Hello Shapr3D team, hope you guys are doing fine and well. Keep up the good work! I have a suggestion for your guys which I thought will help enable the modelling process to be smoother.
I think you guys should include a option to add parameter tables that allow users to add parameters and their values so that these values can be simply assigned to them when modelling and if changes needs to be done, we don’t have to edit the entire model but rather changed the parameter value and will automatically change by itself. This can help smoothern design reiteration processes and allow editing to become easier.
Hi @Maddy1707 , what you refer to is feature based parametric modeling. Shapr3D is a direct modeling tool, and adding feature based parametric modeling would be a major change. That being said, we might add parametric modeling capabilities in the future.
The only thing parametric in Shapr3D is the sketch, but the bodies made from the sketches are not associated to the sketches (that’s why the body’s geometry does not change if you apply changes to a dimension in a used sketch).
Parametric modelling benefits users that know exactly in advance what they are doing or want (what applies to many mechanical enginners), but it confuses many users that like a iterative design-process to find their ideal shape (what applies to many designers).
In opposition to this many mechanical engineers feel uncomfortable with a direct-modelling-process, because it feels a little like loosing control of the geometry, while designers love the ability to push and pull faces to their needs.
@Istvan, as Shapr3D is based on the Parasolid-Kernel, parametric-design is generally possible, but to be honest I think Shapr3D should stick the direct-modelling-process, because it may loose its ease in usability - at least it should be optional to turn parametric on, standard should be direct-modelling. I have mixed feelings on this.
As former Support-Engineer and Instructor for SolidWorks I helped thousands of users finding their way out of their parametric mess. It needs a lot of knowledge, practice and patience to keep the overview of the constrains you get in, when geometry gets more complex.
I predict the amount of customer support requests will increase by far, when you bring parametric modelling.
The mechanical engineer in me, of course wishes for parametric modelling, but from the perspective of a Product-Owner, I am not shure if that suites the niche Shapr3D fills very well! But after all the product-strategy is your part and you made that very well - I don’t want to appear as “wise guy”.
@Istvan@Matt_the-Rathje Thank you for your replies and inputs guys! I really appreciate it! It feels great to be part of such a responsive and supportive community! I hope this trend continues on for the years to come and wishing you guys the best of luck in your fields!
It would good to have parameters as another option under the users disposal of tools. For example, direct modelling can still be the main form of input (this form of input is precisely why I love shapr3D). It allows for a much more closer and immersive experience when I model objects.
Like what @Matt_the-Rathje mentioned, direct modelling allows to undergo reiterating on the platform with ease when you still trying to optimise your model. But once Its finalised and you just need to make minor changes, I feel parameter input modelling can be much more efficient as compared to direct modelling cuz you don’t have to edit the entire model. You just need to change one value and see the changes being reflected on the model. With that being said, you can just have an option whereby parameter table gets generated based on the direct modelling input and users just have to name the necessary dimensions. Again, these are just ideas of my head. You guys can openly criticise the idea!
But there is a component in my workflow which needs me to import my 3D model to other softwares like solid works and fashion 360 and run simulations on the model. As such editing the model becomes a pain on the other software because of format conversions. As such I thought if there is a way to carry forward parameters from shapr3d to other softwares, I will increase the ease of editing the model on the external software rather than coming back to shapr3d, re-editing the model and then exporting it out again (Its a tiring process). This was my thinking behind suggesting the parameters table.
I have a similar use-case, but for cabinetry design. Once you have the cabinets designed (which is way quicker and simple with Shapr3d), the challenge comes when putting a kitchen design together with different cabinet configuration, some the cabinets need to be adjusted to fit in a given customers kitchen. With Parameters in Fushion360, this is literally a few min of work.
But with currently with Shapr3d for each customer design that is a time consuming task.
So @Istvan I’m very eager to see how you can bring parameters into modeling!!