Dear Desktop Engineering Reader:
I frequently have a couple of computers fired up because the interoperability of files created with the same application on different OSes often is more unseemly than seamless. That’s just one of life’s petty, non-cost-effective annoyances that — alas — I’ve grown inured to. But in your multiCAD, multidisciplinary, multi-stakeholder, and multi-headache working day one unseemly bother you don’t need is no good way to view, markup, and share files with your collaborators quickly, easily, and efficiently. This is especially true for you people in manufacturing environments where you need something heavy on that quick, easy, and efficient part because you’re constantly handed all sorts of CAD files that you are expected to deal with right away if not sooner.
WorkXPlore 3D, the focus of today’s Pick of the Week column, is something you might like to check out if that’s your lot in life or you just need a more robust collaboration tool. WorkXPlore 3D is a viewing, markup, and analysis tool from Sescoi, a developer of software tools and systems for manufacturers. You probably know its WorkNC CAM and WorkPlan project management to ERP software lines.
Anyway, I downloaded the 30-day trial edition of WorkXPlore 3D Manufacturing Pro, the top-end version of the software. (There are three versions of WorkXPlore; each has functionalities tailored for different needs.) It was a painless download and install. Yes, I had to register to get the unlocking key, but that’s fine by me.
The upshot is that WorkXPlore 3D seems fast and easy to use as well as more competent than I was able to test out in my brief fling with it. For example, that thumbnail description above might give you the notion that you can make measurements with WorkXPlore 3D, which, of course, you can. But it does a lot more. You also can build prototypes or 3D models from imported CAD files then work on model set ups or improvements before committing yourself to detailed prototyping. You can compare 3D models, explode views, and produce complex animations. And you can analyze undercut areas, plane surfaces, thickness, volumes, surfaces, and weight.
Version 3 of WorkXPlore 3D was recently released. It’s been enhanced with more CAD file import/export capabilities, some of which are standard (Parasolid, PTC prt and asm, for example) and some of which are optional (CADDS, CATIA v4 for example). New BREPs technology provides the ability to stitch together discontinuities in the geometry like cylinders, toroids, and cones. New analyses functions, a new texture library, and a new 64-bit version are some of the other enhancements introduced in version 3. And the company says that it is faster than previous versions.
You can read more about WorkXPlore 3D’s new features and enhancements in today’s column linked over there. But, really, download the 30-day trial from the link at the end of the main text and give it a go yourself. There are tutorials galore on the Sescoi website if you need them or just hit DE’s link to them if you want to see how WorkXPlore operates before you committing to the trial version. All in all, WorkXPlore 3D seems a solid, well-engineered tool that could provide you headache relief and a more efficient way of doing things quickly and easily.
Thanks, Pal. — Lockwood
Anthony J. Lockwood
Editor at Large, Desktop Engineering
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