Making Adjustments to The User Interface

Making adjustments to the user interface is now even easier in version 12.  When moving any dockable tree or pane, the screen will now show arrow boxes where you can easily drop the window.  This is far more convenient than hunting for a narrow window edge to dock on.  There is also a new general preference page for On-Screen Controls.  Here you can set the size and transparency status of screen items such as the interactive UCS or vector arrows.

Note: Some users have reported an issue with the On-Screen Control page of the preference file showing blank values.  This can be fixed by downloading and replacing the existing CimatronE12/data/cimatronE.prf file with this known good default preference file – https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/4377935/CimatronE.prf)

Export Part Analysis Data Into a 3D PDF

The ability to export part analysis data into a 3D PDF document is available in more places throughout the application in Cimatron version 12. This option is now found in Wall Thickness analysis, Curvature analysis, and Direction analysis. These helpful PDFs are created with a custom legend for the color coding on the screen. And because they are in 3D format, anyone with an Acrobat Reader can view, spin, and zoom the model to gain a full understanding of the analysis.  Exporting as PDF is available as a low-cost add-on option, so contact your sales person to take advantage of this feature.

Automatic Curve Offset and Extension

Everyone could use a Cookie once in a while. In Cimatron, a Cookie is an automatic curve offset and extension. Cookies are especially useful in die design and strip development, because they quickly automate the overlap of punch areas.  But the Cookie function can also be found under the Curves menu, and has many other applications outside of die design; for example clearing pocket corners or creating contours for Wire EDM. Cookies can either extend an entire edge or just act in selected corners. Several options in the Cookie function provide complete control over every aspect of the shape and offset distance.

Assembly Tree

Assembly TreeThe Assembly Tree is a vital tool for viewing and controlling the contents of large assemblies. Two new features were added in version 11 to further enhance the Assembly Tree usability. To provide additional clarity, Assembly Add operations now show the name of the part being added. In addition, changing the order of parts in the tree is now easier with simple Drag and Drop. You can only drag a part within the same sub-assembly that it currently belongs to. Dragging a part to a different sub-assembly would affect relations and regeneration, and therefore still requires the use of the Rearrange Assembly function.

Choosing Screen Orientation in 3D Modeling

Aug 1 2014 tooling tips1When modeling in 3D space, it is common to be continually zooming, panning, and rotating the design to get the best view of the geometry. But there are times when your choice of screen orientation can make a task easier. When sketching or using assembly add on face, it’s generally most helpful to be looking straight down at the plane. If that plane isn’t normal to the current UCS, you can still view it flat by using the display icon Rotate to Plane. In a function like Sweep, the filters allow you to pick a random screen point as the length reference. But you’ll get a more predictable result if you first switch to a view that looks straight down at the new surface. In some situations, you may find it useful to make a new UCS based on the current screen rotation. It can be done by using Datum / UCS / Normal to plane. Toggle the on-screen option box to Use Display Plane, then pick your origin point.

Cutters and Holders

June 2014 tooling tip3A little known feature in Cimatron allows you to edit the parameters of multiple cutters in a single action while in the Cutters and Holders dialog. Just use the standard technique of holding down either the Control or Shift key when selecting rows. Most of the parameters are now available and can be modified in a single action for all selected items.

Motion Analysis

may2013toolingtips2Seeing a tool design in motion can be very helpful.  Sometimes a customer wants to see how the design will work; or perhaps you need to check a complex mechanism to see whether it will bind; or possibly check for collision between moving parts.  All of these and more can be done with the Cimatron E10 Motion Analysis function.

Creating a Motion Analysis animation consists of 3 basic steps.  Each step is accessed through a tab in the dialog that opens up along the bottom of the graphics screen.  First, you group the parts of the assembly into Rigid Sets.  Next, you define the sets you want to put into motion.  And lastly, you run the calculation.

Calculation is an important part of the functionality offered because the Motion Analysis is more than just a simple tool for putting parts in motion.  Cimatron recognizes the direction and shape of all the components and analyzes how their interactions result in a movement or collision.  For additional details on the Motion Analysis function and all of its options, you may go to www.supportcti.com and watch the recorded webinar on the topic.