Tag: Autodesk 3ds Max

Solidworks Audi R8 Tutorial by Dan Lavoie

Solidworks Audi R8 Tutorial by Dan Lavoie

Wednesday, November 22, 2017 | By | Add a Comment


Solidworks Audi R8 Tutorial by Dan Lavoie

Well, hello again from your FAVORITE blogger!  I know, I know….I have had many a delay in posting my blogs as of late, but I have been excpetionally busy for some time now with many, many things which never seem to get accomplished and go away.  I have lately accomplished something worth blogging about, and I thought I would share it with you.  For anyone wanting to learn and practice surface modeling in Solidworks, there is a variety of tutorials available throughout the web.  Three key websites for Solidworks tutorials are: www.learnsolidworks.com, www.solidworkszen.com, and www.solidstufflearning.com.  The first two websites I mentioned have some very in-depth and advanced mechanical design tutorials.  I will go into more detail on these websites at a later time.  The last website I mentioned has amazing surface modeling tutorials available for a price.  But, hey, nothing is free in this world now, right?  In fact, things are REALLY, REALLY, REALLY, REALLY EXPENSIVE, aren’t they!!!!!  Even that piece of dirty half eaten, maggot infested, decaying, diseased chicken bone you just were caught stealing out of the garbage bin could potentially be pricey…..you just never know, do you?  Chances are something like that wouldn’t be pricey at all…..however, it could have been placed there as a marker for some member of a bloodthristy crime gang for whatever reasons, and you just took it….and interfered with their business, on their turf!  Like I said….you never know.  So, with that said, let me continue.  Where was I?  Oh yes, so right now, if you can fork out $90 for a Solidworks tutorial on this site, you can purchase a wonderful tutorial on how to model an Audi R8!  Just look at the stunning pictures I created of my Audi R8 from start to finish!  Wooooowwwwww, and who knew Solidworks could create such purrrdy pictures?  I do hope you have a LOT of time set aside to do this project if you are considering it, because it does take a bit of time to complete…..just a warning!  However, when you finally complete the project, you will feel a sense of accomplishment and you will learn quite a bit in the process, especially for people who need to have things shown over and over to them to get it through their thick heads, like me!  (Not from years of suffering fits of delerium from learning things like these projects…..no, not at all, hahahahahaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa! :(:):((((!%$#%$#@!!!!!

When you purchase the download, you get access to a zip file that you must unzip and then you will get a media player software access to play the included video tutorials to complete the project.  Each video runs about a minute to three minutes max.

I found the project to be very informative and I thought that it instructed me well on a variety of fundamental functions in surface modeling.  These key designer methods are as follows, but are not limited to:

  • Curves and projected curves
  • Converting Entities
  • Splitting surfaces and split lines
  • Offsetting lines and surfaces
  • The spline and relations
  • The use of vertical, horizontal, perpendicular, parallel, tangent, and other relations
  • Piercing endpoints to other lines
  • Planes and sketching on planes to create complex shapes in difficult areas
  • Extruded boss/bases, extruded cuts, revolved boss/bases, revolved cuts, lofted boss/bases, swept boss/bases
  • Boundary surfaces
  • Trimming surfaces and entities
  • Cut with surface
  • Knitting surfaces
  • Deleting faces and bodies
  • Fillets
  • Thickening surfaces
  • Combining bodies
  • Cut, copy, pasting and moving entities and bodies
  • And many more!

This was an extremely fulfilling tutorial on all fronts.  I felt it showed me and ingrained some of the essential things that any modeler needs to be introduced to surface modeling in Solidworks. If you have $90 available and you are willing to set aside some time to work on a project like this, then I would highly recommend that you try this tutorial.  Not only is there an Audi R8 tutorial available now at half the price, there is also a tutorial on creating an F16 fighter jet, a Ferrari F-430 tutorial, and a Lamborghini Gallardo tutorial available now at HALF THE PRICE!

With that said, I wish you luck.  I am going to go now and work on my next project.  YAY!

 

Revit Architecture

Revit Architecture

Saturday, February 25, 2017 | By | Add a Comment

RKO backlot main hotel views

RKO backlot main hotel views (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Revit Architecture

Those of us who know anything about BIM or Building Information Modeling know how much of an oh-so-joyous happy dandy fun time Revit Architecture can be.  With its tendencies for the user to have to be highly accurate in the development of a structure without having the ability to adjust measurements manually, Revit can be an extremely time consuming and often excruciatingly painstaking program to design fully developed construction in.

Rendering can be a whole other monster to deal with in itself.  Any project with a significant amount of At the school where I learned my Revit skills, we have wonderful 2 core processor Dell desktops which pretty much are good for doing a percentage of the floor plan work and unless you have several hours to spare, then forget about rendering big projects.  Especially if animation or 3DS Max plug-ins are used, then you should really expect to be spending a significantly lengthy amount of time rendering your projects.

Of course, now we have cloud-based rendering with the experimental plug-in dubbed Project Neon, located on Autodesk Labs which is in the beta phases and allows for the user to render their images through their Autodesk account instead of locally through their own computers.  But rendering a project is still very time consuming and the use of your Autodesk account is not always available (at such places like certain schools).  It is because of the complexity of the program and the time it takes to create each individual aspect of the entire program that the program in its entirety is not always taken advantage of in the workplace.

Just imagine the incredible and beautifully polished 3D designs that could be showcased during potential project bids in any given circumstance if the software were to develop with simplified convenience in mind.  Nevertheless, Revit still is a remarkable program and it is improving dramatically by the year.  I hope to see the day when rooms are created and developed with much simpler methods and randomly generated components and furniture are brought into the program.  These improvements, including the ability to freely manipulate measurements would make Revit an excellent program to use regularly in the workplace.

Using Revit MEP for Ductwork Modelling and Ductwork Fabrication

Using Revit MEP for Ductwork Modelling and Ductwork Fabrication

Wednesday, February 8, 2017 | By | Add a Comment

Using Revit MEP for Ductwork Modelling and Ductwork Fabrication

Having been in the CAD architectural design field for some time now, I have had the opportunity and experience in working in building framing design and ductwork layout.  For a majority of my experience in this field, I have used a variety of CAD related programs including AutoCAD and Navisworks to do the work which is necessary to do in 3D or 4D views.  Revit is quickly becoming an industry standard in the architectural design field, and it is continually upgrading itself to accomodate all of the areas necessary for architectural drafters and designers to accomplish their needs.  Several of the architectural firms I have worked for were in the initial stages of adopting this program, and its use will be widespread in the near future.

Revit is a useful tool in the AEC industry since it was introduced. It has effectively enabled organisations to minimise the possible on-site concerns and helped to lower the overall project cost.  Revit MEP covers of all of the main services including ductwork modelling which is the subject of this particular article and specifically how it is used for modelling and how it is now being used for fabrication.

Focusing firstly on ductwork as a discipline, ductwork is a core feature of MEP design projects as it facilitates heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) for regulating the air flow and to maintain acceptable indoor air quality as well as thermal comfort.

Duct work essentially comes in three types of shape – circular, elliptical and rectangular and they are designed to be fitted at varied elevation levels.  Revit has provided an array of options in its latest update for design ductwork models, yet there are many challenges when modelling ductwork in Revit.  Ductwork is unique in design for each of the structures and all element expose different challenges while designing.  BIM services modellers must create ductwork models to accommodate customised frames, windows, fittings and complex routings.  Specific outlets are also required to be designed for ductwork to fit in the outlets as well as to leave adequate space for electrical and plumbing requirements.

As well as different shapes, ductwork has to modelled in different sizes as well, to suit the design requirements along with the factors such as flow of air and mode of discharge or exhaust.  An oversized duct may pose design challenges such as failing to accommodate the electrical and plumbing requirements and under sized duct may result in a serious design flaw and may not be able to hold the desired amount of air flow.  Ductwork modellers typically model to a high level of detail (LOD), typically at LOD 300 and increasingly at LOD 350.

Although it is only a component of MEP design, ductwork modelling does require expert inputs and precise layout plans to create a clash free duct network for building and engineering projects.  This can seamlessly accommodate plumbing and electrical lines without causing costly design changes at construction level.  Pre-Revit, the industry used AutoCAD MEP, as well as other specialist tools and add-ons such as CAD Duct to create ductwork models.  When Revit was introduced it had a number of shortfalls and incomplete areas for mechanical services and indeed for ductwork.  However later versions have addressed earlier shortfalls and the tool is at a stage where it can be used for detailed design to address the challenges and requirements detailed above but also for interfacing with fabrication level detail, which will be discussed further below.

As well as modelling capability, Revit also provides other advantages such as providing quantity take-offs at an early stage, which helps to avoid costly design changes in the later part of the design process and provides accurate quantities for ductwork, insulation and other materials.  Even though seamless ductwork models are prepared using Revit, the functionality of the design files across other platforms had remained limited.  For instance, when the ductwork model files designed in Revit had to be used for fabrication purposes on related software, due to its incompatibility on these softwares, the duct layouts had to be re-modelled leading to time delays and a more expensive fabrication process, resulting in fabrication errors which can have negative implications while assembling the ductwork.

To overcome the limitations for fabrication, Autodesk updated Revit features for ductwork modelling in its latest version – Revit 2017.  Revit 2017 now has tools to design duct fabrication which are included within the package.  This enables designers and modellers to create the ductwork models, layouts and designs for the entire project lifecycle, including fabrication teams.  The files which have wider compatibility for fabrication tools such as FABMEP help designers and modellers to design ductwork seamlessly over various platforms and save the project in a single file without affecting the actual design.  Historically, this level of interoperability has not been experienced from design, detailing and finally through to fabrication and in the future – facilities management.

In summary, Revit MEP is an established tool for ductwork modeling and it does address the core elements of a ductwork system and allow a reasonably sound set of design drawings to be issued.  The challenge for fabrication from Revit was always a concern and as briefly discussed, Autodesk have now started to address this and we are seeing fabrication interoperability at last.  Added to this is the fact that Revit is working more closely with fabrication tools in its own right and therefore the fabrication (manufacturing) industry is now starting adoption of Revit models in a way that has not previously been experienced.  The end game will surely mean accurate designs, delivered faster and therefore more efficiently – helping to reduce costs and improve timescales in the engineering and building industry.

Auto CAD DXF Three Common Mistakes That People Make When Converting Patterns to DXF-AAMA File Format

Auto CAD DXF Three Common Mistakes That People Make When Converting Patterns to DXF-AAMA File Format

Sunday, January 29, 2017 | By | Add a Comment

Auto CAD DXF Three Common Mistakes That People Make When Converting Patterns to DXF-AAMA File Format

Hello my readers, the modern world of fashion design and smart fashion requires the use of computer technology and, of course, the use of a variety of computer applications to work with creating modern apparel in precise designs and dimensions.  The success of a modern fashion label requires the knowledge and use of this technology to stay on top and ahead of the global competition in the fashion world.  In researching the use of nesting programs used in fashion production, I found some interesting information regarding the use of DXF files, which are AutoCAD related files, or Drawing Exchange Format files.  These files are used often in nesting programs, where these files are placed on a layout that is used to cut the specific pieces according to the nested file’s dimensions.  The original design and dimensions are created in a program such as AutoCAD, and then imported into a nesting program where they are placed to be cut or sewn on a machine for mass production.  So, please take the time to read some of these mistakes commonly made by people when they are trying to convert a pattern into this type of file.

DXF-AAMA is a file format developed by the American Apparel Manufacturers Association in an attempt to solve the difficulties of using DXF files.  Now when talking about converting a pattern into a DXF (Drawing exchange Format. ) you will find that your converted pattern does not contains neither scale or units nor usually any method of reliably describing what needs to be cut, drawn, drilled or notched in your pattern file however, this file is the most commonly used format for exchange of drawing files.  Listed below, are three of the most commonly made mistakes made by people not software when trying to convert a pattern into this type of file.

1rst Problem: Thinking that your pattern will be a print file and not a cut file.

Thinking that your converted DXF CAD pattern file will be kept in a computer system for further modifications is a common mistake.  Most of the time, your converted file pattern will be neither needed nor wanted.  The purpose of the document is to generate tool paths for a machine.  So keep that in mind when formatting and exporting.  In most cases nobody will need to open the drawing in a CAD program, so eliminate what is not essential.  Think about what is needed in a drawing, format and export accordingly.

2rd problem: Not making the outline of your pattern into one closed polyline creating nesting problems.

In computer graphics a polygonal chain is called a polyline and is often used to approximate curved paths. Not closing your pattern outline will create problems when nesting your pattern and processing your DXF file.

3rd problem: Including objects in a drawing that are unnecessary.

Information such as Fabric type, sewing details, pattern codes, designer comments etc.  They all should not be included in your pattern as these will obstruct the conversion process.  Think of a way to hide or make invisible these text blocks put a reference layer or delete all information before exporting to DXF.

To conclude, three of the most common AAMA DXF pattern conversion mistakes are done by people and not by software.  Converting a pattern into a DXF (Drawing exchange Format.) will allow other CAD programs to read and import your digital pattern into tangent or any other nesting and plotting programs.  Some information lost in the conversion process include: No available information to find if your pattern has a scale or units, notching information, drill marks etc.  Not making the outline of your pattern into one close polyline and including non essential objects like text blocks all around a pattern will all contribute to badly formatted DXF files.

Occupation: Designer/ Prod. Pattern Making Consultant Leading Technical Designer, Alejandro Esparza owner of www.smartpatternmaking.com has provided for over 23 years, Auto CAD DXF and DXF-AAMA pattern converting services to many top manufacturing companies of our time in Los Angeles CA USA.
Interesting Career Prospects for Revit Practitioners

Interesting Career Prospects for Revit Practitioners

Sunday, January 22, 2017 | By | Add a Comment

Interesting Career Prospects for Revit Practitioners

With the building and construction industry worldwide moving towards using building information modelling (BIM) approach for designing, documentation, construction, and facility maintenance, proficiency in BIM tools and applications is becoming a sought-after skill in the modern AEC workforce.  Whilst there are several applications that enable BIM, Autodesk Revit is one of the powerful tools used by reputed architects, structural engineers, and MEP engineers worldwide.

Architectural, engineering, and construction management students and professionals proficient in Revit have a greater scope to succeed in the modern AEC industry compared to those who are just specialised in 2D CAD technologies.  As the crucial industry stakeholders worldwide push towards transitioning to smart BIM technologies, interesting prospects related to BIM jobs are poised to open up.  Autodesk certified candidates with medium to advanced level proficiency in executing Revit jobs can seek the following career advancement opportunities:

1. Revit Modeller (Architecture)
Candidates with 2 to 5 years of hands-on experience in working with Revit Architecture can enter architectural firms or design outsourcing firms as Revit Modellers (Architecture).  An important aspect of the profile will certainly include conversion of 2D/3D AutoCAD drawings/models into Revit BIM files and reusable Revit families. For this, the incumbents should be well versed in BIM concepts and an exposure to other related architectural tools (not necessarily BIM tools) including AutoCAD, Navisworks, and GRAPHISOFT ArchiCAD. Excellent visualisation skills and experience of working with diverse projects of simple to complex nature is invaluable.

2. Revit Modeller (MEP / HVAC)
Professionals having mid-level experience of using Revit MEP for modelling MEP and HVAC systems can take the opportunity to work as Revit Modeller (MEP / HVAC) for building systems design consultants or MEP design outsourcing firms.  For the incumbent to be successful in this role, he/she should have an in-depth know-how of HVAC and mechanical services systems generally adopted in commercial, residential and mixed-use facilities.  As far as software proficiency is concerned, barring Revit MEP the candidate should ideally have exposure to modelling in applications, such as CADDuct and CADMEP+.

3. Project Manager (Revit)
Project Manager (Revit) would be an ideal profile for Revit practitioners with 5 – 10 years of experience in implementing BIM standards using the Revit platform.  The role requires coordination with the client’s design team, setting BIM execution plans, and distributing individual/federated BIM models to the production team using Revit worksharing capabilities.  He/she would need to train the project team on client’s BIM standards whilst keeping a tight control on the Revit BIM model by overseeing day-to-day tasks.  A crucial aspect of this profile would demand prompt resolution of any technical issues related to the master model.  Besides Revit, an in-depth understanding of clash detection tools, such as Navisworks proves beneficial.

4. Revit Coordinator
The Revit Coordinator position is ideal for a candidate having more than 5 years of hands-on experience of working with popular CAD and BIM applications.  His/her key role is to control and monitor design information exchange between clients and project team members using face-to-face and virtual BIM coordination meetings.  Familiarity with multidisciplinary design projects (residential, commercial, and mixed-use) is important along with an ability to conduct quality reviews of federated models and construction documentation.  He/she has the responsibility of understanding the BIM objectives of the client and maintaining the BIM model’s integrity to meet the required design and regulatory standards.

8 Tips to Help You Master Solidworks

8 Tips to Help You Master Solidworks

Saturday, December 24, 2016 | By | Add a Comment

8 Tips to Help You Master Solidworks

When it comes to mechanical computer aided design (CAD) software, SolidWorks is quickly becoming the industry leader.  You may already be familiar with the basics of Solidworks, but how do you become a master of this high tech tool?  SolidWorks provides a powerful set of engineering design tools to design products better no matter what size your business is.  While the software is technically amazing in that it allows you to design and test virtual prototypes of any imaginable device, learning how to use it is no small achievement.

To get the most out of SolidWorks, you need to be extremely familiar with the program.  This includes all of the many nooks and crannies as well as add-on programs.  The key to honing your SolidWorks skills is practice and training.  The better you understand the program, the more efficient and productive you’ll be at design.  Here are eight tips to improve your design skills and help you become a master SolidWorks user:

1. Formal Training.  One of the best ways to get started with a new software program is taking a formal class.  In a classroom you’ll get invaluable hands on instruction from a Solidworks professional instructor.  You’ll be committed to showing up and learning, plus the peer pressure of the other students will motivate you to put in the extra effort that would likely not occur if teaching yourself.

2. Non-traditional training.  There are numerous online training materials and books if you prefer to be “home-schooled”.  You can learn at your own pace, but must be motivated enough to keep at it.  Just Google Solidworks training and you’ll see tons of third-party training videos, books, etc.

3. Value Added Resellers (VARs).  You can often find special events for new users from your local SolidWorks VAR.  VARs often offer seminars or night schools where you can find out more about SolidWorks.

4. User Groups.  In order to stay current and network with other SolidWorks users, joining a user group is a great idea. It’s typically free to join and you can learn technical tips from other users. Search for a user group near you at www.swugn.org.

5. Be a Superuser.  Become the go-to person at your company – the SolidWorks guru.  Let other users come to you with their questions and problems.  Considering yourself to be an expert will motivate you to learn more.

6. Discussion Forums.  Getting involved in a discussion forum is a great way to get help or submit advice based on your previous experience.  Solidworks maintains one of the best at forum.solidworks.com.

7. CSWP Test.  The Certified SolidWorks Professional exam provides a standard measure of SolidWorks competency.  You’ll feel confident in your skills and be recognized by employers as a certified user.

8. Create CAD Standards.  To ensure productivity in SolidWorks, create a CAD standard book. Document how to begin new parts and drawings, how to handle design revisions, how you manage standard parts, and so on.

The best approach to mastering SolidWorks is to mix and match several of the eight techniques listed above.  As the saying goes practice makes perfect.  Each year there are new releases, so you’ll want to stay current with new features of the software.