3D Modeling Techniques 
IRONCAD vs Solidworks Lesson Nineteen
Drag and Drop Design
Streamlined Sketching/Feature Based Modeling
Just a Bit of Parametrics!

When I introduce IronCAD's very flexible design paradigm I have a hard time to get the Pro/e clone users, like Solidworks and other programs, to understand the drag and drop design paradigm.

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I saw some Fusion 360 exercises online and I decided to compare IronCAD. It quickly turned into a study in modeling techniques. I have created many comparisons to Fusion 360, Onshape, Solid Edge, NX, Creo, Catia and Inventor lessons to show the difference between IronCAD and my modeling techniques. I found the presenters working identically wasting massive amounts of time with overly complex constrained sketching procedures. I was so unimpressed that I decided to model the parts or assemblies showing my modeling techniques plus IronCAD's superb design system.

3D Modeling Techniques Defined

Many of these modeling techniques can easily be implemented even within their existing system. I call it Streamlined Sketching and Feature Based Modeling. Please review a few of the above IronCAD comparison lessons, there are some very stark differences.

SolidWorks Model Mania 2020 | SolidWorks Tutorial | SolidCad

While creating 3D models from drawings is the very best way to learn 3D CAD and maybe some design techniques it does not expose the designer to the design flexibility necessary in design. IronCAD is all top down due to the single model environment. Creating mating parts is a cruise. But modeling is just one aspect of a well designed productive 3D CAD system.

IronCAD vs Solidworks

I would do a video, but I really am not good at it. So I will show you step by step. I will try and get IronCAD support to create one. They are very good.

IronCAD vs Solidworks and the Pro/e Paradigm

As with my Ironcad vs Fusion 360 and other major CAD systems, I have found the same problems with Solidworks. The modeling technique is hugely responsible for the level of productivity. Those of you that are only trained in the constrained sketching world are truly limited by not using the freedom of Streamlined Sketching and Feature Based Modeling, that is available in even the most Solidworks-ish of CAD systems. If your designers are designing in these very unproductive and time consuming processes it might be time to review your standard design processes. Don't have any do you?

This IronCAD exercise took a few minutes and allows for faster and much easier modification. Again these exercises turned into a study of modeling techniques even though most of this model is Feature Based Modeling not available to most of the Solidworks clones.

Here is IronCAD. My default is inches, so we will set the units to mm. Let's get started.

I put the cursor in the scene and right click and select show and pick show the size box dimensions it makes it much easier to work with setting the dimensions. You can save your custom configurations if you want.

The first thing we do is use the extrude wizard to create a sketch plane! We select standalone part and can set the extrude distance.

Note: Why does IronCAD call it a scene instead of a workspace? IronCAD was first released as a graphic design program called Trispectives. It still has much of the graphic design functionality. It truly is a wonderful mixture of professional 3D CAD and graphic design, which puts it in a much more flexible category as compared to the very mechanical engineering focused Solidworks clones.

The sketch automatically it set to X0Y0Z0. We set the view to ISO.

We create the sketch with the constraints and the parameter operator. We don't need dimensions since IronCAD can define them at creation, eliminating one step.

This is a parametric design with constrained entities. I have never done any constraining or parametrics. My customers have a wide variety of products that do not make it conducive. I usually use Streamlined Sketching which I will show later.

Most design does not need parametric options. Most would not have the foresight of how the design might change. This is a nice little parametric exercise.

Parametric Modeling Finally Defined

We select finish and you can see we have our shape.

We will now drag and drop a cylinder on the middle of the right upper edge and size it by pulling or pushing the appropriate handle to align with the top and bottom. You do that by holding the shift key down and the entities will light up in green. You can also just select to point from a right click from a dialog box!

Using the spin wizard set it to remove material and leave it at 360 degrees we set the sketch at the center of the cylinder by selecting parallel to face at point and orient the sketch with the Triball.

I create the sketch with streamlined sketching projecting the pertinent edges.

We select finish and it cuts our shape.

Now we create the holes by dragging and dropping the first 4mm hole to the center of the radius and then the larger 8 mm hole at the center of the first holes face and size it.

We select the shape and holes to copy link the other two features. Linking allows when changing one feature they all change.

With the Triball we make two linked copies at 120 degrees. We could also use pattern if the feature amount would change later.

As you can see the spin cut does not affect the new features.

We go into the scene browser and move the "Turn 1" to the bottom of the features in the history.

We add the large fillets and drag and drop a cut cylinder to the center of the existing cylinder and size it and we are almost done.

We add the edge fillets and we are done.

We add a small bit of realistic rendering and we are finished with the part.

Here is the AID (Associated Information Document)

We now have to make the changes. We will copy the existing model and paste in the same scene. IronCAD is a single model environment where all parts can coexist.

You can see in the scene browser there is now a part 3.

We change the 22 degrees to 8 degrees. You can see all the shapes change. We will get errors due to the blends not having the correct edges.

In the scene browser we delete the corrupt blends and edge blends.

Now we use the shelling command to create our pockets.

Add the the blends.

Nice rendering.

Here is the AID

You can see more on modeling techniques here.

3D Modeling Techniques Defined

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