Say goodbye to the boundaries between the Design Engineers and the Process Engineers, thanks to TopSolid!

Say goodbye to the boundaries between the Design Engineers and the Process Engineers, thanks to TopSolid!

It’s a fact: jobs, missions, methods, organization, tools and work habits, … everything seems to oppose the Design Engineers and the Process Engineers, and this happens within many companies. The two entities often do not operate in the same environment and are geographically distant. The lack of interaction between the two departments can sometimes create what we speak of: a “border.”

However, at the time of Industry 4.0, where connectivity and communication in all directions are a strategic necessity.  The divide between the IT department through the manufacturing department tends to become a structural issue for the company’s performance.

Let’s discover how the TopSolid digital solution can break down these walls!

1) Design Office VS Process Office: two entities often in opposition within a company

 

A) Reminder of the missions of each

Design Office

Between engineering and expertise, the mission of the design office revolves around advice, recommendation, and control: 

  • As a subcontractor, the design office receives and evaluates the feasibility of its entrusted external projects.
  • As an integrated department within a manufacturer, the design engineer is responsible for designing projects for their company’s customers.
  • Project management also falls within the scope of the design office, which must ensure compliance and traceability.
  • Finally, the design office draws up a detailed plan of the design and sends it to the process office.

An innovative mission dedicated to service

 

Process Office

As the linchpin between the production line and the design office, the process office is responsible for implementing the project from the design office. Its mission has several facets:

Validation of the product’s feasibility after studying elements such as modeling, average dimensions, the geometry of the raw material, or machining assembly. 

– Industrialization: it is the study of the means (tools, machines, operators, materials, and equipment) and the solutions to be implemented in the manufacturing process.

– Optimization of work organization (flow management, access, handling, etc.) and machining (time and cost management) to increase productivity.

They monitor machinery and equipment: reporting the need for maintenance or replacement.

– Management of the conformity of the production about the operating procedures (order of operations, tools used, number of people, and time required to carry out each task).

A multi-faceted mission at the heart of which is naturally a strategic need for communication with the design office.

However, often these exchanges between departments are far from being fluid and collaborative.

 

B) Two worlds that can clash

Creative on one side, functional on the other, and incompatibility of opinions … the reality is hardly subtle. Moreover, the lack of geographical proximity can also factor in.

It so happens that the mission of the Design Office lies in the conception of innovative projects resulting from R&D and consequently presenting a very elaborate technical plan. As such, the department can misrepresent these gratifying aspects, with other departments or subcontractors, thus obscuring how the projects will be industrialized… or even the project feasibility! 

However, the Process Office is in charge of industrializing the projects issued by the Design Office … an endemic situation inevitably puts the two departments in opposition, with the Design Office defending innovation and considering the Process Office as the “brakes” on design and creativity … the Process Office, for its part, is not always able to respond favorably to the conceptual project because of a proven lack of solution.

Should we accept this state of affairs as inevitable and “deal with it”?

2) The disadvantages of a two strong opposition between Design Office and Process Office

 

One thing is sure; the two departments speak the same language: that of 3D modeling, average dimensions, raw materials, machine set-up, and tolerances. There is no shortage of opportunities to exchange information for the smooth running of the project: information needed for industrialization from the design office to the manufacturing office, as well as requests for clarification or revisions before launching the machining, from the manufacturing office back to the design office.

But when the border between the two departments is unbridgeable, a cascade of dysfunctions harmful to the entire organization ensues:

  • Waste of time in post-design discussions; each defending their own position.
  • Increased risk of errors and data loss if there is no direct exchange interface.
  • What about the automatic recovery of part properties and manufacturing characteristics for process office or design office patches?
  • And then … we talk about the work atmosphere and motivation?

It is mainly from this cumbersome operation that tensions arise. The loss of time due to a lack of reliability and traceability is the number one enemy of efficiency. A situation that increases standard costs potentially decreases the quality and puts a heavy burden on productivity… not to mention the delay in deadlines!

In short, the exact opposite of what is expected to meet the company’s strategic challenges. How, then, to create the bridge between the design office and the process office to close this counter-productive border?

 

3) TopSolid: the solution that links the two worlds

 

Going from a product idea to its industrialization implies, in the current context linked to Industry 4.0, the practice – and if possible, the mastery – of several so-called “basic” requirements:

  • a shared thinking process on the global project scale
  • a single, reliable, shared information, to frame and manage exchanges
  • fluid and factual communication
  • a reactive decision-making process
  • a genuine and synergistic collaboration

Also, to connect and rally the two departments falls under a logic of synergy of the processes, the objective being to achieve the rigorous management of the geometrical data, the orchestration of the flows, and the collaboration. An ambitious challenge that TOPSOLID takes up with brilliance!

TopSolid’s CAD and CAM solutions are developed on a common database (PDM) with an intuitive user interface and are associative. In addition, the design process integrates all the tools in line with the manufacturing process: the updates of the parts follow in CAM, and the process office can even make slight modifications in agreement with the design office.

With this highly successful CAD/CAM software solution, TopSolid meets the needs of today’s companies:

  • Data control: the PDM of the solution manages both the technical data of the design office and the manufacturing office, thus allowing the full recovery of the “parts and manufacturing” characteristics.
  • Traceability: TopSolid automatically transfers CAD modifications to CAM, managing common modification indicators.
  • Streamline and secure the exchange of information: with TopSolid, file conversions, data entry, and risks linked to errors and data loss are over.
  • Efficiency: By merging the design and manufacturing processes, the collaboration between the design and manufacturing departments is improved, thus boosting efficiency and motivation.
  • Increased productivity and improved quality.

Suppose this new configuration of the relations between the design office and manufacturing office requires to know how to manage the change (company culture, working methods, tools, …). In that case, it also constitutes the beginnings of digital continuity, so essential to the industrial requirements of tomorrow.

As you understand, fluid and collaborative communication between the design office and the manufacturing office allows the border between the two departments to be erased… And because data volumes are increasing and work flows need to be justified, it has become difficult for industries to pass up a software solution. TopSolid, through its CAM, CAD, PDM, and ERP applications, enables the simplification of exchanges between the design office and the manufacturing office, ensuring the coherence of projects, and secures the design and manufacturing processes while reducing their cost. The time saved is colossal, and the efficiency of the design and manufacturing teams increases. In the end, it is the company’s productivity that improves… A successful challenge!

Why must CAD/CAM solutions become increasingly flexible?

Why must CAD/CAM solutions become increasingly flexible?

In recent years, the notion of flexibility has become an integral part with companies of all sizes. All resources are considered: flexibility in terms of staff working hours, adaptation of the organization’s personnel according to demand, the flexibility of the software used… In this context, many factors tend to become flexible to coincide with the evolution of industry. Computer-aided design and manufacturing are no exception to the rule! CAD/CAM software used by companies must also become more and more flexible. Here’s how….

Flexibility is a significant challenge for companies

Flexibility, what are we talking about?

Whatever their activity, flexibility is a concept many companies are trying to implement. The objective is to move away from a rigid organization and adapt the organization to the company’s needs at a given moment. In this way, resources are allocated according to the actual activity of the departments, which optimizes their efficiency. Therefore, professionals are required to master a variety of subjects and tools in all areas.

Flexibility is an exceptionally fundamental concept when it comes to CAD/CAM systems. Reducing programming and machining times, improving quality, reducing costs, being competitive with the competition… Many challenges must be met by the teams in charge of CAD/CAM. Flexibility must therefore be translated into concrete terms in the organization of the resources in place, especially personnel. The boundaries between design offices, manufacturing offices, and management must become increasingly narrow. Computer-aided design and manufacturing professionals must collaborate and demonstrate a versatile know how to meet the challenges of their department.

 

How does flexibility translate into CAD/CAM?

As you will see, lack of flexibility can be a significant issue for companies using CAD/CAM solutions. The concept of this notion of flexibility has many interesting points, two of which are fundamental:

  • As soon as the design office considers the way parts are going to be manufactured, the company gains in quality and productivity. Design offices must therefore be aware of manufacturing and production requirements (CAM).
  • Likewise, the manufacturing office must consider the way the engineering department designed the parts. This flexibility allows for modifications to be made if necessary to make projects more easily machined. The company then realizes essential productivity gains.

In sum, flexibility in CAD/CAM has four significant benefits:

  • Strengthen the links between the Design Offices and the Manufacturing Offices;
  • Gaining team cohesion;
  • To gain in quality and therefore in customer satisfaction;
  • To gain in productivity and therefore in profitability.

 

However, flexibility in CAD/CAM is not only a matter of teamwork. The CAD/CAM solution used by the company must also be flexible to favor the adaptability of the organization’s resources.

Flexibility is a significant challenge for companies

Flexibility, what are we talking about?

Whatever their activity, flexibility is a concept many companies are trying to implement. The objective is to move away from a rigid organization and adapt the organization to the company’s needs at a given moment. In this way, resources are allocated according to the actual activity of the departments, which optimizes their efficiency. Therefore, professionals are required to master a variety of subjects and tools in all areas.

Flexibility is an exceptionally fundamental concept when it comes to CAD/CAM systems. Reducing programming and machining times, improving quality, reducing costs, being competitive with the competition… Many challenges must be met by the teams in charge of CAD/CAM. Flexibility must therefore be translated into concrete terms in the organization of the resources in place, especially personnel. The boundaries between design offices, manufacturing offices, and management must become increasingly narrow. Computer-aided design and manufacturing professionals must collaborate and demonstrate a versatile know how to meet the challenges of their department.

 

How does flexibility translate into CAD/CAM?

As you will see, lack of flexibility can be a significant issue for companies using CAD/CAM solutions. The concept of this notion of flexibility has many interesting points, two of which are fundamental:

  • As soon as the design office considers the way parts are going to be manufactured, the company gains in quality and productivity. Design offices must therefore be aware of manufacturing and production requirements (CAM).
  • Likewise, the manufacturing office must consider the way the engineering department designed the parts. This flexibility allows for modifications to be made if necessary to make projects more easily machined. The company then realizes essential productivity gains.

In sum, flexibility in CAD/CAM has four significant benefits:

  • Strengthen the links between the Design Offices and the Manufacturing Offices;
  • Gaining team cohesion;
  • To gain in quality and therefore in customer satisfaction;
  • To gain in productivity and therefore in profitability.

 

However, flexibility in CAD/CAM is not only a matter of teamwork. The CAD/CAM solution used by the company must also be flexible to favor the adaptability of the organization’s resources.

 

TopSolid, a flexible solution?

TopSolid is a powerful CAD/CAM solution that offers a fully integrated digital chain. TopSolid contributes to the flexibility of organizations by meeting the challenges of development and adaptability of many companies.

 

TopSolid, an integrated CAD/CAM-PDM-ERP solution meets the flexibility needs of companies

The CAD and CAM solutions proposed by TOPSOLID are developed in the same environment. This means that they communicate perfectly with each other. The TopSolid CAD/CAM tool guarantees that:

  • Changes made in CAD are automatically transferred to CAM.
  • The part numbers are associative between CAD and CAM with integral PDM.
  • The handling of the CAD tool is fast and straightforward: the manufacturing office can make modifications on the projects of the design office.
  • The TopSolid’Erp solution also communicates with the CAD/CAM solution: the management data is entered as soon as the CAD design is completed.

The result: no more re-entering of data and loss of information. Process reliability is guaranteed, and CAD/CAM teams save considerable time.

 

The flexibility of the TopSolid solution is illustrated!

 

Legend: Succinct diagram of TopSolid’s workflow

 

 

  • TopSolid ERP sends manufacturing orders (OFs) directly to TopSolid’SheetMetal CAM in the Job Manager.
  • The drawing files (CAD) are automatically retrieved with the part files (parts with cutting or punching operations).
  • In the OF(s) sent by the ERP, the following information is provided:
  • Part references
  • Designations
  • The order
  • The customer
  • The quantity
  • The material
  • The thickness
  • The machine
  • TopSolid’SheetMetal CAM gathers this data and creates the nesting.
  • TopSolid’SheetMetal CAM refers back to the ERP:
  • References of manufactured parts
  • The quantities
  • The material used
  • The times achieved

Conscious of what’s at stake regarding company flexibility, specifically in regard to the CAD/CAM system function, TOPSOLID developed an adaptable and intuitive solution. The collaboration between the engineering offices, the manufacturing offices, and management is thus facilitated. Everyone has the information they need, and processes are optimized and secured. TopSolid Digital Integrated solution offers you the possibility to work with all your collaborators on the same platform and database, capitalizing on the know-how of each one! Would you like to know more? Contact us for more information!

 

Preparation, control, and quality: everything you need to know about machine probing with TopSolid’Cam

Preparation, control, and quality: everything you need to know about machine probing with TopSolid’Cam

 

It’s not a secret, just an industrial logic: process fluctuations during the machining of a part are detrimental to competitiveness and profitability. They are a source of errors, machine stoppages, scrapping due to manual adjustments and controls, resulting in colossal time and material losses. As a result, quality and labor costs skyrocket, delivery delays occur, and poor traceability. A probing system allows us to understand these process variations and correct them to achieve consistent, automated, and productive machining.

Now, let’s go further and imagine a CAD/CAM solution that allows you to program and simulate your probing cycles – preparation, control, quality, safety – guarantees optimal reliability… This is the package offered by the TopSolid’Cam CAD/CAM solution, which we invite you to discover …

I – Machine probing: what are we talking about?

 

The touch probe is a tool that works mostly by switches, which, when activated by contacting a workpiece surface, allows for adjustments and control during machining operations. The geometric data returned is accurate and repeatable. This means that it shows any errors found by probing the workpiece in different directions and any deviations when examining a workpiece repeatedly in the same order.

The objective of probing on a machine is to obtain parts that conform to requirements and optimize the machining process. The probe is used, in general, for dimensional measurements (metrology) or on three-dimensional coordinate measuring machines (CMM) to calibrate parts or tools. However, it can also benefit the entire manufacturing process, as the dimensional information collected during machining is valuable. We are thinking of the automatic adaptation of machine tools for the entire machining process, the limitation of human interventions, increasingly precise production, and the possibility of dimensional control directly on the CNC machine tool. 

An obvious must-have, it would seem …

 

 

II- Machine probing with TopSolid’Cam: why?

 

In the era of (almost) manual operation, the operator would have to read the part print and enter coordinates for probing, inheriting all the risks of misinterpretation and typing errors that this manual process entails.

With TopSolid’Cam, the control and verification processes are carried out before and after the machining operations. The simulation and trajectory of the probe are carried out in the digital machine environment, safely and securely, using the part’s actual geometry as points to probe.

Efficiency and reliability meet!

III- What are the benefits of this feature?

 

The benefits of using TopSolid’Cam to program machine probing starts with preparation and control, both are definitely “quality” oriented.

Example:

During the preparation operation in the machine space, the part is precisely positioned within a zone of plus or minus ¼” from the position programmed in TopSolid’Cam. The software identifies the part and detects the presence of blank stock or fixtures, such as a screw or clamp, in order to avoid risk of collision. Finally, the location measurement is done automatically.

The generated machine output control report, identical to one produced by a CMM, considers the geometric defect of the latter: the tool is thus corrected dynamically. Therefore, the machine is dynamically corrected, and a correct dimension is obtained without interpretation, reading, or typing errors. With TopSolid’Cam, precision is at the heart of the control process.

Quality as a result: obtaining a conforming part in the geometric state of the machine is 100% guaranteed!

 

IV- More productive probing with TopSolid’Cam

 

Using the TopSolid’Cam solution, the operator avoids possible errors when defining part origins, the risks of crashes or collisions due to the presence of undesirable elements in the machine, or the scrapping of parts resulting from an erroneous tool offset correction, are all eliminated.

 

You stop wasting time.  Your material costs, direct labor and shop support costs, are all reduced – therefore you deliver – on time: your machine output is better, and your productivity is radically improved!

 

 

 

 

Conclusion

Because it combines programming and simulation and is perfectly integrated with the Post Processor, TopSolid’Cam represents a unique solution on the market to problems related to probing. Machining is more consistent, qualitative, and productive by reinforcing automation and minimizing human intervention during the process.

In short, TopSolid’Cam boosts your machining capacities, both in terms of quantity and quality, enabling you to respond better to the needs and requirements of your market. This means that you can accept new contracts, work on innovative concepts and possibly offer your teams more proactive technical roles. Think about all the possibilities!

7 good reasons to switch to TopSolid

7 good reasons to switch to TopSolid

You have noticed that some of your competitors are saving money by using TopSolid, and you may be wondering why you should change software.

Here are seven important reasons to switch to TopSolid that will guide you in your decision.

1. Integrated Product Data Management (PDM)

The integrated PDM makes TopSolid unique in its market.

PDM does much more than simply store and organize files:

– It helps designers find existing parts to reuse instead of recreating them, saving many hours of work.

– It generates bill of materials for cost estimation and data input for ERP systems.

– Finally, it automates change control processes to ensure that outdated or unpublished information is not passed on to factories or suppliers.

  • The PDM is not an additional product: it is directly integrated into the software interface;
  • It allows you to quickly search for product data managed by TopSolid;
  • It allows you to manage versions easily;
  • It allows you to perform all data management activities directly in TopSolid (renaming, etc.);
  • It allows you to put files in the vault and also manages non-TopSolid files;
  • It manages the multi-site (for companies with several production sites around the world).

2. Intuitive user interface

Time is money and TopSolid’s intuitive user interface easily makes the difference!

Design the way you want and not according to the logic of the software, thanks to TopSolid’s unique in-place design method.

In addition, we offer advanced training sessions to enable you to make the most of TopSolid according to your specific needs.

  • Easy to learn and use (learning phase reduced by 50 %);
  • Drag and drop, copy and paste, undo/redo history features are supported;
  • Creating construction entities on the fly;
  • Sorting entities (classification by type) and operations (chronological classification).

In addition, the user interface is fully customizable interactively by the user.

3. Simultaneous engineering

This is a very important feature of TopSolid which allows all co-designers to work on the same design basis simultaneously, which is a significant asset in this time of health crisis.

  • Ability to work with all your colleagues on the same database;
  • Ability to define user rights and permissions;
  • Anyone from anywhere (local or otherwise) can all be connected;
  • Communication made easy with the PDM Messenger;
  • Ability to create life cycle workflows to automate information exchange.

TopSolid CAD/CAM Product Range

4. Modern software technology: open platform

Most of the CAD software available on the market is based on a rather old software technology. TopSolid has been completely redesigned and rewritten, offering you a state of the art software.

Here are a few key points:

  • Use of the latest development technologies (C#, .net);
  • Support for the latest hardware technologies (multi-core technology, rendering engine, etc.);
  • Real-time and incremental updates;
  • High-performance realistic rendering engine (Redway3D);
  • Data exchange with most CAD software available on the market, with these interfaces: Parasolid, AutoCAD (*.dwg, *.dxf), ACIS, IGES, Step, Catia v4, v5, Pro/E, UG, SW, SE, Inventor.

5. TopSolid’Automation

TopSolid’Automation is TopSolid’s API (Application Programming Interface) which allows users to control TopSolid 7 from another program in order to exchange information and/or automate repetitive tasks.

TopSolid’Automation allows significant productivity gains while reducing the risk of errors. The time investment required to master this development tool is therefore undoubtedly well spent.

By allowing communication with other software, TopSolid’Automation is a powerful tool to successfully integrate CAD/CAM applications in your digital process chain and covers a wide range of areas:

  • Data exchange with sales or production management systems;
  • Automation of manufacturing processes for parts and assemblies;
  • Automated data import;
  • Automated generation of drawings;
  • Data exchange with tool management systems.

All these possible uses make TopSolid’Automation a very valuable and reliable tool to optimize industrial processes.

This interface is totally free and included in TopSolid 7. Documentation is integrated into the software to guide you and online training sessions are available for a quick start.

6. Global network and service

France, Europe, Asia, Americas, Oceania, etc. Our customers are everywhere and, thanks to TopSolid, they exchange, develop, collaborate and work together. TopSolid establishes contacts between them.

Our experienced network of 10 subsidiaries and 70 resellers and their teams around the world provide expertise to help you increase your competitiveness in the market.

7.  Ready for Industry 4.0

 TopSolid is more than simply an integrated CAD/CAM software. It is a complete application environment towards the digital transformation of the mechanical industries. It offers solutions for:

– estimation of mechanical parts (TopSolid’PartCosting);

– simulation of CNC machines (digital twin, with TopSolid’CamSimul);

– quality management of parts produced by a machine (TopSolid’Inspection);

 TopSolid has been offering a fully integrated digital chain for years via its CAD/CAM software suite, thus ensuring total interconnectivity from design to production.

Why does CAD/CAM allow you to add new markets and also earn money?

Why does CAD/CAM allow you to add new markets and also earn money?

While many companies have not yet acquired their own CAD/CAM solution, the fact remains that a well-thought-out CAD/CAM solution can be a great ally in growing your business. How can CAD/CAM allow you to add new markets? What are the main criteria to take into account when choosing a CAD/CAM solution? Our answers.

A CAD/CAM to add new markets

Regardless of the type of business, part programming without a CAD/CAM solution, although possible, very quickly reaches a certain limit in terms of technicality and quality. While using a manual and conversational programming “genius” may seem like a viable option, it is nonetheless unrealistic and resolutely limited for large-scale production capacity.

For many companies, equipping themselves with a CAD/CAM solution not only allows them to develop additional technical programming skills, but also represents a significant lever to be able to respond to numerous requests for tenders, which were previously declined.

Better performance, lower costs: there are many advantages to using a CAD/CAM system:

  • Less tool wear
  • Less waste
  • Less machine downtime
  • Better rationalization
  • etc.

In a development logic, the acquisition of an efficient CAD/CAM is a key step for companies. Whatever the specialization of the company, CAD/CAM becomes an ally of machines and human resources, and leads the company towards markets that were previously inaccessible due to a lack of resources. With the ability to produce more, in less time, the company can therefore go further, expand its offer, enter new markets and increase its turnover.

 

Choosing a CAD/CAM software that supports your growth

Though the added value of a CAD/CAM software is already proven, it is still necessary to choose the solution best suited to your needs, which will help you to expand your business. What are the focal points to be taken into account?

Benefits of a fully integrated CAD/CAM solution

Not all CAD and CAM solutions are created equal. Some solutions only offer the Computer Aided Manufacturing option, i.e. only the part relating to the programming of CNC (Computer Numerical Control Machines). In this case, it will be difficult for users to design their own parts to be machined or define a machining setup. To address this situation, users tend to add a CAD solution to their CAM solution. We can therefore talk about a “partially” integrated solution. And for good reason, since the exchanges between the two solutions are not “native”, they are often more difficult to master, not always reliable and even sometimes hazardous.

While a CAD/CAM solution is intended to support the company in its development, choosing a fully integrated solution is preferable. The union between Design and Manufacturing is therefore natively made, and communication between the two entities is direct, optimal and without any ambiguity.

 

 

TopSolid CAD/CAM Product Range

Criteria to be taken into account

A CAD/CAM solution must be a complete, flexible, modern and easy to use tool. It must therefore:

  • Offer a range of possible simple features that can be quickly assimilated by an experienced professional, but also by a new employee discovering the company and its specificities in machining.
  • Be perfectly compatible with the company’s means of production, in particular the machines to be driven and their diversity –  language, technology (3x,4x,5x, turning, mill-turn), their size, their complexity (multi-spindle, multi-table, head attachments, etc.).
  • Be perfectly compatible with the expected manufacturing needs. The software tool must be able to meet the company’s machining needs and manufacture the customer’s parts.

If it responds to these various challenges, a CAD/CAM solution is a way for the company to be more efficient in its production:

  • Reducing programming times
  • Reducing machining times
  • Improving quality (less waste)
  • Reducing costs
  • Being more competitive in the face of the competition, either in terms of time or price
  • And therefore gaining more market share

Advantage of teaching CAD/CAM nationally

In addition to the performance of the CAD/CAM solution, favoring a solution that is taught at the national level represents added value and potential for companies looking for development. The fact that a CAD/CAM solution is taught at the national level is not only a guarantee of confidence, but it also represents a major advantage for companies in terms of human resources management: easier recruitment, faster integration, increased productivity, etc.

 

TopSolid, a growth partner for companies

For more than 30 years, TopSolid has been adapting its offer to the needs of the market in which it operates. A CAD/CAM solution acclaimed by teachers, TopSolid can be proud of offering a “fully” integrated digital channel. Responding to the growth and development challenges faced by many companies, regardless of their size, today we are proud to contribute to their acquisition of new markets and their prosperity. To find out to what extent CAD/CAM can be a lever for performance and growth, there is nothing like seeing it with your own eyes: our customers In Bo and VCN Industries (videos available in French).

Advantages and criteria for choosing the PDM for your CAD/CAM solution

Advantages and criteria for choosing the PDM for your CAD/CAM solution

 

In the age of digitization, design can no longer work without the management component. CAD/CAM companies are well aware of this: managing and storing product data using an automated centralization tool is a major challenge. Yet the use of a PDM in machining is still not the norm. Why should you have a PDM for CAM machining? What are the benefits? What features of the tool should you check when making a decision? Answers.

What is PDM?

PDM is the acronym for Product Data Management. It is also known as a Technical Data Management System. This acronym refers to the digital tool used to retrieve, manage and store electronic information relating to a product.

The role of the PDM in CAD/CAM is to collect and centralize all the CAD documents. In view: a smooth and controlled availability to the users concerned – engineers, and also production or purchasing departments.

CAD/CAM initially made it possible to design, test and produce parts. However, the digitization chain must not stop there. Once the product cycle has been completed, certain problems arise.

  • Traceability: this issue originally appeared in the most sensitive and exposed sectors – the medical and aeronautics sectors. Companies need to know who did what, when and how.
  • Capitalization: the company capitalizes on its know-how, which represents an intangible asset with high added value. In this context, it is in its best interest to carefully keep all its product data in a safe place.
  • The rise in performance: in an ultra-competitive context, and at a time when technological progress allows – demands – a permanent change in techniques, the parts produced in CAD/CAM are bound to evolve. And quickly. To improve performance, the company has no choice but to constantly adapt its products.

The PDM takes over to address these different issues.

 

TopSolid CAD/CAM Product Range

Advantages of PDM for your CAD/CAM solution

How is the product designed, manufactured and operated? All of this technical information represents a considerable and valuable amount of data. To ensure centralized and secure storage, to allow automated updates and to ensure smooth and controlled sharing in real time, the company must have a high-performance management tool.

As a database for machine-oriented people, the PDM has the following advantages:

  • Secure storage: the PDM collects and stores product data. This management tool, in this context, has the advantage of integrity and security. The risk of human error and data loss are reduced to zero.
  • Digitized centralization: CAD/CAM eliminates manual tasks and paper format. Templates and documents are now fully digitized, and their management must also comply with this requirement. With the PDM, the company saves itself a considerable amount of time when it comes to finding information.
  • Update and collaborative work in real-time: product data is updated to optimize the parts that are modified. Faster, ultra-secure. The PDM also allows several people to work on the same project without compromising data integrity.
  • Optimal visibility and smooth sharing: the dissemination of information, due to its digitization, is ensured under the best conditions regarding deadline and reliability. Product data is easily accessible to all or only authorized users.

The PDM, in CAD/CAM, is an essential tool for flexible and smooth management. This is why the most efficient CAD/CAM software today includes a product data management system, for a global tool at the service of company performance.

 

Discover TopSolid’s integrated PDM

Aware of the performance challenges of CAD/CAM companies, TOPSOLID SAS offers an all-in-one tool, which integrates an adapted PDM system into the CAD/CAM software. You can provide yourself with, in a single software package, a programming tool as well as a document management tool.

  • TopSolid’s PDM allows you to manage all of your TopSolid documents as well as the supporting documents: material certificates, orders for specific tools, administrative processes and validation of loads, etc. The database of your digital tool integrates all types of information, without volume limit.
  • With TopSolid, you have the opportunity to automate the entire digital chain. By centralizing the company’s know-how via an ultra-secure, collaborative and intuitive system, the company preserves its intangible assets and makes information available in a smooth and controlled manner.

The major advantages of TopSolid’s integrated PDM:

  • A user-friendly tool: the user takes control of the tool intuitively, saving precious time. It easily exploits all of the features of the software, for the benefit of the company.
  • A machining simulation with ISO code management according to the simulation.
  • A machining situation in conditions of optimal reliability.
  • The management of machined stocks.

Concentrate on your core business, save yourself management issues, save time and exploit the latest technological innovations with TopSolid’s integrated PDM! Data security, smooth and controlled exchanges, maintaining know-how, etc., treat yourself to the best advantages of the PDM for CAD/CAM!