3D CAD modeling concepts

3D modeling is the process of creating three-dimensional representations of objects using 3D modeling software. With a 3D CAD modeling tool, you can create detailed designs with depth, visualize concepts with realism, and produce models for real-life simulations.

CAD is a subset of 3D modeling which is a crucial component in manufacturing. If your goal is manufacturable designs, CAD provides a holistic design environment that allows for both 2D and 3D representations. The level of detail you can do with CAD modeling is essential for better collaboration, precise engineering, analysis, documentation, and visualization throughout the product development lifecycle.

Shapr3D is a CAD software solution that offers a complete design workflow from ideation to manufacturable models. Seamlessly transition from concept to detailed 3D modeling and documentation with the help of these main benefits:

  • Integrated workflow. The multiplatform availability for Windows, macOS, and iPadOS, and Sync capabilities provide you the flexibility to work across various devices, giving you a much more integrated approach to your design process.
  • Offline use. Shapr3D is fully operational offline across all platforms, enabling you to work on your designs even without an internet connection.
  • Collaboration. The Webviewer feature is a quick and efficient way to share your concepts, making collaborative reviews effortless.
  • Software compatibility. Shapr3D works smoothly with other CAD tools. With its support for universal CAD file formats such as STEP and IGES, you can conveniently integrate your designs into other relevant software.

History-Based Parametric Modeling

CAD models are built up through a series of steps. History-Based Parametric Modeling, or Parametric Modeling, is a feature that provides you with the history of your model by recording the series of steps in a timeline or feature tree. As these steps are recorded, connections through dependencies are formed, allowing you to review or modify each step cohesively.

In Shapr3D, you can access the history of your model through the History sidebar. As you continue to build your model, the history establishes a connection through dependencies and relationships between different features, dimensions, and constraints. With this existing connection, modifications or iterations you make to any step automatically propagate through the entire history, making the iterative process much easier and faster.

By keeping the History sidebar closed, you can use Shapr3D just as you would normally without the history feature. However, keep in mind that steps are still recorded in the background so if you want to use history later on, there might be broken connections that you would need to fix.

To learn more about error messages in History, visit Error messages in History.

Direct modeling

Direct modeling, also known as push-and-pull modeling, is a 3D CAD method that focuses on directly manipulating models by pushing and pulling selected topologies of a geometry. With direct modeling, you can adjust geometry quickly without thinking about existing features and constraints. For example, if you want to increase the height or depth of a box, you can simply “pull” any of its faces upwards or sidewards. The same applies to cylindrical bodies or holes: just select the cylindrical faces and then adjust the diameter by pushing and pulling them.

In Shapr3D, you can use a direct modeling approach by simply keeping the History sidebar closed. This approach can provide you the flexibility to make quick modifications without referring to the history timeline.

For more in-depth information on direct modeling, visit How does direct modeling actually work?

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