If you have never heard of SOLIDWORKS xDesign, you are in for a treat. More and more companies face new challenges and are hungry for great products without the overhead. Expensive IT cost is typically associated with engineering. The cost of servers and their upkeep is enormous. Many companies no longer maintain an IT person on staff; those positions are being outsourced by companies more and more. Therefore, outsourcing IT does save money, but it is a partial solution to the problem. Many companies and organizations are currently looking for a solution that does not require IT overhead. If this is something you are looking for, you are at the right place.
xDesign is an app that runs on any device that can access the internet via a web browser. The software isn’t locally installed, so it can run on a Chromebook and does not require a Windows operating system.
An administrator must invite you to the 3DEXPERIENCE Platform to gain access to this technology. The invitation can come from a variety of sources. If purchased by a company, the point of contact will receive an invitation from Dassault Systems. If your company already has access, the invitation will be from your 3DEXPERIENCE administrator. Once you have your login and password, you must select your tenant (i.e., welcome to ABC Corp (DS-R1234678910)) and pick a collaborative space. You may also be invited to a dashboard by another user where the app can be easily made available.
If you need to launch the app, click on the Compass at the top left-hand corner.
The Compass will light up and provide access to the roles that have been assigned to you. If the 3D Creator Role is not listed, see your 3DEXPERIENCE administrator. You can also scroll down to the apps below or click on the 3D Creator role link. It will display the apps assigned under that role.
Apps are not sold individually; the roles are. There are many Roles to consider as you become more familiar with these products. The Collaborative Business Innovator (CBI) Role and the Collaborative Industry Innovator (CII) Role are essential for collaboration and Product Lifecycle Management (PLM). There are packages one can lease or purchase for an entire year or by the quarter, which is excellent for those businesses on a tight budget. The quarterly purchase option is also easy to start designing products with little upfront investment. When the app launches, it looks like this:
The welcome screen reflects the many ways you can start using the platform; it also has links for additional training on the 3DEXPERIENCE EDU website. The welcome screen also includes a link to the SOLIDWORKS 3DEXPERIENCE User Community.
|The Quick Tour link will prompt you to create a new Component; you must enter a Name and a Location.
Under the Design Guidance Tab, there is a User Assistance and a Learning Assistant to guide you thru your design, with an interactive video to show you through the process.
There are in-context menus to reduce mouse travel.
To activate a sketch, pick a plane and click on the Create or Edit sketch icon and start sketching.
There are some unique advancements and similar hotkeys you may already be familiar with. These hotkeys mean minimal downtime getting up to speed with this product. Sketching is intuitive and straightforward.
You will have many new features and capabilities not available within other CAD programs. For instance, SOLIDWORKS xDesign has a single modeling environment. Therefore creating assemblies from a separate file is unnecessary. With xDesign, you can create parts or assemblies on the fly. There is even an option to switch from an extruded feature to a revolve or a sweep feature, all from the same easy-to-use interface. Just select your desired feature and click on the green checkmark.
Now repeat the process for your next feature. It’s that simple. You can add or remove material on the fly. You can add applied features like fillets easily.
As you can see, I modeled a simple part without any videos or additional training. Similarly, I can add material from an extensive database or apply color to the design. In other words, there are several options to choose from: to use color, click on the Design Features at the top of the Design Manager on the left. After clicking, a pop-up menu will appear, and a beach ball icon (in color) will appear. A menu will pop up, allowing you to choose from two selections: Sets or Faces.
The Sets option will select all faces on the model. Click on the color swatch box at the bottom of the menu, select a color or drag within the gradation of tone area, and watch the model change in color as you drag the pointer. Select any color you desire and click on the green checkmark at the top right corner.
As you can see, SOLIDWORKS xDesign runs on any device with a browser connection. It is intuitive, easy to use, and has many shortcut commands you may already be aware of.
You can create parts or assemblies from one single environment. Want to learn more about SOLIDWORKS xDesign or other software programs on the 3DExperence platform? Contact us today.