In the CAD world, there’s a long-running tradition of design competitions that test your precision and speed alike. As a first step, you are usually given an engineering drawing that you need to recreate as a 3D model as quickly and accurately as possible. After that, to ensure that it’s indeed a robust, adjustable parametric model, you are requested to make a few changes and maybe perform a few additional tasks.
While our goal is world domination and it is our mission to reinvent the CAD industry, there are cases where tradition is great. Such design challenges tend to be a wickedly fun way to challenge your modeling skills — and your CAD app!
This is why we think it’d be just as fun to do it with Shapr3D — and kick off a series of design competitions!
This is how the first challenge goes:
- start up the parametric version of Shapr3D
- start recording your screen (see this guide for help on this)
- open the first drawing below and recreate it as a (parametric) 3D model
- open the second drawing and make the changes as instructed:
- change the position of the cylindrical parts
- change the inner & outer diameters of the cylinders
- adjust the thickness of the flat center of the body
- stop recording and send us both the recording and the exported .shapr file via https://shapr3d.wetransfer.com/
- post your time & a screenshot of the 3D model below to brag!
To make the competition even more interesting, we’re awarding a $50 gift card for the first 5 submissions (regardless of how long it took) — and an additional $50 for the quickest correct solution. The competition is open until the 9th of August.
SM-01-A.pdf (68.0 KB)
SM-01-B.pdf (130.2 KB)
Leaderboard (last updated 2023-07-30T22:00:00Z)
- @Yepher 5:12 + 1 minute penalty – the modified object is not exactly how it should be, it should no longer be an even sided triangle
- @PatrickD 12:44
- @NathanD 16:52
Well, that wasn’t too bad after all – haven’t tried something like this in ages! But, I gotta admit, I hit a few roadblocks along the way. I thought creating new lines with offset edge would automatically connect them to the originals, but nope, that didn’t happen, so I had to start that part over.
Took me around 13 minutes to get everything sorted, and now I’m uploading the video. It’s kinda big, so it might take some time. Let me know when you’ve got it.
Here are the before and after versions. Do you think the volumes look right?
Got the video It is the perfect solution
We will reach out about the prize
You are right about offset edge, we ran into that, too and we plan to fix it soon. A small tip until then: even though it does not automatically add a constraint, if it’s a simple shape (eg. a line or an arc) you can set up constraints manually between the originating and the new sketch item (even if the origin is a body edge) and those will be maintained during history updates:
Hi, I have now come across when using Shapr CAD that the basis of parametric modeling is the correct use of constraints.
Absolutely – it’s definitely something that you need to pay a lot more attention to in a parametric setup. It’s a bit more investment up front, but in return, you’ll be able to adjust your designs much quicker later on.
It took me about 17 minutes, which I know I could do it a lot faster. The pressure is on when recording!
Had to go back and fix some broken features, as my base sketch was not well thought out.
Full disclosure: I actually rehearsed it and it took about 10 minutes with no issues but I’m submitting the recording with mistakes.
I had several times where I am pretty sure I had put a constraint, but it was not maintained. I uploaded my video, so I need to re-watch it to see where I made the mistake.
My initial drawing for SM-01-A is about the same length (12 minutes) as how long it took me to figure out how to use parametric UI to resize the parts (11 minutes).
I had meant to use the beta app but had not found the time yet, so that was my first time using parametric in Shapr3D. I have a feeling there are a lot of shortcuts that I am missing. Also, my approach to drawing this differed from how I would have “usually” drawn it. I for sure focused on the 2D sketch and constraints way more than I would otherwise have done.
Re-watching my video looks like I struggled with confusion of arc length versus radius of the tangent arcs. Makes me want to draw it again.
I used offset for the ribs in the base sketch, and for some reason I thought the offsets would stay constrained relative to the position of the selected sketch element/s.
I know I could’ve made a very robust design had I spent more time thinking about my approach.
I did see that offsets made on a planar body surface stay offset the same distance if the body shape changes… I need to try it for myself.
TLDR: I’m ready for the next design challenge
Congrats, both of you, these are great times: you have certainly beaten the majority of Shapr3D staff We got the videos as well, we’ll reach out about the prizes.
@NathanD offset constraining (or the lack of it) is something that everbody (including me) tripped at, so don’t feel ashamed about that. We’ll definitely have to fix that.
@Yepher, was it different from how you’d do it in “regular” Shapr3D or from how you’d do it in other parametric CAD, if you use those? Was the experience just different, or worse/better?
A new task is definitely coming, we’re already working on it, but we’d also like to give others a chance to compete in this first. If you can’t wait, just search for “CAD speed modeling” or “CAD modeling challenge”, “parametric speed modeling” or similar and will find many similar tasks. While we can’t offer prizes for solving those, we’d absolutely be interested in how/whether you could do those in Shapr3D’s parametric mode.
Yes, I would normally have drawn it differently in Shapr3D. I spent a lot more time ahead of time on the 2D layer rather than doing some 2D extrude and then doing some more 2D. Although this drawing probably would not need it for this sort of part. I tend to use “grouping” extensively in my drawings. I found lots of crashes related to grouping yesterday. You should probably find about a dozen crash logs from yesterday’s explorations.
Also, I tend to delete many 2D lines to make things easier. I did this challenge many times yesterday with different techniques. Generally, I used an equilateral triangle as my starting point and built it up from there. That triangle gets in the way for a lot of the drawing, so I tried deleting it with hopes the “distance” to the circles was still captured somewhere in the parametric layer, but I could not work out where the 50 to 60 change would happen easily. So next, instead of deleting the triangle, I moved it on the Z axis with the hopes it would keep the constraint on the circles, but it seems as soon as I move it out of the plane, the constraints are lost. I almost feel like my failure attempts could be more valuable than the successful flows. I also tried deleting the triangle and then adding “lines” for revision B. That did not work out great for me. But I think I did not spend enough time exploring that path and just did not use enough constraints.
I found myself really wishing I could mark things as “construction sketches” that would not interact with the extrusion groupings… Or be able to hide parts of the sketch (like the triangle) or change their color or group them based on their “use”. When I try make a line a “construction line” the app crashes.
Also for the 6mm diameter cricle that joins the round flange to the body, I wanted to delete the parts of the circle that were not used because they caused (for me) some unwanted body parts to appear on revision B. But when I did that other bad things happened so it was easier to keep all the “extra lines” even though I did not need them in future steps and they made more work for me.
Again, I am just getting my feet wet with parametric in Shapr3D so not sure I am using it correctly at all yet.
Played with layer break points and thought that was pretty cool. Also I hid the body for the revsion a few times and felt like that was nice because you don’t see all the weird artifacts while you are mid change.
One use case I do in Shapr3D is to group a part and make copies. This way, I can keep revisions a,b,c,d,… I hide old versions and only show them when I want to compare to an old version or go back to that version and start again because where I was heading in next version did not work out. I think that use case will be broken with the parametric feature because all those old “versions” will change as I adjust the 2D layer…
This is my cheat to be a little like a “git” workflow where I can go back in the revision tree.
Maybe there will be a way to “checkpoint” a history point so I can go back to that version at any point in parametric.?
My best so far is 5min 13sec to complete tasks A & B. Still making plenty of fumbles, but I am getting faster at it. I feel like I could shave off another 45 seconds.
I figured out some workarounds for crashes, that helps too
Well done, now you’ve officially beaten the best time within Shapr3D, and that was from a QA engineer who uses (and abuses) Shapr3D for 8 hours every day as his primary job
Our “make construction” function in the constraints menu indeed serves this very purpose, to be able create sketch lines that define relationships & distances but don’t interfere with extrusions and other operations. They’ve been working reliably for us in even in this alpha build, so we will check the videos and the crash logs to see what’s going on with you.
As for revisions: we’ll add a “Duplicate” or similar tool very soon that will allow you to create unlinked copies of geometries that won’t be changed as you change the history. But we will need to explore that further, as the ideal flow would be if you could “fork” an entire branch and create two completely independent parametric models – but the UX of that can get very tricky.
I think I can give you a project and 1 or 2 steps that cause the crash if that is helpful.