Creaform VXelements has been updated!

VXelements, the software used with Creaform 3D scanners has been updated to version 6.0!  The update includes a major overhaul of the interface.  Now VXelements has a home page. You can choose which aspect of the software you will be using.  One of my favorite enhancements is part of the VXinspect and VXmodel.  Now you can choose from recent CAD files!  SOLIDWORKS has had this for a long time, and now VXelements has it also! When in VXscan, the workflow […]

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Creaform 3D Scanning: Colormap, the Quick Go/No-Go of Inspection

Colormap, the Quick Go/No-Go of Inspection   The HandyScan 700 is a great tool for inspecting parts for Quality Control engineers.  Using VxElements, PPAP inspection reports can be created being as simple or as complicated as needed.  After importing a CAD model, either .iges or .stp, the scan can be compared to the “perfect” CAD model.  One of the useful tools within VxElements is the ability to create a colormap of the differences between the CAD model and the scan.  […]

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Precise Placement of Forces and Fixtures

When working with SOLIDWORKS Simulation, exact positioning of fixtures and external loads is very important.  Occasionally they are placed on entire faces such as pictured below. This however, is seldom the case.  It is much more likely that the fixtures or external loads be placed on only a small portion of the face.  This can be accomplished by using split lines.  Split lines divide a face into multiple faces.  This can be done as a part level feature or within […]

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Complex Curved Shapes Made Simple

There are many methods to creating objects in SOLIDWORKS.  Use of loft and boundary extrusions or surfacing techniques can go a long way.  Another method is using the multi-body command “Combine” that is found in the Direct Editing tab. Using regular modeling techniques, the solid part shown below would be difficult. Multiple coexisting bodies can be created by unchecking the “Merge Results” box in the second extruded boss.  The images below, show the multi-bodies shelled out and then with ribs […]

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SOLIDWORKS 2015 What’s New – Drawing: Zoom to Sheet #sw2015

When working with Drawings, especially when using the “Auto-start projected view” in the View Palette, it can be very easy drop a view outside the drawing sheet.  I have also seen some people will place all of their views on the first sheet, positioning the views that will go in further sheets outside the sheet area until they have completed the first sheet.  In previous versions if this happened, using “Zoom to fit” would zoom to include everything, including the […]

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SOLIDWORKS 2015 What’s New – Simulation: Load Case Manager #sw2015

When running simulations a Design Study can save a lot of time to find the best design.  In SOLIDWORKS 2015 we now have the Load Case Manager.  This tool allows us to create and test different primary load cases and linear combinations of the primary load cases in static studies.  This tool can be started by right-clicking on the study name in the Simulation study tree. In this example, the primary load cases are “Twisting” and “Twisting with Downward Force.”  […]

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The Importance of Organization

For almost all users of SOLIDWORKS, organization is vital for understanding another designer’s methods.  Everyone designs a little differently and what makes perfect sense to one person may seem completely crazy to another.  The ability for one person to lay down a design and have another person pick it up and be able to immediately begin working from where the first person left off can be invaluable.  A good example of a chaotic feature tree is shown below.   Looking […]

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SOLIDWORKS Design Insight Plot: Locations of Max Loading

When running Static Studies, there are many useful plots that can give a wide variety of information.  One of these plots is the Design Intent plot and sometimes known as a “load path” plot.  This plot is designed to show the areas with higher loading.  Using this plot, it can be determined what areas could potentially be reduced to save on material or weight.  It can also be used to identify what areas might need to be “beefed up,” but […]

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Shortcuts in SOLIDWORKS: Mate References

Creating mate references in parts used frequently is a great way to speed up the assembly process.  With a couple of selections, automatic mates will be applied to a part as soon as it is inserted into the assembly.  However, sometimes the automatic mates will not be what we want them to be. First, the mate reference command can be found at Insert/Reference Geometry/Mate Reference or under Reference Geometry on the Features tab of a part file Command Manager or […]

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How to Create Threads

Threading is an important feature of many parts.  While cosmetic threads can be used in some cases to decrease the file size, they are often vital for the end product such as when using the part file to print in a 3D printer.  For this example, threading for a cap will be created. To begin, a sketch must be created on the plane where the threading should start.  In this case the threading will start at the bottom of the […]

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