SOLIDWORKS


  • POSTED IN CAD, SOLIDWORKS

    What’s new in SOLIDWORKS 2018

    by Angelle Erickson on October 17, 2017

    Whats-new-SOLIDWORKS-2018-1The release of SOLIDWORKS 2018 is here. Every year new enhancements and features are added to the SOLIDWORKS toolset to make drawing, simulating, and designing faster and easier. Whether you’re new to SOLIDWORKS software and want to start incorporating SOLIDWORKS 3D CAD into your everyday workflow or are a seasoned pro looking to upgrade to the latest and greatest, SOLIDWORKS 2018 won’t disappoint.

    The following blog was created and provided by SOLIDWORKS and will show you enhancements for the user experience, data, inspection tools, and more.

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    • POSTED IN CAD, SOLIDWORKS TECH TIPS, SOLIDWORKS

      Bringing Flat Files into SOLIDWORKS to Create Models (Part 2): Pictures

      by David Janicki on October 13, 2017

      This is the second part to a blog I wrote on how to bring flat files into SOLIDWORKS. In my first blog, I showed how to bring in drawings and DXF files. In this blog, I am going to show you how to bring in pictures.

      If you’re a conceptual designer, just mocking drawings up on a whiteboard or napkin sketch, you may be wondering if it is possible to bring those 2D sketches or pictures into SOLIDWORKS. With the ability to directly import and size a picture, we are able to bring in our sketch-up and move through the process of part creation. Let’s get started.

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      • POSTED IN FISHER UNITECH NEWS, SOLIDWORKS, 3D PRINTING

        Meet our Experts: Dan Erickson - 3D Printing Application Engineer

        by Angelle Erickson on October 12, 2017

        Meet-our-experts-Dan-Erickson-3D-Printing-Application-EngineerMeet our expert, and member of our 3D Printing team, Dan Erickson who is based out of our Headquarters in Pleasant Ridge, Michigan. Dan started at Fisher Unitech in 2011 as a SOLIDWORKS Technical Support Engineer. After gaining more and more knowledge and interest in additive manufacturing and the power and capabilities of 3D printing, Dan joined our 3D printing team in 2015 as an Application Engineer.

        Keep reading to learn more about Dan, his role in supporting the sales and marketing teams, and his passion for transformative technology.

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

          Using a Data Card for State Changes in SOLIDWORKS PDM

          by Todd Barr on October 6, 2017

          Using-a-Data-Card-for-State-Changes-in-SOLIDWORKS-PDM-1When you have multiple SOLIDWORKS PDM users that need to make approvals or need to track tasks completed by different departments or individuals, it’s not always easily done using the Parallel option in Transitions. Using Automatic Transitions and Radio-button selections on a Data Card will allow multiple users to select when they are either completed with a task or approve a document. The last person to select approve or complete will send the document to the next State in the Workflow. Using the Data Card option you can also use the Search Tool to create Excel reports showing the status of documents, (i.e. who has approved or completed a task.)

          In this blog, you’ll learn how to configure the Vault for tracking completed tasks.

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          • POSTED IN CAD, SOLIDWORKS, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, 3D PRINTING

            Celebrating National Manufacturing Day

            by Stacey Clement on October 4, 2017

            celebrating national manufacturing day-1Held on October 6, 2017, National Manufacturing Day celebrates the incredible achievements manufacturers have made to revolutionize, streamline, and challenge the modern world. And, it’s now more important than ever to pay attention.

            Unlike the Industrial Revolutions of the past, the Fourth Industrial Revolution is changing how we engage with the world across all industries, and it’s happening at unprecedented speeds. Manufacturers have made huge breakthroughs in our communicative capabilities and our ability to store and access data instantly from anywhere in the world.

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            • POSTED IN CAD, SOLIDWORKS TECH TIPS, SOLIDWORKS

              The Power and Value of the SOLIDWORKS Hole Wizard

              by James Reeher on September 29, 2017

              The-Power-and-Value-of-the-SOLIDWORKS-Hole-Wizard-1I am often surprised to discover how many SOLIDWORKS users are not taking advantage of the SOLIDWORKS Hole Wizard and all the capabilities that it brings to the table. The SOLIDWORKS Hole Wizard provides a myriad of hole options from threaded and clearance holes to pipe threads, dowel holes and slots.

              What many people don’t realize is that by using the SOLIDWORKS Hole Wizard you can automatically bring in your hole callouts into drawings, have the toolbox match the appropriate fastener size to the hole, and even have SOLIDWORKS automatically populate your holes with the correct fastener. If you do not use the Hole Wizard then you are manually performing all of these actions, which is a lot of extra design work that could be better spent on other tasks.  It’s time to work smarter, not harder.  Keep reading to learn more about the SOLIDWORKS Hole Wizard.

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              • POSTED IN CAD, SOLIDWORKS, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, 3D PRINTING

                Delivery Drone Soars with SOLIDWORKS 2018 at Design to Manufacturing Events

                by Angelle Erickson on September 26, 2017

                Delivery-Drone-Soars-with-SOLIDWORKS-2018-at-Design-to-Manufacturing-Events-1What do SOLIDWORKS 2018, an RV manufacturer, and a delivery drone have in common? The Fisher Unitech SOLIDWORKS 2018 launch events! The theme of our events this year is Design to Manufacturing. We are so excited about SOLIDWORKS 2018. Using the new software along with additive manufacturing technologies in our portfolio, we have developed an end-to-end story using these technologies that we’ll share with you during the events.

                So plan to join us at a Design to Manufacturing event in a city near you. We’ll show you product demonstrations and real world examples of how you can apply SOLIDWORKS 2018 and additive manufacturing to your business to increase productivity, accelerate innovation, and get your great designs created. Keep reading to learn more about the events, how to find one near you, and a preview of our delivery drone.

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                • POSTED IN CAD, SOLIDWORKS TECH TIPS, SOLIDWORKS

                  Bringing flat files into SOLIDWORKS to create Models: Drawings and DXF Files

                  by David Janicki on September 22, 2017

                  In the current state of CAD affairs, everyone is either using or has heard of 3D CAD. But for users who have been using a 2D system for many years and have an exorbitant amount of data, making the switch isn’t always as easy as deciding to.

                  Inside of SOLIDWORKS, there are a multitude of tools to help you take and convert your old 2D drawings, and begin to create 3D parametric models with them. In this blog, I’m going to take you through those steps to ensure none of your data gets left behind in this smooth and easy process.

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                  • POSTED IN FISHER UNITECH NEWS, CAD, SOLIDWORKS

                    Meet our Experts: Cami L. Florence - Technical Support Manager

                    by Angelle Erickson on September 21, 2017

                    Meet-our-experts-Cami-Florence-technical-support-manager-1Today on our Meet our Experts series we’re featuring Cami L. Florence. Cami has been with Fisher Unitech for over 10 years and is a Technical Support Manager based out of our office in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. As a Certified SOLIDWORKS Expert, Cami specializes in weldments, sheet metal, and surfacing and has over 20 years experience with SOLIDWORKS, design, pre-sales, support, and training.

                    If you’ve been to the well-known conference SOLIDWORKS World, you may have seen Cami present. She has an extraordinary knowledge- base and has created informative presentations to help with other users’ success. Keep reading to learn more about Cami and the pride she takes in providing the best customer experience.

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                    • POSTED IN EDUCATION AND RESEARCH, CAD, SOLIDWORKS

                      2017 FIRST Robotics Competition: The Dundee Vi-Borgs

                      by Ethan Harper on September 18, 2017

                      2017-FIRST-Robotics-Competition-The-Dundee-Viborgs-1FIRST Robotics is an organization that encourages students from elementary through high school to further involve themselves in science, technology, engineering, art, and mathematics, otherwise known as the common acronyms STEM or STEAM.

                      The 2017 FIRST Robotics Competition has been the best season yet for team 4395, The Dundee Vi-Borgs based out of Dundee, Michigan. Incorporating plenty of cooperation, hard work, the right technology, and good spirits has all lead to a very successful year.

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                      • POSTED IN CAD, SOLIDWORKS TECH TIPS, SOLIDWORKS

                        Removing Padlocks in the SOLIDWORKS Customer Portal Area

                        by Toby Schnaars on September 15, 2017

                        One of the most useful resources available to subscription service customers is the ability to access the SOLIDWORKS customer portal. From this section of SOLIDWORKS, users may access the SOLIDWORKS Knowledge Base, grab a copy of the full download of SOLIDWORKS, examine the API support, and get some great tips and tricks from the SOLIDWORKS community.

                        However, when first creating a SOLIDWORKS customer portal account, users may find themselves in a situation where many of these terrific resources are “padlocked” and the user is unable to access these sections of the customer portal. In this blog, we will explore how to properly register your software and remove these padlocks.

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                        • POSTED IN SOLIDWORKS, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING

                          Come Experience SOLIDWORKS 2018 and Additive Manufacturing

                          by Angelle Erickson on September 14, 2017

                          Come-Experience-SOLIDWORKS-2018-and-Additive-ManufacturingThe time is coming right up to experience what’s new in SOLIDWORKS 2018 and the latest in additive manufacturing technologies at one of our Design to Manufacturing Events. We’re heading to several locations throughout the Midwest, New England, and Mid-Atlantic. Join us so you can engage with experts, learn what’s new, and see in person what enhancements will help you keep up with the latest technology and software to benefit you and your business.

                          Keep reading to find out how you can get involved, what’s on the agenda, and where we’re headed.

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                          • POSTED IN CAD, ELECTRICAL, SOLIDWORKS

                            You Can Take SOLIDWORKS Electrical for a Virtual Test Drive

                            by Christa Prokos on September 11, 2017

                            You-Can-Take-SOLIDWORKS-Electrical-for-a-Virtual-Test-Drive-1Are you tired of managing countless spreadsheets and CAD drawings to document your electrical design projects? Is collaboration with other team members clumsy and cumbersome at best? If you have these product development pains, you need to reconsider the tools you are using. Today, you don’t need to sacrifice valuable time and effort with your electrical design work.

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

                              How to Link Variables in SOLIDWORKS PDM to a Newly Created Drawing

                              by Jodi Degenaer on September 8, 2017

                              Often times, linking the variables in SOLIDWORKS PDM (Product Data Management) to newly created drawings can seem like a puzzle with a piece or two missing. Fortunately, this can be mitigated by arming yourself with a step-by-step system that I’ve found to be very useful.

                              In this blog, I’ll take you through the steps to easily link variables in SOLIDWORKS PDM to newly created files. Let’s get started.

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                              • POSTED IN CAD, SOLIDWORKS TECH TIPS, SOLIDWORKS

                                SOLIDWORKS Network Licensing: Installing/Upgrading the SOLIDWORKS SolidNetWork License Manager on the Server

                                by Jon Sauerbrey on September 1, 2017

                                SOLIDWORKS-Network-Licensing-Installing-Upgrading-the-SOLIDWORKS-SolidNetWork-License-Manager-on the-Server-1Our technical support department often gets questions from customers regarding installing and upgrading processes. Depending on the situation, this can be an extensive support case. This blog is going to take you through the entire process and instructions for installing/upgrading the SOLIDWORKS SolidNetWork license manager on the server.

                                Before installing, upgrading, or reinstalling the SOLIDWORKS SolidNetWork License Server, you must first check the system requirements and review the “SOLIDWORKS Network License Server section. Now let’s get started.

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                                • POSTED IN CAD, SOLIDWORKS, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, 3D PRINTING

                                  Design to Manufacturing: Find an Event Near You

                                  by Angelle Erickson on August 29, 2017

                                  Design-to-Manufacturing-Event-Explores-SOLIDWORKS-2018-and-Additive-ManufacturingAre you familiar with SOLIDWORKS 3D CAD software but want to know more about how 3D printing could also improve your processes? Is your company already 3D printing prototypes and parts and is interested in learning more about SOLIDWORKS? Now is the time to see how it all comes together during our Design to Manufacturing events.

                                  Keep reading to learn how you can experience the latest and greatest of SOLIDWORKS 2018 and see what’s new in additive manufacturing technologies.

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                                  • POSTED IN EDUCATION AND RESEARCH, CAD, SOLIDWORKS, 3D PRINTING

                                    The ThunderChickens use SOLIDWORKS and 3D Printing to design their FIRST Robotics Team Robot

                                    by Ryan Henigan on August 28, 2017

                                    The-ThunderChickens-use-SOLIDWORKS-and-3D-Printing-to-Design-their-FIRST-Robotics-Team-Robot-1On July 14th and 15th First Robotics Indiana Robotics Invitational (IRI), took place just outside of Indianapolis, IN. This event is an off season competition of the best performing team in the FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC), from around the world. Each team was hand picked from those that applied for their outstanding robot performance during the official FRC season.

                                    First Robotics is an organization dedicated to inspiring students to participate in STEM and STEAM related fields. FIRST offers competition levels for elementary through high school students, in the form of Junior FIRST Lego League (Jr. FLL), FIRST Lego League (FLL), FIRST Tech Challenge (FTC), and FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC). These are broken down into elementary, middle, and high school level competitions.

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                                    • 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 ten major cities starting in Canton, 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 view our recorded 30 minute webcast to see  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, his 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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