3D CAD files are as good as gold in a modern engineering company. They can quickly create manufacturing drawings, be used to check for fit, form, and function of a part, and be used for marketing material. If you don’t have 3D CAD files yet, then you should convert your engineering drawings today.
In this guide, we’ll explain exactly how to find the right company to convert your engineering drawings into 3D CAD files. By the end, you’ll know what to do, what to ask, and what to look for.
How to Find the Right Company to Convert Engineering Drawings into 3D CAD
Now, let’s explain the full process. In this section, you’ll learn exactly how to find the right company to convert your engineering drawings into full 3D CAD models.
You Don’t Have to Search Locally
We should start by explaining a common mistake: you don’t have to stick with local companies. It’s tempting to look for the best CAD service near you, but this industry is global — as a Texas-based company, we’ve had clients all across America and in different countries. That’s the beauty of creating digital files and sharing them.
We have no problem visiting your site and getting all the information and documentation you need, but that doesn’t mean you need to be right down the road. By expanding your search, you’ll find more options to choose from.
Get on the Phone with Them
Before getting too far, it’s a good idea to give the company a call or reach out via email. Why? To get a better sense of who they are and what they offer.
When you’re on the phone, you can ask more specifics about how their company runs and what services you can get. It’s also a good opportunity to get a feel for the company.
If they’re hard to contact, rude on the phone, or too secretive, then you might want to pass on them. Unfortunately, there are a lot of companies in our industry that deliver sub-par work and try to basically scam companies. The company that you call should be friendly and eager to help.
Learn About the Company’s History
A company’s history will tell you a lot about them. If they get bought out every year and their headquarters is always moving, something is wrong. If the company has been around for decades and they’re proud of their history, that’s a great sign.
A rich history for a company means a few things. For one, it proves their trustworthiness. They get enough repeat business and new clients that trust them to keep them open.
In addition, it speaks to how well they operate. It takes a lot to stay open for multiple years. Plus, it shows that the company is legitimate. With brand-new companies, it’s hard to know how honest they are.
Get a Quote
It never hurts to get a quote. A good engineering conversion company will offer free quotes and get them back to you quickly. A lot of times, we try to get quotes out within a day or two of getting your information.
We don’t want to waste your time.
The quote will tell you a lot about the company, their promises, and its schedule. If they have an outrageous turnaround time, then you should be hearing alarm bells. If they can’t hit your timeline, then they shouldn’t be selected.
Sure, companies get busy and it’s hard to expedite every project. But that doesn’t mean that you should suffer just because an engineering company can’t keep up.
At CAD/CAM Services, we have around-the-clock coverage and our engineers work on three different shifts. That means that we can work 24/7 so you don’t have to. You’ll get your 3D CAD files sooner.
In addition, look at the price that they’re quoting. If the price is way too high or too low, it’s another bad sign. Companies that charge way too little are usually inexperienced and unsure of their abilities. If they charge way too much, then they’re just wasting your money.
Ask About Their Expertise
We’ll be the first to say it: making 3D CAD drawings isn’t easy. It takes a lot of experience and plenty of practice before you can do it well.
In fact, expertise can make or break your project’s success. A highly experienced staff will know all the ins and outs of creating a 3D CAD file. You’ll get parts that work, look great, and have the right material properties.
An inexperienced staff will make mistakes. These mistakes can cost you a lot in the long run. Maybe they send you drawings that aren’t right, and you waste time trying to find the issue and solve it.
Look Around for Their Proof of Success
If you can, ask the company to send over some previous projects. You should be looking for the quality of work they deliver and some sort of proof of success.
If they have a strong online presence, take a look for case studies, customer testimonials, or a gallery of previous designs. This will tell you a lot about the company. The ideal company will only have great reviews and high-quality work. This is what your project deserves.
Ensure They Use the Right CAD Program
If your master model is built in a certain CAD program, then you need to make sure the outsourced engineering team uses that CAD program.
With mismatched files, it’s hard to transfer over drawings and keep all the data and settings. You could lose tolerance information or material properties during the conversion.
If they deliver an Inventor file but you use PTC Creo, you can’t use the file until it gets converted. It adds a lot of hassle to the process, and it’s not worth it. The best option is to ask the engineering team to use the CAD program that you have a license for and use already.
Now you know how to find the right company to convert engineering drawings into 3D CAD. If you want to start with the best in the industry, consider CAD/CAM Services.
We’ve been around for decades, and we’ve converted millions of drawings over the years. We’re a full-service engineering team that can handle 2D, 3D, 3D scanning, and full conversions. Get your free quote today to learn more.
This article was last Updated on February 6, 2023