SOLIDWORKS


  • POSTED IN SOLIDWORKS, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING

    Design to Manufacturing Events with SOLIDWORKS 2018 and Additive Manufacturing

    by Christa Prokos on August 21, 2017

    Design-to-Manufacturing-Events-with-SOLIDWORKS-2018-and-Additive-Manufacturing-It’s always an exciting time when a new release of SOLIDWORKS is announced. This year is no exception. In fact, SOLIDWORKS 2018 comes at a time when there is a lot of excitement around new technologies for additive manufacturing as well. There’s so much to share that Fisher Unitech is hosting a series of Design to Manufacturing events.

    The Design to Manufacturing events will take place across nine major cities starting in Cleveland, Ohio on October 3rd. With each event featuring what’s new in SOLIDWORKS 2018 and the latest in additive manufacturing technologies, including Stratasys and Desktop Metal 3D printers, anyone involved in product development should plan to attend. The event will show you how to apply these tools to your business to increase productivity, accelerate innovation, and get great designs created.

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    • POSTED IN CAD, SIMULATION, SOLIDWORKS

      Optimize Your Plastic Parts and Injection Molds with SOLIDWORKS Plastics

      by Drew Buchanan on August 16, 2017

      Optimize-Your-Plastic-Parts-and-Injection-Molds-with-SOLIDWORKS-Plastics-In an increasingly technologically driven manufacturing environment, product lifecycles continue to become shorter and shorter. Designers are looking for ways to reduce costly prototypes, and to get a leg up on their competition. With the advent of computer-aided engineering (CAE), designers and engineers are able to test out designs and determine if design changes need to be made prior to prototyping and fabrication.

      SOLIDWORKS Plastics is one of the many tools in the SOLIDWORKS CAE portfolio. Read on to learn more about SOLIDWORKS Plastics and plan to attend our upcoming 30 minute webcast on August 24th to see in action with product demonstrations and examples of how to use the tool in your everyday workflow.

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      • POSTED IN FISHER UNITECH NEWS, CAD, SIMULATION, SOLIDWORKS

        Meet our Experts: Drew Buchanan - Application Engineer

        by Angelle Erickson on August 11, 2017

        Meet-out-experts-Drew-Buchanan-Application-Engineer-1Meet our Application Engineer, Drew Buchanan, who is based out of our office in Horsham, Pennsylvania and has been with Fisher Unitech since 2015. Drew has been immersed in Computer-Aided Engineering (CAE) technology, also known as design validation or simulation technology, for the majority of his career. After earning his Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Pittsburgh he continued to Villanova University for his Masters degree.

        Keep reading to learn more about Drew’s background with CAE, how to attend his upcoming simulation webcast on SOLIDWORKS Plastics, and how having the right solution can help you spot challenges before they occur during the design process.

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        • POSTED IN EDUCATION AND RESEARCH, TRAINING, CAD, SOLIDWORKS

          Online SOLIDWORKS Training: Your Source for Success

          by Johnna Insana on August 10, 2017

          Online-SOLIDWORKS-Training-Your-Source-for-SuccessHere at Fisher Unitech, we want to make sure our customers are exposed to the best SOLIDWORKS training. We also strive to make sure training is as convenient as possible to fit everyone’s style and needs. What you may not know, is that we offer online training to more than just our Midwest, Mid-Atlantic, and New England customers. SOLIDWORKS online training classes can be taken by anyone anywhere in the United States.

          Don’t own SOLIDWORKS software yet? That’s okay too; we can set you up with everything you need to learn SOLIDWORKS, boost your skill-set, and add to your résumé. Keep reading to find out more about training and how to get started.

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          • POSTED IN FISHER UNITECH NEWS, PCB, ELECTRICAL, SOLIDWORKS

            CIMdata Highlights Automation Alley Event on Designing Smart Products for the IoT

            by Christa Prokos on August 4, 2017

            CIMdata Highlight Designing Smart Products for the Internet of Things 1 The Internet of Things (IoT) is changing how manufacturers design and develop products. From industrial and medical equipment to consumer goods, the products we use today are becoming increasingly connected and smart. While the IoT brings new revenue opportunities for manufacturers, there are also new product development challenges that can eat into profitability.

            Product development experts Peter Bilello, President of CIMdata, and David Hofer, Electrical Technical Specialist at Fisher Unitech recently spoke about how to address such challenges at an Automation Alley Industry 4.0 Tech Takeover event in Troy, Michigan on July 19th. In this blog, we provide an excerpt from CIMdata’s commentary summarizing the event and topics discussed.

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            • POSTED IN EDUCATION AND RESEARCH, SWUG / USER GROUPS, CAD, SOLIDWORKS

              SOLIDWORKS User Groups: Connect with Your Community

              by Angelle Erickson on August 3, 2017

              SOLIDWORKS-User-Groups-Connect-with-the-communitySOLIDWORKS User Groups were first established in 1999 with the mission to bring together SOLIDWORKS power users and new users alike to learn from one another. Meetings are free of charge, usually held in the evening, and experts present on an array of topics. They provide tips and tricks and answer questions during a Q&A session.

              Keep reading to learn more about these events, find out how to locate a user group near you, and what to expect.

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              • POSTED IN CAD, SOLIDWORKS TECH TIPS, SOLIDWORKS

                A Quick Lesson on SOLIDWORKS Treehouse

                by Ken LaVictor on August 2, 2017

                Often when I teach SOLIDWORKS training classes, my students will ask me what the best way is to copy an assembly in order to ‘reuse’ the design. Though there are a few ways to easily copy existing assemblies, I find that the best method is through a tool that was introduced a couple of years ago called SOLIDWORKS Treehouse.

                In this blog, I’ll give a quick lesson on what SOLIDWORKS Treehouse is, and how it can save you time when creating a design.

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                • POSTED IN FISHER UNITECH NEWS, PCB, ELECTRICAL, SOLIDWORKS

                  Meet our Experts: Ken Reinert - Senior Application Engineer

                  by Angelle Erickson on July 26, 2017

                  popappengineers-2Meet our expert and Senior Application Engineer Ken Reinert. Ken is based out of our office in Horsham, Pennsylvania and has a slew of knowledge on Electrical 3D CAD software with over 18 years experience.

                  After gaining his degree in Specialized Technology and Mechanical Engineering from York Technical Institute, Ken jumped right into the industry and has been a leader, trainer, and technical supporter ever since.  Keep reading to learn more about Ken and his focus on helping companies reduce cost and design better and smarter products.

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                  • POSTED IN MASTERCAM, EDUCATION AND RESEARCH, CAD, SOLIDWORKS

                    The Camobots FIRST Robotics Team Climbs, Catches, and Overcomes Obstacles in 2017

                    by Amanda Osbun on July 20, 2017

                     

                    The-Camobots-FIRST-Robotics-Team-Climbs-Catches-and-Overcomes-Obstacles-in-2017-1As with many things in life, when one chapter ends another begins. The same goes for FIRST Robotics team mentors and coaches. Mr. Mang was a mentor on FIRST Robotics Team 2600 at Jefferson Township High School in New Jersey, where I had the pleasure of working with him before he moved back to his hometown in Honesdale, Pennsylvania. There, he started teaching at his Alma Mater, Honesdale High School.

                    Mr. Mang and a teacher from Western Wayne High School started a FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) Team. Together, the two schools make up Team 4285, also known as the Camobots.

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                    • POSTED IN CAD, PDM, SOLIDWORKS

                      Don’t Let Mismanaged Product Data Hold you Back

                      by Christa Prokos on July 17, 2017

                      Don't-let-mismanaged-product-data-hold-you-back-1If you hear the British idiom, “don’t be penny wise and pound foolish” it’s probably in the context of making an important decision. In other words, don’t cut corners to save small amounts of money because it could cost you more in the long run.

                      The same idiom applies to the decision to invest in product data management (PDM) software. Some companies choose to cut corners and skimp on PDM. They may think it’s too expensive, or takes too much time to set up, or that their engineers and designers won’t like the new process and it could slow down their productivity.

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                      • POSTED IN FISHER UNITECH NEWS, CAD, SOLIDWORKS

                        Meet our Experts: Sean O’Neill - Senior Support Engineer

                        by Angelle Erickson on July 11, 2017

                        Meet-our-experts-Sean-Oneill-senior-support-engineer-1Next up in our Meet our Experts blog series is Sean O’Neill! Sean is a SOLIDWORKS Senior Support Engineer at Fisher Unitech based out of our Horsham, Pennsylvania office and has handled thousands of technical support cases along with delivering training on multiple products within the SOLIDWORKS portfolio.

                        After graduating from Villanova University, Sean worked in the building products industry before joining Prism Engineering in 2012. Keep reading to learn more about Sean and his passion for continuing to provide an exceptional customer experience.

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                        • POSTED IN CAD, ELECTRICAL, SOLIDWORKS

                          Designing Smart Products Requires a Smarter Approach

                          by David Hofer on July 10, 2017

                          Designing-Smart-Products-Requires-a-Smarter-Approach-1Today many of our daily interactions involve connected devices and connectivity is shaping the economy. Gartner predicts that the total number of smart or connected “things” will reach 20.4 billion by 2020.

                          Designing smart products for the Internet of Things (IoT) and Industry 4.0 requires a smarter approach. In order to stay competitive business leaders need to assess their product development processes to ensure that they are striving for best-in-class performance. This includes keeping an eye on the ever-evolving state of product design tools.

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                          • POSTED IN CAD, SOLIDWORKS TECH TIPS, SOLIDWORKS

                            Tech Tip: The difference between a sheet format and a drawing template in SOLIDWORKS

                            by Matt Haywood on July 7, 2017

                            Almost every SOLIDWORKS user has the need to insert a unique company title block into the SOLIDWORKS drawing template. In this blog, we’ll discuss a few handy strategies that will streamline your process. Understanding the terms “Sheet Format” and “Drawing Template” in SOLIDWORKS terminology will be central to your success. Although they might look the same on the screen, they have distinctly different jobs within the SOLIDWORKS file infrastructure.

                            In general drawing templates are used to start a new drawing. A sheet format is an overlay or title block that we might see on the initial drawing template, but it can be hidden. Also, sheet formats are useful on multi-page drawings as you might want a different looking title block on subsequent pages in a multi-page drawing. Before we get to saving anything, let’s make sure we cover some background information. Here’s an outline of the topics we will cover.

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                            • POSTED IN TECHNICAL COMMUNICATION, CAD, SOLIDWORKS

                              More Control and Speed with SOLIDWORKS Visualize

                              by Laurie Luther on July 5, 2017

                              More-Control-and-Speed-with-SOLIDWORKS-Visualize-1Today we take it for granted that our digital product design and development process can run more efficiently with such software as SOLIDWORKS 3D CAD and all of its add-on tools for design validation, product data management, and more.

                              Now think about the phase in your product development process when you need images to show others what it will look like and how it is intended to perform in the real world.

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                              • POSTED IN DRIVEWORKS, FISHER UNITECH NEWS, CAD, SOLIDWORKS

                                Meet our Experts: Aaron Winthers - Advisory Support Engineer

                                by Angelle Erickson on June 29, 2017

                                Meet-our-experts-Aaron-Winthers-advisory-support-engineer-11Have you ever contacted the Fisher Unitech SOLIDWORKS customer support team? If you have, chances are you’ve been helped by our technical support expert Aaron Winthers. Based out of our Horsham, Pennsylvania office, Aaron has been an Advisory Support Engineer at Fisher Unitech since 2014 specializing in DriveWorks.

                                Aaron earned his Bachelor of Science Mechanical Engineering degree, concentrating in product design, from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and comes to work every day with a wealth of knowledge. Keep reading to learn more about technical support, our support team, and how Aaron contributes to the customer experience.

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                                • POSTED IN DRIVEWORKS, DESIGN AUTOMATION, CAD, SOLIDWORKS

                                  DriveWorks Design Automation is a Game Changer for Steiner Technologies

                                  by Christa Prokos on June 28, 2017

                                  DriveWorks-Design-Automation-is-a-Game-Changer-for-Steiner-Technologies-1Steiner Technologies produces a family of automatic back boring tools called the Autofacer. They have been using DriveWorks design automation software since 2010. In a recent blog post, Steiner Technologies explained how DriveWorks has significantly improved their processes to make them faster, better and more cost-efficient.

                                  Read the full blog post below by Matthew Hoyt from Steiner Technologies to learn how implementing design automation has been a ‘game changer’ for them and the many benefits they’ve seen beyond internal operations.

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                                  • POSTED IN CAD, SOLIDWORKS

                                    SOLIDWORKS Premium Does it All: Here’s What to Expect

                                    by Ken LaVictor on June 22, 2017

                                    SOLIDWORKS-Premium-Does-it-All-Heres-What-to-ExpectAre you creating designs with a comprehensive 3D CAD solution? Do you have a place to store, manage, and analyze your designs? You can get all of that and more with SOLIDWORKS Premium. In this two-part blog series, I will cover toolsets included in SOLIDWORKS Premium. Remember, this is additional functionality not found in SOLIDWORKS Standard and Professional.

                                    Part one covered Simulation, Motion, and assembly level cost estimation. You can learn more about those toolsets here. In this blog, I’ll be covering three different areas: routing with piping and tubing, routing with electrical cabling and wire harnesses, and advanced surface flattening.

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                                    • POSTED IN CAD, SIMULATION, SOLIDWORKS

                                      Strength Check Your Designs with SOLIDWORKS Simulation Professional

                                      by David Roccaforte on June 21, 2017

                                      Strength-Check-Your-Designs-with-Simulation-Professional-1Simulation tools in SOLIDWORKS 3D CAD software are so user friendly and widespread these days that we often compare them to a spell checker analogy. Almost every application that requires entering text has a built in spell checker. Similarly every seat of SOLIDWORKS has some form of “Simulation” built in. You shouldn’t send on an email without a quick spell check, so why release a design without doing a performance check?

                                      Keep reading to find out how to quickly check your design the first time and eliminate repercussions.

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                                      • POSTED IN FISHER UNITECH NEWS, TRAINING, CAD, SOLIDWORKS

                                        Meet our Experts: Rachael Buhl - Senior Application Engineer Instructor

                                        by Angelle Erickson on June 20, 2017

                                        Meet-Our-Experts-Rachael-Buhl-Senior-Application-Engineer-Instructor-1Rachael Buhl is a Senior Application Engineer Instructor at Fisher Unitech and is based out of our office in Cincinnati, Ohio. Rachael has been passionately instructing students on SOLIDWORKS 3D CAD software for three years to help users sharpen their skills and gain their certifications.

                                        Rachael is a Certified SOLIDWORKS Expert, with certifications in Mechanical Design and Composer. She has been a SOLIDWORKS user since 2011. Keep reading to learn more about Rachael and what got her interested in SOLIDWORKS.

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                                        • POSTED IN CAD, SOLIDWORKS

                                          SOLIDWORKS is not just CAD, it’s a Complete Product Development Platform

                                          by Christa Prokos on June 19, 2017

                                          SOLIDWORKS-is-not-just-CAD-its-a-Complete-Product-Development-Platform-1Where were you on November 1st, 1995? Perhaps you were a child, or a college student, or already building your engineering career. That was a long time ago. As you reflect back to 1995, you may already know the date’s significance. It’s when SolidWorks 95 was released — the first version of the computer-aided design and engineering software we know today as SOLIDWORKS 3D CAD.

                                          Now 21 years later, SOLIDWORKS is one of the most widely-used 3D CAD software solutions and a complete product development platform for today’s complex processes. In this post, I will cover how SOLIDWORKS improves collaboration and streamlines workflow with integrated solutions for product design, validation, documentation, and product data management.

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                                          • POSTED IN EDUCATION AND RESEARCH, CAD, SOLIDWORKS

                                            Northwestern University Provides SOLIDWORKS for Students, Researchers, and Entrepreneurs

                                            by Christa Prokos on June 16, 2017

                                            Northwestern-University-Provides-SOLIDWORKS-for-Students-Researchers-and-Entrepreneurs-1It takes competitive product design and development skills to advance careers in today’s market. Northwestern University, a private research university based in Evanston, Illinois recently upgraded to a campus-wide SOLIDWORKS software solution. The university will provide SOLIDWORKS software in classrooms for students and researchers, and at its incubator space, The Garage, an accelerator where start-ups gather to experiment, collaborate, innovate, and build new ideas.

                                            SOLIDWORKS 3D computer-aided design (CAD) software gives users the ability to turn ideas into products with tools for mechanical design, simulation, electrical design, data management, and communication. Individuals can securely share design models for team collaboration and with suppliers throughout the entire manufacturing process.

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                                            • POSTED IN PCB, ELECTRICAL, SOLIDWORKS TECH TIPS, SOLIDWORKS

                                              How to Insert a Printed Circuit Board in SOLIDWORKS

                                              by Ken Reinert on June 14, 2017

                                              As I was walking around town recently, I noticed a woman pushing a baby stroller that had USB ports. Her phone was plugged into one and a travel mug was plugged into another. It occurred to me that so many things today are designed with a printed circuit board, even something like a baby stroller.

                                              Designers today have to consider not only the aesthetics of products, but how to integrate all the electronics that go with it. Trying to document that integration can be challenging without the proper tools. When you select the “Insert Printed Circuit Board” icon in SOLIDWORKS Electrical, you are given four options. Keep reading to find out what each of those options mean.

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                                              • POSTED IN FISHER UNITECH NEWS, PCB, CAD, ELECTRICAL, SOLIDWORKS

                                                Meet our Experts: David Hofer - Electrical Technical Specialist and CID

                                                by Angelle Erickson on June 12, 2017

                                                popappengineers-2Meet David Hofer, our SOLIDWORKS Electrical Technical Specialist and Certified Interconnect Designer located out of our Troy, Michigan headquarters. David has been one of our Electrical and Printed Circuit Board (PCB) experts at Fisher Unitech since 2014, specializing in developing electronic designs and helping companies get the best value from their SOLIDWORKS PCB and Electrical software.

                                                David really knows his stuff. He’s been working with computer-aided engineering tools since the 1980s when he was programming and designing printed circuit board layouts. A high-speed imaging project arose in 2011 where he was introduced to SOLIDWORKS and the rest is history! Keep reading to learn what gets David so geeked out about SOLIDWORKS Electrical and PCB design software.

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                                                • POSTED IN CAD, SOLIDWORKS

                                                  Get a Fully Loaded Toolset with SOLIDWORKS Premium

                                                  by Ken LaVictor on June 9, 2017

                                                  Get-a-Fully-Loaded-Toolset-with-SOLIDWORKS-Premium-1As a former mechanical design engineer, I have always felt there were three tools that were a ‘must have’ in my tool belt. These tools include a 3D design tool, a data management tool, and a design analysis/validation tool.  I believe we need to design in a comprehensive 3D CAD solution. We need a place to store and manage those designs, and we need a way to analyze those designs in order to save on material costs and remain competitive. Today, I am fortunate to get some form of all three of these tools in one 3D CAD bundle: SOLIDWORKS Premium.

                                                  In this two-part blog series, I will cover toolsets included in SOLIDWORKS Premium. Keep in mind, this is additional functionality not found in SOLIDWORKS Standard and Professional. Our webcast on June 20th covered the differences between SOLIDWORKS Standard and Premium. You can watch that webcast here.

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                                                  • POSTED IN CAD, SIMULATION, SOLIDWORKS

                                                    Getting Started: SOLIDWORKS Simulation Standard

                                                    by Drew Buchanan on June 5, 2017

                                                    Getting-Started-SOLIDWORKS-Simulation-Standard-1In an increasingly technologically driven manufacturing environment, product lifecycles continue to be shortened and shortened. Designers are looking for ways to reduce costly prototypes, and to get a leg up on their competition. With the advent of computer aided engineering (CAE), designers and engineers are able to test out designs and determine if changes need to be made prior to prototyping and fabrication.

                                                    SOLIDWORKS Simulation is one of the many tools in the SOLIDWORKS CAE portfolio. This blog will provide you with a brief summary of SOLIDWORKS Simulation and SOLIDWORKS Simulation Standard.

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                                                    • POSTED IN TRAINING, CAD, SOLIDWORKS

                                                      3 Ways to Get the Best SOLIDWORKS Training

                                                      by Angelle Erickson on May 31, 2017

                                                      3-Ways-To-Get-The-Best-SOLIDWORKS-Training-1Are you comfortable working in your SOLIDWORKS 3D CAD software tools? Have you ever stumbled across a challenge that you wish you could have solved on your own but instead had to pass to someone else? Even if you just want to sharpen your skills, it’s never too late to consider SOLIDWORKS training.

                                                      SOLIDWORKS training allows users to become more comfortable on a daily basis to manipulate and create designs. Being able to confidently overcome challenges independently means completing a project and getting a product to market faster. Worried that you can’t fit training into your schedule? It’s easier and more convenient than you may think. Keep reading to learn three different ways to get the best SOLIDWORKS training that will work for you.

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                                                      • POSTED IN FISHER UNITECH NEWS, TRAINING, CAD, SOLIDWORKS

                                                        Meet our Experts: Rodney Harper - Technical Training Manager

                                                        by Angelle Erickson on May 30, 2017

                                                        Meet-Our-Experts-Rodney-Harper-Technical-Training-Manager-1Meet Rodney Harper! Rodney has been our technical training manager here at Fisher Unitech since 2008 and is based out of our office in Troy, Michigan. With over 13 years of experience working with SOLIDWORKS, Rodney wants to guarantee that his students get the best training experience available.

                                                        SOLIDWORKS training is offered in class, on site, or online to meet your needs. Rodney manages a team of skilled trainers and training administrators committed to making your learning experience the best it can be.

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                                                        • POSTED IN TECHNICAL COMMUNICATION, CAD, SOLIDWORKS TECH TIPS, COMPOSER, SOLIDWORKS

                                                          What's New in SP3.0: Import SOLIDWORKS BOMs Into SOLIDWORKS Composer

                                                          by Sean O’Neill on May 26, 2017

                                                          A few weeks ago, I was teaching a rather large SOLIDWORKS Composer class. It was comprised of ten students, all hailing from one of our larger customers. With each passing lesson on how to make their product assembly instructions more decipherable and their product exploded views much quicker/lighter, I couldn't help but notice them giving those "where have you been all my life" eyes.

                                                          While discussing bill of materials (BOM) tables, one of our more actively-involved students asked a very intuitive question: "Can we import our bill of materials from our SOLIDWORKS files into SOLIDWORKS Composer?" My answer then was different than my answer today because of a great timesaving enhancement to SOLIDWORKS Composer 2017 SP3.0.

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                                                          • POSTED IN CAD, SOLIDWORKS

                                                            What’s the Difference Between SOLIDWORKS Standard, Professional and Premium?

                                                            by Christa Prokos on May 25, 2017

                                                            Whats-the-difference-between-solidworks-standard-professional-and-premium-1We often get the question, “What is the difference between the three SOLIDWORKS packages (Standard, Professional, Premium)?” Another common question is, “When does it make sense to upgrade from Standard to Professional or Premium?”

                                                            The answer depends on many factors and while there is a SOLIDWORKS 3D CAD matrix that outlines every feature in each package, it can be a bit complicated. This blog provides a quick overview of each package, as well as two easy ways to figure out which package is best for you.

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                                                            • POSTED IN TECHNICAL COMMUNICATION, CAD, COMPOSER, SOLIDWORKS

                                                              Technical Communications Come to Life with SOLIDWORKS Composer

                                                              by Angelle Erickson on May 19, 2017

                                                              Today, visual images are more important than ever. Just because a physical prototype of a product design isn’t available, doesn’t mean your training materials, assembly instructions, marketing and sales collateral should be put on hold. With SOLIDWORKS Composer you can start producing a range of technical communication graphical assets earlier in the product design process, helping to lower costs and speed time-to-market.

                                                              Even nontechnical roles can use SOLIDWORKS Composer. The easy-to-use tools let you work directly from 3D CAD data to create associative 2D and 3D deliverables that automatically stay up-to-date with the latest design changes.

                                                              Keep reading to learn more about SOLIDWORKS Composer and check out our recorded webcast "How SOLIDWORKS Composer Improves Technical Communications."

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                                                              • POSTED IN EDUCATION AND RESEARCH, CAD, SOLIDWORKS

                                                                Steampunks, STEAMworks, and SOLIDWORKS in the 2017 FIRST Robotics Competition

                                                                by Amanda Osbun on May 17, 2017

                                                                Steampunks-STEAMworks-and-SOLIDWORKS-in-the-2017-FIRST-Robotics-CompetitionI was a very shy, introverted kid who, although open to trying new things, would never imagine growing up to be the outgoing person I am today. I owe much of who I am to the FIRST Robotics team at Jefferson Township High School in New Jersey.

                                                                The FIRST Robotics team started when I was a junior. One of my woodshop teachers suggested I get involved and here I am nine years later. I was on the team for my junior year and co-captain of the team during my senior year. I have been a mentor for the team ever since I graduated high school. Our team is Team 2600 or Team Falcon.

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                                                                • POSTED IN DATA MANAGEMENT, CAD, SOLIDWORKS TECH TIPS, SOLIDWORKS

                                                                  How to Use the ‘Pack and Go’ File Management Feature in SOLIDWORKS

                                                                  by Matt Haywood on May 15, 2017

                                                                  In my opinion, one of the better file management features in SOLIDWORKS 3D CAD is Pack and Go, which was introduced around 2007. Included in every release of SOLIDWORKS since then, this feature is still very useful today.  I’ve been providing SOLIDWORKS tech support for nearly 14 years and it’s fun to show unsuspecting users Pack and Go.

                                                                  In this blog, I’ll take you through two scenarios:

                                                                  1. Duplication of a data set for sharing or repurposing
                                                                  2. Organizing a data set by renaming multiple files simultaneously

                                                                  It’s true that these tasks can be done outside of Pack and Go, but I think you’ll find that through the use of Pack and Go, these processes will be completed faster and you will have fewer problems with mixed up file references.

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                                                                  • POSTED IN CAD, PDM, SOLIDWORKS TECH TIPS, SOLIDWORKS

                                                                    Using Custom Search Columns to Create Simple Reports from PDM Searches

                                                                    by Peer Larson on May 10, 2017

                                                                    It can often be very useful to collect information about your files from a high level, such as if you were interested to learn the internal PDM Document ID or who in your department approved what when.

                                                                    You can use custom search columns to change how a search card displays information and then export your search results to Microsoft Excel. This can also be useful when tracking project management documents, as you can have all of your relevant fields show in the PDM search card and then export those results to Microsoft Excel for easy portability and communication.

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                                                                    • POSTED IN CAD, SOLIDWORKS

                                                                      These 9 SOLIDWORKS Blogs & CAD Sites Will Boost Your Productivity

                                                                      by Stacey Clement on May 8, 2017

                                                                      Starting your Monday by catching up on industry news can be a great way to encourage inspiration and innovation all week long. By starting two-way conversations with fellow designers and SOLIDWORKS professionals worldwide, you can begin to expand your network, share experiences, and learn helpful tips and tricks you’d never find within the confines of your office.

                                                                      While we’ve worked hard to stock the Fisher Unitech blog with up-to-date SOLIDWORKS news, regularly synthesizing diverse viewpoints from across the web can help make you a more global designer. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of informative, entertaining, or just downright underrated CAD forums, SOLIDWORKS blogs, and design Twitter accounts—for the betterment of workweek productivity everywhere. So which online community is right for you?

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                                                                      • POSTED IN DRIVEWORKS, DESIGN AUTOMATION, CAD, SOLIDWORKS

                                                                        Time to Test Drive DriveWorks Design Automation and Sales Configurator Software

                                                                        by Christa Prokos on May 5, 2017

                                                                        Time-to-Test-Drive-DriveWorks-Design-Automation-and-Sales-Configurator-Software-1Do you have repetitive design tasks that could be automated? Could the products you design be defined by rules? If you answered yes to these questions, it is time to add design automation and sales configurator software to your toolbox—specifically DriveWorks because you can use it in tandem with SOLIDWORKS 3D CAD design software.

                                                                        There are two DriveWorks software packages to choose from, DriveWorks Solo and DriveWorks Pro, which can also be used beyond the engineering department by marketing and sales teams. DriveWorks Solo and Pro provide the ability to automatically generate 2D and 3D drawings of your SOLIDWORKS 3D CAD models as well as manufacturing and sales data. Imagine the time and cost this can save your company and the productivity it can add to your day.

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                                                                        • POSTED IN CAD, SOLIDWORKS TECH TIPS, SIMULATION, SOLIDWORKS

                                                                          How to Deal with Fixture Warnings in SOLIDWORKS Simulation

                                                                          by Drew Buchanan on May 3, 2017

                                                                          How-to-Deal-with-Fixture-Warnings-in-SOLIDWORKS-Simulation-00You sit down at your desk to finalize the design for a new product you are working on. You want to verify that the product does not fail under loading, and expect the finite element model to be fairly easy to set up and run.  However, much to your chagrin you run the model and a warning pops up.

                                                                          If you have been working with SOLIDWORKS Simulation for a long time, you most likely have seen this warning box before. In today’s blog I will show a handy tool which can remedy this issue very quickly. It should be noted that all tips in today’s blog pertain to a traditional Linear Static Analysis, which is available in SOLIDWORKS Premium,  SOLIDWORKS Simulation Standard, SOLIDWORKS Simulation Professional, and SOLIDWORKS Simulation Premium.

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                                                                          • POSTED IN EDUCATION AND RESEARCH, CAD, SOLIDWORKS

                                                                            Jenison Robotics Team “Game Over” Uses SOLIDWORKS to Design Award Winning Robot

                                                                            by Nathan Appel on May 1, 2017

                                                                            Jenison-Robotics-Team-Game-Over-Uses-SOLIDWORKS-to-Design-Award-Winning-Robot-1I belong to Jenison Robotics’ team 457B named “Game Over” in Jenison, Michigan, near Grand Rapids. In Jenison Robotics, we use VEX Robotics technology to further our learning in the areas of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM), and grow skills in teamwork, leadership and problem solving. We also have a lot of fun.

                                                                            I started using SOLIDWORKS 3D CAD fifteen months ago when I got a student edition for Christmas. I taught myself how to use the software using tutorials, along with guidance from my dad, who uses SOLIDWORKS at work. Last season, my dad showed my team and I how we could use SOLIDWORKS to design our robot. So, my goal for this year was to learn how to use SOLIDWORKS before the season even started so that when we did start practicing, I could fully design our robot.

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                                                                            • POSTED IN TRAINING, CAD, SOLIDWORKS

                                                                              Ramp Up Your Work Performance with SOLIDWORKS Training

                                                                              by Michelle Orleski on April 28, 2017

                                                                              Ramp-Up-Your-Work-Performance-with-SOLIDWORKS-Training-1Are you being efficient or proficient in your workplace? It’s not simply a matter that one is better than the other, but it is important to assess which quality you possess and whether or not you and your employer are happy with your style of performance.

                                                                              In this blog, you’ll learn how to understand your qualities and work ethic from a slightly different perspective, one that your employer may see. You’ll also learn how to determine how to tell the difference between being proficient and being efficient and the ways to enhance your workplace performance.

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                                                                              • POSTED IN CAD, SOLIDWORKS TECH TIPS, SOLIDWORKS, UNCATEGORIZED

                                                                                How to Utilize the SOLIDWORKS Customer Portal

                                                                                by Toby Schnaars on April 26, 2017

                                                                                Did you know that SOLIDWORKS has a customer portal? Whether you’re a new user, an existing user, or just need a little help, the SOLIDWORKS customer portal is an excellent resource available to all SOLIDWORKS subscription customers.

                                                                                This blog will take you through how to use the portal, along with a step-by-step guide on how to get your questions answered before calling technical support.

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                                                                                • POSTED IN PDM, SOLIDWORKS

                                                                                  Looking for the SOLIDWORKS Workgroup PDM Migration "Easy Button"?

                                                                                  by Joe Frank on April 24, 2017

                                                                                  Looking for the SOLIDWORKS Workgroup PDM Migration Easy Button 1With the retirement of SOLIDWORKS Workgroup PDM approaching, I’m getting a lot of questions about what to expect when migrating to SOLIDWORKS PDM Standard or Professional. I wish I could say there is an easy button, but there just isn’t.

                                                                                  Migrating your intellectual property out of your SOLIDWORKS Workgroup PDM vault is not an easy process. Many things need to be considered when setting up a SOLIDWORKS PDM Standard or Professional vault to accept your data. You want a vault that works for you, not the other way around.  Although there is not a simple program or “Pack and Go” process, I do know how to make the process easier.

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                                                                                  • POSTED IN EDUCATION AND RESEARCH, CAD, SOLIDWORKS

                                                                                    Dundee FIRST Robotics Team Goes from Concept to Competition with SOLIDWORKS

                                                                                    by Ethan Harper on April 19, 2017

                                                                                    Dundee-FIRST-Robotics-Team-Goes-from-Concept-to-Competition-with-SOLIDWORKS-1If you’ve heard of the organization FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology), you probably know that it is directly tied to STEM and STEAM, other common acronyms used in today’s classrooms that stand for: Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Mathematics.

                                                                                    You may not realize that FIRST was founded way back in 1989 “to inspire young people's interest and participation in science and technology." For me, the FIRST program has accomplished just that, as I have directly benefited from the features of STEAM that come into play every day during robotics. I am currently a sophomore at Dundee High School, in Dundee, Michigan and our team is the Dundee Vi-Borgs.

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                                                                                    • POSTED IN CAD, SOLIDWORKS

                                                                                      The Real Difference Between Standard and Professional SOLIDWORKS CAD

                                                                                      by Sean O'Neill on April 18, 2017

                                                                                      For many years now, SOLIDWORKS has provided three package tiers of its 3D CAD software: Standard, Professional, Premium. While changes and additions are made to these packages every year, each package has provided the ability for anyone to create parts, assemblies, and/or drawings.

                                                                                      The difference between the three packages has really been found in what else it adds to your business. At the Professional level (and Premium, in additional ways), SOLIDWORKS provides tools that realistically accommodate the challenges faced by all multi-employee companies. This article explains how it does exactly this.  You can also learn more by watching the recorded webcast, 7 Key Benefits of SOLIDWORKS 3D CAD Professional 2017

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                                                                                      • POSTED IN CAD, SOLIDWORKS

                                                                                        How the STEM Program Can Help Shape our Future Engineers

                                                                                        by Amelia Pillarelli on April 12, 2017

                                                                                        How-the-STEM-Program-Can-Help-Shape-our-Future-Engineers-1In the US, about 20% of engineers are female.  Ladywood High School, in Livonia, Michigan is working hard to raise those numbers with the help of the STEM program (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics). Recently, I had the privilege of speaking to the all-female Engineering Graphics class about my journey as a Mechanical Engineer and experiences with SOLIDWORKS. The girls have been using SOLIDWORKS in the classroom this year to introduce the concepts of Computer Aided Design.

                                                                                        My main focus of the presentation was: Don’t quit.  An engineering career isn’t limited to the limited topics studied in high school or college, but the groundwork for a degree is challenging.  Blending together subjects such as calculus, physics, and mechanical design, an engineering degree is not obtained without some hard work, critical thinking, and challenging senior projects. Once the work is complete, this training will be your ticket to a great career in a broad field.

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                                                                                        • POSTED IN CAD, SOLIDWORKS TECH TIPS, SOLIDWORKS

                                                                                          Setting Parts Colored and Opaque when Editing in SOLIDWORKS

                                                                                          by Toby Schnaars on April 7, 2017
                                                                                          Setting-Parts-to-be-colored-and-opaque-when-editing-in-SOLIDWORKS-1

                                                                                          When editing a component in the context of an assembly, SOLIDWORKS automatically makes all of the other components transparent. This makes it easy to see through everything else, to get at what you need, but can bring on its own challenges.

                                                                                          This blog will demonstrate step-by-step instructions on how to override this default behavior to get assemblies looking just the way you need.

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                                                                                          • POSTED IN TRAINING, CAD, SOLIDWORKS

                                                                                            Starting off with SOLIDWORKS Surfacing

                                                                                            by Rachael Buhl on April 3, 2017

                                                                                            Surface modeling in SOLIDWORKS can often be intimidating to new users, so I’m here to put your worries aside. Once there is a decent foundation in solid modeling, many aspects of surface modeling will be easy to migrate to because the same tools are used in both processes. For example, in solid modeling, users may do an Extrude, whereas in surfacing users would do an Extrude Surface. The Property Managers for these two like tools are also very similar.

                                                                                            In this blog, I’m going to start from the beginning and start with the basics.

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                                                                                            • POSTED IN CAD, ELECTRICAL, SOLIDWORKS TECH TIPS, SOLIDWORKS

                                                                                              How to Handle Multi-Part Components in SOLIDWORKS Electrical

                                                                                              by David Hofer on March 31, 2017

                                                                                              I was recently working with a SOLIDWORKS Electrical project that a customer had developed, and I ran across a situation that I see quite often. Users that develop components that are made up of multiple parts, often run into issues when associating symbols to them in SOLIDWORKS Electrical Schematic.

                                                                                              Often the problem goes unnoticed until the project is moved to SOLIDWORKS CAD using the Electrical 3D add-in and the wires and cables are routed. Generally, the routing analysis will display an error having to do with the connection points.

                                                                                              In this blog I’m going to show an example where this can easily happen and a way to spot the issue and fix it before entering the CAD environment.

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                                                                                              • POSTED IN CAD, SOLIDWORKS TECH TIPS, SOLIDWORKS

                                                                                                Best Practices when Installing SOLIDWORKS 2017

                                                                                                by Toby Schnaars on March 29, 2017

                                                                                                When the time comes to install or update your SOLIDWORKS software to a newer version, the process can feel a bit overwhelming.  Below is a guide to help you through this process.  Following these steps should ensure a clean and successful installation.  

                                                                                                I have broken down the sections into “RECOMMENDED” and “OPTIONAL”.  Each step in “RECOMMENDED” should be followed and thought of as required.  The sections marked “OPTIONAL” can be skipped, but might give you some good tricks for ensuring that everything goes smoothly on the user end.

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                                                                                                • POSTED IN TECHNICAL COMMUNICATION, CAD, SOLIDWORKS

                                                                                                  Peak Performance with SOLIDWORKS Visualize Professional

                                                                                                  by Laurie Luther on March 27, 2017

                                                                                                  With SOLIDWORKS Visualize Professional, users can transform digital peak-performance-with-SOLIDWORKS-Visualize-Professionalrenderings into realistic 3D animations. Get product photos before the manufacturing stage to work out the kinks, impress investors, and truly visualize the final creation. See a complete 360-degree view of a design, and make real-time adjustments that immediately transition from the program to the screen. The possibilities are endless, and the platform can be used in almost every industry.

                                                                                                  In the following, we explore some of the many benefits of SOLIDWORKS Visualize Professional and how it could enhance your engineering abilities moving forward.

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                                                                                                  • POSTED IN PCB, CAD, ELECTRICAL, SOLIDWORKS

                                                                                                    How SOLIDWORKS Electrical and PCB Get Rid of the Guesswork

                                                                                                    by Angelle Erickson on March 22, 2017

                                                                                                    How do companies use SOLIDWORKS Electrical and SOLIDWORKS PCB to solve all of their designing needs? From the very beginning of the idea process, SOLIDWORKS can help electrical and mechanical engineers design every detail leading to the finished product.

                                                                                                    One of the most important aspects of working in SOLIDWORKS Electrical and SOLIDWORKS PCB is being able to work together in completing a project. Electrical and Mechanical engineers must be able to communicate thoroughly and smoothly every step of the way. Luckily, SOLIDWORKS makes that process easy by getting rid of the guesswork between electrical and mechanical design teams.

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                                                                                                    • POSTED IN TRAINING, CAD, SOLIDWORKS

                                                                                                      9 Reasons to Get SOLIDWORKS Training

                                                                                                      by Rodney Harper on March 17, 2017

                                                                                                      If you or your company recently made an investment in SOLIDWORKS, then you’re probably already reaping the many benefits and capabilities that SOLIDWORKS has to offer. But there’s more to just owning SOLIDWORKS. Learn how you can get the best out of your software and expand your business by getting the proper SOLIDWORKS training and certifications.

                                                                                                      9-reasons-to-get-SOLIDWORKS-Training-1We offer over ten SOLIDWORKS certification programs that allow you to get the best out of your software. Use our Education Roadmap to guarantee you’re going down the right path for your educational needs.

                                                                                                      Training allows users to explore the areas of the software to prepare a team to work intelligently with speed and to be flexible in design for decision changes. We’ve got nine reasons why training at Fisher Unitech can change your SOLIDWORKS experience.

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