CAD CAM Design Using 3D Models

CAD CAM technology is used to design and to manufacture products.  While the CAD software is confined to design only, CAD CAM software not only designs but also programs CNC manufacturing processes.   Today, the CAD design portion is often done using 3D models and assemblies.  3D models let designers try the design out virtually in order to ensure that it works before the CNC machine is programmed to create the initial prototype.

Being able to test designs in a virtual environment prior to building the first prototype saves both the time and the money that would have been spent to build multiple physical prototypes in the pre-3D model days in order to work out any problems inherent in the initial design. CAD CAM Design

CAD CAM Software

Two example of CAD CAM software is Autodesk HSM Works and Inventor HSM software.  Both are integrated CAM solutions that work with Autodesk’s Inventor 3Dp CAD software as well as with Solidworks by Dassault Systemes, according to the Autodesk website.

By using CAD CAM software, engineers can more efficiently develop products and reduce costs.  These kinds of integrated tools accelerate time-to-market, control development costs, improve product quality and innovation, and help companies to compete successfully.

Challenges of Engineering for Manufacturing

Meeting the product development, equipment design, and systems engineering needs of manufacturers in all kinds of industries means meeting unique challenges in today’s ever-evolving and increasingly multifaceted global marketplace.   Many factors contribute to this, such as the increased cost of energy used in the manufacturing process, the greater world-wide focus on safety and environmental issues, and the increasing demand for products of all kinds in developing countries.  All of these factors combine to created competitive pressures on designers and engineers.

Regardless of the product being designed, developed and manufactured, competing successfully in the global market is necessary, and that means developing more complex products more quickly, more cost-effectively and with greater levels of collaboration, sometimes across countries or across continents.

How CAD CAM Software and 3D Models Help

Today’s market pressures mean that 2D design tools are no longer a viable option.  2D tools have too many limitations in efficiently using design data to address multiple functional requirements.   By using 3D CAD CAM software, like that by Autodesk or Dassault Systemes, engineers are able to meet challenges as they appear during every phase of development:  from concept and proposal through validation, production and implementation.  Using 3D design techniques enables the use of the same model for concept development, design automation, simulation, and communication, as well as for prototype development and product manufacturing.

Managing, Documenting, and Communicating Design Data

As our global markets continue to evolve, every manufacturing company’s success will depend upon its ability to respond to demands quickly and effectively.   Fast, effective response is highly dependent on how well a company can organize, manage, and communicate its internal design data and expertise.   Often competitive time pressures require more collaborative development relationships, data reuse, modular design, and systems prefabrication. To complete their jobs effectively, engineers must have efficient data management, documentation creation, and design communication tools.  Often an outsource CAD CAM Service can provide the necessary expertise in this area, enabling the design engineers to focus on product development.  Additionally Using a 3rd party independent CAD CAM outsource to validate the designs prior to automating the manufacturing and production can help ensure that the manufacturing process goes smoothly.

Final Steps – Automating Manufacturing and Production

After using an independent CAD CAM 3D outsource to validate the designs, companies can leverage the 3D CAD data to automate their manufacturing and production. Because 3D design data is highly visual, engineers can communicate and collaborate more effectively with assembly and production personnel to balance cost, quality, and delivery.

Through the use of integrated CAM (computer-aided machining) software, engineers automate machining and manufacturing.   In addition to cutting time from the production process, 3D CAD CAM software can help companies to reduce the volume of scrap produced and rework required. Because the design has been validated and manufacturing relates directly to 3D CAD data, fewer questions and surprises will arise in manufacturing than when using 2D development methods.


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