So, I have been playing with the DimExpert tool to apply annotation dimension and GD&T on models.  I really like this tool to a point.

My concern is that to date there is no real good modeling standard that I have seen that encourages modeling that enables easliy changing models for design changes.  Most of the time when I had to do eco’s most of my time was spent trying to figure out someones mental state when they created the model.  Then I had to make my changes followed up by a model comparison to ensure that I did not inadvertantly screw something up with my changes.  What should have taken minutes and been simple became hours and mundane even frusturating.

With this cool new tool I fear that models will continually become harder to edit when it comes to change or data reuse.  The DimXpert for those who have not played with it yet enables the user to create models in any manner then when the user is ready for detailing they select the DimXpert tool which allows them to added driven dimensions to the model’s annotation view making the detailing process easier and more accurate.

In my mind this tool is a pandoras box that enables SW users to continue modeling without any regard to fututre changes or data reusage.  For this tool to be effective, when this tool is activated the dimesnions that it adds would need to somehow convert the sketched and feature dims to driven and the added dimnsions added by the tool then become the parametric driving dimensions.  Ooh ohh, that would be nice.  Difficult (Quoting Rick Chin and John Hirschtek) this is the Absurdly Ideal DimXpert.

Try this tool out.  Let me know if I am off my rocker or not.  By the way – When using this for GD&T it is soooooo much easier and correct than attempting at the sketch level.

Materials Database Library

Click here for the download page of the updated ctopher SolidWorks material database library.

Have you ever needed a material database that has more than the standard materials that comes with SolidWorks? Over the past eight years I have created solid models for military and commercial designs that required accurate 3D models to send to our customers for weight and FEA analysis.I have weighed the actual against the calculated weight from SolidWorks and the parts were very accurate, 98-100% accurate. Major aerospace companies were pleased.I created my own material database based on the materials used in these industries; it is available on my site for free download: Materials.[Updated 9/2016 ML]

Sometime in the near future, I plan on expanding the material database to include materials requested by other SolidWorks users and friends. [Update 9/2016 is now available at the link above. ML]