CAD has played a role in the design industry for literally decades, but when it came time to produce prototypes CAD data was often sent off to experts in fabrication and manufacturing to do the actual production work. However, with increasing numbers of businesses having in-house 3D printers, or a 3D printing service provider on speed dial, CAD software has needed to adapt. Not only has it needed to become easier to work with because it is being used by more people around the office, but it has needed to expand its role within an office workflow. Modern CAD programs really need to be able to do it all now: rendering, previewing, sending off to be 3D printed and accepting new ways to import information, including the ability to turn sketch and 3D scan data into a working CAD model.
In that regard the latest updates to Geomagic software packages from 3D Systems are following the suit of just about every other piece of design software on the market. Their 2016 updates for the entire line of Geomagic have one goal in common: make it easier to use and more flexible to the expanding role software plays in modern design workflows. The Geomagic 2016 software product updates include Geomagic Freeform, Geomagic Freeform Plus and Geomagic Sculpt. They have added some new functionality to make the 3D sculpting and design process more organic and precise while sidestepping many of the restrictions on content creation that often slow down most geometric CAD platform design to production processes.
“Geomagic Freeform shifts your horizons regardless of whether you are an artist, industrial designer or engineer. Digital design becomes tangible with these tools, allowing you to achieve that perfect design and immediately bring it to life via 3D printing or traditional manufacturing processes,” said artist, designer and Geomagic Freeform Plus user Scotty Ziegler.
The new Geomagic Freeform 2016 update offers engineers, designers, artists, model makers and sculptors a robust and comprehensive set of 3D engineering tools that allow them to easily solve many of the more complex design and manufacturing challenges faced today. Users can work with virtual clay models that are easy to transform into any detail or form using the enhanced set of tools that have been optimized to support easy and quick 3D printing. The professional-grade products are even more powerful with Geomagic Freeform Plus. It has an even larger set of tools and features that simplify advanced manufacturing design, including instant conversion of digital clay and polygons to NURBS surfaces, mold and die design, shell generation, draft analysis, parting line and surfacing tools for organic shapes and complex geometries.
3D data can now be scanned directly into Geomagic Freeform with the Geomagic Capture scanner. This new, seamless scan-to-design workflow makes it easier to work with imported CAD data and transform it into organic designs. StructureFX is a new feature that offers advanced 3D lattice and structure tools, which delivers custom, internal and external lattice structures for complex or lightweight 3D designs. The tools simplify the generation of complex structures for highly functional applications like the creation of customized medical implants. StructureFX will seamlessly work with Freeform’s advanced 3D printing analysis tools that make it easy to successfully 3D print any advanced designs without needed to import the data into a second software package.
The enhanced 3D print analysis and printability toolset in Freeform 2016 is a huge simplification of the standard design to manufacturing workflow. It includes enhanced feature size analysis and print alignment tools that optimize the quality and repeatability of 3D print production, including small-scale manufacturing. Freeform 2016 is also fully integrated with 3DSPRINT, which automatically supports the entire range of 3D Systems’ 3D printers. That includes the ability to monitor prints, manage printing queues, repair faulty or damaged 3D data for 3D printing or traditional manufacturing and offers a wide variety of file format exports.
“3D Systems Geomagic Freeform products deliver an advanced design environment that enables designers and engineers to create incredible products. The 2016 release of these Geomagic Freeform products represents 3D Systems’ commitment to delivering the very best tools for design, engineering and manufacturing.” said Vice President, Co-Chief Operating Officer and Chief Revenue Officer of 3D Systems Software, Calvin Hur.
The Geomagic Freeform software works exclusively with 3D Systems Touch haptic devices that simulate the physical sensation of sculpting in a 3D digital environment. Sculpting with haptic devices is a more intuitive method of interacting with and creating digital assets that often reduces learning curves, makes the design process quicker and produces high quality 3D data. You can learn more about all of the Geomagic Freeform 2016 updates, as well as get access to a free trial version of the software, here. Is this update something that interests you? Tell us about it in the Geomagic & 3D Workflow forum over at 3DPB.com.