Category Archives: Blog

Timing screw machining…is it really this simple?

At TopSolid, we really try to make it easier for our customers to engineer AND manufacture their parts.  And we don’t stop doing this just because the parts are hard to work with either.  In fact, it is here that TopSolid really starts to shine.  In this video, you will see how easy and moreover how quickly you will be able to program something even as complicated as a timing screw.  In earlier videos, I have already shown you how easy it is to design a timing screw.  Now it’s time to learn how easy it is to machine one too.

Is it magic? No, it’s TopSolid…

Working with Explicit Families in TopSolid 7

Manufacturing is hard enough!  But sometimes it can be made a to be a bit easier.

In this video, you will learn how to create and use an explicit family within TopSolid 7. An explicit family allows you to create one master document that will in turn allow you to control many documents downstream in the process. For example, in this video, we will import 3 parts that are the same geometries, just different sizes. Then we will turn them into an explicit family document within TopSolid 7. Finally we will use that family document to create all of the machining documents needed to manufacture each family method. This is a great example of TopSolid helping you to do your job more efficiently!

Core & Cavity Creation – Can it really be this easy?

TopSolid Core and Cavity creationWorking with software solutions that are not intended to do the job that you do is crazy. All you are doing is working harder than you need to work. Thankfully, TopSolid understands your needs. In fact, TopSolid was written specifically with manufacturing in mind.  In this video you will get a quick look at what I am talking about. In this sample, I start by importing a Parasolid file into TopSolid for a simple plastic part.  Then I show you all the steps needed to get the split finished.  And here’s the best part. This sample has internal shutoffs, a stepped external parting line, and the part requires a side action as well.  For most solutions, this is a lot of work. For TopSolid it only takes a few minutes.

Choosing a fully integrated CAD/CAM Solution

Missler Quarter Page Ad IMTS 2016Choosing a CAD or a CAM solution can be a daunting task.  There are many aspects that you need to take into consideration prior to making your choice. These include, but are by no means limited too such things as cost (up front and annual), functionality, availability, learn-ability, support resources, development schedule, popularity, and…well even more. Many people companies choose their solution based on a number of these items.  However, one of the most important items to consider is often missed…integration.

Integration between your CAD and your CAM software is paramount in today’s manufacturing world. Integration allows downstream elements, such as CAM files, to automatically receive updates from upstream items like CAD files.

For example, ACME Manufacturing designs and manufactures their own product line.  Today ACME uses one CAD product to engineer with and a totally independent and different CAM product to manufacture with.  This was ok to do…10 plus years ago.

The problem with this methodology is that when the engineering team makes a change to the CAD data how do they ensure that the manufacturing teams not only receives that engineering change, but that the manufacturing team uses is?  Also, how long does it take the manufacturing team to integrate the new data into their standalone CAM solution?  Is it a few minutes? Hours? Days???

Herein lies the problem of independent products that do not communicate with each other seamlessly.

Simply put, they cost ACME a lot of money in lost time and rework.

What is the solution?

The solution is to choose a solution that integrates all aspects of your engineering and manufacturing process together under one easy to use and deploy platform. Continue reading Choosing a fully integrated CAD/CAM Solution

Using imported core & cavity blocks with TopSolid Mold

LogoTopSolidAhhh…the life of a mold designer. The beauty of it, and the hard part about it, is that they never really know what they are going to have to deal with from one design to the next.

At TopSolid, we totally understand this.  It is why we have written TopSolid specifically to allow you to just do your job.  What do I mean?

In the following 5 videos, I am going to show you how to use a core and cavity set that was developed…dare I say…in another cad software!!!

To be super clear here.  TopSolid is THE BEST CHOICE for all aspects of your mold design.

But what I am working to point out here is that we don’t get upset when you try to work outside of our solution.  Here I am gently poking fun at all of the other Cad software’s that seem to just fall apart when you work outside of their scripted way of life. (You know who you are).

In the following videos you will see for yourself what I am talking about. Here’s what you will be introduced too:

  • Importing the core/cavity blocks from a 3rd party software
  • Defining them as core and cavity blocks in TopSolid
  • Sending the defined blocks into a TopSolid’Mold document and positioning them
  • Creating a multi-cavity layout (yes by using our automation on the imported parts)
  • Adding a standard DME mold base
  • Processing the core and cavity blocks to create pockets (again with automation)
  • Deciding that we don’t want pockets, but want to machine the blocks directly in solid in the A and B Plate
  • Catching and correcting a small mistake (To show simplicity)
  • Adding some ejector pins (again, more automation on the imported parts)

There is where I stop.  I think these videos do a great job of speaking for TopSolid.  But you be the judge!

Step 1 – Import and define
Step 2 – Include the blocks in a TopSolid’Mold document

Step 3 – Create a multi-Cavity and include a DME mold base

Step 4 – Make a change or two

Step 5 – Correct a mistake, and add some ejector pins

Getting Started: Creating a drafting document and dimensioning

LogoTopSolidTopSolid drafting sampleIn this getting started video tutorial, you will be introduced to some basic concepts around the creation of 2d drafting files.  First let’s discuss what a drafting document is.  A TopSolid drafting document is a document where we project the 3d data created in TopSolid into a 2d format.  It is in a drafting document where you will add your dimensions, GD & T and other detailing types of elements.

This tutorial contains 4 videos that will walk you through some basic concepts on the creation of 2d drafting documents..

In this first video, you will learn how to create a basic drafting document that contains 3 standard views of your part.  You will also learn how to set and customize the origin point of the view.

Step 1 – Create your views

In the next video, you will learn how to add an Origin Symbol to your drafting views. You will also be shown a few different ways of adding and working with Composite dimensions. Composite dimensions allow you to quickly add several styles of dimensions to your view from a common origin point.  This is heavily used in the Tool and Die industries.

Step 2 – Add origin symbol and use composite dimensions

In step 3 of this tutorial, Continue reading Getting Started: Creating a drafting document and dimensioning

TopSolid: Who, What, Where, Why…

The question is often asked…”who is TopSolid?”  We do our best to answer.  Sometimes we hear “What is TopSolid?“.  Again we answer.  This leads to “Where did TopSolid come from?“. And of course the big question, “Why choose TopSolid?“.  Let’s have a look at each of these questions. But before we do, please enjoy our new corporate video!  I think it does a great job of answering these questions.

Who is TopSolid?

TopSolid is you. TopSolid is me. TopSolid is everyone from the staff in our front office, to the developers in the back office. TopSolid is our partners around the globe.  TopSolid is the technicians that help everyone use TopSolid.  Who is TopSolid?  TopSolid is everyone!

What is TopSolid?

TopSolid is inspiration. Inspiration that leads to better engineering; better manufacturing.  TopSolid is information management combined with cutting-edge software development to bring the entire process of manufacturing under one platform.  TopSolid is simplicity merged with ingenuity wrapped around data with the simple target of empowering you to get your job done efficiently…and perhaps with a little bit of fun along the way!

Where did TopSolid come from?

TopSolid came from…no.  TopSolid comes from people like you.  Industry experts with a passion for manufacturing…a passion for process…a passion for creation.  TopSolid comes from over 30 years of research and Development. TopSolid comes from listening to our customers across the globe. So again, TopSolid comes from you!

Why Choose TopSolid?

TopSolid is the best choice for any company that designs and/or manufactures…well pretty much anything.  TopSolid offers the only PDM based manufacturing solution on the market. Moreover all of our vertical solutions are written by our development team.  This means that they are written to work well together from the beginning.  Click here to learn more about our industry leading manufacturing solutions.

Webinar: How to manage your manufacturing experience with TopSolid 7!

TopSolid Webinar logo

Manufacturing is a challenge. In fact manufacturing is challenging enough without having to fight with your CAD and CAM software to get your job done. Join this webinar to discover Mfg'ing Spagettihow working with world-class PDM based CAD/CAM solution can help to increase your productivity while also saving money from your bottom line.

To view this video, you will need to register.  Please click the link below and you will be redirected to the registration page.  After you register you will have access to the video from this webinar.

Register Here

If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to us with them! After all, that’s what we are here for!

Create a Machine Part Setup Document within TopSolid 7

Like all processes that exist in manufacturing, it is important to understand the process of how to send a part to be machined within TopSolid 7.  This process includes a special document type called “Machine Part Setup”.

It is this document that today’s video will cover.  In this video you will be shown various ways to send a part into a Machine Part Setup document.  But first, what is a Machine Part Setup document?

A Machine Part Setup document, or MPS for short, is a document that exists between the Cad document and the Cam document. Its sole purpose in life is to give you a simple way to describe the part, or parts to cut to TopSolid and also to describe the stock model to be used.

We created an intermediate document like this because we have found that our users always need a way to manipulate and edit the stock conditions of the parts they are cutting. And with this intermediate document, they can do this with ease.

The following video will introduce you to the basics of what an MPS document is and how you can use it.