSmack

SolidSmack Radio | The Wild Ones (Powered by Spotify)

Get that stretch out of your system with this week’s Spotify-powered SolidSmack Radio Playlist. It’s fashioned up, ready to make you pull your shoulder blades back and knock out another week of meaningful work while you bob your head to the beat. Whether you’re in the shop milling aluminum, sketching the latest product prototypes or modeling up a 3D storm, consider these tracks as a tool for your process.

This week we’ll get the groove going with “Otis” from The Durutti Column before diving into sweet melodies from Sunflower Bean, Kyle Craft, Woods, Vanishing Twin, and others before wrapping up with “Lucky Once” from Nick Waterhouse. Rock!

Have suggestions? As always, let us know what you listen to, what you want to hear and what tunes get you through the week. Shoot us an email or leave a comment down below!!

*Note: if the embedded playlist below doesn’t work for you, try this.

<iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="0" height="775" src="https://open.spotify.com/embed/user/evdmedia/playlist/1GNehp7w6V4iK9NyolQ0Nn" width="100%"></iframe>

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by SolidSmack at April 17, 2018 10:00 AM

April 16, 2018

SolidSmack

Slope of Enlightenment: Hardware is Making A Comeback

Hardware Massive - Hardware is Making a Comeback

We’re stoked to welcome Hardware Massive with this special guest post by Greg Fisher, Founder at HardwareCon. Check out Hardware Massive and, if you’re in the San Jose area this week, you’ll want head over to HardwareCon to learn about the future of hardware.

Having spent the last 13 years helping more than 900 hardware startups (they used to be called inventors) taking innovative, physical products to market, I’ve seen the industry go from one dominated by large established companies, to the burgeoning hardware revolution that has already brought thousands of startup products to market. Using new tools and technologies, it is just getting started.

Despite growth in the market, in 2017 many promising hardware startups shut their doors. The industry has been doing some soul searching and ultimately discovered a need to pivot. I believe we’ve entered a “slope of enlightenment” and discovered that the current model is broken. We are realizing that it’s nearly impossible for startups to learn all aspects of a hardware startup business, while simultaneously developing and launching an innovative technology in the two or three-year available window.

Hardware became more global last year, with many different models and directions attempted and developed. With only 3 percent of startups seeing any meaningful exit to date, I believe the path forward for successful hardware innovations will come from those that create robust business models with value-driven solutions (solving real problems). They will need to connect with the right partners – true experts that uniquely understand hardware.

To support this new vision for success, we’re bringing together the world’s thought leaders, entrepreneurs, investors, innovators, and key decision makers across the hardware ecosystem to “Get Deals Done,” which is our HardwareCon theme this year. We chose this theme because it is evident that in order for the next generation of startups to succeed, they will need to have knowledge of and access to the right platforms, software and hardware, investors that share their vision, and a complete ecosystem of external service providers who can fill their roles.

Four years ago, we saw the chance to provide that educational support and bring the community together to facilitate these critical partnerships. I’m excited to say that HardwareCon continues to grow, with a big step up this year by moving to the San Jose Convention Center on April 19-20.  We are also very excited to announce one of the godfathers of the Silicon Valley hardware scene, Allan Alcorn, as our keynote speaker to kick things off. Allan is the founding engineer at Atari, inventor of the world’s first popular video game, Pong, and Steve Jobs’ last boss.

This year’s conference agenda will feature two full days of keynotes, panels, and workshops, all focused on the most important topics around building a successful hardware company and will feature key insights from the hardware investment community.

The consumer device segment of the hardware market remains one of the most exciting areas for innovation. We’ve just added an IoT Summit Transformation of Consumer Products: Connectivity & IoT, presented by Parks Associates. The Summit will address the impact of IoT on the development, design, and monetization of consumer products. This Summit is designed to help executive-level hardware innovators better understand market trends and how to position for growth.

I’d like to personally invite you to join me at HardwareCon 2018 and right now is the best time to save on tickets, as we’re offering our Insider Rate at 25% off the full ticket price.  I look forward to connecting with you there and shaping the future of the next generation of hardware innovation. Come be a part of the conversation, meet your future partners, and Get Deals Done!

The post Slope of Enlightenment: Hardware is Making A Comeback appeared first on SolidSmack.

by Hardware Massive at April 16, 2018 03:35 PM

The SOLIDWORKS Blog

Live Town Hall Webcast: Bridging the Gap between Plastic Part Design and Manufacturing

Plastic Injection mold tools are costly, and they take time to manufacture. Even a small design change late in the product development process could turn tens of thousands of dollars’ worth of molds into doorstops and boat anchors. Join our panel of experts, from plastic injecting molding industry, as they discuss plastic part design and manufacturing best practices and share ideas on how to avoid costly errors and rework during this virtual town hall event on Thursday, April 26 at 1:00 PM EST. Sign up here.

This 90-minute event is sponsored by DS SolidWorks Plastic Design group and will on focus on:

  • Plastic Materials Selection & Preparation
  • Molded Part Defects & How to Avoid Them
  • Establishing a Scientific Molding Process
  • Financial Impact of Utilizing Injection Molding Software

Panelists will share their knowledge and experience and following their presentation you will have a chance to ask questions and exchange ideas.

Town Hall panelists include:

Andy Routsis: With more than 30 years of experience in plastics training and consulting, Andy, joined by the SOIDWORKS technical team, will teach you how to address plastic part design challenges from both business and engineering perspectives.

Jesse Matola: Jesse is a plastics professional with 13 years of industry experience covering processing, part design, and product development in the injection molding industry. He is a graduate of Penn State’s plastics program and spent a majority of his career working on large plastic products for the cleaning and back-of-house markets.

Rick Riesterer: Rick is a seasoned manufacturing business professional. At PCI Rick works with sales, marketing account managers, and engineering staff to manage up-front analysis, product development, new business, selling, and customer relationships. During his time leading business development at PCI, business has grown from $7.5 Million to $33.5 Million.

REGISTER HERE for the 1:00 PM ET town hall.

Author information

SOLIDWORKS
Dassault Systèmes SolidWorks Corp. offers complete 3D software tools that let you create, simulate, publish, and manage your data. SolidWorks products are easy to learn and use, and work together to help you design products better, faster, and more cost-effectively. The SolidWorks focus on ease-of-use allows more engineers, designers and other technology professionals than ever before to take advantage of 3D in bringing their designs to life.

The post Live Town Hall Webcast: Bridging the Gap between Plastic Part Design and Manufacturing appeared first on The SOLIDWORKS Blog.

by SOLIDWORKS at April 16, 2018 01:49 PM

SolidSmack

Cool Tools of Doom: SAS Safety Classic Safety Glasses

It may not be your favorite shop accessory, but a sturdy pair of safety glasses is an absolutely critical piece of kit. Whether running a 2 x 4 through the table saw or simply sanding the final edges of a model, the last thing you need is dust in your eyes or worse—something much larger.

Which is why we love the Classic Safety Glasses from SAS Safety.

These no-bull safety glasses feature durable impact resistant polycarbonate 99.9% UV-resistant lens and offer additional protection with temple covers. Lightweight and comfortable with just the right amount of ‘Shop Boss’ style, you can’t go wrong with these no matter what gets thrown at you (quite literally).

SAS Safety Classic Safety Glasses — $9.16

Features:

  • Impact resistant polycarbonate lens
  • 99.9% UV Protection
  • Lightweight comfort
  • Stylish frame design

PURCHASE VIA AMAZON

Affiliate purchases help support SolidSmack through a small commission earned from the sale.
Thank you!

The post Cool Tools of Doom: SAS Safety Classic Safety Glasses appeared first on SolidSmack.

by SolidSmack at April 16, 2018 01:38 PM

This Guy Built His Own Custom Roomba to Clean Up LEGO Bricks

Though LEGOs can be used to build just about everything from a ship in a bottle to a Tic Tac dispenser, the one thing they aren’t so good at is cleaning up after themselves.

YouTuber The Brick Wall must have stepped on one too many of his LEGO builds because his newest project is a LEGO Roomba.

<iframe allowfullscreen="true" class="youtube-player" height="390" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/0AwK8O9Nos0?version=3&amp;rel=1&amp;fs=1&amp;autohide=2&amp;showsearch=0&amp;showinfo=1&amp;iv_load_policy=1&amp;wmode=transparent" style="border:0;" type="text/html" width="640"></iframe>

While the Roomba is traditionally used to sweep all debris from floor surfaces, this special floor sweeper specializes in just sweeping up LEGOs— Small LEGOs, medium LEGOs, even those humongous LEGO slabs you can’t seem to take apart.

LEGO Roomba   

In total, the machine is made up of 986 individual parts and has a height of 5.5 inches (14 cm), a width of 13 inches (33cm), and a length of 14 inches (36cm). Its magical LEGO-sweeping powers are made possible by seven separate motors.

LEGO Roomba

Driving the Roomba is made possible using two SBrick Plus RC receivers and an iPad with the SBrick application. Combined with the seven motors, the LEGO Roomba is capable of making smooth 180-degree turns for efficient hands-free LEGO gathering; the front guards funnel in small and medium-sized LEGOs while larger pieces are scooped up by a mechanical arm.

If you have the time and need a solution for picking up all those plastic bricks, you can watch the entire build video here:

<iframe allowfullscreen="true" class="youtube-player" height="390" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/COOVF0RuaMM?version=3&amp;rel=1&amp;fs=1&amp;autohide=2&amp;showsearch=0&amp;showinfo=1&amp;iv_load_policy=1&amp;wmode=transparent" style="border:0;" type="text/html" width="640"></iframe>

Also be sure to check out more of The Brick Wall’s builds over on his YouTube channel.

The post This Guy Built His Own Custom Roomba to Clean Up LEGO Bricks appeared first on SolidSmack.

by Carlos Zotomayor at April 16, 2018 01:33 PM

Triggers Cards Aim to Help Creatives Tackle Any Brainstorming Session

While they likely aren’t to replace a roomful of clever creatives, Triggers Cards are certainly a brilliant tool when it comes to creative problem solving. The brainchild of creative director Alejandro Masferrer to be used as as an ideation tool, Triggers are designed to help ideate and run smooth brainstorming sessions with a series of “what if” questions.

The Triggers process is relatively straightforward: write down your defined problem, pick out a Triggers Card, and use the “What if” question on the card to ideate solutions. While many creatives will be quick to note that this is generally how most brainstorming sessions kickoff, it’s important to note that Trigger Cards aren’t supposed to replace the brainstorming process; rather, they’re designed to get the ball rolling and keep it rolling.

Questions on the cards range from “What if the project’s format is broken?” to “What if users invested in the product?”

These questions are then broken down into categories relating to different topics. For example, the Serendipity Deck features random “what if” questions; the Campaign Deck features communication questions better suited for advertising; the Innovation Deck features digital and social-based questions, and queries about human emotions are found in the Human-Centric Deck. Each deck includes 60 questions total related to the subject matter, instructions, and an idea-filtering exercise.

While previous iterations of Trigger decks have been available since 2016, four new decks have been added to expand their power in a brainstorming session further. These include a new Business Design Deck, a Brand Strategy Deck, a Graphics Deck, and a Storytelling Deck. With the addition of the new decks, there are now 480 Triggers cards in total, all of which can be mixed and matched to help solve the problem you have on hand.

<iframe frameborder="0" height="450" scrolling="no" src="https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/alejandromasferrer/triggers-a-powerful-ideation-tool-for-any-creative/widget/video.html" width="800"> </iframe>

Both the new card decks as well as the old deck reprints have already exceeded their $4,680 goal on Kickstarter (the funding is now somewhere at $13,372), but you can find a more in-depth guide on this non-competitive card game on the Triggers web page.

The post Triggers Cards Aim to Help Creatives Tackle Any Brainstorming Session appeared first on SolidSmack.

by Carlos Zotomayor at April 16, 2018 01:09 PM

SOLIDWORKS Tech Blog

Revisit your Childhood with SOLIDWORKS Flow Simulation

Who’s paper plane will fly the farthest and highest is part of most childhood memories. But how do we validate that our paper plane design is achieving optimal performance? How to fly higher and farthest? With a little bit of help using SOLIDWORKS Flow Simulation, you definitely can fly higher and farther.

Below is a paper plane example that we created in SOLIDWORKS.

paper-plane-with-solidworks

Using this simple illustration, we are going to investigate the aerodynamic fluids effect on the flying plane when the paper plane flies.

With a little tweak to the model, half of the model now has an elevated angle of 16o.

elevated-paper-plane

Quick Knowledge:
How does a paper plane work?

how-paper-plane-works

As the paper plane launches, the swing moment of our hand will produce the Thrust for the plane to move forward. The wind motion that opposes the motion of the plane will create a Drag to stop the plane.

Due to the airfoil shape of the paper plane, as the motion of wind crosses the body of the paper plane, it will create a pressure different on the top and bottom region that creates a Lift on the paper plane. The mass of the plane will create a Weight imposed by the gravity pulling the paper plane downward.

We will then simulate a scenario during the flight of a paper plane, assuming that the paper plane will fly forward with a velocity of 5m/s. We will run 3 different similar studies to check the performance of our paper plane.

simulating-plane-flying-forward

Now, let’s look at the results of analysis for our first configuration.

Configuration 1

paper-plane-config1

Pressure plots on the wings

Pressure plots on the wings

We are interested in the pressure difference between the top and bottom region that creates the LIFT force that keeps the plane gliding in the air. The difference in value of pressure will determine the lift of the paper plane and a wide and uniform distribution will ensure a good gliding of the plane.

Configuration 02
Add wing flap flipping downward on both wings.

Configuration 2

Pressure plots on wings

pressure-plots-on-plane-wings-config2

Configuration 03
Add wing flaps flipping upward on both wings.

paper-plane-config3

Pressure plots on wings

pressure-plots-on-plane-wings-config3

Comparing 3 different configurations

Configuration 1 Configuration 2 Configuration 3
paper-plane-configuration-01 paper-plane-configuration-02 paper-plane-configuration-03

Configuration 1 has a decent distribution in the pressure region on the wing, we should be expecting the paper plane to fly in a straight course for a while. This configuration will serve as a benchmark to the upcoming configurations.

Configuration 2 seems to have higher pressure in the middle of the wings as well as a more concentrated pressure region. We should be expecting the plane to fly higher compared to configuration 1 as the lift force is higher in this case. However, due to the low pressure region at the tail of the paper plane, it might result in higher drag force as the orientation of the paper plane changes along the flight, hence, the paper plane might not fly as far.

Configuration 3 has a high pressure region on the top face of the wings tail. This will probably cause the plane to make a sharp-turn in the air and topple, failing the moment after launch.

With all of this information on hand and different case studies carried out, we can definitely come out with the best paper plane that flies farthest and highest. So, next time you want to build a paper plane. Make sure you get it validated in SOLIDWORKS Flow before building it!

paper-plane-validation

 

 

Author information

The post Revisit your Childhood with SOLIDWORKS Flow Simulation appeared first on SOLIDWORKS Tech Blog.

by ateworks at April 16, 2018 12:40 PM

SolidSmack

The Monday List 16.18 | What We’re Reading This Week

Mondays might not be your favorite day of the week, but the good news is that we’re all in this together ladies and gentlemen. As purveyors of prime Grade A web content, the SolidSmack crew has done some of the heavy-lifting to make sure you get your Mondays started on the right track.

Welcome to The Monday List.

Every Monday, we link you up with some of the most insightful, informative, and socially-relevant stories to keep tabbed, bookmarked, reading listed, pocketed, or what have you to get your week started on the right foot. Be sure to check in each week for a new crop of freshly sprouted words curated straight from the source of your favorite homegrown ‘Smack.

What We’re Reading This Week:

Instagram Looks Like Facebook’s Best Hope

With lawmakers and users on the warpath, the photo-sharing app could be Mark Zuckerberg’s way out of the latest data scandal.

Instagram Looks Like Facebook’s Best Hope

Roam Robotics Announces $2500 Soft Exoskeleton For Skiers and Snowboarders

The lower body support system uses pneumatic muscles to help you carve harder for longer

Roam Robotics Announces $2500 Soft Exoskeleton For Skiers and Snowboarders

Boeing hit by WannaCry virus, but says attack caused little damage

Though news of the attack triggered widespread alarm within the company and among airline customers during the day, by evening Boeing was calling for calm.

Boeing hit by WannaCry virus, but says attack caused little damage

Letter of Recommendation: AliExpress

It’s not quite shopping — it’s more like mainlining late capitalism.

Letter of Recommendation: AliExpress

Cambridge Analytica and the Coming Data Bust

The queasy truth at the heart of Facebook’s Cambridge Analytica scandal, which is so far the company’s defining disgrace of 2018, is that its genesis became scandalous only in retrospect.

Cambridge Analytica and the Coming Data Bust

Fiber Lasers Mean Ray Guns Are Coming

A clever configuration of industrial lasers is set to finally make laser weapons practical

Fiber Lasers Mean Ray Guns Are Coming

The post The Monday List 16.18 | What We’re Reading This Week appeared first on SolidSmack.

by SolidSmack at April 16, 2018 12:13 PM

The Javelin Blog

SOLIDWORKS Electrical 3D is the tool Mechanical Designers have been looking for

Do you use SOLIDWORKS 3D CAD to create the world that has yet to be? For those of you that answered yes, please keep up the fantastic work!

How do you handle electrical, pneumatic, and hydraulic connections in your 3D designs?

Getting power to and from mechanical components is a critical design decision, and all too often is a task left to the manufacturing department. At minimum this limits the optimization of a design, but it can easily lead to a lack of standardization, production delays, and unnecessary costs from wasted material.

SOLIDWORKS Electrical System Schematics

System overview schematics can easily be created with information-rich symbols and interconnections.

No electrical design department? No problem!

SOLIDWORKS Electrical 3D is the solution designed for mechanical designers to be able to easily specify all of their connection information. SOLIDWORKS Electrical makes it easy to quickly draw high-level diagrams of system interconnects. Cable information, such as colour, diameter, and bend radius, can then be applied directly to these schematics, allowing you to easily capture information all in one place. If necessary, terminal specific connection information can be entered through streamlined dialogs, providing the flexibility for you to design as much or as little as the project requires.

 

The Routing Component Wizard is your complete solution to prepare any SOLIDWORKS component to

The Routing Component Wizard is your complete solution for preparing any SOLIDWORKS component to be used in a route.

As soon as the high-level overview is in place, you are ready to get back into the 3D world! 3D models of electrical components can be downloaded from the more than 20,000,000 parts available in the Online Content Portal, letting you get straight to routing cables. SOLIDWORKS Electrical 3D also simplifies the process of making your own models electrically intelligent with a wizard that automates creation of mates and reference points for wire and cable termini.

SOLIDWORKS Electrical 3D Routing Process

The fully automated routing process produces realistic cable routes and automatically updates cable lengths in your reports.

Routing wires and cables in SOLIDWORKS Electrical 3D is fully automated, allowing you to completely wire your design with only a handful of clicks. It is also possible to define routing paths with 3D sketches, giving you full control over your design. Regardless of the methods used, exact wire lengths are automatically calculated, and can easily be published into reports. No more guess work, and no more time spent using the measure tool!

Get started with SOLIDWORKS Electrical

Adding SOLIDWORKS Electrical 3D to your digital toolbox will increase the accuracy of your designs, provide you with valuable manufacturing data, all while saving you time and money. Contact us today to get started with this powerful, fully integrated tool!

The post SOLIDWORKS Electrical 3D is the tool Mechanical Designers have been looking for appeared first on The Javelin Blog.

by Angus Hudson, CSWP at April 16, 2018 12:00 PM

April 15, 2018

SOLIDWORKS Tech Blog

Pinewood Derby Time – Getting the Fastest Car with SOLIDWORKS

It’s that time of year again. Every Cub Scout’s favorite time of year. Pinewood Derby time! Last year, my son took 3rd place in his Den (7th or 8th in the Pack). This year he is determined to do better. His words, not mine. As a responsible father (and engineer with access to the best design and simulation tools on the planet), who am I to squash his aspirations to take home the first place trophy?

We started by doing some research on tips for getting the fastest car. I stumbled across this video, which does a great job of simplifying the relationship between kinetic and potential energy. After all, this is a learning opportunity for the boys.

This year, we decided to focus mainly on weight distribution. I can think of no better tool than SOLIDWORKS to help with this. A few years ago they added the “Center of mass” tool so we can visually watch it move with design changes.

I started with a simple block of wood given to us by the Scouts.

Since we want the COM to be as far back and high up as possible, a simple “wedge shape” is the easiest way to start.

As you can see here, I also added the Center of Mass callout. This can be found in the Reference Geometry pulldown.

You can see from the image below, we are sort of moving in the right direction. The COM went towards the back, but also down.

But wait, it gets better! The Center of mass callout is live-updating! In conjunction with Instant3D, I can change the wedge cut and watch what the changes do to my COM IN REAL TIME!

So with the power of SOLIDWORKS, I can make very drastic design changes, but intelligent ones, that will positively impact my design.

Author information

CADimensions
We are an authorized SOLIDWORKS and Stratasys reseller with certified training & support centers located in New York and Pennsylvania, USA. We are 100% focused on living a CADLIFE and have our vendor's unconditional endorsement in the sales and support of their products.

The post Pinewood Derby Time – Getting the Fastest Car with SOLIDWORKS appeared first on SOLIDWORKS Tech Blog.

by CADimensions at April 15, 2018 02:45 PM

April 14, 2018

The Javelin Blog

How to Estimate Weld Size using SOLIDWORKS Simulation

There are two types of edge welds in SOLIDWORKS simulation: Fillet Weld and Groove Weld. Each weld type can be single-sided or double-sided. Fillet weld is a triangular weld that joints two metal parts at a right angle. Whereas, groove weld is applied in a preformed opening or groove. Edge weld results are calculated for all mesh nodes on the intersecting edge of the terminated part. Results are calculated with respect to a local coordinate system established at each node as shown in the figure.

Weld size is demonstrated in the following image. For fillet weld, the weld size is the distance from the root to its toe and weld throat is the minimum distance from the root of the weld to the face of the weld. For groove weld, the weld size is the width of the weld coverage and weld throat is the depth of the groove filled with weld.

Weld Size demonstrated in the SOLIDWORKS Help

Weld Size demonstrated in the SOLIDWORKS Help

The edge weld connector estimates the appropriate size of a weld needed to attach two metal components. The program calculates the appropriate weld size at each mesh node location along the weld seam. Select American or European Welding Standards to perform the weld calculations.

Note: The Edge Weld Connector is available in SOLIDWORKS Simulation Professional and SOLIDWORKS Simulation Premium.

Estimate Weld Size Example

Consider a cantilever beam with four edge welds at the fixed end of it. Notice that the beam is modeled using surface bodies to allow adding edge welds. At least one of the two sides of the edge weld has to be surface body to work.

A Cantilever Model with 4 Fillet Edge Welds on the Fixed End

A Cantilever Model with 4 Fillet Edge Welds on the Fixed End

After the simulation is done, to estimate the welds size, right-click on on Results folder and Select “Define Weld Check Plot…”

To Check on the Weld Size Estimation, Right-click on Results folder and Select “Define Weld Check Plot…”

The simulation is run with an estimate weld size value. However, it seems that all four edge welds fail. Therefore, we will increase the estimated value for edge weld and run the simulation again.

Estimate Weld Size

Weld Size Is Smaller than the calculated. Estimated value needs to be increase and rerun of the simulation

Use Various Values for estimated welds size will eventually goes close to the estimated value

By changing the estimated weld size to a higher number, the weld check plot will show all edge fillet sizes are good now.

Clicking on “Details…” button on Weld Check Plot opens up the Edge Weld Results page which summarizes all results for the weld in this model. Also by clicking on the graph button, a graph of weld size and throat size shows up. See below:

Edge Weld Simulation Results

Edge Weld Size Plot vs Weld Throat Sizes

The post How to Estimate Weld Size using SOLIDWORKS Simulation appeared first on The Javelin Blog.

by Mehdi Rezaei, CSWE at April 14, 2018 12:00 PM

April 13, 2018

SolidSmack

Friday Smackdown: Banshee Zip Tie

Alejandro-Burdisio-art

The tundra trails wound through the brush, dusted in the sticks of fallen trees and the fancy winter people’s sculptures of clay and ice. We had to find the blue one though, darker and slightly larger than the others, glowing with rich, sticky gum juice of these links.

Alejandro Burdisio – You’ve not seen flying car ships like this. Mash-ups of the vintage and future with robot villages, cityscapes and giant battles thrown in.

Zsolt Hlinka – Instagram follow of the week. He has a thing for perspective and symmetry, which is cool because I have a thing for perspective and symmetry.

Chalking About – David Zinn is one of those cool guys who does 3D chalk street art, but not like others. This is him talking about the process.

Visual Search – Pond5 released their AI-driven visual search that matches what ever you upload with their massive database of images and video.

924 Bel Air – Bruce Makowsky set out to make the most amazing Billionaire homes with the budget of “No Budget” and the requirement of only the best.

Banana Carving – It’s a thing. And Stephan Brusche is the Netherlands-based artist applying his craft to the foundational fruit.

Lazy Gourmet – What fun with fake grocery signage looks like. Each post/prank on Obvious Planet is a delight. This one is frozen dinners for lazy people.

Procedural Creatures – Watch the videos here, then read the details – really interesting details and thoughts about the next generation of CG software.

Latent Cycles – A musical loop experiment by Tero Parviainen that uses Google Magenta MusicVAE model to explore different combinations of melodies and harmonies.
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One Nation Under Laser – A little augmented reality 2D animation in a new one from Dada Life.

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The post Friday Smackdown: Banshee Zip Tie appeared first on SolidSmack.

by Josh Mings at April 13, 2018 10:46 PM

The Javelin Blog

Balloon your PDFs faster with SOLIDWORKS Inspection 2018

Are you receiving PDF documents for design inspection and quality assurance? If so, then the SOLIDWORKS Inspection Balloon PDF feature in the standalone application is perfect. Especially now, as the 2018 release where multiple characteristics can be pulled at the same time.

NOTE: SOLIDWORKS Inspection software is available as two applications types, a standalone product and a SOLIDWORKS Add-in.

How do you add balloons to a PDF?

The Smart Extract tool in SOLIDWORKS Inspection Standalone allows for the selection of single or multiple characteristics.

Smart Extract Tools

Smart Extract Tools

By selecting multiple characteristics the software will allow for a box selection:

Box Select Annotations

Box Select Annotations

Within seconds the SOLIDWORKS Inspection will populate the drawing with balloons and is ready to be sent out for inspection!

Balloons are applied

Balloons are applied

SOLIDWORKS Inspection Demo

SOLIDWORKS Inspection comes with many amazing features to save both time and effort that go into creating the inspection documentation. For applications that require SOLIDWORKS drawings, the SOLIDWORKS add-in is perfect and allows for automatic extraction. Learn more about SOLIDWORKS Inspection in the short demonstration video below:

<iframe allow="autoplay; encrypted-media" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen" frameborder="0" height="281" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/kWczxj7j5TQ?feature=oembed" width="500"></iframe>

Get more information

For more information you can visit our SOLIDWORKS Inspection product page, access white papers and other related resources in our resource library.

The post Balloon your PDFs faster with SOLIDWORKS Inspection 2018 appeared first on The Javelin Blog.

by Sam Sharkawi at April 13, 2018 12:00 PM

April 12, 2018

SolidSmack

This DIY Super Nintendo Boombox Delivers Hard-Hitting 80s Nostalgia

Need a fix of retro nostalgia mash-up? We’ve got one to make your drool tubs.

Colin of Why Not Make It is to blame for your sudden craving to combine a 19080’s boombox and Super Nintendo (Chalmers). Being born in a time where the video games were simpler/better and the music players a lot bigger/doper, he took it upon himself to combine the two. The result is a battery powered machine which can play classic Nintendo games AND yo’ funky tunes.

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According to Kotaku, Colin took an hour every day after his day job to work on the project. After a week and roughly $250, he finally managed to get all the wiring inside the boombox and have it play cassette tapes, the FM radio and, YES, video games.

SNES Classic Boombox

The boombox in question is an old Montgomery Ward GEN 3998 boombox, which conveniently houses a small black-and-white TV screen next to the cassette deck. In order to play colored SNES games, Colin took out the factory screen and replaced it with a small LCD screen. The SNES components are pretty much just wires and a tiny circuit board, so he had no trouble fitting the console’s innards and controller ports into the bottom left of the boombox casing, just below the speaker.

SNES Classic Boombox

The whole thing runs on a rechargeable 12-volt battery pack he attached to the back of the casing. The extra power is needed since he also added an HDMI cord and audio extractor which connects to the LCD screen and boombox speakers. And since playing games on a tiny boombox screen isn’t exactly practical, Colin added an HDMI splitter which allows him to connect the boombox to a larger screen. The battery runs for half a day on a full charge, but the novelty in being able to carry a boombox around, walk up to the basketball court and play some Marioworld, is just timeless.

SNES Classic Boombox

Now that his SNES-box is a success, Colin plans to retrofit other gaming consoles into the old school music players as well. Check out the part breakdown and more on his website, Why Not Make,  and expect to see more retro gaming consoles to be fitted into outdated sound-producing fossils in the future!

The post This DIY Super Nintendo Boombox Delivers Hard-Hitting 80s Nostalgia appeared first on SolidSmack.

by Carlos Zotomayor at April 12, 2018 05:31 PM

Foldstar Is Generative 3D Folded Geometry For SOLIDWORKS

Folstar Foldable 3D Design

FoldStar provides a very unusual 3D model generation system.

The New Jersey-based company’s product, by the same name, is a generative system to dynamically create 3D models of folded geometry.

Here’s how it works, in their words:

Doubly-Periodic Folding Tessellations are a versatile family of deployable materials that repeat a pattern in “row” and “column” directions.

FoldStar Designer lets you prototype DPFTs by controlling the shape of a crease in the “row” direction, and a cross-section in the “column” direction. The Row Edge (RE) and Column Cross–Section (CCS) define your surface’s “base state”. All DPFTs fold from a flat sheet to their base states (and often beyond) without bending.

These regular patterns are interesting because they can be used in many different specialized applications.

<figure class="wp-caption aligncenter" id="attachment_94411" style="width: 941px">An example folded geometry from FoldStar<figcaption class="wp-caption-text">An example folded geometry from FoldStar</figcaption></figure>

For example, a specific repeated folding pattern may be used to reduce noise levels among certain audio frequencies. Or another pattern might be used as a shock-absorbing layer in a vehicle. Unusual exterior architectural elements could be generated. They even suggest that cardboard packaging could benefit from this approach. There are many possibilities.

FoldStar says they are delivering the “first software capability to capitalize on the new world of folding technology”, and that may indeed be the case, as I’ve not heard of this technique elsewhere.

<figure class="wp-caption aligncenter" id="attachment_94412" style="width: 825px">An example structure made from a design generated by FoldStar<figcaption class="wp-caption-text">An example structure made from a design generated by FoldStar</figcaption></figure>

Their site offers a kind of preview of the system, in which you select a base geometry and then view a corresponding animation that demonstrates how the system contorts the shape into the final folded object.

Once complete, I presume you can download the pattern and then incorporate it into a further 3D design, most likely by repeating the pattern as many times as required. In fact, FoldStar has an add-in for SOLIDWORKS, where subsequent design activity would most likely take place, and plans to support other 3D software.

FoldStar offers this function to the public in two ways. They have a standalone purchase option, where you can obtain a license for a one-time charge of $9,800 USD. That’s a good chunk of cash, and would likely be suitable for someone who’s generating folded objects constantly. Alternatively, they also offer a cloud-based subscription service that costs only $800 USD per month.

An interesting option for some. How about you?

Read more about 3D printing at Fabbaloo!

The post Foldstar Is Generative 3D Folded Geometry For SOLIDWORKS appeared first on SolidSmack.

by Fabbaloo at April 12, 2018 03:35 PM

The SOLIDWORKS Blog

SOLIDWORKS xDesign Challenge Submission – Shawn Lesley

The fourth person we would like to profile from the SOLIDWORKS World xDesign challenge is Shawn Lesley. He shared the following with us regarding the challenge:

When I first started trying to figure out what I would design for the SOLIDWORKS xDesign Challenge, I really couldn’t think of anything. The inspiration came to me as I was using a forge doing one of my hobbies, blacksmithing. Blacksmithing is something that happens all over the world, believe it or not. This ancient art has been happening for thousands of years and still exists all over the world. The surprising thing is that many third-world countries rely on blacksmithing to survive. Basic tools that are used to farm and support themselves come from local blacksmiths.

The Design Inspiration

Back to my design. As I was standing in front of a 3000-degree forge, I realized how much energy was being lost in the forging process. Shaping metal requires these extreme temperatures, but so much of that energy is lost. This got me wondering how to harness some of this energy for other purposes.

This design, a hybrid forge-water purification system, incorporates a couple of different operations together to produce something other than pure heat for metalworking. This design can be used next to a water source and will produce clean drinking water along with several other things that are traditionally labor-intensive to produce. The system will create steam, which will in turn power a steam engine.

This engine will power a water pump (which fills the boiler), power the blower for the forge (which is normally done by hand on a simple forge), and will produce purified water from the leftover steam. This water can then be used as drinking water. This could allow communities to obtain many more benefits from the use of their forges, and could potentially be adapted to conventional cooking stoves as well to produce something that so many of us take for granted: clean water to drink!

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Want to get involved in the xDesign beta? Sign up at https://www.solidworks.com/product/solidworks-xdesign

Author information

Divi Lohiya
Divi Lohiya
Divi is a Senior Manager, Product Portfolio Management at SOLIDWORKS. He is passionate about how new technologies are coming together to change the way how products are designed, made and sold and engaging/teaching kids in STEM activities. Divi graduated from Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Bombay with a dual degree in Mechanical Engineering and a Masters degree in Engineering from University of Texas at Austin.

The post SOLIDWORKS xDesign Challenge Submission – Shawn Lesley appeared first on The SOLIDWORKS Blog.

by Divi Lohiya at April 12, 2018 12:00 PM

The Javelin Blog

There is a SOLIDWORKS Simulation Package to virtually test your design

Spending too much time on prototyping and attempting physical tests? Use a SOLIDWORKS Simulation Package to virtually test your design!

With SOLIDWORKS Simulation, the virtual testing environment makes validating your design a breeze. If you think about how much time and cost goes into prototyping and setting up physical tests, virtual simulation is done on the spot and is fully integrated with SOLIDWORKS 3D CAD. Validation can happen with just about every application: structural, automation, product design and much more!

SOLIDWORKS Simulation is available in three packages:

Each package is filled with time and cost saving features. The following matrix is a high level look at the features and capabilities of the three SOLIDWORKS Simulation packages:

SOLIDWORKS Simulation Package Matrix

SOLIDWORKS Simulation Matrix

SOLIDWORKS Simulation Standard

Starting with the standard package, you are able to complete linear static analysis which includes the fixtures to fix the model and many different choices for loads including forces, loads and more. With linear static analysis, both parts and assemblies can be analyzed and retrieve results such as stress, deformation, strain, and factor of safety.

SOLIDWORKS Simulation Professional

The Simulation Professional package includes additional modules which can save time and cost such as optimization, sub modeling and load case manager. New for 2018 we get topology — which can optimize the design and give us a visual of what material we’re able to remove and work through directly from concept or design stage.

SOLIDWORKS Simulation Premium

For nonlinear capabilities the Simulation Premium package is the one. Whether you need to analyze plastic deformation or run a dynamic analysis, SOLIDWORKS Simulation Premium has the capability of running complex design testing and giving you the confidence that your design will work in the real world!

Learn more about Simulation

Visit our SOLIDWORKS Simulation product page to find out more. Access our SOLIDWORKS Simulation resources for the latest news, case studies, white papers, and on-demand webinars. Watch the video below to learn about the latest enhancements in SOLIDWORKS Simulation 2018.

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The post There is a SOLIDWORKS Simulation Package to virtually test your design appeared first on The Javelin Blog.

by Sam Sharkawi at April 12, 2018 12:00 PM

April 11, 2018

SolidSmack

See How McLaren Uses VR for Car Body Design

Maclaren VR Car Body Design

Before automobile technology even reached the point where two cup holders in a single car was an ovation inducing breakthrough, the automotive design process involved a constant back-and-forth of 2D sketches–it still does for many manufacturers.

Then there is the strict adherence needed for that unfortunately inconvenient internal structure. Most of the time, these “hard points” – monocoque, suspension, engine/radiator position, etc – go through their own approval before progress can be made. This can take months, delaying other work and, even then, the confidence of the design translating well in 3D is lacking.

Car Body Design of the Future… Now

Enter the modern world of VR, where McLaren Automotive, together with software company Vector Suite, is incorporating an immersive 3D experience into car body design.

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Mark Roberts, Head of Design Operations, describes the initial aim of implementing VR as a way to support vehicle ergonomics and review 3D design data before creating the physical car. However, Roberts soon saw a way to enhance and optimize the car concept design process through the same means.

Maclaren VR Car Body Design

The Vector Suite software imports the aforementioned hard points to create a volume which the user is then able to create and manipulate a  structure of 3D sketches for the proposed design. All along the way they are able to see how everything fits, fine-tuning each aspect. This drastically reduces the time it takes when transferring 2D sketches to 3D models and is more efficient than switching between paper or 2D graphics and 3D software.

Why Change the Car Body Design Process?

Like a lot of awesome things in this world, video games played a large part in the inspiration for the project. According to an article Roberts posted on LinkedIn, game engine technology allowed them to create realistic VR assets which in turn enable engineers and designers to translate their work better on the virtual plane.

Maclaren VR Car Body Design

Working with Vector Suite founder and CEO Neil Johnston, Roberts was able to create a method which allows designers to switch fluidly between a sketch tool and a 3D VR program, all while giving them the ability to fine-tune a design at any moment.

But why change the process?

Roberts says, “Ultimately, it allows us to create a better product and, therefore, a better driving experience for our customers.”

And in the end, it speeds up the early-concept design phase and lets McLaren’s designers translate their sketch concepts into 3D much faster. This gives them more time to work on other parts of the automobile’s production process. And yes, the designers are even able to generate surfaces with the 3D curves for use in other software, which again saves time downstream in everything from renders to manufacturing prep.

You remember that future of 3D design we kept talking about in years past? The idea of sketching in 3D? Seems it’s here boys and girls.

The post See How McLaren Uses VR for Car Body Design appeared first on SolidSmack.

by Carlos Zotomayor at April 11, 2018 02:41 PM

The SOLIDWORKS Blog

Introducing the Coffee and CAM Video Series

I don’t know about you, but I often find myself going to the internet for everything these days.  Want to see a new recipe?  Go to the web.  Need to know where the new dry cleaner is?  Go to the internet.  What is the correct firing order for a small block Ford engine?  Go to the web.  As a car person, I find myself reading blogs or watching videos regularly to learn new tips and tricks on how to make the process shorter and limit the number of “adult” words used while performing the task.

Coffee and CAM is a new video series that aims to answer questions like these as they relate to manufacturing.  As more and more people are starting to get into the world of manufacturing, it is important to have a place where people can go to see how others approach manufacturing in a real-world environment.

The goal of Coffee and CAM video series is to work through different processes from idea to reality in an informal setting.  As we gather more projects and process, we will add these to our playlists.  Our first episodes cover building clutch mounts, hydraulic reservoirs and a custom shifter for a six-speed swap.

We also bring in a 3D scanner to show how this process is handled for an upcoming project that will be built, tested and installed throughout the year.  You may even see the parts being machined live at SOLIDWORKS World 2019 in Dallas!  We will also be visiting customers and talking with them about how they make components and work through challenges in manufacturing and processes that they are implementing to be a leader in their industry.  Stay tuned as we help showcase what makes design and production so amazing!

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Author information

The post Introducing the Coffee and CAM Video Series appeared first on The SOLIDWORKS Blog.

by Michael Buchli at April 11, 2018 02:15 PM

SolidSmack

Wham-O Introduces a Radical New “Square” Frisbee Design

Although humans have been throwing disc-shaped objects for centuries, it wasn’t until the 1930s when a couple was offered 25 cents for a cake pan they were throwing back and forth did the idea for the modern frisbee start to take shape.

Today, the flexible polypropylene plastic disc is one of the most accessible and favorited outdoor activities—with many businesses even handing branded versions out as promotional material alongside ballpoint pens and mousepads. But like many other classic designs to receive modern updates in recent years, the simple plastic throwable disc is undergoing a design revolution of its own.

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Wham-O, the California toy company who bought the rights to produce the official Frisbee in 1957, launched a Kickstarter campaign to support the production of their Wham-O Frisbee Sonic—a radical new square design inspired by aviary flight that they tout as being “a whole new experience.”

Designed to take advantage of aerodynamic pockets that make catching the Frisbee easier, the updated form is also capable of self-correcting when thrown at a slight angle. From a more ergonomic standpoint, the alternating shape of the new design also allows for more variations in throwing to avoid wrist strain. And with only three points of contact that touch the ground, you can be sure that the reinterpretation will remain free of scuffs and chipped plastic for all those days in the park. Finally—Fido will appreciate the raised surfaces rather than scrapping a flat piece of plastic all of the ground with his snout.

Frisbee Sonic

“The Frisbee Sonic is built from a cube,” explains the company. “The design is the intersection between a sphere and a cube. Not only does the Sonic appear cubic in flight, but six completely flat surfaces form the overall shape – it is not an optical illusion.”

Frisbee Sonic

With five days left to go in their Kickstarter campaign, Wham-O has already raised over $6,000 of their original of $5,000. For those that want to be among the first to experience this all-new square Frisbee, pledges start at just $9. Find out more over on Kickstarter.

The post Wham-O Introduces a Radical New “Square” Frisbee Design appeared first on SolidSmack.

by Simon Martin at April 11, 2018 02:13 PM

Cool Tools of Doom: Trusco Metal Toolboxes

Founded in 1959 as a professional tool manufacturer to support Japan’s burgeoning manufacturing industry, Trusco—a combination of the words “Trust” and “Company”—is still manufacturing some of the best toolboxes, today.

While their stripped-down design makes them a must-have for many design aficionados, the pressed steel boxes are ridiculously useful for just about anything—tools or not.

Still manufactured in Fukui, Japan, Trusco toolboxes now come in more sizes than ever—capable of whatever storage challenges you throw at them.

Trusco Toolboxes [Various Sizes] — Starting at $11.98

Features:

  • Steel body, formed for extra strength
  • Versatile sizing for specific storage solutions
  • Double-hinged construction for smooth opening
  • Dividers included
  • Equally useful in the home, office, or the shop

PURCHASE VIA AMAZON

Affiliate purchases help support SolidSmack through a small commission earned from the sale.
Thank you!

The post Cool Tools of Doom: Trusco Metal Toolboxes appeared first on SolidSmack.

by SolidSmack at April 11, 2018 01:15 PM

The Javelin Blog

SOLIDWORKS PDM Combobox Styles Reference

Within the SOLIDWORKS PDM (Data) Card Editor, there are four different Combobox Styles to list data; Combobox Dropdown, Combobox Simple, Combobox Droplist, and a Listbox:

Combobox Styles

Combobox Styles

I find that I’m always forgetting the difference between them, and it’s not clear from within the editor to see the difference.  The purpose of this article is to act as a SOLIDWORKS PDM Combobox Styles cheat sheet, so you no longer have to jump back and forth between explorer and the editor when creating cards.

Combobox Dropdown

Combobox Dropdown

Combobox Dropdown

Combobox Simple

Combobox Simple

Combobox Simple

With a Combobox Dropdown and a Combobox Simple, users have the option to either enter their own value or select one from the list.

Combobox Droplist

Combobox Droplist

Combobox Droplist

Listbox

Listbox

Listbox

With a Combobox Droplist and a Listbox, users only have the option to choose a value from the predefined list.

The post SOLIDWORKS PDM Combobox Styles Reference appeared first on The Javelin Blog.

by Justin Williams at April 11, 2018 12:00 PM

April 10, 2018

SOLIDWORKS Tech Blog

Top 10 Favorite Features in SOLIDWORKS 2018

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GSC’s technical experts have each selected their favorite features in SOLIDWORKS 2018.

GSC’s Top 10 Features in SOLIDWORKS 2018

  • Mesh Modeling
    Now you can bring in 3D polygon mesh data and incorporate this data into your SOLIDWORKS designs.
  • Mirror 3D Sketch Geometry
    Save design time with the ability to mirror geometry in a 3D sketch. Additionally, planes can be used as the mirror reference in both 2D and 3D sketches.
  • Rotate Linear Pattern
    Linear patterns now rotate at the user’s specified axis and angle.
  • Custom Tabs in PDM
    With SOLIDWORKS PDM API, you can add custom tabs to a PDM vault view in Windows Explorer.
  • Expanded File Types in SOLIDWORKS Inspection
    SOLIDWORKS Inspection now supports more file types allowing users to create inspection reports directly from DWG and CATIA V5 Drawing files.
  • Modify Index in SOLIDWORKS Electrical
    With the addition of Modify Index, users can create connection labels much faster. Instead of editing pasted elements individually, you can select and edit the whole line.
  • Topology Study
    With user-defined goals, the topology study helps you determine the best strength to weight ratio, minimize the mass, or test for multiple load cases simultaneously.
  • Select Over Geometry
    Work faster with the ability to make a box or lasso selection directly over a model’s geometry. You can even select multiple items using the Control key.
  • SOLIDWORKS CAM
    SOLIDWORKS CAM leverages proven CAMWorks technology to communicate with CNC machines. What previously required a license from a third-party is now included in every seat of SOLIDWORKS 2018.
  • Hide Surfaces
    Use the ALT key to temporarily hide surfaces and quickly select the hidden faces.

Author information

GSC
GSC fuels customer success with 3D engineering solutions for design, simulation, data management, technical documentation, and 3D printing, as well as the most comprehensive consulting, technical support, and training in the industry. As a leading provider of SOLIDWORKS solutions and Stratasys 3D printing technologies, GSC’s world-class team of dedicated professionals have helped numerous companies innovate and increase productivity by leveraging advanced technologies to drive 3D business success. Founded in 1989, GSC is headquartered in Germantown, WI. For more information about GSC, please visit www.gsc-3d.com.

The post Top 10 Favorite Features in SOLIDWORKS 2018 appeared first on SOLIDWORKS Tech Blog.

by GSC at April 10, 2018 01:41 PM

SOLIDWORKS Support Monthly News – April 2018

Hello to all,

Welcome to this new edition of the SOLIDWORKS Support Monthly News, coauthored by members of the SOLIDWORKS Technical Support teams worldwide.

SOLIDWORKS 2020 will be the final release of SOLIDWORKS Supported on Windows 7

As Microsoft has announced the end of life plan for Windows 7 Support, SOLIDWORKS 2020 will be the final planned release of SOLIDWORKS which supports Windows 7.  Starting with SOLIDWORKS 2018 SP3, reminder messages will appear within the software so that users have ample notice prior this change. SOLIDWORKS 2010 will be the final release of SOLIDWORKS supported on Windows 7. SOLIDWORKS 2021 will not run on Windows 7.

In general, refer to the SOLIDWORKS System Requirements page.

Do you want 10x faster rendering in SOLIDWORKS® Visualize 2018 SP3?

By Julien Boissat

To take advantage of this performance boost, you must make sure the GPU your NVIDIA graphic card is compatible with the new AI denoiser in SOLIDWORKS® Visualize 2018 SP3.

The update to include the AI Denoiser means we can no longer support very old NVIDIA graphics card of the Fermi generation. These cards no longer supported are Quadro FX series and Quadro x000. Updating to Visualize 2018 SP3 and newer with these outdated cards will result in Visualize not using your GPU and run in CPU-only mode. To continue using Visualize with your Fermi generation GPU, please remain on Visualize 2018 SP2 and do not update to new versions until you have a graphics card of Kepler generation or newer.

Here is a table which summarizes the evolution of supported NVIDIA® GPU microarchitectures:

SOLIDWORKS Visualize

 Version

2017 SP0.0 and older

2017 SP1.0 to 2018 SP2.0

2018 SP3.0 and future

AI denoiser

No

No

Yes

Supported NVIDIA® GPU microarchitectures

Maxwell
Kepler
Fermi

Pascal
Maxwell
Kepler
Fermi

Volta
Pascal
Maxwell
Kepler

Wonder what NVIDIA® GPU microarchitecture is on your computer? Please check this Wikipedia page for all NVIDIA graphics cards ever made, with their chip generation.

If you think it’s time to replace your graphic card, you’ll be happy to know we’re offering a  limited-time 30% discount on Quadro P4000.

To learn more about the new AI Denoiser  and the time-limited discount offer, click here.

Note:

  • The new AI Denoiser has a minimum hardware requirement of 4GB VRAM. Machines featuring a graphic card with less VRAM will not be able to use the AI Denoiser feature, but will still be able to use the GPU for rendering. More technical details in Solution Id: S-072096.
  • Even if your graphics card supports the AI denoiser, you may still need to update your driver. Please make sure to check out the SOLIDWORKS Certified Graphics Driver page once 2018 SP3.0 is released.

An Inside Look at Archive Replication in SOLIDWORKS® PDM Professional

By Kevin Crawford

Have you ever struggled with setting up or troubleshooting issues with Archive Replication in SOLIDWORKS® PDM Professional?  I want to explain how it works behind the scenes that may help in troubleshooting replication.

What happens when a vault is replicated?

When setting up replication, there are a number of things that happen in the database and on the replicated archive server.

  1. Empty archive folders for the vault are created on the replicated archive server
  2. The registry on the remote server is updated with the vault information
  3. The remote server is added and assigned a unique ArchiveServerID in the ArchiveServers table
  4. All existing files in the Documents table are added to the ArchiveServerStored table. Database now “knows” that the first archive server has all the files and the new remote server has none. Vault is now replicated to new server.

What happens when a user Gets Latest Version of a file?

When a user “Gets” a file, the client system will check the database to determine which server has the version of the file based on the information in the ArchiveServerStored table.

  1. If the archive server that the client is attached to does not have the file, the archive folder is created and the index.xml file is created on the replicated archive server. The index.xml file is used by the archive server to know which physical file (version) to send to a requesting client or replicated archive server.
  2. A record of the replicated file, version, and archive server is added to the ArchiveServerStored table.
  3. The file is copied from the source archive server to the replicated archive server.
  4. The file is cached to the client vault view and is now available for the user

Summary

When setting up replication be sure to refer to the Replication Guide found in the PDM installation folder, typically located under ‘C:\Program Files\SOLIDWORKS Corp\SOLIDWORKS PDM\Lang’ and inside the appropriate language folder.  When troubleshooting replication failures, common issues include a communication failure between archive servers or missing information either in the database or on the archive server.  A couple of the most common communicatio   n issues are the servers are unable to find the server name or the port is being blocked.  Ensure DNS (Domain Name System) lookup is working over a WAN.  If DNS lookup is not working, add an entry to the hosts file to map the server name to the IP address (see S-037242).  Check to make sure the port used by the archive servers (typically 3030) is open and any security software or devices are not blocking it.  Use the Network Connectivity Test Tool to help identify communication issues (see S-069274).  I hope this helps explain what happens behind the scenes with replication and provides some things to check when troubleshooting problems.

You can test SOLIDWORKS 2018 SP3.0 EV (Early Visibility) ONLINE!

We are making big changes to the EV program. Starting with SP3, Service Packs can be run from a browser with zero install. Yes, you read that correctly!

Any customer who is on subscription can run EV online. You can launch EV Online from www.mysolidworks.com

Main benefits

  • No installation
  • Instant access
  • More platforms. You can run SOLIDWORKS from Windows and Linux PCs, Macs, and Chromebooks using an HTML5 web browser (Chrome, Internet Explorer, and Firefox)
  • No signup is required
  • You can quickly check if a specific issue is fixed and test to make an informed upgrade decision
  • Allows next SP to be run in parallel with your production version

To report an issue, use the new ‘Send Feedback’ UI that is built right into SOLIDWORKS EV.

To access your SOLIDWORKS files from SOLIDWORKS EV, first upload them to Dropbox or Google Drive and then select that location from File > Open.

Simulation Step-Up Series

Last month, Rameshgave an Introduction to Nonlinear analysis. This month, for the final video of the Simulation Step-Up Series, Joe discusses Thermal Analysis.

<iframe allow="autoplay; encrypted-media" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen" frameborder="0" height="641" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/FUQ33ARf4yU?feature=oembed" width="1140"></iframe>

Thanks for having followed all the videos of the Simulation Step-Up Series. If you want to view the videos again, click here.

Noteworthy Solutions from the SOLIDWORKS Knowledge Base

icon - SW In the SOLIDWORKS® Resource Monitor or SOLIDWORKS, why do I see the warnings: ‘Available open document capacity is low’, ‘Available open document capacity is critically low’, and ‘WARNING! SOLIDWORKS is running critically’?
SOLIDWORKS monitors your entire computer system resource usage in real time while SOLIDWORKS is running, including Windows® Graphical Device Interface (GDI) objects. The Windows OS limits the maximum number of GDI objects available for each process to 10,000 GDI objects. Once any process nears the 10,000 GDI Object limit, the process can become unstable.
For more information about how SOLIDWORKS uses GDI objects, see Solution Id: S-074412.

 

Icon - EPDM After upgrading to SOLIDWORKS® PDM 2018, why does the variable value not appear in the output file name of PDF files generated by the ‘Convert’ task?
To resolve this issue, follow the steps in Solution Id: S-074089.

Why do I receive the error: ‘Exception code 0xc0000005 thrown at address XXX in: XXX file version XXX…’?
This message appears because the solver crashed for an unknown reason. SOLIDWORKS detected the solver crash and returns this message to inform about the circumstances of the problem.
As a user, you cannot overcome a solver crash. What you should do is take a full screen capture with the error message, and send it along with the model to your support contact.
For more information, see Solution Id: S-074253.

Why do I receive the error ‘Abnormal bolt pretension is detected during the modifying pretension cycle…’?While performing the preliminary run to determine how to adjust the pretension in the Bolt Connectors, the solver determined that the adjusted pretension values it obtained are abnormally high. This can occur by mistake if the bolt connection is extremely soft (very low stiffness compared to surrounding bodies).
For more information, see Solution Id: S-074092.


That’s it for this month. Thanks for reading this edition of SOLIDWORKS Support News. If you need additional help with these issues or any others, please contact your SOLIDWORKS Value Added Reseller.

Also, comments and suggestions are welcome. You can enter them below.

Author information

Julien Boissat
Sr. Technical Customer Support Engineer, SolidWorks, EMEA at DS SolidWorks Corp.
I have been a Tech Support engineer for Simulation products since 2002. I was previously a product manager at SRAC, the original makers of COSMOS for those who remember that time! ;-). I am currently in charge of the content of the certification exams for simulation products. I also initiated and still author the Simulation Knowledge Base and participate as much as possible in the expansion and evolution of the SolidWorks Knowledge Base. Finally, I handle the SolidWorks Support Monthly News blog.

The post SOLIDWORKS Support Monthly News – April 2018 appeared first on SOLIDWORKS Tech Blog.

by Julien Boissat at April 10, 2018 12:48 PM

SolidSmack

SolidSmack Radio | Snakeskin Drill Bit Suitcase (Powered by Spotify)

Get that stretch out of your system with this week’s Spotify-powered SolidSmack Radio Playlist. It’s fashioned up, ready to make you pull your shoulder blades back and knock out another week of meaningful work while you bob your head to the beat. Whether you’re in the shop milling aluminum, sketching the latest product prototypes or modeling up a 3D storm, consider these tracks as a tool for your process.

This week we’ll get the groove going with “100 Million” from Charlie Hilton before diving into sweet melodies from Mac DeMarco, Happiness, DYAN, Future Islands, and others before wrapping up with “A Great Snake” from The Lemon Twigs. Rock!

Have suggestions? As always, let us know what you listen to, what you want to hear and what tunes get you through the week. Shoot us an email or leave a comment down below!!

*Note: if the embedded playlist below doesn’t work for you, try this.

<iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="0" height="775" src="https://open.spotify.com/embed/user/evdmedia/playlist/1TwlsHM8pgHCtf71m2MHzz" width="100%"></iframe>

The post SolidSmack Radio | Snakeskin Drill Bit Suitcase (Powered by Spotify) appeared first on SolidSmack.

by SolidSmack at April 10, 2018 12:21 PM

Model of the Week: Kid-Size Predator Mask [I Ain’t Got Time To Bleed!]

3d printed Predator mask

I know you’ve all see Predator. What? You’ve not seen the 1987 sci-fi horror flick starring Arnold Schwarzenegger? Push your computer off the desk and go and watch it NOW. You’re welcome for learning how to survive an alien with a tri-laser, arm nuke and jowls that will make curl up in a ball and call your dentist.

Anywho. Why a kid-size Predator mask you ask? Because THAT’S not super creepy. Baby Predators. Can you imagine? They’re probably like baby snakes – WAY more lethal, shoulder blastin’ everyone at the slightest offense. Sheesh. And we have Oskar Mohar to thank. He made the Predator mask for his 8-year-old. YES. To go along with a complete Predator costume. YEEE-EEES. Pretty much dad-o-the-year material there, Mr. Mohar.

3d printed Predator mask

This mask is a part of the whole costume–I printed whole bunch of other stuff, wrist claws (non-retractable) (modified from some other model), wrist detonator (with led lights) (modified from some other model), shoulder armor, belt, bombs on the belt, skulls around the neck.. And a spear (extendable).. And a really cool cardboard backpack.. And.. more stuff.

You totally need to share the other bits, Oskar.

Now, the mask is sized for a 8-year-old kid, but you can scale it up, of course. Oskar printed it in three pieces, support free. The horns don’t have alignment pins so you’ll need some horn-aligning skills there. For the tri-laser light, he hot-glued a 3-light LED strip into the mask, overlayed with a scratched lens to diffuse the light.

You can download the model on MyMiniFactory. (Bonus! Check out his Adventure Time BMO face-changing monitor topper here! YES!)

Have a model you think everyone needs? Share the link and details with us here!

This post features affiliate links which helps support SolidSmack through a small commission earned from the sale at no extra cost to you! Thank you for your help in moving away from banner ads by delivering better content!

The post Model of the Week: Kid-Size Predator Mask [I Ain’t Got Time To Bleed!] appeared first on SolidSmack.

by Josh Mings at April 10, 2018 12:02 PM

The Javelin Blog

Why is the SOLIDWORKS PDM Update Variable greyed out when using Set Revision?

A question I run into often while on tech support is:

“Why is the SOLIDWORKS PDM Update Variable checkbox greyed out when using the Set Revision tool?”

SOLIDWORKS PDM Update Variable disabled

Set Revision – Update Variable Greyed Out

The minimum permissions required to use Set Revision are;

  • Folder Permission
    • Set Revision
  • State Permission
    • Set Revision

But to also update the variable will require;

  • Folder Permission
    • Check out file
  • State Permission
    • Check out file
Set Revision - Update Variable - Required Permissions

Set Revision – Update Variable – Required Permissions

With the Check out file permission added, you’ll be able to also update the variable when using Set Revision;

Set Revision - Update Variable - Complete

Set Revision

If you’re of the mindset that the Check out file permissions shouldn’t be necessary to update the variable, you’re not alone.  There’s an existing enhancement request to have this requirement removed;

SPR# 898366: ‘Set Revision’ feature should not require ‘Check Out File’ permission to increment revision without update to variable (data card).

If this sounds appealing, you can vote on this via the SOLIDWORKS Customer Portal.

The post Why is the SOLIDWORKS PDM Update Variable greyed out when using Set Revision? appeared first on The Javelin Blog.

by Justin Williams at April 10, 2018 12:00 PM

SolidSmack

Does This Rendering Suggest Spotify Really is Stepping Into Hardware Design?

As reported on SolidSmack back in February, music streaming service Spotify is getting into the hardware game—as evidenced by three job postings for hardware engineers or supply chain managers.

“Spotify is on its way to creating its first physical products and setting up an operational organization for manufacturing, supply chain, sales & marketing,” explained the job posting for Operations Manager – Hardware Product. “We are looking for a passionate and seasoned Operations Manager that will contribute to the creation of innovative Spotify experiences via connected hardware.”

While some SolidSmack readers suggested that the company remain focused on making a better digital product rather than focusing on hardware to add to our existing plethora of devices, The Verge suggests that the company may, in fact, be unveiling a standalone audio player at a press event on April 24th.

According to The Verge writer Chris Welch, back in February, several Spotify customers reported seeing an offer inside their Spotify app for a hardware device as a part of a new subscription. The minimalist circular device featured subtle buttons, and a green LED light.

Could there be a potential market for a standalone audio player? For those looking to simplify and escape from the “information overload” that comes naturally on our existing devices, a smart and low-cost standalone player just might make sense. Either way, we’ll have to wait until April 24th to find out.

The post Does This Rendering Suggest Spotify Really is Stepping Into Hardware Design? appeared first on SolidSmack.

by Simon Martin at April 10, 2018 11:51 AM

The SOLIDWORKS Blog

Self-Sailing Ships: The New Way to Travel the Seven Seas

autonomous_ship_rolls_ royce

autonomous_ship_rolls_ royce

Ever since humanity crawled from the oceans it seems we have been fixated with returning to them. From humble vine-bound wooden rafts to town-sized liners transporting thousands of holidaying guests at a time, it’s fair to say that, as a species, we’ve got travelling the oceans covered.

Now, finally, it might be time for people to step away from the big blue once again. The latest ocean-going vessels have no need for a human captain and the era of self-sailing ships is approaching at a rate of knots.

From ship to shore…

Shipping is big business: a global industry worth tens of billions of dollars. Millions of containers packed with trillions of products are routinely transported atop the waves. It’s a huge undertaking that requires on-board crews and resources for those employees. Now the maritime industry is looking to reduce the cost of cargo shipping with autonomous technology pioneered by Rolls-Royce.

The Rolls-Royce of the ocean waves

The world-famous engineering company is proposing an autonomous ship design that employs HD cameras relayed to shore-bound surveillance teams, sensor technology, thermal imaging and thermal radar. It’s an ambitious project that combines today’s cutting edge communications technology, to make the cargo ship of tomorrow.

Drones are now commonplace and driverless cars are finally in gear. Engineering has brought the world autonomous vehicles, on the ground and in the air. Yet, with two-thirds of our planet covered in water, you might be forgiven for assuming that we might have done the same on the seas sooner.

Setting a 2020 deadline to produce the first crew-reduced vessel, Rolls-Royce envisages a further fifteen years to perfect the design of a fully-functional autonomous ship. It’s not an unreasonable deadline. Smaller, scaled down vessels are already in use by naval forces and researchers – and have been for several years. So if the necessary technology has existed for this long, why is the autonomous shipping movement only just beginning to make waves?

Crews, money and laws

Firstly, there is sizeable resistance within the industry itself to the new technology. Autonomous shipping means smaller crews and, ultimately, no crews. Perhaps understandably there is reluctance to embrace an evolution of the industry that leads to fewer jobs.

Similarly there is dispute over the costs of the venture. While one figure credits autonomous shipping with a transport cost saving of 22 percent, another puts the crewing costs of running a ship at a mere 6 percent. It’s hard to gauge how financially viable investing in autonomous shipping technology really is.

Lastly sending unmanned ships into chartered waters is, ironically, something of a venture into unchartered waters. Liability for unmanned accidents and mishaps on the seven seas is a legal quagmire for which there is currently very little legislation. As progress develops rapidly on the first voyage to set sail, governments are going to have to tie up any legal loopholes to keep laws watertight for the rare occasions when the ships themselves aren’t.

Captain, no captain

Despite these hurdles the autonomous program is steaming on, with many key industry players on board. The rapid rise of smart technology has pushed the possibilities of logistics in waves just this past decade, with the autonomous cargo ship merely a few years from making her first journey. Against the backdrop of ever-advancing progress, the dissenting voices may increasingly become a drop in the ocean.

Author information

SOLIDWORKS UK
Dassault Systèmes SolidWorks Corp. offers complete 3D software tools that let you create, simulate, publish, and manage your data. SolidWorks products are easy to learn and use, and work together to help you design products better, faster, and more cost-effectively. The SolidWorks focus on ease-of-use allows more engineers, designers and other technology professionals than ever before to take advantage of 3D in bringing their designs to life.

The post Self-Sailing Ships: The New Way to Travel the Seven Seas appeared first on The SOLIDWORKS Blog.

by SOLIDWORKS UK at April 10, 2018 11:00 AM

April 09, 2018

SolidSmack

Handmade ‘Rocket League’ Cars Based on Video Game Characters

Rocket League Custom Cars

If you’re looking for a video game to play with friends or your kids, Rocket League is a great way to remove stress, bond with them, and crush them in race to the finish intensity. It’s basically soccer only, instead of football players, you’re controlling a virtual RC car which can double jump and rocket boost around a custom-made arena (hence the name Rocket League).

It’s a fairly simple game with a lot of depth to it; so much so that it has its own Esports division and a HUGE fan following. One of these fans, Kim Szkudlarek, has gone above and beyond to create a number of custom Rocket League cars.

What’s the big deal? Every car she makes follows a theme of a video game character from another franchise and she’s painted up the custom design herself.

Most of her creations follow the Overwatch characters, from a sleek Tracer speeder to a boxier Reaper muscle car. By far the best thing about these babies is how they look like cars which the heroes would actually drive–can you guess which one is whose?

Rocket League Custom Cars

Rocket League Custom Cars

Custom Rocket League Cars

Rocket League Custom Cars

Custom Rocket League Cars

Custom Rocket League Cars

Custom Rocket League Cars

She does have cars from other games, such as a sky blue Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild-themed octane racing car and a purple Spyro The Dragon racer (both of which share the same design but with altered paint jobs).

Rocket League Custom Cars

Custom Rocket League Cars

The cars are remodeled plastic pull-back racers by Zag Toys and measure around 2.5 x 1.375 x 0.75 inches. After remodeling them, Kim hand paints each racer using acrylics before sealing them with either a satin or glossy finish. Considering the work she puts into every car, it’s no wonder there are only one of each car available for sale.

Apart from handmade toy cars, she also has some awesome animal portraits. You can find them as well as her Rocket League– inspired builds over on her Etsy page.

The post Handmade ‘Rocket League’ Cars Based on Video Game Characters appeared first on SolidSmack.

by Carlos Zotomayor at April 09, 2018 09:24 PM

The Javelin Blog

Metal 3D Printing Materials Analysis – Everything You Need to Know

Javelin Technologies, known across Canada as a top reseller for SOLIDWORKS software and the full range of Stratasys 3D printers, has added Desktop Metal 3D printing systems to our additive manufacturing offerings.

During this live webinar, our special guest from Desktop Metal will present a thorough look at all the metal materials currently available for the Desktop Metal Studio System.

We will also run a Question & Answer session, where the following questions — and your questions — will be answered: 

  • How do metal 3D printed parts compare to a conventionally created parts in terms of hardness, resistance and strength? 
  • What is the grain structure like in comparison to other metal printers? 
  • With the addition of a binder, and removal of the binder, are there impurities or residual product left over in the end part post-sintering? 
  • Can Desktop Metal make custom materials at a cost to the customer? 
  • When will Aluminum be available? 
  • Can the parts be heat treated? If so, are there any limitations? 
  • Are there any considerations that need to be taken when machining prints?

<iframe allow="autoplay; encrypted-media" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen" frameborder="0" height="281" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/dTFwhgKhdyw?feature=oembed" width="500"></iframe>

Desktop Metal Materials

Prototype and mass produce with the same alloys

Desktop Metal designed their systems to use the same MIM (Metal Injection Molding) materials used in traditional manufacturing. This opens up an ecosystem of low-cost, high-quality alloys with a mature supply chain and well-studied process controls.

200+ compatible alloys

By enabling the use of metal powders from the MIM industry, the Desktop Metal systems have access to a wide range of existing materials—from steels and aluminum to superalloys and titanium.

Up to 80% cheaper

Laser-based systems require specially formulated, cost-prohibitive metal powders. We use metal powder with a wide particle size distribution, enabling much lower materials costs.

The post Metal 3D Printing Materials Analysis – Everything You Need to Know appeared first on The Javelin Blog.

by Rod Mackay at April 09, 2018 01:03 PM

SolidSmack

The Monday List 15.18 | What We’re Reading This Week

Mondays might not be your favorite day of the week, but the good news is that we’re all in this together ladies and gentlemen. As purveyors of prime Grade A web content, the SolidSmack crew has done some of the heavy-lifting to make sure you get your Mondays started on the right track.

Welcome to The Monday List.

Every Monday, we link you up with some of the most insightful, informative, and socially-relevant stories to keep tabbed, bookmarked, reading listed, pocketed, or what have you to get your week started on the right foot. Be sure to check in each week for a new crop of freshly sprouted words curated straight from the source of your favorite homegrown ‘Smack.

What We’re Reading This Week:

Popular Apps Are Leaving the Apple Watch

Is that a bad sign?

Popular Apps Are Leaving the Apple Watch

Why Zuckerberg’s 14-Year Apology Tour Hasn’t Fixed Facebook

Facebook’s CEO’s constant apologies aren’t a promise to do better. They’re a symptom of a profound crisis of accountability.

Why Zuckerberg’s 14-Year Apology Tour Hasn’t Fixed Facebook

New Sentences: From ‘Coffee Lids: Peel, Pinch, Pucker, Puncture’

‘The coffee lid’s entire purpose is to prevent the loss of coffee due to movement of the cup, but it still must have a penetration to enable drinking.’

New Sentences: From ‘Coffee Lids: Peel, Pinch, Pucker, Puncture’

How Volkswagen Walked Away From a Near-Fatal Crash

The diesel cheating scandal nearly ended the company. Now it’s the No. 1 car seller on the planet, with staggering electric goals.

How Volkswagen Walked Away From a Near-Fatal Crash

An (Apple) Education

The reality distortion field meets a market it can’t penetrate…

An (Apple) Education

How the Avocado Became the Fruit of Global Trade

The precious commodity that drives Michoacán’s economy and feeds an American obsession is not marijuana or methamphetamines but avocados, which local residents have taken to calling “green gold.”

How the Avocado Became the Fruit of Global Trade

The post The Monday List 15.18 | What We’re Reading This Week appeared first on SolidSmack.

by SolidSmack at April 09, 2018 12:57 PM

The Javelin Blog

How to attach additional leader lines to SOLIDWORKS Balloons

Does your company require you to have every part in a drawing identified to avoid confusion? This blog post will show you how to identify every item in your drawing view without requiring extra SOLIDWORKS balloons.

When you identify every item in an assembly drawing do your views end up looking like the example below where most of the drawing space is taken up by balloons? This method leaves little room for additional information such as dimensions or annotations.

Messy drawing views containing SOLIDWORKS Balloons

Having multiple copies of balloons can be very messy

Another way to detail these parts without requiring additional balloons is to simply drag out another leader line from the existing item call out.

Use one Balloon to create multiple leader lines

Use CTRL to drag the blue dot to another instance of the item

Once the balloon is selected, hold CTRL while clicking and dragging the blue box at the end of the leader line over to another instance of the same component. This works with multiple components within one drawing view, and also between drawing views.

Cleaner drawing view with one balloon feeding multiple instances

With all instances of an item detailed from one balloon, more space is left for adding dimensions or annotations while keeping the drawing view organized.

Finish your drawing view by adding even more detail with a quantity value on the balloon.

Quantity values may be added to ensure full clarity

Quantity values may be added to ensure full clarity

Learn more SOLIDWORKS Balloons techniques

For even more drawing techniques, attend a SOLIDWORKS Drawings training course available both live online and in person at a Canadian training facility near you. Check our Training Schedule for the next available class, or call a Javelin training representative today (1-877-219-6757) to find out about all of the courses available from Javelin.

The post How to attach additional leader lines to SOLIDWORKS Balloons appeared first on The Javelin Blog.

by Bryan Sprange, CSWE at April 09, 2018 12:00 PM

April 08, 2018

SOLIDWORKS Tech Blog

Archive Management and Relocation – Part 2 – Distribution

SOLIDWORKS PDM Tech Tip

Written by: Bryce Hooper, Application Engineer @ DASI Solutions

 

It is important to know that the location where our data is stored is not a place that is forever set in stone. There will always be situations where we need more space, more speed, or – in a bad situation – have a failing drive. Here, we can find the methods used to relocate and redistribute our vault storage.

Distribution

The archive file store can be relocated into as many as 16 locations. This load split is done from the archive server and can be done to any directories or drives that the server has access to. This can be drives that are located on the network or physically attached to the server. This is the best method for addressing space concerns that doesn’t result in an entire server move as we are adapting the hardware that we are using instead of removing data.

Built-in Archive Relocation

We start this process by launching the Archive Server Configuration application from the start menu. If, upon launch, a dialog is not shown, check the task tray by the clock as in the image below. Right click this and select “Open”.

PDM Archive Server Configuration Application

In the tool, you will find your vault(s) listed in the main pane by selecting “This Computer” and the folder that is located underneath that. Select the vault that we want to relocate and right click. Select “Relocate” from the menu that shows.

Note:  The directory that contains your vaults may be different than the image below.

SOLIDWORKS PDM Archive Server

The resulting dialog will give us a few options in how we would like to relocate our vault data. In the example below, I am relocating 25% of my vault structure to a networked location.

Note: It is important to understand that the process moves the 25% of the archive structure NOT 25% of the total sum of data. The archive can be moved in 1/16th increments. This is due to the nature of how the vault is organized. Each file upon entry into the vault is assigned a File ID. This ID is translated into a hexadecimal (base 16) number. Files are organized in the archive based on this number. Each file will land in a folder for the last digit of its hexadecimal ID. This relocation will relocate any number of those 16 folders to a new location. Folders will not be split into different drives and each folder size may vary with the number of versions and actual data size per file of the files located in these folders. 

File Vault Relocation

The relocation dialog will indicate that the percentage of the vault being stored must be 100% across all locations. The total size is displayed numerically along with a color indicator. Green is good and red is either less than or greater than 100%. The dialog will not close if this is the case. Percentages of the archive store are set by clicking the path in the highlighted area and then adjusting the slider. To add more paths, click the “Add” button and direct to a new path. If a full move is being performed, adjust the original path to 0%. Clicking OK will prompt to make sure that all users are logged out of the vault before this move is started. Click OK to start the process from there. A progress dialog will indicate that files are being moved. This process should not be interrupted once started. Allow this to complete and users will be able to log in and use the vault without issue.

Considerations:

If your vault is large, it may be best to relocate in small increments of 1/16th at a time. This will avoid overloading the server during the process and locking up.

Manual Relocation

If your vault is particularly large to the degree of Terabytes (or close to), it may be best to perform a manual move. This method involves fewer dialogs and safety checks, but is still fairly simple.

To start this process, stop the PDM Archive Server service from running. Then, obtain the directory of your current archive data by either looking in the Archive Server Configuration tool as detailed above or look at the registry settings for the archive locations. This will come in handy to have open later, so is the advised method. Open the registry editor and navigate to the following keys.

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\SolidWorks\Applications\PDMWorks Enterprise\ArchiveServer\Vaults\[Vault Name]\ArchiveTable\

 

PDM Registry Editor

Each of these keys give the specific location to one of our archive folders. Here, we can determine where they currently reside and then alter where the archive will look for that folder once restarted. With the Archive Server Service still stopped, locate one of these folders and manually move it to the new location. Then, change the value for the respective key to the new path. After the move has been completed, the Archive Server Service can be restarted and the change will be in effect.

Disclaimer

Before taking any steps to relocate, remove or compress data, please ensure that all files have been checked in by the users, backups have been taken of both the database and archives. In the event of a relocation, have all users log off or go into Offline Mode before attempting the move.

 

Author information

DASI Solutions
DASI Solutions
DASI Solutions is dedicated to service and support. As one of a handful of original, charter value-added resellers (VAR) in the SolidWorks Community, DASI Solutions has built partnerships and success stories with many of our customers. We are very pleased to bring you SolidWorks 3D CAD design engineering software and 3D printing services.

The post Archive Management and Relocation – Part 2 – Distribution appeared first on SOLIDWORKS Tech Blog.

by DASI Solutions at April 08, 2018 01:00 PM

April 07, 2018

SolidSmack

The SolidSmack Weekend Reader | Week 14.18

Filmmaker Gary Hustwit Releases Teasers for Upcoming Dieter Rams Documentary

Don your favorite bathrobe, cream that coffee and get comfortable with this week’s SolidSmack Weekend Reader.

The Weekend Reader features a handful of the most interesting articles featured on the ‘Smack over the past week ranging from tips and tricks to inspirational designs, processes, and more. So lay back, relax and take a load off while reading the top stories on SolidSmack this past week.

Oh and uh…don’t forget to shed some much-needed sunlight on your face, too.

The New iPad and Chromebook Tablets for Educators Are Also Great Options for Pros

If you’ve been on the fence about finally entering into digital tablet sketching (or notetaking) territory, both Google and Apple revealed some great news for you this week.</spcan>

The New iPad and Chromebook Tablets for Educators Are Also Great Options for Pros

How To Create A Kitchen Knife From Everyday Aluminum Foil

YouTube user kiwami japan has a bit of an odd obsession with making homemade blades and other weapons from obscure and unusual materials. Case in point. This knife wasn’t made from a hard-to-find metal, but from a roll of aluminum foil you likely have stashed in your cupboard to wrap a sandwich or make tin foil hats.

How To Create A Kitchen Knife From Everyday Aluminum Foil

The AssembleAR App Turns IKEA Build Instructions Into an Interactive Experience

Although IKEA takes the cake for masterminding the ready-to-assemble (or flat-pack) furniture, the concept was initially captured in an 1878 US patent described as “(A) class of furniture which is so constructed that it may be packed and transported in parts, and put together for use by skilled or unskilled persons.”

The AssembleAR App Turns IKEA Build Instructions Into an Interactive Experience

Filmmaker Gary Hustwit Releases Teasers for Upcoming Dieter Rams Documentary

Since raising nearly $300K from backers on Kickstarter in 2016, documentary filmmaker Gary Hustwit has been hard at work putting the finishing touches on Rams — the first feature documentary film covering the life and philosophies of design icon Dieter Rams.

Filmmaker Gary Hustwit Releases Teasers for Upcoming Dieter Rams Documentary

Behind the Design: Mike Clifford’s Maple Wood and White Concrete Table

It’s always nice to see well-designed creations built from relatively cheap materials. With a little ingenuity and (in some cases) a lot of hard work, you don’t need a fortune to craft something worthy of a showroom floor. Among others, master builder Mike Clifford recently proved this with his homemade white glass-fiber reinforced concrete (GFRC) table.

Behind the Design: Mike Clifford’s Maple Wood and White Concrete Table

Industrial Designer Eric Strebel Launches 3-Part Series on Modeling with Bondo

When working on a project for a client, designer Eric Strebel likes to help out his fellow man by dropping some of his own modelling tips and tricks along the way. He’s already showed us how to create casting boxes, approximately a hundred cast parts from scratch, and his personal process for low volume manufacturing. This time around, Strebel is working with something a little closer to home.

Industrial Designer Eric Strebel Launches 3-Part Series on Modeling with Bondo

The post The SolidSmack Weekend Reader | Week 14.18 appeared first on SolidSmack.

by SolidSmack at April 07, 2018 08:00 AM

April 06, 2018

SOLIDWORKS Tech Blog

SOLIDWORKS 2018: 3D Sketch Mirroring

Unlike older versions of SOLIDWORKS where symmetry couldn’t be defined, the newly introduced 3D Sketch Mirroring tool in SOLIDWORKS 2018 enables you to create complex sketches very quickly and easily. To put this into context, the older way of doing things meant symmetrical shapes built up from 3D sketches were either a lengthy process to create (each sketch item would have to independently drawn), or symmetry would have to be defined at feature level, which wasn’t always as effective within our models.

How does 3D Sketch Mirroring work?

Step 1: Let’s start by mirroring a partially created sketch. Rather than a centre line for mirroring, planes are used to create 3D sketch mirrors. The mirror tool is the same as it ever was and is accessed from the sketch toolbar. All that we need to define is the entities to mirror and the sketch plane to mirror about, which is selected in the lower box.

Step 2: Repeat this process to complete your sketch – mirroring around the Front plane this time.

You will notice that lines crossing the centre will be merged where they lie perpendicular to our plane. This is one of the main advantages of 3D Sketch Mirroring compared to the old way of doing things using the mirror feature. It means that weldment profiles will continue across centre planes rather than having a break where two lines meet.

Step 3: Complete your sketch with a few dimensions.

Using Instant 2D, you can see that symmetry is maintained when making a change. The functionality will work the same as in a 2D sketch, Symmetric relations are used to define the locations of sketch entities. It is worth noting that the ability to mirror around planes will also work in 2D sketches.

This functionality allows you to build up extremely complex sketches very quickly. Keep this in mind when building up 3D sketches. You will find this functionality works best if complex sketches can be broken up into several independent sketches.

See it in action – Watch the video!

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We hope you found that useful!

Have you seen our blog archive where we have posted plenty of helpful articles? We also have a fantastic video library filled with easy-to-follow videos on a number of topics inspired by other SOLIDWORKS users – take a look. Also, don’t forget to follow Innova Systems on Twitter for daily bite size SOLIDWORKS tips, tricks and videos.

Author information

Innova Systems
We specialise in the supply, technical support and training of SOLIDWORKS software. Based in Cambridge we have a central location to service a UK wide customer base. We offer the skills and experience to help you develop new products using SOLIDWORKS - empowering smarter, faster and more cost effective design. We've been recognised by SOLIDWORKS Corporation for providing the highest rated customer support in Northern Europe in 2014, 2015 and 2016. Email: info@innova-systems.co.uk / Telephone: 01223 200690.

The post SOLIDWORKS 2018: 3D Sketch Mirroring appeared first on SOLIDWORKS Tech Blog.

by Innova Systems at April 06, 2018 02:22 PM

SolidSmack

Industrial Designer Eric Strebel Launches 3-Part Series on Modeling with Bondo

When working on a project for a client, designer Eric Strebel likes to help out his fellow man by dropping some of his own modelling tips and tricks along the way. He’s already showed us how to create casting boxes, approximately a hundred cast parts from scratch, and his personal process for low volume manufacturing. This time around, Strebel is working with something a little closer to home.

Bondo is a material almost any car nut or wannabe repairman will be familiar with. Released as a brand of polyester body fillers under the 3M conglomerate, most folks use this sticky putty as a universal answer to their house or car’s injuries. While these were the initial reasons Robert Merton Spink created Bondo to replace more toxic lead-based fillers, Strebel gives a great introduction from a designer’s perspective on how to get the most out of this indispensable body filler.

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After mixing the fiberglass resin and liquid hardener, he demonstrates a few ways Bondo can be applied to solve everyday hardware problems:

  1. Filling Holes

As the pitch for the product already says, Bondo makes for a pretty amazing filler. Because of the putty’s thickness, it can support its weight without dripping. Strebel demonstrates this by covering the ends of a small copper pipe and a PVC pipe. He then puts the later on a sheet of wax paper to prevent the Bondo from sticking to another surface while it dries.

  1. It works well on wood, foam, and carbon fiber

For modeling purposes, Bondo’s density lets it stick well to pieces of wood, foam, and carbon fiber. These materials aren’t affected by the polyester resin, so they allow the Bondo to be applied without surface deterioration.

  1. Don’t stick it on polystyrene unless you’re planning to apply it on something else afterwards

This may sound like a bit of a downer, but Bondo does not stick to polystyrene. Further, the resin also breaks down the material and eventually melts the polystyrene.

While you usually wouldn’t use Bondo on things like Styrofoam cups, they make for a good agent in applying the Bondo on other materials such as large car parts or boat hulls. In fact, some grease monkeys apply Bondo to the bottom of Styrofoam cups before applying it to various car parts.

This is the first in a three-part series Strebel has planned for his Bondo bonanza. The following videos will focus on using Bondo to fill in builds, smoothen edges, and how it can help in the model building process—something that some of you industrial designers are likely very familiar with already.

In the meantime, find more of Strebel’s design goodness over on his YouTube channel.

The post Industrial Designer Eric Strebel Launches 3-Part Series on Modeling with Bondo appeared first on SolidSmack.

by Carlos Zotomayor at April 06, 2018 01:11 PM

Cool Tools of Doom: Bondo Lightweight Filler

From quick repairs to form exploration studies, few materials are as useful around the design engineer’s workshop as good old Bondo. Featuring a resin-based filler and a hardening solution, the hardener is blended together with the filler to create a chemical reaction which cures the creamy and spreadable product into a solid body.

Originally created as a quick-fix putty for auto body repairs, the fast-curing, and easy-to-sand formula carries a tremendous range of semi-permanent applications. No wonder, then, that the two-part putty is used extensively by industrial designers and engineers to easily prototype concepts. Needless to say, a can of Bondo belongs in every workshop.

<iframe allowfullscreen="true" class="youtube-player" height="390" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/DXv1EX3YQcg?version=3&amp;rel=1&amp;fs=1&amp;autohide=2&amp;showsearch=0&amp;showinfo=1&amp;iv_load_policy=1&amp;wmode=transparent" style="border:0;" type="text/html" width="640"></iframe>

Bondo 261 Lightweight Filler Pint Can — $7.84

Features:

  • Original formula for repairing dents, dings, holes, large rusted areas and scratches in vehicles
  • Two-part lightweight compound mixes easily and spreads smoothly
  • Cures in minutes and sands easily
  • Formulated to be non-shrinking
  • Also suitable for wood, steel, aluminum, fiberglass, and concrete
  • Includes Bondo Red Cream Hardener
  • Use during the Fill stage of the 3M Body Repair System

PURCHASE VIA AMAZON

Affiliate purchases help support SolidSmack through a small commission earned from the sale.
Thank you!

The post Cool Tools of Doom: Bondo Lightweight Filler appeared first on SolidSmack.

by SolidSmack at April 06, 2018 12:11 PM

The Javelin Blog

How to create SOLIDWORKS PDM Custom Explorer Views

Did you know that you can build  SOLIDWORKS PDM Custom Explorer Views with additional columns based on variables within the vault? This is a useful tool, as it allows users to obtain specific information about a file at a glance without having to open the file[s] or select the data card tab. This feature can be assigned to specific users or groups.

How to add SOLIDWORKS PDM Custom Explorer Views

  • Administration Tool > Columns > Right Click > New Column Set…
Administration Tool > Columns > Right Click > New Column Set...

New Column Set

  • In the Customizable Columns window; give the new column an appropriate name and for type select File List;
Give the new column an appropriate name and for type select File List

Explorer View

  • From here, we can add variables by selecting New Column and setting the desired Variable from the drop-down list;
Selecting New Column and set the appropriate Variable from the drop-down list;

Selecting New Column

  • The next step is to assign permissions accordingly;
Assign permissions accordingly

Assign permissions

  • Now, when users with the appropriate permissions log in, they’ll see the additional columns;
Create Custom Explorer Views - Complete

Additional Columns Added

Note: The columns Name, Checked Out By, Size, File Type, State, Modified, Checked Out In and Category are all standard and cannot be removed. Users can reorganize the order of the columns by dragging within explorer.

Need SOLIDWORKS PDM Training?

Learn about our SOLIDWORKS PDM training courses for users and administrators.

The post How to create SOLIDWORKS PDM Custom Explorer Views appeared first on The Javelin Blog.

by Justin Williams at April 06, 2018 12:00 PM

The SOLIDWORKS Blog

Finding New Ways to Leverage Data Throughout the Enterprise

There’s a common thread among many of the big tech trends today. Big Data, the Internet of Things (IoT), machine learning, Artificial Intelligence (AI) are all powered by one thing: data. Better access and analysis of data enables people and organizations to be nimble and make better decisions faster. It’s pretty simple. Unfortunately what’s not simple is how you access, share, safeguard and understand that data.

Manufacturers, in particular, benefit from and, therefore, must protect their most valuable asset: IP. So the ability to easily share this data throughout the enterprise as well as with outside partners, and yet also simultaneously safeguard this valuable data, is often paramount to success. What makes access to this data and the high-level visibility it provides is the fact that it’s often buried within its departments, databases and systems.

Even though these various data silos meet the requirements of their intended purpose, and benefit those individual departments, they are often disconnected from each other and fail to provide any potential enterprise-wide benefits. PDM systems, for example, work well at securing and storing IP within product data and ensuring proper version control is maintained. There are other areas of the enterprise, however, that could also benefit from this information.

Supply chain management—sourcing, procurement, and inventory management—and manufacturing planning—budgeting, scheduling, and quality assurance—are functions that stand to benefit from the use of product design data housed within PDM systems. Likewise, users of ERP systems that manage financial transactions and personnel information would benefit from PDM and MRP connections.

Unfortunately linking these data silos often requires expensive customization, additional development and ongoing, costly administration and management. What has been missing is a means for managing access to and distribution of this valuable data, including product data, in a format that’s useful to others outside of engineering and throughout the enterprise.

Going beyond PDM

Breaking down these traditional data silos, SOLIDWORKS Distributed Data Management (DDM) solutions, which include SOLIDWORKS PDM and the newly introduced SOLIDWORKS Manage, tap and present the underlying data in specific silos in formats that make it easier for other enterprise-wide applications to utilize it. DDM distributes data to internal and external users by providing access to the most up-to-date information, leveraging PDM data beyond product development, enabling manufacturers to accelerate and support other critical applications that can leverage product data.

While PDM is a critical tool for effectively managing product data, using this data to facilitate other important functions such as project management, process management, items management as well as the ability to generate reports with easy-to-understand dashboards takes that data one step forward, enabling organizations to leveraging its value outside of their design department.

Let’s touch briefly on each of these areas to see how SOLIDWORKS Manage, a SOLIDWORKS DDM solution, can help you leverage your data throughout your company to make better, more informed decisions.

Project Management

With SOLIDWORKS Manage, and its tight integration into SOLIDWORKS PDM, organizations can now plan each stage of a project, assign resources and tasks, and attach required engineering documentation within the same ecosystem used in design. Resources can be allocated to each stage of a project and tasks can be defined and assigned to project stakeholders. Attachments can be added to a task, including CAD files, documents and items with no file associated with them. When users complete their work, the project progress is automatically updated.

With SOLIDWORKS Manage, you have complete visibility into all projects, enabling organizations to plan, manage resources, connect project deliverables and monitor status right down to the task.

Process Management

Data management systems have electronic workflow capabilities that are mainly focused on document approval and engineering changes, but many manufacturers may have more complex needs for engineering change requests, orders, and notices. With the powerful process management capabilities in SOLIDWORKS Manage, you can automate critical workflows to minimize errors and streamline approvals.

Individual processes are stored as a record and authorized participants have access to information associated with this process. Effected items, documents, and CAD files can be attached to the process and tasks can be automatically created. Insight into the progress can be viewed visually, so you know exactly where you are in the process.

Dashboards

In today’s digital environment, it’s easier than ever to create vast amounts of data, but keeping track of it all can be a challenge. To gain insight into all of this data, SOLIDWORKS Manage provides fully customizable Dashboards to visualize critical information in an easy-to-consume format for better decision-making.
Dashboards are fully customizable and can be built using grids, gauges, charts, and more to capture key information about what is happening in your department or business. These graphical elements reference your data, in real time, and provide instant access to key performance indicators.

Items Management

PDM is a great tool for keeping track of CAD files and creating an engineering Bill of Material (BOM), but not everything gets modeled in CAD and typically, there are items that need to be added after the design is modeled. Items such as glue, spare parts, packaging and documentation need to be accounted for, as well as overall quantities when customers order multiple units.

With the tight integration of SOLIDWORKS Manage and SOLIDWORKS PDM, all of this data is in one place, whether represented by a CAD model, document, or database-only items. Others in the organization can create a BOM in SOLIDWORKS Manage and leverage the engineering BOM by referencing the SOLIDWORKS assembly. This can be the basis for creating a manufacturing BOM, which can contain additional files, records or items that are necessary to manufacture a product.

Learn more about SOLIDWORKS DDM solutions by downloading “New Methods of Maximizing the Value of Data throughout the Enterprise” white paper. Or, if you’d like to take a deeper dive, watch Mark “Model Mania” Schneider explain all the functionality offered in SOLIDWORKS Manage in the video below.

<iframe allow="autoplay; encrypted-media" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen" frameborder="0" height="641" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/MVrawKK-fLY?feature=oembed" width="1140"></iframe>

Author information

Barbara Schmitz
Barbara Schmitz
Senior Brand Introduction Manager at SolidWorks
Loyal dog owner, travel bum, cool mom, and lover of hoppy IPAs, alternative music and cool tech.

The post Finding New Ways to Leverage Data Throughout the Enterprise appeared first on The SOLIDWORKS Blog.

by Barbara Schmitz at April 06, 2018 12:00 PM

April 05, 2018

SolidSmack

This 3D Printed House Could Change the Developing World

3D Printed House by Icon + New Story

If you thought 3D printing an entire jet engine was a ambitious task, you aren’t thinking big enough… at least as far as size is concerned.

3D printed houses have been attempted in various ways, but we’ve been keeping our eye on what non-profit organization New Story and for-profit construction firm ICON is doing.

They recently unveiled the first permitted, 3D printed house in the U.S., deep in the heart of Texas–Austin, Texas, y’all. Using their custom, portable, gantry-style, proprietary cementitious spittin’ 3D printer (patent pending), the structure of the house was constructed at a size of ~800 square feet with a (25% speed) print time of ~48 hours, from start to finish (foundation, plumbing, electrical, roofing, insulation, interior finish, trim work, and painting is another topic altogether). The goal is to get the print time down under 24 hours. Here’s the inspirational video:

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Big goals. Worthy cause. Both companies are setting out on this venture to solve housing problems around the world with an estimated one billion people lacking adequate/comfortable living quarters.

Why do they think it will work? Well, they want to start by slashing cost for housing for the millions living in slums of Latin America and New Story is already building houses in those countries; already making houses happen. Here’s how New Story does what they do:

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Each 3D printed structure costs $4,000 (approximately half the cost for a structure the same size in the U.S.). Costs will need to controlled, but the technology is still new, and local sourced material could bring that down. Plus, you can get in on the action too. Should you decide to subsidize housing for a family, you’ll be able to donate (100% goes to the field), then meet the home’s eventual inhabitants through a digital family profile page and see them in a move-in video upon build completion–Think Compassion International, but you’re putting a family in a house.

3D Printed House by Icon + New Story

New Story and ICON plan to start printing homes in the U.S. by 2019 with the printer destine for El Salvador over the next 18 months. You can help fund a 3D printed home or help fund the 3D printer R&D to help scale their printing technology, both of which can be done through New Story’s website.

The post This 3D Printed House Could Change the Developing World appeared first on SolidSmack.

by Carlos Zotomayor at April 05, 2018 06:52 PM

SOLIDWORKS Tech Blog

What’s New in SOLIDWORKS 2018 – Assemblies

In this blog, we will investigate some of the new features and enhancements available within the assembly environment of SOLIDWORKS 2018.

We will start with possibly the most obvious change, which most of you who have opened an assembly in SOLIDWORKS 2018 may have noticed. The new “Assembly Open Progress Indicator” will appear at the top of your screen when opening an assembly and gives you a great indicator as to the progress of an opening assembly, particularly for those dreaded assemblies that take a while to open and leave you unsure if the software is hanging, or just taking a bit of time to open your file.

Performance Evaluation Tool
Sticking with the topic of files, opening the newly refreshed and updated “Performance Evaluation Tool” can give you some vital indicators to a potential pesky part file which could be the cause for any long open/rebuild times. Below is an example of the same assembly file open in SOLIDWORKS 2017 SP5 and 2018 SP2 with their respective performance evaluation tool open. In 2018 the evaluation tool provides additional information regarding opening files, display and settings, rebuild performance of the model and a quick link to the SOLIDWORKS help section.

Assembly Visualization
Another option you’ll see in the bottom right-hand corner of the 2018 performance evaluation tool is a direct link to open the “Assembly Visualization” tool. This is where the next set of changes that we will be looking are located. One new option is “Performance Analysis” which you can enable to show the “SOLIDWORKS-Open Time” and “SOLIDWORKS-Rebuild Time”. With this enabled, you can have the assembly visually represented by a range of colours depicting the length of time it takes to open a particular part or for that part to be rebuilt (such as using CTRL+B or CTRL+Q for a forced rebuild).

In SOLIDWORKS 2018 the colour of the individual parts can be changed to represent its position on the graph/range depending on which attribute you are sorting by (Mass, Quantity, Open Time, Volume, etc).

Top Level Transparency
The next change within assemblies is that you now have the ability to easily make the full assembly transparent. This comes in the form of right clicking your top level assembly component and selecting “Top Level Transparency”. This feature was previously called “Change Transparency” and was previously limited to making parts or sub-assemblies transparent (by right clicking that individual or set of components). Clicking the option for the top level assembly would not change any transparency of the model in 2017, but now it can make the entire model transparent with just a single click.

Misaligned Concentric Mates
There are two nice changes within the ‘Mates’ section of assemblies. These include the ability to create misaligned concentric mates, an example can be seen in the image below where a concentric mate (or mates) can be shifted over slightly such as how, in the example, the four holes don’t align perfectly with their respective pair of holes.

The other change for mates is the ability to have the face of a component temporarily hidden during the creation, editing or copying of mates. This can be performed by hitting your ‘Alt’ key while holding your mouse cursor over the face/s in question. The hidden face/s will then reappear once you have selected an entity to mate or they can be brought back using the key combination ‘Shift + Alt’.

Rotate Instances
Another really nice change in the assembly environment is the ability to create a component linear pattern and a component circular pattern in a single feature. Some great examples of where this can be handy is in the creation of a spiral staircase or the handles for a mug rack. To obtain his type of outcome you will need to have created your initial seed, select the ‘Linear Pattern’ option where you can select your first direction as normal. You can then select the new option “Rotate Instances” which is located under the instance count. This allows you to select an axis (or temporary axis via selecting a circular face, edge, etc.) and telling the software how many degrees each instance will be separated by, with the instance count itself being controlled by the option above. Using this new feature does not remove your ability to define a second direction for your linear pattern.

Note – In the above example you are not limited to selecting these definitions, you are free to select the same options that are normally available for each respective linear pattern type (linear and circular).
A couple of other enhancements or additions to assemblies in SOLIDWORKS 2018 which we may feature in future blogs include:

  • Improvements to Speedpak.
  • Enhancements within SOLIDWORKS Treehouse.
  • The ability to create Smart Explode Lines – anyone who has attended a SOLIDWORKS Essentials Training Course prior to using SOLIDWORKS 2018 will love this, particularly when you’ve previously had to create all exploded sketch lines manually when it came to the assembly and exploded view exercises.
  • “Magnetic Mates” enhancements.
  • Changes within the “Check Entities” tool.

We hope that you enjoyed reading this blog and stay tuned for our next Blog where we will look at ‘what’s new’ within another area of SOLIDWORKS 2018.

 

 

Craig Girvan is an Applications Engineer at TMS CADCentre, a SOLIDWORKS Value Added Reseller in Scotland.

You can read more from Craig on the TMS CADCentre blog

Author information

TMS CADCentre
TMS CADCentre - is a SOLIDWORKS Reseller based in Scotland providing 3D CAD Design Software, analysis software & product data management software. The company was formed in 1981 and now pleased to be celebrating 37 years in business. TMS CADCentre is the only UK SOLIDWORKS Reseller based and funded within Scotland and have been providing SOLIDWORKS software, training and support since 1996 when the product was first launched in the UK.

The post What’s New in SOLIDWORKS 2018 – Assemblies appeared first on SOLIDWORKS Tech Blog.

by TMS CADCentre at April 05, 2018 02:00 PM

SolidSmack

Cool Tools of Doom: The 3Dconnexion SpaceMouse Wireless 3D Mouse

SpaceMouse 3D Mouse

Long considered an indispensable asset for anybody working in CAD, the 3D mouse is a quintessential tool that belongs on the desktop of any industrial designer or engineer.

Within a 3D application such as SolidWorks, Rhino, Fusion 360, or Keyshot, the directional, zoom and rotate functions provide an intuitive extension of the users’ design intent. To put it quite simply, a 3D mouse helps get rid of those annoying repetitive keystrokes and allows the designer to come as close to possible to holding their digital 3D design in the physical world.

As pioneers of the 3D mouse territory, 3Dconnexion has blazed a trail with their SpaceMouse collection. And when it comes to the perfect balance of price, performance, and portability, we’re big fans of the company’s SpaceNavigator 3D Mouse.

Utilizing the company’s patented 6-Degrees-of-Freedom (6DoF) sensor, the intuitive 3D mouse also includes two buttons for accessing radial control menus to drive commands from directly within your applications. And with a wireless connection, you can be sure that this won’t be just another desktop peripheral clogging your desk with obnoxious wires.

SpaceMouse 3D Mouse

The 3Dconnexion SpaceMouse Wireless 3D Mouse — $121.00

Features:

  • Superior 3D Navigation – Intuitively and precisely navigate digital models or viewports in 3D space.
  • Wireless Freedom – 3Dconnexion 2.4GHz Wireless technology ensures a reliable, real-time connection to your 3D content.
  • Easy to Use – Each SpaceMouse Wireless button opens its own radial menu providing convenient mouse-click access to four application commands.
  • Flexible Recharging – Supplied micro-USB cable handles re-charging and data at the same time. Just connect and continue working, Stylish Design – small footprint, elegant brushed steel base, two buttons.

PURCHASE VIA AMAZON

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Thank you!

The post Cool Tools of Doom: The 3Dconnexion SpaceMouse Wireless 3D Mouse appeared first on SolidSmack.

by SolidSmack at April 05, 2018 12:42 PM

The Javelin Blog

What happens when you import an Insight .cmb file into GrabCAD Print?

“When I import a Stratasys Insight .cmb file into GrabCAD Print it looks nothing like the model I want to print?”

Don’t worry, it’s NOT broken!

Here is an explanation of what is going on. Let’s say you want to print this bracket:

Generally, it’s better to print brackets out as solid, and for this special purpose, you decide you want to pack as much material in this as possible, attempting to make it water-tight. You throw the part into Insight and do some custom toolpaths and air gap manipulations:

Part in Stratasys Insight

Part in Stratasys Insight

After saving your project as a toolpath (.cmb file format), you import that file into GrabCAD Print and see this:

Imported CMB Part in GrabCAD Print

.cmb file in GrabCAD Print

You may think the object has become corrupted. Maybe you changed something up in Insight and basically filled the entire block with material, rather than leaving the bracket hollow. Or maybe your display preferences in GrabCAD are set to low quality, so the program isn’t rendering as much as it should.

This is Normal

Insight’s .cmb file format holds information about the printer of choice, its toolpaths, contour and raster widths, air gap controls, layer parameters, and support structures. That’s almost everything you would be able to specify in GrabCAD if you used a standard .stl or .obj file. It also holds basic data such as orientation and scale. This is why, when you import a .cmb file into GrabCAD, the only thing you can change is where the object will sit on the build tray.

Now you may be looking at the image above and thinking “yes, but what about the actual object, it’s nothing like what I want to print”.

Insight’s .cmb files hold custom parameter and toolpath information that only deals with individual layers of a model rather than the entire part. GrabCAD isn’t able to render a fully detailed model because the information that it’s given is per slice. Instead of using more of your processors resources in trying to re-interpret the model, it generates a bounded silhouette of the object.

So why does this happen?

The way GrabCAD processes 3D models for printing is quite simple:

  1. Import 3D model
  2. Specify:
    1. Fill style (solid, sparse, sparse double dense)
    2. Layer thickness
    3. Position and orientation on build tray
  3. Print

All of the data that you specify is stored in a way that is quick and easy for GrabCAD to understand. Taking that information, it can then build an accurate interpretation of the 3D model, including toolpaths. When you import a .cmb file into GrabCAD, you’re basically telling it to not worry about all the model information, as it’s already been provided from an external source. This is why the modified 3D model looks oversimplified and at times “damaged”, because the program isn’t trying to develop an accurate interpretation of the object. It’s assuming you already know what it will look like from Insight, and simply showing a silhouette. If you want to see your custom layer settings, just hit the Slice button

There are a few benefits from doing this, the main one being resource usage. GrabCAD doesn’t use unnecessary processing power trying to re-interpret an already specified 3D model. This resource-saving really shows when you start printing multiple .cmb files on one build tray.

One thing to note

After importing a custom toolpath into GrabCAD, you cannot import conventional 3D object files in the same project, as the software can’t parse the data correctly. Hopefully that’ll be fixed with a software update somewhere down the line.

The post What happens when you import an Insight .cmb file into GrabCAD Print? appeared first on The Javelin Blog.

by Eissa Ahmad at April 05, 2018 12:00 PM

SolidSmack

Behind the Design: Mike Clifford’s Maple Wood and White Concrete Table

It’s always nice to see well-designed creations built from relatively cheap materials. With a little ingenuity and (in some cases) a lot of hard work, you don’t need a fortune to craft something worthy of a showroom floor. Among others, master builder Mike Clifford recently proved this with his homemade white glass-fiber reinforced concrete (GFRC) table.

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Using a $10 piece of maple wood he bought on eBay as the focal point of the table, Clifford begins his build process by carving a casting box out of a sheet of melamine. Because the casting box is going to be the same size as the finished table, he also carves out an indention big enough to fit the maple slab.

After coating the maple in water sealant and building the rest of the box, Clifford covers everything in a paste finishing wax before applying silicon to the gaps. Doing so will result in clean silicone lines that won’t stick to unwanted surfaces.

Clifford then wipes off any excess wax before spraying the face coat of the table consisting of a thin layer of cement, sand, polymer, and admixtures. He uses a hopper gun (which is in no way a deadly weapon) to apply the mixture from the edges going inwards. He then uses a chip brush to work the concrete into the corners of the box manually.

After waiting 30 minutes, he then applies the back coat, which consists of glass fibers to give the table its sturdy structure. To make the mixture more fluid-like to get into those nooks and crannies, Clifford adds a plasticizer. With everything filled and leveled, Clifford leaves the mix overnight.

Once everything is set and dried overnight, he comes back to it the next day to begin the process of demolding and sanding. Once he achieves the desired finish, he applies a concrete sealant to reinforce and finish the table.

Find more of Clifford’s clever projects over on his YouTube channel.

The post Behind the Design: Mike Clifford’s Maple Wood and White Concrete Table appeared first on SolidSmack.

by Carlos Zotomayor at April 05, 2018 11:21 AM

Build Your Next Workstation in a Weekend with This Computer Building Course

These days, you can get just about any computer rig designed to your exact specifications. Whether you’re a RAM-hogging SolidWorks user, or simply just want a powerful workstation, there’s something for everybody. But no standardized hardware mod will ever replace the satisfaction of building your own rig from scratch.

If you’ve ever wanted to create your own custom-built PC but didn’t know where to start, boy do we have great news for you.

The How to Build a Computer Bundle consolidates five intensive online courses (a total of 126 individual lessons) ranging from how to create a blueprint for your desired desktop or laptop setup to how to overclock CPU processor functions to speed up rendering times.

How to Build a Computer Bundle — $374 $19.00 (94% off)

Topics Covered Include:

  • Learn about the basic functions of a computer system
  • Pick out appropriate hardware for your build
  • Assemble all hardware needed for a fully functional computer
  • Wire everything within the case like an expert
  • Cover the most effective method of CPI cooling: closed-loop liquid cooling
  • Upgrade to a higher capacity storage device
  • Improve your RAM chip(s)
  • Clean & refresh your CPU cooling unit
  • Swap in an SSD
  • Learn about the various tricky aspects about RAID setups
  • Understand how to increase data read/write speeds & prepare your computer for a drive crash

Get It!

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Thank you!

The post Build Your Next Workstation in a Weekend with This Computer Building Course appeared first on SolidSmack.

by SolidSmack at April 05, 2018 01:46 AM

April 04, 2018

SolidSmack

Filmmaker Gary Hustwit Releases Teasers for Upcoming Dieter Rams Documentary

RAMS documentary

Since raising nearly $300K from backers on Kickstarter in 2016, documentary filmmaker Gary Hustwit has been hard at work putting the finishing touches on Rams — the first feature documentary film covering the life and philosophies of design icon Dieter Rams.

Hustwit, who same may know as the force behind the Helvetica, Objectified, and Urbanized design documentaries, was granted unprecedented and exclusive access to Rams for several weeks in his home and studio. The result is what is sure to be the most in-depth look at how Dieter developed his Ten Principles for Good Design and paved the way for designers and companies that praise the ‘less is more’ spirit.

As Hustwit buttons last minute details in preparation for a launch this year, he’s managed to piece together three great teasers that should help tide you over until then:

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Rams is a design documentary, but it’s also a rumination on consumerism, materialism, and sustainability. Dieter’s philosophy is about more than just design, it’s about a way to live,” explains Hustwit. “It’s about getting rid of distractions and visual clutter, and just living with what you need.”

For those who didn’t get behind the Kickstarter backing wagon to catch an early screening, expect a wider digital release sometime later this year.

The post Filmmaker Gary Hustwit Releases Teasers for Upcoming Dieter Rams Documentary appeared first on SolidSmack.

by Simon Martin at April 04, 2018 06:18 PM

The SOLIDWORKS Blog

SOLIDWORKS xDesign Challenge Submission: Ethan Kinney

I’m a programmer, an engineer, a husband and a father. I chose to focus on the “Simplify Your Life” project as clutter is always a huge issue for my wife and me.

My wife is a fabulous cook and always makes great food, but there always tends to be a mess afterwards; and it’s worse anytime I try and cook. One of the problems is our spice cabinet. Since we put all our spices in the same cabinet, I’m constantly moving them around to find what I need. Boy does that annoy my wife. We could put a Lazy Susan turntable in there, but I always thought they were a waste of space and the spices always fell over anyways. I wanted a way to have them easily accessible and organized, and someway to have more shelf space back.

There are plenty of magnetic spice racks out there, but they have the same issue; you can only see the spices in the front. And if you start moving them around to get to what you want, you end up having the same issue as our spice cabinet.

The Design Inspiration

So, I designed a spice carousel that can attach under the cabinets. The spice jars are magnetic on the top so you can clip them into each holder, you can also move all the spices around like a Lazy Susan so you can see them. Unlike a turntable, it’s not round; it runs on a chain and track system to maximize the space available!

I had an “Aha” moment while using SOLIDWORKS xDesign when I realized that there isn’t a distinction between parts and assemblies. Any component can be placed into any other component. This was nice when I made an initial “part” but then decided I’d rather that “part” be an “assembly.” There was no issue, I simply added the components that I wanted and presto, I was done!

Here is a snapshot of my design:

Watch the video below to see Ethan’s spice carousel model in xDesign.

<iframe allow="autoplay; encrypted-media" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen" frameborder="0" height="641" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/W-328TJXA54?feature=oembed" width="1140"></iframe>

 

Want to get involved in the xDesign beta? Sign up at https://www.solidworks.com/product/solidworks-xdesign

 

Author information

Divi Lohiya
Divi Lohiya
Divi is a Senior Manager, Product Portfolio Management at SOLIDWORKS. He is passionate about how new technologies are coming together to change the way how products are designed, made and sold and engaging/teaching kids in STEM activities. Divi graduated from Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Bombay with a dual degree in Mechanical Engineering and a Masters degree in Engineering from University of Texas at Austin.

The post SOLIDWORKS xDesign Challenge Submission: Ethan Kinney appeared first on The SOLIDWORKS Blog.

by Divi Lohiya at April 04, 2018 12:00 PM

The Javelin Blog

50% of product failure is due to Mechanical Fatigue! How can you predict & avoid it?

Market data indicates that more than 50% of product failure is due to fatigue, which occurs in many different mechanical components such as turbines and other rotating equipment operating under intense, repeated cyclical loads. The primary tool for both understanding and being able to predict and avoid fatigue has proven to be finite element fatigue analysis.

Fatigue Analysis

Fatigue Analysis

What is fatigue?

Designers normally consider the most important safety consideration to be the overall strength of the component, assembly, or product. To design for this, engineers want to create a design that will stand up to the probable ultimate load, and add a safety factor to that, for insurance.

In operation, however, the design is unlikely to experience static loads. Much more frequently, it will experience cyclical variation, and undergo multiple applications of such load variation, which may lead to failure over time.

The definition of fatigue is: failure under a repeated or otherwise varying load, which never reaches a level sufficient to cause failure in a single application.

The symptoms of fatigue are cracks that result from metal or plastic deformation in localized areas. Such deformation usually results from stress concentration sites on the surface of a component, or a pre-existing, virtually undetectable, defect on or just below the surface. While it may be difficult or even impossible to model such defects in FEA, variability in materials is a constant, and small defects are very likely to exist. FEA can predict stress concentration areas, and can help design engineers predict how long their designs are likely to last before experiencing the onset of fatigue.

SOLIDWORKS Simulation can run fatigue analysis

SOLIDWORKS Simulation packages include fatigue analysis, in fact the entry level Standard version includes fatigue. You can carry out fatigue analysis and predict component failures during the design phase with the CAD embedded add-in. You can then adjust your design or define a preventive maintenance schedule to reduce warranty costs and maximize product life:

  • Check a system’s expected life or accumulated damage after a specified number of cycles.
  • Import load history data from real physical tests to define loading events.

Take a look at SOLIDWORKS Simulation fatigue analysis in action below:

<iframe allow="autoplay; encrypted-media" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen" frameborder="0" height="281" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/jOHN2IS2H9o?feature=oembed" width="500"></iframe>

SOLIDWORKS Simulation Standard also includes additional functionalities to help you determine early in the design process if your products will work and how long they will perform, including:

  • Linear static analysis for assembly
  • Time-based motion simulation
  • The Trend Tracker Productivity Tool (provides visual feedback on the impact of a design change on performance criteria such as maximum stress level)

Simulation/FEA software is too expensive!

We know that you understand the value and benefit of virtual prototyping, but feel the investment required to move to SOLIDWORKS Simulation software is too large. SOLIDWORKS Simulation Standard is the entry level package in the simulation suite and is available at an affordable price. Ask us for a competitive quote »

SOLIDWORKS Simulation is too hard to use!

SOLIDWORKS Simulation software works right inside of SOLIDWORKS and is surprisingly easy to set up and test your products with. We can help you learn fatigue analysis along with other product testing types in our SOLIDWORKS Simulation Professional training course. The course can be taken in a Canadian classroom near you or live online from your office.

Want to learn more about fatigue analysis?

Download a guide to learn how you can strike a balance between saving materials and preserving design life along with an overview of the SOLIDWORKS Simulation tools available for you to account for fatigue.

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by Rod Mackay at April 04, 2018 12:00 PM

April 03, 2018

The Javelin Blog

Saving Costs with Virtual Prototyping

Leveraging the combined powers of 3D solid modeling and design analysis software, engineers can now test a design on the computer instead of using prototype-test iterations for design. CAD models have become virtual prototypes, and design analysis has supplanted physical testing, enabling faster, less costly, and more optimized product development. In addition, computer-based design analysis allows for more in-depth examination of product performance than would ever be possible using even the most detailed prototypes, resulting in more innovative, reliable, and marketable products.

Virtual prototyping

Virtual prototyping

Prototypes vs. Design Analysis

Studies have shown that 80% of a product’s manufacturing costs are locked into the approved design, which is why the ability to perform quick and inexpensive design iterations prior to releasing the design has become a critical competitive advantage.

Design analysis makes it possible to perform design iterations quickly and inexpensively on computer models instead of on costly physical prototypes. Even if prototyping costs were not important considerations, design analysis provides significant product quality benefits, enabling engineers to detect design problems far sooner than a prototype could be built.

Design analysis also facilitates studies of more than one design option and aids in developing optimized designs. Quick and inexpensive analysis often reveals nonintuitive solutions and benefits engineers by providing them with a better understanding of product characteristics.

Optimized design

Optimized design

If it isn’t broken, it still might need fixing

Numerous misconceptions surround the use of design analysis software. Many engineers believe that FEA-based design analysis is esoteric, expensive, and hard to use. Some engineers believe design analysis software requires a Ph.D. to operate, is only used by really big companies, and is unnecessary for the type of work they do. Studies have shown that seven out of ten design engineers using 3D CAD have these impressions.

As a result, many engineers take untested designs straight to prototype or even directly into production, thereby jeopardizing product quality and valuable customer relationships. In other cases, designers simply stay the course by reproducing outdated products, preferring to continue with concepts that have worked in the past instead of striving for innovation and breaking new ground.

Their premise is: “If it isn’t broken, don’t try to fix it.”

Staying with the status quo can cost a company a lot of money in lost opportunities for introducing higher-quality, more aesthetically pleasing, modern products that more consumers want to buy. Not optimizing product design can increase expenses, for example, the use of excessive amounts of materials, that could be trimmed by implementing design analysis and optimizing designs. Saving just one-tenth of a penny per unit can add up to a sizable sum when a manufacturer produces thousands of units. In other words, even “if it isn’t broken, it still might need fixing.”

Now that design analysis is fully automated and very affordable – some analysis capabilities are included free with SOLIDWORKS 3D CAD packages – the misconceptions regarding design analysis are fading away as more and more engineers evaluate design analysis tools.

Virtual Simulation vs Traditional Methods White Paper

Virtual Prototyping vs. Traditional Methods White Paper

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by Rod Mackay at April 03, 2018 03:43 PM

SolidSmack

Anatomy of a Workstation [Don’t Fear The Power!]

Anatomy of a Workstation - Lenovo

 
 

Brought to you by
lenovo-logo-red-150

We’re super excited to be teaming up with Lenovo to bring you an exclusive webinar for SolidSmack readers! If you’ve ever wanted to know more about the internals of your computer and specifically what is needed to power 3D CAD software, you won’t want to miss this!

Save my seat

The Anatomy of a Workstation

The specs to know and what works best for the 3D modeling workflow.

It sits there cooking sweet 3D on your screen, but how does that workstation actually do the wonderful things it does? In this exclusive webinar, the Lenovo team takes us behind the scenes to reveal the secrets of the workstation. Sign up quickly as space is limited!

In this webinar:

  • The Processor: Best processors for 3D modeling
  • The Memory: How much you really need + what to avoid
  • The Storage: The latest tech to know about
  • The Graphics: Exactly what you need for what you do
  • The Inside: Workstation tear down
  • Q&A

Remember, seats are limited and won’t last long. Register now to save your seat and get on the list.

REGISTER NOW

The post Anatomy of a Workstation [Don’t Fear The Power!] appeared first on SolidSmack.

by SolidSmack at April 03, 2018 02:30 PM

SolidSmack Radio | Part Lines From Paradise – Spring 2018 Edition (Powered by Spotify)

Get that stretch out of your system with this week’s Spotify-powered SolidSmack Radio Playlist. It’s fashioned up, ready to make you pull your shoulder blades back and knock out another week of meaningful work while you bob your head to the beat. Whether you’re in the shop milling aluminum, sketching the latest product prototypes or modeling up a 3D storm, consider these tracks as a tool for your process.

This week we’ll get the groove going with “Smoke Machine” from Jesse Woods before diving into sweet melodies from Monster Rally, The Concretes, Blake Mills, Mothers, and others before wrapping up with “Seve” from Tez Cadey. Rock!

Have suggestions? As always, let us know what you listen to, what you want to hear and what tunes get you through the week. Shoot us an email or leave a comment down below!!

*Note: if the embedded playlist below doesn’t work for you, try this.

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The post SolidSmack Radio | Part Lines From Paradise – Spring 2018 Edition (Powered by Spotify) appeared first on SolidSmack.

by SolidSmack at April 03, 2018 02:19 PM

How To Create A Kitchen Knife From Everyday Aluminum Foil

aluminum foil kitchen knife

YouTube user kiwami japan has a bit of an odd obsession with making homemade blades and other weapons from obscure and unusual materials. Case in point. This knife wasn’t made from a hard-to-find metal, but from a roll of aluminum foil you likely have stashed in your cupboard to wrap a sandwich or make tin foil hats.

What some may not realize is that enough sheets of aluminum foil can become a block of aluminum foil. And said block can be sharpened. Crafting a knife from a sandwich wrapper isn’t simple, with considerable tempering and hammering of the layers needed to create the slab of metal to be sharpened.

aluminum foil kitchen knife

aluminum foil kitchen knife

From the hammered layers, Kiwami traces an outline on the slab of metal and cuts it out using a hacksaw. This serves as the blade of the knife and will be subject to hours of sharpening on a variety of different whetstones from 150 grit all the way up to 30000 grit. The actual sharpening begins at the 5:30 mark in the video below.

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As before, Kiwami rough cuts a slab of wood then sketches the shape of the knife handle before shaping and sanding it down.

aluminum foil kitchen knife

To put it all together, he drills two holes through the handle and blade before jamming two screws in. Once the pieces are firmly attached, he cuts of the screw heads back with a hacksaw and files down the rough edges.

aluminum foil kitchen knife

It might not last as long as other commercial knives, but this baby sure can cut cucumbers like it’s nobody’s business. A knife is one thing, but imagine using a homemade crucible to melt it down and mold other objects – even fashioning a knife from aluminum foil would seem longer lasting than hammering the layers for hours. I dunno, have you tried it?

You can find more of kiwami japan’s homemade madness over on his YouTube channel.

The post How To Create A Kitchen Knife From Everyday Aluminum Foil appeared first on SolidSmack.

by Carlos Zotomayor at April 03, 2018 02:01 PM

The Javelin Blog

SOLIDWORKS Visualize Unknown Tips and Tricks: Part Two

Utilizing Motion Studies for more than just motion

Motion studies are a great tool inside of SOLIDWORKS to bring your assemblies to life, they allow you to utilize real world conditions like gravity, connections and other physics based motion attributes to give your animations a realistic look while also delivering analysis for greater insight into validating the motion of your project.

In our case motion studies are a great tool for rendering animations using SOLIDWORKS Visualize, utilizing the SOLIDWORKS Visualize add-in and SOLIDWORKS Visualize Professional we can automatically transfer motion studies from SOLIDWORKS to Visualize Professional in the press of a button to have all of our motion automatically key-framed and ready for rendering. Having this ability is a massive time saver and allows us to get motion results that would be very difficult to key-frame by hand, did someone say GRAVITY!

But what if I don’t have SOLIDWORKS Visualize Professional or an Animation?

Sometimes your project doesn’t necessarily have motion but you want to be able to portray a model in its natural position for a still frame render, you can do this in motion studies utilizing materials and gravity. Now, this is easy with SOLIDWORKS Visualize Professional, simply setup the motion study, import it into Visualize, and select a frame from the timeline you would like to render as a still image.

But what about SOLIDWORKS Visualize Standard? I have no ability to import motion studies or setup animations, how to I get the results I need?

Well there is a tip that we at Javelin have discovered that can help with this; although this tip might be closer to a hack, I’ll let you decide.

Set your assembly to flexible

The first thing you need to do is open the assembly you want to render in SOLIDWORKS, as an example I have a coffee tray setup and I want the spoon and sugar cubes to look like they are in a relatively realistic position.

Starting Motion Assembly

Starting Motion Assembly

For this trick to work select the assembly that will have the motion applied to it and set it to flexible, in this case the cutting board assembly.

Visualize Tips: Make Assembly Flexible

Make Assembly Flexible

Add Motion

Next you need to open the assembly you just made flexible and add motion, for this example I have already created a motion study to show the spoon and sugar cubes in a more realistic position using gravity.

Open Motion Study

Open Motion Study

If you switch back to the original top level assembly you can see that nothing has changed, this is expected.

The next step is to turn off the flexible option on the assembly that we have added motion to.

Turn Flexible Off

Turn Flexible Off

You should now see the assembly motion be applied at whichever frame of the motion you selected from your motion assembly, the last step is to make the assembly flexible one last time. This will stop the assembly from resetting to its original state during rebuild. You can test this by rebuilding your assembly and if the assembly with motion does not reset, then you are good.

Turn Flexible on a Second Time

Turn Flexible on a Second Time

Export to SOLIDWORKS Visualize

You can now use the SOLIDWORKS Visualize add-in to send our assembly directly to SOLIDWORKS Visualize, it doesn’t matter which method you use (Simple or Advanced) this method should work for both.

Export using the Visualize Addin

Export using the Visualize Addin

And that’s it, you should now see the correct part locations in your Visualize project and can start setting up your photo-realistic render!

Project Imports into Visualize

Project Imports into Visualize

If you want to dive into this technique a little more or see a step by step video version click on the video below:

<iframe allow="autoplay; encrypted-media" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen" frameborder="0" height="281" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/dYNAbEQ9cVI?feature=oembed" width="500"></iframe>

Get more SOLIDWORKS Visualize Tips

Check out part one of this series to learn how to create your own HDR Environments for rendering in SOLIDWORKS Visualize.

The post SOLIDWORKS Visualize Unknown Tips and Tricks: Part Two appeared first on The Javelin Blog.

by Scott Ellery, CSWE at April 03, 2018 12:00 PM

April 02, 2018

SOLIDWORKS Tech Blog

19 Years of Model Mania®

Every year SOLIDWORKS hosts one of the largest engineering conferences in the world, SOLIDWORKS World. Since SOLIDWORKS World 2000, Model Mania® has been an attraction for many engineers wanting to show off their SOLIDWORKS skills. Model Mania, for those not familiar, is a design challenge where you are measured on both time and accuracy.

First, you are first given a 2D drawing of a part. Your goal is to create that part in SOLIDWORKS as quickly and as accurately as possible. Seems simple, right? Well the second “Phase” is when things get really interesting. For Phase 2, you are given a modified version of that drawing; you can consider it an engineering change if you like. Your goal now, similar to before, is to make the design change as quickly and as accurately as possible and run a simulation to determine the factor of safety.

At SOLIDWORKS World, all of the entries are judged on accuracy first, and time second, because in the real world, it doesn’t matter how fast you get something done if it’s not right.

Over the years, many people have asked for access to the Model Mania drawings so we are happy to make them available to you.  Below you will find links to the Phase 1 and 2 drawings and a video solution to each year’s Model Mania Challenge.  Feel free to use these for your user group meetings, internal company training and we hear that many schools use them for their exercises.

The models, drawings, and other materials created for the Model Mania® Challenge and distributed by Dassault Systemes SolidWorks Corporation (DS SolidWorks) are intended for the sole use of DS SolidWorks, its partners, and customers, and may not be used for commercial purposes except by DS SolidWorks partners without written consent from DS SolidWorks

Model Mania 2000
  Phase 1 drawing
Phase 2 drawing
Solution video
 

 

Model Mania 2001
  Phase 1 drawing
Phase 2 drawing
Solution video
 

 

Model Mania 2002
  Phase 1 drawing
Phase 2 drawing
Solution video
 

 

Model Mania 2003
  Phase 1 drawing
Phase 2 drawing
Solution video
 

 

Model Mania 2004
  Phase 1 drawing
Phase 2 drawing
Solution video
 

 

Model Mania 2005
  Phase 1 drawing
Phase 2 drawing
Solution video
 

 

Model Mania 2006
  Phase 1 drawing
Phase 2 drawing
Solution video
 

 

Model Mania 2007
  Phase 1 drawing
Phase 2 drawing
Solution video
 

 

Model Mania 2008
  Phase 1 drawing
Phase 2 drawing
Solution video
 

 

Model Mania 2009
  Phase 1 drawing
Phase 2 drawing
Solution video
 

 

Model Mania 2010
  Phase 1 drawing
Phase 2 drawing
Solution video
 

 

Model Mania 2011
  Phase 1 drawing
Phase 2 drawing
Solution video
 

 

Model Mania 2012
  Phase 1 drawing
Phase 2 drawing
Solution video
 

 

Model Mania 2013
  Phase 1 drawing
Phase 2 drawing
Solution video
 

 

Model Mania 2014
  Phase 1 drawing
Phase 2 drawing
Solution video
 

 

Model Mania 2015
  Phase 1 drawing
Phase 2 drawing
Solution video
 

 

Model Mania 2016
  Phase 1 drawing
Phase 2 drawing
Solution video
 

 

Model Mania 2017
  Phase 1 drawing
Phase 2 drawing
Solution video
 

 

Model Mania 2018
  Phase 1 drawing
Phase 2 drawing
Solution video

 

Author information

Mark Schneider
Mark Schneider
Mark Schneider (CSWE) has been with SolidWorks since 1996, and creates technical content for all sorts of product demos, What’s New videos and more. He has also run the Model Mania® contest at SOLIDWORKS World since 2002.

The post 19 Years of Model Mania® appeared first on SOLIDWORKS Tech Blog.

by Mark Schneider at April 02, 2018 05:44 PM

PHOTOVIEW 360: Final Render Quality

PHOTOVIEW 360: what is it?

PHOTOVIEW 360 is a rendering package included in both SOLIDWORKS Professional and SOLIDWORKS Premium. It allows us to take our 3D designs and quickly turn them into a photo-realistic image. This allows us to show how good our products are.

PHOTOVIEW 360 gives you four different pre-set options for the final render quality of the image; these are ‘Good’, ‘Better’, ‘Best’ and ‘Maximum’. But, what’s the difference, and what do they actually mean in our renders? Firstly, we need to look at what parameters are being set by each of these pre-sets:

Anti-Aliasing – The number of samples which are taken around a curve; the greater the number of samples, the smoother the curve will look.

Number of Reflections – The number of bounces the light is allowed before terminating; as the number increases, areas which are shaded from the light source should become lighter.

Number of Refractions – The number of times the light rays can refract through a transparent/translucent material.

Indirect Rays – These are light rays which are set at an angle as you would find in real life, where by light rays hitting earth may be at an angle, rather than 90 degrees to the object.

PHOTOVIEW 360: Table of parameters

Table of parameters

 

All of the sample images have been rendered at a resolution of 1920 x 1080 and appear in the order as below:

 

PHOTOVIEW 360: Render Resolution

Render Resolution

 

Let’s begin by looking at a simple torch component which has a light where the bulb would be, hence we should have a range of reflections and refractions through the transparent and reflective materials.

 

Sample 1, Torch light in some ambient light

PHOTOVIEW 360: Sample 1, Torch light in some ambient light

Sample 1, Torch light in some ambient light

 

Looking at these four images, there isn’t really a lot of difference – apart from slightly more light coming through the glass on all but the ‘good’ pre-set.

Now, let’s look at an example with multiple layers of transparent materials using these instance panes of glass.

 

Sample 2, Multiple Panes of Glass

PHOTOVIEW 360: Sample 2, Multiple Panes of Glass

Sample 2, Multiple Panes of Glass

 

This sample shows the limitations of reflections and refractions a little more clearly, and how this can have a dramatic effect depending on which final render setting you choose. As we can see where the light must pass through multiple panes, a higher number of refractions, as driven by the pre-sets, makes this possible. However, we have a black area where the light is unable to continue.

Looking at the time to completion for each setting, it is clear how much of an impact the settings have. Therefore, if you don’t have multiple translucent/transparent materials, there is no major benefit from using the maximum pre-set.

 

Author information

Solid Solutions Technical Team
Solid Solutions commenced business as a SolidWorks Training and SolidWorks Support provider in 1998 and has consistently achieved strong growth year-on-year to become the UK’s leading SolidWorks 3D CAD reseller. Growth has been completely organic and has been consistently driven by a focus on recruiting the best from academia and industry and by delivering high quality services to more than 4,000 customers. Our customers range widely in size and are drawn from a broad spectrum of industry sectors. SolidWorks software is used by over 2 million engineers and designers across the world. As a company we are dedicated and focused at providing first class training and support to help you realise the best return on your investment.

The post PHOTOVIEW 360: Final Render Quality appeared first on SOLIDWORKS Tech Blog.

by Solid Solutions Technical Team at April 02, 2018 02:00 PM

The SOLIDWORKS Blog

SOLIDWORKS Electrical Allows for a More Precise Bill of Material

The term manufacturer takes on many meanings. For a lot of us along the gulf coast, that participate in the oil and gas and marine industries, it usually means custom, low-volume solutions, generally with short lead times.  Busy manufacturing floors, packed with projects as varied as the customers.  A dizzying array of parts flowing onto the receiving dock in a constant stream of delivery trucks.  The general sense of urgency as a group of dedicated technicians and engineers work from the office to the warehouse to the shop floor.  The whole experience is akin to a beehive, bustling and productive. What can make this process more efficient? SOLIDWORKS Electrical offers a variety of solutions.

Manufacturing companies vary widely in what they produce, but they all have one thing in common, a highly skilled workforce capable of interpreting customer requirements, making quick decisions and delivering a quality product on spec and on time with little direction in the form of detailed engineering drawings.

So if fully detailed engineering documentation isn’t a requirement for your production process, what is?  If the traits reviewed above describe your organization, you’re probably stewing on the answer as you read this article …. bill of material (BOM) accuracy.  You’re also likely irritated thinking about the last time a basic electrical drawing coupled with an inaccurate, disjointed excel BOM threw your entire production system into disarray.

BOM accuracy isn’t just about delayed delivery.  It’s also about lost efficiency and project margin.  It’s about the engineer that needs to put down his or her current work and scramble to find parts.  It’s about the added expediting fees.  It’s about the Sales Representative that now has to have a very unpleasant conversation with a customer.  It’s about the technician who now has to find another project to work on.  You don’t need to be a 6 Sigma guru to know the lost productivity involved in rearranging production schedules to keep a technician producing.  BOM mistakes affect the entire organization.

So how do you balance the need for an accurate BOM with the advantage of having only to produce minimal documentation to produce the desired result?  SOLIDWORKS Electrical’s flexible structure provides a suite of tools designed to provide your highly proficient technicians with enough information to meet customer requirements without spending months on the design documentation while maintaining the integrity of the bill of material.

SOLIDWORKS Electrical’s one line drawing tools allow an engineer to specify components required for a project, how they are connected, and the general location of the component, without needing to spend time on unnecessary detail.

 

Component tools within SOLIDWORKS Electrical allow the engineer to tie manufacturer specific parts to symbols on the online.  The database-driven drawing updates the BOM automatically when changes are made, mitigating the chance a change to the drawing won’t be picked up in the BOM.

Finally, easy to set up macros allow engineers the ability to reuse design data, pulling in both schematic symbols and BOM info.

At the end of the day, you need tools that let you do what you do best, produce great products and serve your customers.  Let MLC CAD Systems show you how SOLIDWORKS Electrical can provide your production team with accurate bills of materials, without changing how you work.

Author information

MLC CAD Systems
Celebrating Three Decades of Unbeatable Service! MLC CAD System's mission is to help design and manufacturing companies, entrepreneurs, creative individuals, research institutions and other organizations put their ideas and products into production using the industry's best software technologies including SOLIDWORKS 3D CAD, Mastercam, 3D Systems' & Markforged 3D printers well as other leading CAD and CAM technologies.

The post SOLIDWORKS Electrical Allows for a More Precise Bill of Material appeared first on The SOLIDWORKS Blog.

by MLC CAD Systems at April 02, 2018 12:29 PM

The Javelin Blog

Top Features only available in SOLIDWORKS Visualize Professional

SOLIDWORKS Visualize is a suite of standalone software tools that combine industry-leading rendering capabilities with design-oriented features and workflows that enable easy and fast creation of visual content for designers, engineers, marketing, and other content creators. The software is provided in two different versions:

  • SOLIDWORKS Visualize Standard — included with SOLIDWORKS Subscription Service or available to purchase standalone
  • SOLIDWORKS Visualize Professional — available to purchase standalone

In this blog post we are going to have a look at SOLIDWORKS Visualize Professional features:

VR & Panoramic Interactive Outputs

SOLIDWORKS Visualize Professional includes a Virtual Reality (VR) output which renders a user-specified number of images from around the model and stitches them together so the model can be viewed from all angles, creating a truly interactive experience tumbling around the model. VR outputs are ideal for showing off your designs to stakeholders for review and for interactive marketing experiences to tell a deeper story with your CAD data.

The Panoramic output stitches multiple rendered images together to form a three hundred sixty degree panorama around the active camera. Once created, the active camera functions as a pivot point from which you can pivot and zoom to explore the environment. Panoramic outputs are convenient for interior spaces like cars, planes, interior rooms, and large assembly plants, and can be used with all render modes (Preview, Fast, Accurate). Take a look at an aerospace panoramic example below:

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Configurations

Within a single Visualize project file, rapidly generate multiple design variations, product variants, material options, environments, camera angles and more, then click one button to automatically render out all Configurations at once. Very powerful tool for projects with multiple part/material options.

SOLIDWORKS Visualize Configurations

SOLIDWORKS Visualize Configurations

Full Animation Suite (parts, models, appearances, cameras & environments)

A variety of different animation options and tools are available with the professional version:

  • Simple one-click 360 degree turntable animations make this type of output a breeze to create.
  • Part/Group/Model animations for animated exploded views, sequence animation, and more to explain complex mechanical movements and detailed designs.
  • Camera animations with unique Animation Ribbon, which is an intuitive 3D representation of how the camera moves through the scene, making camera fly-by a snap to create.
  • Sun Study output type allows Visualize users to see what the play of light looks like across their model throughout an entire day. This is perfect for interior designers who need to see how sunlight casts shadows from their interior concept throughout a complete day sun-cycle.

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Custom camera Post-Processing (camera filters)

Unleash your creativity and add additional effects to your Visualize content with customizable camera filters (shown below) and the new Bloom Filter, perfect for glowing LEDs, lights and sun highlights.

SOLIDWORKS Visualize Professional Camera filters

SOLIDWORKS Visualize Professional Camera filters

Render Queue

Similar to a printer queue, stack up render jobs to send all at once, for example at the end of the day, to remain productive during work hours and allow all the renders to cook overnight. The integrated Render Queue instantly boosts productivity allowing you to never wait for a render to finish again.

SOLIDWORKS Visualize Professional Render Queue

SOLIDWORKS Visualize Professional Render Queue

Visualize Boost

Visualize Boost is an Add-on feature to the Visualize Professional Network Rendering package, which is an extremely powerful product for instantly increasing render speeds and content productivity. Visualize Boost allows users to send render jobs to a dedicated machine(s) which frees up their local machine to set up the next render job, update their model back in their original CAD package, or perform other actions that require graphics computation.

SOLIDWORKS Visualize Boost

SOLIDWORKS Visualize Professional Boost

SOLIDWORKS Visualize Boost is a separate install and is recommended to install on dedicated render machines. It’s super easy to set up, and also included is a web-based admin to set-up the Boost render cluster(s).

As an added value to SOLIDWORKS Visualize Professional customers, DS include 1 free license of Visualize Boost with each seat of Visualize Professional! So if you have 10 seats of Visualize Professional, you’ll have 10 free licenses of Visualize Boost!

Learn more about SOLIDWORKS Visualize Professional

Visit our product page, take a training course, view our resources or contact us to get a quote.

The post Top Features only available in SOLIDWORKS Visualize Professional appeared first on The Javelin Blog.

by Rod Mackay at April 02, 2018 12:00 PM

March 31, 2018

SolidSmack

The SolidSmack Weekend Reader | Week 13.18

The Scrabble Keyboard is the Ultimate Desktop Peripheral for Word Junkies

Don your favorite bathrobe, cream that coffee and get comfortable with this week’s SolidSmack Weekend Reader.

The Weekend Reader features a handful of the most interesting articles featured on the ‘Smack over the past week ranging from tips and tricks to inspirational designs, processes, and more. So lay back, relax and take a load off while reading the top stories on SolidSmack this past week.

Oh and uh…don’t forget to shed some much-needed sunlight on your face, too.

The Scrabble Keyboard is the Ultimate Desktop Peripheral for Word Junkies

Even as more players eschew traditional board games in favor of smartphone app alternatives, there is still a significant population of diehard board game lovers who live for the real thing.</spcan>

The Scrabble Keyboard is the Ultimate Desktop Peripheral for Word Junkies<

Behind the Design: The Pi Bicycle

Pi Day may already be behind us (March 14th), but there are plenty of other ways to celebrate the mathematical constant over the rest of the year.

Behind the Design: The Pi Bicycle

Watch 1,000 Soda Cans Melt Into Hefty, Aluminum Ingots

You know what’s more satisfying to watch than a thousand soda cans being crushed? Seeing them get turned into solid blocks of pure aluminum bliss. After consuming an unhealthy amount of soda products, Ben from PressTube decides to crush and melt the cans into reusable aluminum ingots (which can be used as bricks for a shiny, aluminum house, a shiny, aluminum walkway, or a shiny, aluminum koala climbing a meat bridge).

Watch 1,000 Soda Cans Melt Into Hefty, Aluminum Ingots

San Pablo Build in Cities: Skylines As Future of 3D Product Design? Could Be.

You know, some think video games are a glimpse into the future of 3D product design and engineering. Just keep that in mind as you see what YouTube user Gilbert Roy Alva uses Cities: Skylines, a 3D city building sim game, to recreate some of Southeast Asia’s most well-known cities.

San Pablo Build in Cities: Skylines As Future of 3D Product Design? Could Be.

The AssembleAR App Turns IKEA Build Instructions Into an Interactive Experience

Although IKEA takes the cake for masterminding the ready-to-assemble (or flat-pack) furniture, the concept was initially captured in an 1878 US patent described as “(A) class of furniture which is so constructed that it may be packed and transported in parts, and put together for use by skilled or unskilled persons.”

The AssembleAR App Turns IKEA Build Instructions Into an Interactive Experience

The New iPad and Chromebook Tablets for Educators Are Also Great Options for Pros

If you’ve been on the fence about finally entering into digital tablet sketching (or notetaking) territory, both Google and Apple revealed some great news for you this week.

The New iPad and Chromebook Tablets for Educators Are Also Great Options for Pros

The post The SolidSmack Weekend Reader | Week 13.18 appeared first on SolidSmack.

by SolidSmack at March 31, 2018 02:28 PM

March 30, 2018

SolidSmack

The New iPad and Chromebook Tablets for Educators Are Also Great Options for Pros

If you’ve been on the fence about finally entering into digital tablet sketching (or notetaking) territory, both Google and Apple revealed some great news for you this week.

First up is the all-new $329 9.7-inch iPad.

While marketed towards educators as a low(er) cost of entry to bring iPads into the classroom (the education-adjusted cost is just $299 per unit), the most significant update is the inclusion of Apple Pencil compatibility. Previously only available on the company’s significantly more pricey iPad Pro tablet, the company is banking on the hardware combo to help springboard an entirely new way of thinking about technology in the classroom. Fortunately, everybody else can benefit from this lower price point, too.

Although indeed not as powerful as the iPad Pro, the 9.7-inch iPad is a compelling piece of kit. From digital sketching to convenient digital notetaking, there are a lot of bells and whistles packed into the lower-priced model that just might suffice for most.

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Not ones to let Apple encroach upon their existing status as a go-to for educators, Google’s announcement of their first Chrome OS tablet—the Acer Chromebook Tab 10—offers similar sketching or notetaking compatibility with the addition of a built-in Wacom EMR stylus. All this at the same $329 price point as the new iPad.

It would be hard to imagine Google even making a dent in Apple’s announcement without some form of stylus support. Not only did they deliver, but they also brought on the best stylus manufacturer in the business responsible for helping even make “digital sketching” a thing.

So while two of the biggest names in tech may be battling it out to win over classrooms with impressively powerful tablets and bottom-of-the-barrel prices, the real winners are the consumers and pros…both inside of the classroom and out.

The 9.7-inch iPad is available now over at Apple. The Chromebook Tab 10 will be released in April.

The post The New iPad and Chromebook Tablets for Educators Are Also Great Options for Pros appeared first on SolidSmack.

by Simon Martin at March 30, 2018 01:27 PM

Friday Smackdown: Underground Where Muffin Bubbles Are Slapped

G-liulian-art

The cap slapped shut with a thud and the tunnels expanded. You would never think a labyrinth of this complexity lay beneath the grass, yet the expanding corridors of hinged plates, overlapping gears and pistons steaming drew us toward the cavern, the cavern where we would slap muffin bubbles into these links.

G liulian – A lot of mind-bending and intricate architectural work, but I just love the trees in his painted scenes.

Aporetic Sequence – Instagram follow of the week. Jean Pierre Roy is a Brooklyn-based artist who just had a solo exhibition at Volta Show.

Simple Line – Since we’re talking exhibitions, check out the sweet spirograph-like work of Gao Rong. Absolutely, geometrically brilliant.

Materialization – The intricate laser cut wood sculpts by Gabriel Schama. You can almost smell the wood shavings burn.

Blup – Numbers. Who woulda thought their translucent innards were so beautifully bubbly. Cool, new typography work from TAVO.

Plex – New typeface anyone? IBM was due for an update apparently, so they created their own and documented the process here.

BeatBlender – A machine learning beat maker from Google Creative Lab. Works in the browswer and code is available. Hit ‘Launch Experiment’ in upper right. Drop the beat.

Incense Sticks – 48,000 submissions, from photographers in 115 countries. These are the finalists and winners for Smithsonain’s 15th annual photo contest.

Hide Away – Hiller Goodspeed creates some of the most simple drawings, and they are random and hilarious.

<script type="text/javascript"> amzn_assoc_placement = "adunit0"; amzn_assoc_search_bar = "true"; amzn_assoc_tracking_id = "solid0a-20"; amzn_assoc_ad_mode = "manual"; amzn_assoc_ad_type = "smart"; amzn_assoc_marketplace = "amazon"; amzn_assoc_region = "US"; amzn_assoc_title = "Deals We're Watching"; amzn_assoc_asins = "B074W7296T,B075GVR79D,B01HB068TS,B01I7VCTIE"; amzn_assoc_linkid = "012cf6c0232cac861864c51695d84220"; </script>
<script src="http://z-na.amazon-adsystem.com/widgets/onejs?MarketPlace=US"></script>

The Prodigy – Luca Stricagnoli walks through container storage yard, playing his acoustic playing three pieces by ‘The Prodigy’ – Invades Must Die, Omen, Voodoo People.

<iframe allowfullscreen="true" class="youtube-player" height="390" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/CIpOxa5hxOw?version=3&amp;rel=1&amp;fs=1&amp;autohide=2&amp;showsearch=0&amp;showinfo=1&amp;iv_load_policy=1&amp;wmode=transparent" style="border:0;" type="text/html" width="640"></iframe>

The post Friday Smackdown: Underground Where Muffin Bubbles Are Slapped appeared first on SolidSmack.

by Josh Mings at March 30, 2018 12:39 PM

Cool Tools of Doom: The Palomino Blackwing 602 Pencil

Cherished by writers, designers, illustrators, and other creative professionals for its soft dark lead and unique flat eraser, the Blackwing 602 is worth trying at least once—but be forewarned: you may never go back to plain old #2 pencils again.

Originally manufactured by the Eberhard Faber Pencil Company from 1934 – 1988, the Blackwing brand was acquired by California Cedar Products Company in 2008 and reintroduced to a new generation of creatives in 2012.

And now, you can score your own 12-pack of the legendary pencil for just 23 bucks.

Palomino Blackwing 602 Pencils 12-Pack — $22.95

Features:

  • One pack of 12 Palomino Blackwing pencils
  • Pencils feature a soft and smooth graphite core that is perfect for artists and composers
  • Pencils feature a unique ferrule and allows you to extend and replace the eraser
  • Replacement erasers available in three different colors
  • Pencils made out of Genuine Incense-cedar

PURCHASE VIA AMAZON

Affiliate purchases help support SolidSmack through a small commission earned from the sale.
Thank you!

The post Cool Tools of Doom: The Palomino Blackwing 602 Pencil appeared first on SolidSmack.

by SolidSmack at March 30, 2018 12:30 PM

The Javelin Blog

Stratasys Insight and GrabCAD Print: An Introduction

Stratasys 3D Printer Slicer Tools: GrabCAD Print vs. Insight

In a previous post, I talked about the differences between Stratasys Insight and GrabCAD Print. I went over how these slicer tools are very functional on their own but can also increase that functionality by working together. In this post, I’ll explain in a little more detail just what I mean.

GrabCAD Print and Insight are both specifically tailored for Stratasys 3D printers. The main difference here is that GrabCAD Print was built for Stratasys’ Idea Series and Design Series printers and Insight was built by Stratasys for their Production Series printers.

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Starting from Insight 

I won’t go too far into the workings and functionalities of Insight, as I’ve covered it all in my previous article. What I will cover, though, is how Insight project files can be transferred to and processed by GrabCAD Print.  

FILE > SAVE AS > JOB 

FILE > SAVE AS > TOOLPATH 

Depending on the version of Insight you have installed, generating the .cmb file for your object will be a little different. In the standalone version, you need to save the project as a Job. In the GrabCAD add-on, make sure to save the project as a Toolpath.  

Into GrabCAD 

Once you’ve saved your .cmb file, import it into GrabCAD either from the File dropdown menu, or from the keyboard shortcut: 

CTRL > SHIFT > I 

Once the .cmb file is imported, you’ll notice the 3D model looks slightly skewed or “damaged”. THIS IS NORMAL. Since GrabCAD already has the model data, it builds a silhouette of the modified object for better efficiency. Hitting the Slice button shows the modified layers in full detail.  

The one thing you need to remember is that once .cmb files are loaded, you are no longer able to import standard object files like .stl or .obj in the same project. Another thing to remember is that print properties and settings can’t be changed in GrabCAD once a .cmb is loaded. The program is already assuming you’ve set everything up in Insight, so it locks all other options like layer height and support style. The only thing you can change is the position of the object on the print bed.  

Apart from that, everything else is pretty much the same. Import the .cmb, choose where you’d like to place it on the build tray/sheet, and hit “Print”.  

The post Stratasys Insight and GrabCAD Print: An Introduction appeared first on The Javelin Blog.

by Eissa Ahmad at March 30, 2018 12:00 PM

The SOLIDWORKS Blog

SOLIDWORKS xDesign Challenge Submission: David Furry, Thunder Scientific

The second person we would like to profile from the SOLIDWORKS World xDesign challenge is David Furry. He shared the following with us regarding the challenge:

As long as I can remember I have been designing and building things. My dad was an engineer and I got to help with a lot of projects around the house, usually my job was to stay out of the way and watch and learn. We designed and built Pinewood Derby cars for five years running and won a lot of trophies. Three years of drafting in high school, with one of the best teachers around, really sparked my interest in creating. It seems that most of the jobs I have had over the years have ended up including drafting in one form or another. I had to learn to think three dimensionally during my career as a sheet metal worker — seeing how a flat pattern would fold up into the desired shape. After learning 2D CAD, it was a rather easy leap to move into the 3D world. I have used other software, but I have found that SOLIDWORKS outshines them all by far.

The Design Inspiration

When presented with the challenge, I narrowed the ideas down to the organizing and the design for social products. I think both themes are going to be quite useful, both now and in the future, as our population grows older and is more active longer. After looking at pictures for several hours and sleeping on it, the thought came to me that there were no storage containers actually attached to a laptop or iPad.

I think that having a storage container at hand, and easily available, would be most helpful, especially for somebody with mobility issues. The less somebody has to stand up just to get a pencil, pen or a pad of paper would save time and effort. I own a third-party case / keyboard and I sized this model to be a press fit onto the bottom of the keyboard side of the case. This design can be made in separate modules and joined together to fit onto a larger laptop with the addition of dovetail joints between pieces.

One problem I ran into using xDesign is when I found myself tapping on the keyboard and expecting a command to start. What I really like is how I can get on any computer or tablet and access my files. I have been talking this up at work for a year when it was last announced.  It definitely has a lot of possibility as my boss is a draftsman from long ago and he has told me more than a few times that he wants to learn to model. This application will please him I am sure!

Another thing I am excited about is the fact that exporting the model is so easy, either in a SLDXML or a STL file, both of which are easily imported into the desktop version of SOLIDWORKS. This will allow us to collaborate at work without everybody congregating in the Drafting office.

<iframe allow="autoplay; encrypted-media" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen" frameborder="0" height="641" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/tPu9CGXPfKQ?feature=oembed" width="1140"></iframe>

I am very grateful I was given the opportunity to participate in this challenge and I look forward to the production version of the software.

Want to get involved in the xDesign beta? Sign up at https://www.solidworks.com/product/solidworks-xdesign

Author information

Divi Lohiya
Divi Lohiya
Divi is a Senior Manager, Product Portfolio Management at SOLIDWORKS. He is passionate about how new technologies are coming together to change the way how products are designed, made and sold and engaging/teaching kids in STEM activities. Divi graduated from Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Bombay with a dual degree in Mechanical Engineering and a Masters degree in Engineering from University of Texas at Austin.

The post SOLIDWORKS xDesign Challenge Submission: David Furry, Thunder Scientific appeared first on The SOLIDWORKS Blog.

by Divi Lohiya at March 30, 2018 12:00 PM

March 29, 2018

SolidSmack

The Incredible MagicaVoxel 3D Modeling Tool

Created in MagicaVoxel by Yannick Castaing

Image: Yannick Castaing

Need an introductory 3D modeling tool? MagicaVoxel is what you need.

MagicaVoxel is a free, open source software package that provides simple, yet surprisingly powerful 3D modeling capability. Creator ephtracy explains:

A free lightweight 8-bit voxel art editor and interactive path tracing renderer.

And that is precisely what this is. At first glance, the software appears to be a rather simple Minecraft-like block editor, and in many ways, it is just that. But as you get deeper into the system its more powerful features begin to emerge.

The tool installs freely on Windows or MacOS. It launches very quickly and is highly responsive, even on lesser machines.

You’re presented with a simple interface window where you can manipulate the blocks of the 3D model in many different ways. What got me right away was the paradigm they use is anything but “blocks”. In this system, think of them as just voxels that you typically do not individually operate upon.

<figure class="wp-caption aligncenter" id="attachment_94179" style="width: 960px">MagicaVoxel 3D Modeling Tool<figcaption class="wp-caption-text">Using MagicaVoxel’s line tool</figcaption></figure>

Instead, you use drag and drop style tools, such as the “line” tool. With that, you can easily draw a line (of blocks) in a simple operation. There are complementary tools to select, move, rescale and erase groups of blocks. It’s a lot like using a 2D pixel-based image tool like PhotoShop.

You can also perform “freehand” operations and then create 3D shapes from your efforts. It’s not exactly spline-level capability, but it’s not bad for an introductory tool.

Another paradigm shift is that this tool recognizes 3D “faces”. If it detects a continuous chunk of flatly-aligned blocks, it considers them a “face” and permits operations on it. What operations? One is a “push-pull” style tool where you can stretch a face in and out – just like you’d see on more powerful 3D CAD tools.

There’s more.

This tool includes a painting function, where you can apply textures to individual blocks – although you’d typically apply a color to a face selection.

<figure class="wp-caption aligncenter" id="attachment_94180" style="width: 729px">Building an animated 3D deer in MagicaVoxel<figcaption class="wp-caption-text">Building an animated 3D deer in MagicaVoxel</figcaption></figure>

MagicaVoxel also includes an ability to duplicate shapes and slightly modify them to create a 3D animation sequence. Basically, you’re creating a series of different scenes much like a 2D flipbook. The built-in renderer is handy for this feature.

Watch this busy video to see even more features:

<iframe allowfullscreen="true" class="youtube-player" height="390" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/d_WymsNdRBA?version=3&amp;rel=1&amp;fs=1&amp;autohide=2&amp;showsearch=0&amp;showinfo=1&amp;iv_load_policy=1&amp;wmode=transparent" style="border:0;" type="text/html" width="640"></iframe>

There is a “command” feature where you can enter some simple line commands to create or manipulate 3D objects is a more programmatic fashion. For example, you can quickly create a maze shape with a single command.

MagicaVoxel includes some 3D modeling features I’ve never encountered before, like a shuffling feature that pushes a structure through the workspace – and then wraps it around to the other side automatically.

The features of MagicaVoxel, when combined together in ingenious ways, allows the relatively easy creation of fairly complex 3D objects and scenes. It’s surprisingly easy to use.

<figure class="wp-caption aligncenter" id="attachment_94181" style="width: 923px">A lousy 3D model I created in MagicaVoxel, exported in .OBJ and opened in MeshLab - suitable for 3D printing<figcaption class="wp-caption-text">A lousy 3D model I created in MagicaVoxel, exported in .OBJ and opened in MeshLab – suitable for 3D printing</figcaption></figure>

For 3D printing, MagicaVoxel permits export of created files in a variety of formats, including .OBJ and .PLY, both of which can handle the color textures. While there is no .STL format export feature, you can very easily convert the .OBJ or .PLY files into .STL if you wish with other external tools like MeshLab (also free).

Is MagicaVoxel going to replace SOLIDWORKS or Fusion 360? Not a chance.

But it is an extremely useful tool that could be used to introduce newcomers to 3D modeling concepts. I would not be afraid to hand this tool over to any child – of any age! The “solid” 3D modeling experience in this tool would easily implant many necessary concepts into young brains that would greatly assist the transition into more powerful professional tools later in life.

Give MagicaVoxel a try – it’s definitely worth it.

Read more about 3D printing at Fabbaloo!

The post The Incredible MagicaVoxel 3D Modeling Tool appeared first on SolidSmack.

by Fabbaloo at March 29, 2018 02:32 PM

The SOLIDWORKS Blog

Find Out Why You Should Attend a SWUGN Technical Summit

I take notes and make myself reminders. It’s what I do. So after my day at the SOLIDWORKS User Group Network’s Technical Summit in Nashville, I’ve got a lot of notes and reminders to review.

The SWUGN Technical Summits are one-day training and networking events in cities across the country. If you have attended a SOLIDWORKS World in the past, you can think of them as an entire day of breakout sessions.

The day starts with an introduction to the User Group Network, followed by several presentations during which attendees get to choose what technical content they want to see.  The sessions are geared toward all levels of users and are given by an all-star lineup of presenters from SOLIDWORKS employees, resellers and User Group leaders.

Over the course of the day’s training sessions, I took 17 pages of notes on part modeling, simulation, large assembly management, PDM and surfacing. I jotted reminders about things I want to be sure to share with my User Group (Panama City Beach SWUG) as well as techniques to use and ideas to implement at work. I made a record of folks I met for the first time and reminders about where prior acquaintances were from. It’s all about networking.

I know that every attendee will leave the Summit having learned something they didn’t know. There is so much to gain from the presentations, the questions asked by fellow attendees and discussions amongst users. This event will be $40.00 with breakfast and lunch provided. You can see the scheduled locations, technical lineups and register at http://swugn.org/swugn/events.htm.

If there isn’t a Summit nearby, consider attending a free User Group meeting in your area. Whether it is a time-saving trick, a functionality you didn’t know existed, or a new approach to an old method, you are bound to take something away from either a Summit event or User Group meeting.

To look for a SOLIDWORKS User Group in your area, visit http://swugn.org/swugn/directory.htm. If you would like to be added to the Panama City Beach SWUG mailing list, please feel free to contact Kendra Wardlow at PCBSWUG@gmail.com.

Author information

Kendra Wardlow
Kendra Wardlow
Kendra Wardlow is the lead drafter for a government contracting company that works mainly with the Naval base in Panama City Beach, Florida. She has ten years of SOLIDWORKS CAD experience and is a Certified SOLIDWORKS Professional (CSWP), CSWPA-Drawings, CSWPA-Sheet Metal, CSWPA-Weldments. Kendra has been leading the Panama City Beach SOLIDWORKS User Group since 2015. The group was named the 2016 SWUGN User Group of the Year.

The post Find Out Why You Should Attend a SWUGN Technical Summit appeared first on The SOLIDWORKS Blog.

by Kendra Wardlow at March 29, 2018 01:20 PM

The Javelin Blog

SOLIDWORKS PCB 2018 Top 5 Enhancements Video

Printed Circuit Board (PCB) design solutions were added to SOLIDWORKS two generations ago as a result of a partnership between DS SolidWorks and Altium. The partnership yielded two products:

  1. SOLIDWORKS PCB Connector, which connects Altium Designer to SOLIDWORKS.
  2. SOLIDWORKS PCB, which was developed by the combined efforts of DS SolidWorks and Altium. This product directly interfaces with SOLIDWORKS.
SOLIDWORKS PCB 2018

SOLIDWORKS PCB 2018

If you are catching up with this exciting PCB solution or if it your first time reading about SOLIDWORKS PCB,  I recommend taking a sneak peek of it in action with the video below:

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SOLIDWORKS PCB 2018 Related Posts

As a pioneering E-CAD and M-CAD integration tool, true to always delivering customer defined products, here are 5 favorites from the SOLIDWORKS PCB 2018 enhancements:

Watch our SOLIDWORKS 2018 Launch Broadcast

Javelin’s team of Certified SOLIDWORKS experts unveiled the new software in a live broadcast. Watch a recording of the broadcast to see technical demonstrations and tutorials on how to use the new software. Click here to learn more about SOLIDWORKS 2018

The post SOLIDWORKS PCB 2018 Top 5 Enhancements Video appeared first on The Javelin Blog.

by Delvin Masilamani at March 29, 2018 12:00 PM

March 28, 2018

SolidSmack

The AssembleAR App Turns IKEA Build Instructions Into an Interactive Experience

Although IKEA takes the cake for masterminding the ready-to-assemble (or flat-pack) furniture, the concept was initially captured in an 1878 US patent described as “(A) class of furniture which is so constructed that it may be packed and transported in parts, and put together for use by skilled or unskilled persons.”

Either way, decades of design expertise, new methods of manufacturing, and a slew of customer experience updates have radicalized the ready-to-assemble experience. But the one thing that hasn’t changed much? Those pesky minimalist assembly instructions.

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Inspired by IKEA’s Place app, which uses augmented reality features on a smartphone to enable preview furniture within an interior space, UI designer Adam Pickard took a stab at carrying the same augmented reality features over to the brand’s assembly instructions.

IKEA AR App

“Even though the IKEA assembly manual is well-designed, people often struggle with the self-assembly, so much so that its a common cliche,” explains Pickard. “There are even professional builders that are hired to do the assembly for you.”

Keeping aspects of the original manual layouts to keep the experience on-brand, Pickard added animations created in Cinema 4D and life-sized reference models to help simplify the self-assembly process.

IKEA AR App

“I looked at what 3D elements should be positioned in the user’s environment for each step, to prevent the user having to crawl or walk over to each small detail,” he explains. “I enlarged aspects of that instruction in the user interface at the bottom of the screen.”

Will IKEA bring on Pickard to make (some variation of) this concept official and public? Either way, with the increasing accessibility of AR technologies, could we altogether be moving away from the traditional paper booklet?

The post The AssembleAR App Turns IKEA Build Instructions Into an Interactive Experience appeared first on SolidSmack.

by Simon Martin at March 28, 2018 12:35 PM

The SOLIDWORKS Blog

Designing and Building the Solar-Powered Car of the Future

Students from Singapore Polytechnic finished in ninth place in the 2017 World Solar Challenge in a solar-powered car designed and built using SOLIDWORKS. Their car, not only had to be designed in accordance with strict competition design criteria but also needed to have the stamina to traverse 3000km across the unforgiving Australian outback, from Darwin to Adelaide, where temperatures fluctuated from single digits to 40°C within a single day.

A solar-powered car that does not compromise consumer appeal

To participate in the World Solar Challenge, held every two years in Australia, Singapore Polytechnic students needed to design and build a futuristic two-seater, fiber-composite, solar-powered electric vehicle: SunSPEC5. The team who participated in the challenge consisted of 35 students from various engineering diplomas, 12 lecturers, and three alumni. The car, SunSPEC5, an upgrade of the team’s previous entry in 2015, took 20 months from December 2015 to design and build. The team entered the cruiser category, which emphasises practicality, design and end-user appeal over speed.

“We wanted to build a solar vehicle that was uniquely Singapore-designed and built, but still retained the look and feel of a commercial vehicle,” said Mr Foo Fang Siong, Lecturer at Singapore Polytechnic. “It was a long journey to reach this level of design, experience and technology –six years, three races, more than nine different prototypes, including solar cars to create the SunSPEC5 model.”

Given the time taken to design and build a working model and prototype, it is crucial to have flexible software that not only has a short learning curve but allows the team to test and innovate the design easily. SOLIDWORKS was the answer.

<iframe allow="autoplay; encrypted-media" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen" frameborder="0" height="641" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/-7Sw2Ie5gC4?feature=oembed" width="1140"></iframe>

The design process – test, learn, innovate

Developing a new solar car is done through various stages. Aerodynamic studies on the design ensures the car runs as fast and smoothly as possible. In the design stage, it is also important to test the structure and integrity to ensure the car is durable and can withstand impact. These are followed by fabrication and manufacturing process and procedures to actually build the car. The software needed to be sophisticated to detect errors easily and quickly in the early stages of the design process and enable the team to make design modifications without affecting the entire assembly. If these defects are not caught early, it can be costly to catch them when the prototype has already been built.

A significant challenge throughout the design process is safety – of utmost importance is to protect the occupants of the car. “On the surface the challenge seems simple: build a car and drive from Darwin to Adelaide. However it’s not that simple. On the road, we will encounter gigantic road trains, which displace a large amount of air. One wrong move could send the solar car flying off the road. We can also encounter animals such as kangaroos, dingos, emus, or reptiles, crossing the road and impact with these animals could damage the car badly. We need to be able to test these scenarios in the software when we design the car,” said Mr Foo.

“While we try to do as many tests as we can in the software and in the prototype, nothing can prepare you for the real thing. During the race, the car tire burst and we almost caused an accident. This is why it’s so important to be able to detect defects early as well as accurately document all specifications for subsequent prototypes and improvements,” said Ms Krystal Wong, Singapore Polytechnic student and driver of the SunSPEC5 car.

Looking forward to 2019 World Solar Challenge

Driving the car for six days straight over the Stuart Highway is tiring for the team. The two drivers drive from 8am to 5pm every day, racing to reach each of the nine checkpoints along the route. Out of 13 teams in the cruiser category, only three managed to finish the race within the final day’s deadline. SunSPEC5 came in ninth out of 13 cars.

There are many things the team needs to improve on and the next batch of students are looking forward to working on the next iteration of the car together with SOLIDWORKS in time for the next race in 2019.

Author information

SOLIDWORKS
Dassault Systèmes SolidWorks Corp. offers complete 3D software tools that let you create, simulate, publish, and manage your data. SolidWorks products are easy to learn and use, and work together to help you design products better, faster, and more cost-effectively. The SolidWorks focus on ease-of-use allows more engineers, designers and other technology professionals than ever before to take advantage of 3D in bringing their designs to life.

The post Designing and Building the Solar-Powered Car of the Future appeared first on The SOLIDWORKS Blog.

by SOLIDWORKS at March 28, 2018 12:00 PM

The Javelin Blog

Help DS SolidWorks Improve the Performance of Large Assemblies and Drawings

Submit SOLIDWORKS Software Performance Reports (SPR) and Enhancement Requests (ER)

Have you encountered SOLIDWORKS software performance that has hindered your workflow and caused frustration? One of the less known techniques for bug reports and performance enhancements requests is getting Dassault Systemes SolidWorks Corporation attention by reporting issues directly to them and voting for enhancements. The most effective way to get DS SolidWorks to dedicate resources to solving these issues is by having a large amount of users vote on an SPR or ER. Issues with a large amount of supporters will be placed at higher priority than issues that are reported but not as common or heavily supported by other users.

Equally important is describing in as much detail as possible what the business impact for your company will be if the bug is not fixed, or if the enhancement is not implemented. Make sure that your explanation boils down to time and money.

These are the steps to create an Enhancement Request (ER) or vote on a pre-existing ER or SPR.

  1. Login to your customer portal account at https://customerportal.solidworks.com if you do not have an account and don’t know how to set it up check out our how-to article.
  2. After signing in, on the home page navigate to My Support and select Enhancement Requests.

    Customer Portal

    Customer Portal

  3. Type in your enhancement request (such as Large design review) and search to see if it has previously been submitted by another user. If so, by selecting it and completing the form you are voting for that ER to be fixed.

    SOLIDWORKS Software Performance Enhancement request list

    Enhancement request list

  4. Fill out the required fields for your request (product version, reason for ER, and extra attachments) and then vote or create a new enhancement request.

    Enhancement Request Form

    Enhancement Request Form

SPRs are created for all reproducible SOLIDWORKS Software Performance defects which are reported to DS SolidWorks tech support. The process for SPRs is as follows:

  • DS Tech Support will only issue an SPR if the problem is reproducible in the current version with the newest service pack and in the version and service pack that the customer is using.
  • DS Tech Support will find an SPR in the database with the same issue and the hit countwill be incremented. The greater the customer hit count, the higher the priority it becomes for fixing.
  • A workaround will be provided if possible. If there is no workaround it will increase the priority of the SPR.

Severity level is assigned to an SPR based on the impact the problem has on a customer’s business. They are prioritized based on product impact, customer impact and the number of customers that have reported the problem.

Current SOLIDWORKS Software Performance SPRs

There is currently a list of SPRs that would improve SOLIDWORKS Software Performance for large assemblies and drawings if solved. If any of the following apply to you then please visit the customer portal and vote for them:

  • SPR 712870 Ability to open SolidWorks files in Large Design Review Mode.
  • SPR 659327 Ability to open any drawing as detached without having to first save it as deatched drawing.
  • SPR 1064818 Regression of new functionality SOLIDWORKS is not displaying last opened time.
  • SPR 1066436 Performance Evaluation ‘Modified on Open’ is missing from the new 2018 Performance Evaluation, even though should be there as per the Help File and What’s New document.
  • SPR 1010093 Image quality option Apply to all referenced part documents option at assembly level does not apply quality settings to referenced parts or sub assemblies.
  • SPR 773041 Ability to dimension SpeedPak elements in drawings.
  • SPR 442399 SpeedPak Drawings User would like to be able to create SpeedPak views in high quality.
  • SPR 567670 Ability to create a detached drawing containing a view of a SpeedPak configuration of an assembly.
  • SPR 556714 A DXF generated from a SpeedPak assembly drawing misses all lines based on ghost geometry.
  • SPR 539720 Detail views cannot be created from section views that have SpeedPak applied.
  • SPR 624141 Cannot predictably crop Drawing Views using a combination of SpeedPak and Non-SpeedPak sub-assemblies.
  • SPR 633445 Measure tool show incorrect location for circular references, when in Large design review mode.
  • SPR 723321 Lasso selection is not available in large design review.
  • SPR 1063660 Fully Defined Component is Moving when a Component Mated to it is Dragged’.
  • SPR 1063598 isolate does not work correctly in Large Design Review (LDR) mode if the file was last saved in 2018 version.
  • SPR 932887 Legacy dataset Components that should be hidden in snapshot are shown if assembly is opened in large design review.
  • SPR 933480 After using unload hidden components, mate error shows for mate defined by temporary axis and does not solve.
  • SPR 999176 Ability to define route C-points to SpeedPak.

DS SolidWorks is listening! You just have to vote to be heard.

The post Help DS SolidWorks Improve the Performance of Large Assemblies and Drawings appeared first on The Javelin Blog.

by Adam Ferrer at March 28, 2018 12:00 PM

SolidSmack

App Smack 13.18: Textor, Unfold, Thunderly, Android Auto, and More…

SolidSmack App Smack

It’s time for another round of apps that cover the spectrum of your beloved mobile device(s)!

The Weekly App Smack is the best of new or updated design and productivity apps (and maybe a couple of fun ones, too) for the busy design or engineering professional and this week we have a list sure to make you more efficient.

Do you have an app suggestion that has made your life easier or changed up your workflow? Let us know in the comments below or send it into tips@solidsmack.com.

Hit it!

Textor (iOS — Free)

Textor is a plain text editor, fully optimized for iOS.

Textor is a plain text editor, fully optimized for iOS.

Unfold (iOS – Free)

Tell your story exactly the way you want to with Unfold.

Tell your story exactly the way you want to with Unfold.

Thunderly (iOS — Free)

At photorealistic globe you can see real time lightning all around the world. Besides accurate day and night cycle, globe contains real time clouds, precipitation and lightning history layer for last hour.

At photorealistic globe you can see real time lightning all around the world.

Canva (Android — Free)

Whether you need an Instagram post, Facebook header, logo maker, photo collage, wedding invitation or poster maker — Canva is an all-in-one graphic design app that allows you to produce eye-catching graphics on the go.

Canva is an all-in-one graphic design app that allows you to produce eye-catching graphics on the go.

Android Auto (Android — Free)

Android Auto is your smart driving companion. With a simplified interface, large buttons, and powerful voice actions, Android Auto is designed to make it easier to use apps from your phone while you’re on the road.

Android Auto is your smart driving companion.

Knife Hit (Android — Free)

Throw the knives into the logs to break them. Slash the apples and unlock new knives. Each 5th stage is defended by a boss – beat them to get exclusive knives!

Throw the knives into the logs to break them. Slash the apples and unlock new knives. Knife Hit App.

The post App Smack 13.18: Textor, Unfold, Thunderly, Android Auto, and More… appeared first on SolidSmack.

by SolidSmack at March 28, 2018 09:48 AM

March 27, 2018

SolidSmack

San Pablo Build in Cities: Skylines As Future of 3D Product Design? Could Be.

san pablo cities skyline 3d product design future

You know, some think video games are a glimpse into the future of 3D product design and engineering. Just keep that in mind as you see what YouTube user Gilbert Roy Alva uses Cities: Skylines, a 3D city building sim game, to recreate some of Southeast Asia’s most well-known cities.

With Minecraft being used to create castles in the sky and computer kits for kids, it’s also interesting to think how future designers and engineers will think about the digital creation of everyday things. In another example, Cities: Skylines, allows you to make your own living, breathing city – complete with roads and buildings which citizens interact with as they go about their daily lives and you build.

The tools in the game are pretty robust – allowing to you push and pull bodies of water to meet your omnipotent needs. While most players would take this as an opportunity to push the limits of urban society, Gilbert had other plans – building San Pablo.

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Just look at how he recreates the city meter-by-meter. Using cringe-worthy pixelated images from Google Maps to plot the city’s layout, Alva painstakingly traces not just the main roads, but each little side street and corner where a crime has most likely been committed.

Once the streets are set in, he begins to add other details likes lakes, trees, and different terrain to give the digital city a lived-in feel.

But what really sets this build apart from the rest is his attention to detail on the different buildings in the area. Houses, malls, even the churches have a distinct Filipino vibe to them (the ads on the SM mall are a very nice touch). It doesn’t replicate the amount of traffic you experience in the real San Pablo city, but maybe it’s for the best.

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Gilbert Roy Alva doesn’t just limit himself to cities in the Philippines. After expanding his channel to cover ASEAN cities, Gilbert has also made builds of Bandar Seri Begawan in Brunei and Putrajaya in Malaysia.Each city usually has a design video where he makes the build, followed by a video which showcases the finished product.

Now, the detail work he puts into these isn’t too far off from today’s method of sketching and modeling, tweaking and updating, setting up configurations, building assemblies. Think if you could build houses, cars, bridges, automation systems using a system like Cities. Yeah? Pulling from a pre-configured database of parts/assemblies with enough smarts to adaptively update as you laid out each component? Interesting to think about.

You can find more of the build videos over on his YouTube channel Gilbert Plays.

The post San Pablo Build in Cities: Skylines As Future of 3D Product Design? Could Be. appeared first on SolidSmack.

by Carlos Zotomayor at March 27, 2018 11:25 PM

Model of the Week: Alien Head Shower Head [Get Out of the Room!]

3d printed alien shower head

Oh , look at you! You are just A DARLING. Your glistening, acidic alien skin… Ohh! You’re yawning. CUTE. A yet you just burst from the belly of my dog. Gonna have to clean the carpet… a few times. Bad baby alien. Kidding! Don’t tongue mouth my face!

We may not have actual baby xenomorphs, but MyMiniFactory user crazyman2099, an “Engineer and designer that loves 3D printing and yo mama”, has given us the next best, less deadly, thing – an alien head shower head. YES.

This is a remix of a great alien head model to make it into something all Alien fans need in their bathrooms. I hollowed out the model, clean up the interior face for minimal overhang issues, and remade bottom section because it’s neck is removed. The threads are remixed from the most popular shower head posted.

It is a remix of Ideaform’s Alien head and Mr’ MegaTronic’s showerhead. He used ABS on a Solidoodle 3 3D printer with a 100% infill for the single part print and smoothed it out with a bit of Acetone. He recommends going slow for the threads, using tighter layers as well as a sanded Z plate.

You can download the .3mf model on MyMiniFactory or .stl on Thingiverse. (Bonus! Check out his Alien Facehugger pen/pencil holder here! YES!)

Have a model you think everyone needs? Share the link and details with us here!

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The post Model of the Week: Alien Head Shower Head [Get Out of the Room!] appeared first on SolidSmack.

by Josh Mings at March 27, 2018 10:56 PM

Watch 1,000 Soda Cans Melt Into Hefty, Aluminum Ingots

You know what’s more satisfying to watch than a thousand soda cans being crushed? Seeing them get turned into solid blocks of pure aluminum bliss. After consuming an unhealthy amount of soda products, Ben from PressTube decides to crush and melt the cans into reusable aluminum ingots (which can be used as bricks for a shiny, aluminum house, a shiny, aluminum walkway, or a shiny, aluminum koala climbing a meat bridge).

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Ben starts by dumping roughly 1,000-1,100 soda cans into a shredder. Once they’ve been turned into aluminum confetti, he resists rolling in it, fires up his one-liter crucible and shovels a handful of shredded metal into it.

As the bits begin to melt, a large portion of slag starts to make its way to the surface. This comes from the various paints, dirt, and other materials which were used to make the cans. Ben removes this excess slag before pouring the pure aluminum into a heavy-duty, cast iron mold.

Ben makes three separate ingots – one made of a single pour from the crucible, another from two pours, and a third out of three pours. The first ingot is simply left to dry and is removed from the mold once it’s finished, but the two ingots made from different pours require a block of ice for them to cool and meld together.

The smallest ingot weighs 1.9 kg (4.2 lbs), the middle ingot 3.6 kg (7.9 lbs), and the third and heaviest ingot weighs 4.7 kg (10.3 lbs). All in all, the one thousand melted soda cans provide a total of roughly 10 kg (22.4 lbs) worth of aluminum.

Soda cans aren’t the only thing Ben works with. You can see more of his casting projects (some of which are toys!) over on his Youtube channel, PressTube.

The post Watch 1,000 Soda Cans Melt Into Hefty, Aluminum Ingots appeared first on SolidSmack.

by Carlos Zotomayor at March 27, 2018 08:22 PM

SOLIDWORKS Tech Blog

Dirty decals

Dirty decals in SOLIDWORKS

Decals in SOLIDWORKS Visualize are often for applying logos, labels and signage onto products. This blog explores how decals can be used to give realistic defects, dirt and damage onto appearances that would otherwise look too clean and perfect.

 

Dirty decals in SOLIDWORKS

Dirty decals in SOLIDWORKS

 

When exporting a render in Visualize, you have the option to save the file in .png (portable network grahpic) format. This file type supports alpha channels which means that portions of the image can be set transparent and therefore easy to superimpose onto any background. The same goes for when you import decals. A scratch with a transparent surround can be set as a decal so that only the scratch would be visible on your object. All you need to do is find some .png decals.

There are plenty to be found from online sources. One great example is Textures.com which includes a whole category dedicated to decals. Below is just a small snippet of the grimy wall stains available – just download any that take your fancy!

 

Different decals

Select your decal

 

The process to add the decal is the same as any other. Hit the plus symbol on the appearances tab (for Visualize 2018) and choose to add a new decal then browse for your .png. You will also find this option by right clicking in the appearances pane.

 

Add new decal

Add new decal

 

Drag the decal onto the intended face then position, rotate and scale it using the object manipulation tool.

 

Drag the Decal

Drag the Decal

 

This render example below illustrates a new container conversion for offices in a fabrication yard. The highlighted decals help to give realistic examples of:

  • Graffiti
  • Cracks (wall and road surfaces)
  • Excess cement on walls
  • Damage to tarmac
  • Dampness mould
  • Health and safety signage
Where's the render

Where’s the render?

 

Warning! Don’t rough up your render too much!

Author information

Cadtek Systems UK - Elite SOLIDWORKS Training & Support
Cadtek has been established for over 27 years. Based in the UK, we have unrivalled experience in providing design solutions for designers and engineers. We work across all disciplines and multiple industries. An award winning Elite Reseller we can help you understand and choose the right 3D CAD solution. Call 0800 804 7766 to speak to an account manager. For more information, visit cadtek.com.

The post Dirty decals appeared first on SOLIDWORKS Tech Blog.

by Cadtek Systems UK - Elite SOLIDWORKS Training &#38; Support at March 27, 2018 01:21 PM

SolidSmack

“Mad” Mike Hughes Finally Sends His Homemade Rocket Sky High

Mad Mike Hughes

Hey, remember last year when a retired limo driver said he would launch himself into space with a homemade rocket? After countless delays due to rocket repairs and his inability to get a proper permit to fly, “Mad” Mike Hughes was finally able to launch his creation sky high…

…before crashing back down to earth like a sack of potatoes.

Here’s the launch video, courtesy of YouTube user softypapa:

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The launch, which took place last Saturday (March 24, 2018) in the Mojave Desert, actually went better than expected. Rather than exploding and sending Hughes to the stars, the rocket propelled him a total of 1,875 feet (571m) skywards at a speed of 350mph before forcing him to deploy his parachute and land nose first on terra firma.

<figure class="wp-caption alignnone" id="attachment_94136" style="width: 1366px"><figcaption class="wp-caption-text">image from NoiZe TV</figcaption></figure>

You’d think everything would be okay after the parachute deployed, but then again, the rocket isn’t built up to NASA standards. The cockpit, located very close to the nose of the aircraft, took some damage upon landing – leaving Hughes dazed and exhausted.

It could have been worse though – he could have never left the ground and ended up in a smoldering heap of his creation. And those parachutes? NASA supposedly supplied them.

The launch aimed to provide Hughes with “data” so he could discern if Earth is flat or not. Considering a significant portion of the mission was funded by the flat-Earth community, I hope he had the time to take a look around up there instead of wondering if he will ever make it down in one piece.

Watch the entire launch below, courtesy of NoiZe TV:

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The post “Mad” Mike Hughes Finally Sends His Homemade Rocket Sky High appeared first on SolidSmack.

by Carlos Zotomayor at March 27, 2018 01:17 PM

Cool Tools of Doom: The rOtring 800 Retractable Mechanical Pencil

Rotring-Pencil

When it comes to mechanical pencils, not all are created equal. And with rOtring, this couldn’t be truer.

Ideal for sketching, writing, and drawing, the iconic rOtring 800 Mechanical Pencil features an ergonomically enhanced full metal body, with centered weight balance and a comfortable non-slip knurled grip for long work periods without discomfort or fatigue. Featuring a “Twist and Click” retractable mechanism of the entire sleeve and lead, the rOtring 800 Mechanical Pencil can easily go from pocket to sketch without worrying about damage or lead breakage. Quite frankly, you’d be hard-pressed to find a better mechanical pencil for this price.

The rOtring 800 Retractable Mechanical Pencil — $34.29

Features:

  • An iconic tool meant for a lifetime of use.
  • Unique “Twist and Click” mechanism retracts entire lead and sleeve for durability and pocket-safety.
  • Full metal body providing the ideal balance of weight and feeling.
  • Hexagonal barrel ensuring fatigue-free writing and drawing.
  • Fixed lead guidance sleeve prevents breakage and gives a clear page view for ruler-based drawing.

PURCHASE VIA AMAZON

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by SolidSmack at March 27, 2018 12:27 PM