Direct CAD News & Views from Kubotek USA

Merry Christmas & Happy New Year from Kubotek USA

Posted by John Agoglia on Thu, Dec 23, 2010

Looking forward to next year and the release of KeyCreator 2011!

Use KeyCreator and you can get rid of a Boss with a simple Scribe.

Posted by John Agoglia on Thu, Dec 09, 2010

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Imagine that you’ve imported the part illustratedpp4 4 resized 600 at the right from another CAD package and need to quickly modify it so it looks like the lower part.

In a Feature-Based Parametric CAD package this can be a real hassle, since the cross-rib feature shares common faces on the top and bottom of the part with describe the imageother features.

In KeyCreator, our powerful Face Scribe Function and Face-Logic Feature Recognition make this a piece of cake!

We simply scribe the faces to break them into multiple patches.describe the image

describe the imageAnd then use our Remove Feature Function and Face Logic to identify the two sections as bosses to be removed.

We don’t need a feature tree since KeyCreator can instantly recognize features using powerful algorithms unique to this application!





Topics: KeyCreator, KeyCreator Tips and Tricks

10 signs that your CAD Software is Wrong for your organization

Posted by Scott Sweeney on Wed, Dec 08, 2010

describe the imageCAD Software is a critical tool for manufacturers and product design companies.   Many companies have decided to standardize on a particular CAD Software tool or tools because it’s the most popular or because that is what they have used in the past.  In the past, 3D CAD meant history-based CAD.  With the evolution of Direct CAD modeling and other newer CAD viewing and Validation tools, your CAD environment can be more productive and help you to leverage the time, skills, and creativity of your organization - paying great business dividends.  Review these signs that your CAD tools aren’t up to snuff and see if it might be time for you to consider a CAD upgrade.

Your CAD software may be wrong for your organization if:

  1. What should be simple changes to designs sometimes take a day or week because they clash with the potential changes anticipated when the model was created.
  2. Your customer sent you a new CAD model and you can’t determine where the changes are without overlaying one drawing over another and changing their colors. And then you still aren’t sure that you found all of the changes.
  3. You support one CAD package for 3D and one for drawings and you pay for maintenance and education on both.
  4. You are still designing in 2D because 3D is too hard to learn.
  5. Your software is so old that it won’t run properly on  Windows 7. 
  6. In order to run a simulation someone needs to start from scratch and remodel the product to simplify it.
  7. Large files are crashing your system.
  8. When you walk by your designer’s computer it usually says “rebuilding.”  (And the designer is at the coffee machine.)
  9. You are losing jobs to the competition because you need a CAD operator to open a customer’s files in order to create quotations.
  10. You bought the most popular CAD package because “everyone is using it”, but your productivity plummeted and your CAD vendor tells you it’s because you need “more training.”

Does one or more of the situations above pertain to you?  Kubotek USA may have the CAD Software, Multi-CAD Viewer or CAD validation/comparison tool to boost your productivity in 2011.  Check out all of our products or request free trials today at .

Topics: CAD Software, 3D CAD, CAD software analysis, CAD Software issues

One Step Assembly Configurations with KeyCreator

Posted by John Agoglia on Mon, Dec 06, 2010
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This KeyCreator Power Play provides a powerful example  of why in many assembly design situations KeyCreator is a better solution than the super-sophisticated feature based modelers like SolidWorks.

We’ve all seen demos of configurator files built in SolidWorks that allow a user to create entire families of parts. They are certainly impressive but they do require a large investment in developing link variables and driving spreadsheets to make them work. Unfortunately, all of this background work seriously interrupts the normal creative design flow and in many cases has to be substantially redone as the design goes through successive iterations. (No one likes to talk about the big bear in the room when you are using a feature-based modeler: That is, in many cases substantial design changes result in a feature tree that will not regenerate without errors. This then necessitates a partial or complete reconstruction of the model.)


Users of feature-based parametric modelers love to demonstrate how they can create an assembly like the stainless steel workstation at right and then develop a driving spreadsheet that allows them to make a family of products. (In this case, benches are different widths.)

Now seeing a canned demo of this is really impressive. All you need is a box of popcorn and you sit back and watch as multiple versions of the product appear!

The problem is that for any decent assembly, you have to spend a substantial amount of time creating the spreadsheet, checking the relationships, and testing to make sure that everything works. That’s why you always see this as a canned demo. You would finish the popcorn and fall asleep if you had to wait while the spreadsheet was built!

There are 32 components in the basic assembly illustrated above. In order to build a product configurator in Solid Works (That’s what they call it. It sounds impressive so you feel like you got something for all the money you spent!) you would need to control the dimensions and positions on all of these components. That makes the process tedious and creates a lot of room for errors.Using KeyCreator for One Step Assembly Configuration

More importantly, creating the spreadsheet requires the designer to break the creative train in the design process. I can tell you from experience that that’s the last thing you want to do when you are on a creative binge.

In addition, more often than not, you will wind up making iterative changes in the design several times between the beginning of the project and release to production. Every time, you’ll need to update the spreadsheet to make the magic happen. If this is starting to seem like you’re a hamster, running on a wheel, you get the picture!

In KeyCreator, you can instantly configure any number of bench sizes without creating a spreadsheet or interrupting your creative flow in any way! Let’s say we want to add 9 inches to each side of the 24 inch wide bench to make a 42 inch wide bench.

You simply switch to an elevation view. (In this case the Front View.)

Then, using the powerful Xform Box-Move Function, you drag a describe the imagebox around the left side of the entire assembly. Then type –9 for the x value.

The entire bench is stretched 9 inches to the left. Parts that lie completely within the selection box like the left legs, left horizontal beams, left drawer slides and rollers simply move 9 inches to the left. Parts that are partially in the selection window like the counter, shelf, and drawer front are stretched 9 inches in length.

Repeat the process by dragging a selection window around the right side and moving it 9 inches to the right and you have a 42 inch wide bench.

If you use the SaveAs Function to make a copy of the file before each configuration change, you’ll have a family of benches created in no time at all.

And remember that all of the associated layouts for the model will also instantly update as you stretch the assembly.

Now, I’ve used a workstation table with a drawer as an example but this approach works equally well with conveyors (Change a 12 inch wide conveyor to an 18 inch wide one) or any other assembly where a series of discreet sizes is needed. describe the image

So when you need to configure multiple assemblies fast- - -

Come to KeyCreator where the solution is just a Box-Move away!

Topics: 3D Direct Modeling, CAD Software, KeyCreator, Direct Modeling

CAD Software Revolution of 2010

Posted by Scott Sweeney on Fri, Dec 03, 2010

describe the imageEvents in the world of CAD as of the last 2 months or so indicates that the world of CAD software is in the midst of a revolution!

Pro/E no longer exists

AutoDesk Fusion is going after the DIY market

Detroit Automakers are making news with big changes with their CAD systems.

For a long while there didn't seem to be a lot happening in the CAD world.  Everyone was busy with Lifecyle Management, Product Data Management and everything other than the basic design/drafting tool.  It seemed that companies and suppliers had given up on innovation in design tools. 

About 5 years ago, Kubotek USA, makers of the CAD Software KeyCreator started a new paradigm.  The ability to change geometry with ease - using dimensions or push-pull tools, without the need to create history, and with the ability to edit any model regardless of which system authored it.  All of a sudden, CAD designers and companies had CAD freedom.

Not long after sharing the concept with some well known CAD industry analysts and veterans, another company started, Spaceclaim - waiving the new banner - no more history-based design.  Obviously their investors also believe in the message and continue to pour money into the venture.

The concept started to blur some and become a bit muddled, SolidWorks claimed, "we have direct modeling" within our history-based system, but in fact this "direct editing" is no more than a technique inside a history-based system that continues to handcuff the user by the design thus reducing its usefulness as a design tool.  The history-based modelers are merely 3D drafting systems - once the design has been "locked down," the drawings that they create are simply ways of communicating the design throughout the company and supply chain.

Next came a bold move by Siemens PLM.  They clearly stated that history-based modeling would be replaced by their new vision ST - synchronous technology design.  It has taken some time for Siemens to achieve this vision, but it is their clearly stated direction.

Last came the bomb-shell: PTC, completely obliterating their trademarked and beloved Pro/E - ProEngineer.  What a terrific name for a CAD Software Package.  Shouldn't a professional engineer be using a tool called ProEngineer - a brand that is clearly worth billions!  But as they say, in order to fully commit to a new path ,it is best to burn the bridge behind you so that you cannot go back.  So PTC announces a new way with new tools - Direct CAD Software Tools (and I believe history-based too - once again to lock down the design and communicate it) and they call them CREO.   WOW!  Gutsy move PTC!

So what is next - what will be the end result of all of these changes and what is Kubotek doing?

We quietly continue to invest in our world class 3D CAD software tools.  We are solving tough geometry problems for our customers and helping them to get their jobs done everyday with robust, 3D Direct CAD Software and tools. 

Back in January, I posted a short commentary about one of Paul Hamilton's Blog (from CoCreate - now Creo) I titled it 2010 the Year of Direct Modeling.

I believe that prophesy has come true - almost all of the major CAD software vendors with the exception of one,  have stated their intention to develop 3D Direct CAD.

What's in the wind for Kubotek for 2011? Keep an eye out for new developments, not just our latest version of KeyCreator : KeyCreator 2011, but exciting new developments in our technology as we keep pushing the envelope and leading the way of change in CAD software modeling, visualization and geometry management tools.

Thanks for reading,


Topics: 3D Direct CAD, CAD Software, CAD Software Revolution