3D design has become an integral function of nearly all manufacturing businesses, ensuring that the industry is bustling with products and software solutions which seek to meet every company's stringent requirements. While individual needs may make certain software packages more attractive in certain situations, there are nevertheless four essential features which all 3D design software should include.
1. Mold Design
Molds are the heart of the manufacturing industry - they enable complex and intricate items to be produced with precision and reliable conformity. Therefore any software solution for your 3D designing needs shouldn't make it difficult or painstaking for you to start building your molds from the ground-up.
It's also especially useful if the software has import/export capabilities as this will enable you to refine molds from previous projects and digitally share your most recent creations with colleagues and clients.
2. 2D Drawing Creation
Accurate 2D drawings of your design's schematics and assembly instructions are vital tools for clearly communicating the functions and structure of your project. While 2D drawing features are included within many 3D design software packages, the important point is whether these 2D drawings can automatically update based on revisions you make to the 3D model.
If not, you may spend days working on the 2D drawing only to realise that major changes to the 3D design have made your past 2D mapping obsolete. Not only does it save time to have the 2D drawing linked to the 3D design but its automated production ensures a level of accuracy which can sometimes be lacking when creating the plans manually.
3. Price Estimation
It might sound restrictive but when creating a 3D design it's absolutely fundamental that an eye is kept firmly on the price. After all, there's little value in creating an excellent 3D design which will ultimately be impractical for the client or project budget.
Ideally you want a software solution which will automatically estimate the price while you handle the design. This should either reflect the manufacturing costs of producing the product in-house or have its costing linked to that of your regular outsourcer. This is especially convenient if the estimation automatically updates with every change, rather than requiring you to input the changed information into another part of the program.