Welcome to the Onshape forum! Ask questions and join in the discussions about everything Onshape.

First time visiting? Here are some places to start:

  1. Looking for a certain topic? Check out the categories filter or use Search (upper right).
  2. Need support? Ask a question to our Community Support category.
  3. Please submit support tickets for bugs but you can request improvements in the Product Feedback category.
  4. Be respectful, on topic and if you see a problem, Flag it.

If you would like to contact our Community Manager personally, feel free to send a private message or an email.

Onshape for Industrial Design?

kinsleymarkkinsleymark Member Posts: 35 ✭✭✭
I appologize in advance for the length of this post! But I believe there is probably a certain audience that is considering using Onshape that would be interested in this.

I’m a professional Furniture Designer / Lighting Designer (trained as an Industrial Designer)
Not only do I create concepts for products (quick model studies, renderings, proof-of-concept geometry, form studies, ergonomic studies, etc), but often times I need to create the final engineered product and CAD models and drawings for fabrication as well.

Previously, I was 100% invested into SolidWorks. It gave me most of the tools I needed to do my concept work as well as the final engineering drawings. It wasn’t the fastest way to create concept models, but being able to tweak and seamlessly turn those concepts into manufacturable components and drawings within one system was worth it. Plus, having a rendering engine built in made it all very efficient. With one assembly model, I could go from concept, to rendering, to engineered parts and drawings all within the same system.

Because of my needs, I’ve been very curious to see how Onshape grows and which direction it heads. I’ve also been watching Fusion360 closely since they have been more aggressively pursuing the Maker / Industrial Design community.

Currently, Onshape doesn’t seem to be a good place for CAD “sketching” or concept ideation. (as someone has mentioned in another forum, Onshape is great at modeling a product that has already been thought out and designed). So for me, Onshape is a great solution for creating final CAD after I’ve figured out the design and the direction for a product.

My workflow has now been split into two phases:

PHASE 1 (concept work, ideation, rendering, etc). This is all done in Fusion360. Fusion360 is very buggy, but extremely feature-rich and lets me pump out quick concepts w/out worrying about file sizes, correct modeling procedures, or the number of documents I've created. The built-in rendering engine is also nice for quick visualizations — and if I need something more robust, I can export and open in Keyshot in just one click. Fusion360 also has a great sharing feature where I can send a link for any model or project and the receiver can view the model w/out having to sign up for anything. I can easily create dozens of variations of a design to compare and contrast and share before deciding on a final direction.

PHASE 2 (final engineering, production drawings). Once I’m ready to move forward with engineering and manufacturing a chosen concept, I’ll re-model the entire product from scratch in Onshape and finalize the product engineering there.

My concern is this: Is Onshape positioning itself as just an MCAD system for engineers? Or is it going to pursue the Industrial Design community as well? Is it going to be the all-in-one modeling solution that Solidworks was for me? Or is it going to just do one function (MCAD) — but do it extremely well? 

As I mentioned in a previous thread: Fusion360 seems to be grabbing up users at a fast pace (at least in the industrial design / maker world). Their marketing campaigns and partnerships (with Core77, DeZeen, etc) are aggressively targeting designers, makers, tech startups, and industrial designers. If most of my colleagues end up using Fusion360 (which is the trend I see), that is where I'll need to be. It doesn't matter if it's a sub-par program right now -- I need to go where my colleagues are going in order to make full use of the collaboration features. (This is the same reason why I'm on Facebook. It's far from being a good product -- but it's where all the people are!)

I'd really like to see Onshape take the same approach that Autodesk is doing (targeting Makers, Designers, and semi-pro users) both from a marketing standpoint and from a feature standpoint. However, if Onshape only plans on just being an MCAD system, then great! They are doing a really great job! I'll still be a customer, but just a more limited one.
Tagged:

Comments

  • kevin_quigleykevin_quigley Member Posts: 306 ✭✭✭
    I'm curious. If you were 100% invested in Solidworks, why change to Onshape? It is a similar annual subscription cost. Fusion, I can understand, given the fact that it is 1/4 the cost and has considerably more concept generating capability (than Onshape).

    what is the big driver for switching to Onshape if you already have SolidWorks?
  • 3dcad3dcad Member, OS Professional, Mentor Posts: 2,432 PRO
    Mark, it is nice to meet a colleague. I haven't noticed in your previous posts that you are also in furniture business, I see you have wide range of projects. I work purely with sheet based stuff as I run my own factory for producing flatpack MDF / MFC furniture.

    I have used Alibre like you did SW in the past, I always needed to create two sets of models: first one for design and looks and later another for production. Creating detailed models with toolings and connectors kills creativity and is very slow for just trying out some idea.

    I like Onshape multipart studios very much, now I can create one sketch when I have some idea - if sketch looks good on screen, I will proceed to extruding parts. If it's still good I will export step for keyshot and show for customer. 

    If I get greenlight to proceed with the product (or usually collection of products), I will go back and edit parts with holes and other toolings (this is mainly for assembly instruction images since we have done furniture over 40 years and have pretty good templates for many kind of parts in our cnc machines, it is not necessary to create detailed drawings for production in my case).

    So with Onshape I can go with only one model / design since it's easy to update parts in multipart studio.
    If I wan't to try some other concept, I just duplicate tab and make changes.
    If I appear to go in wrong direction at some point, I just jump back in history to the point where I can take new direction.
    I don't need to worry about files, copies, constraints, backups.. I don't even know 'file' sizes since I have so many designs in one document.
    And I always have everything with me, all sketches and tryouts which might grow into something later on..

    In meetings I like to use ipad since it's easy to turn around for customer and manipulate model with touchscreen, in lunch I might show something from my smartphone to replace 1000 words. In office I enjoy multiple HD monitors and 3d mouse.

    I'm waiting for oncoming features to effectively use standard parts and share links to models (no sign-in required). I don't know what my colleagues / competitors use, but if not Onshape I think I've been smart finding the better tools in this early stage. 
    //rami
  • 3dcad3dcad Member, OS Professional, Mentor Posts: 2,432 PRO
  • kinsleymarkkinsleymark Member Posts: 35 ✭✭✭
    I'm curious. If you were 100% invested in Solidworks, why change to Onshape? It is a similar annual subscription cost. Fusion, I can understand, given the fact that it is 1/4 the cost and has considerably more concept generating capability (than Onshape).

    what is the big driver for switching to Onshape if you already have SolidWorks?
    Solidworks has always been a love/hate relationship for me.
    They don't support Apple (so I would need to use Bootcamp or Parallels to run it).
    Their licensing system is also antiquated -- I frequently switch between my Macbook, my desktop iMac, and my iPad and I'm used to the way most programs work now (buy an "App" once and use it anywhere).
    Also, up until recently, I've worked at companies that supply a seat of Solidworks for me to use. Now that I'm doing more of my own in-house design work, I need to provide my own software and have had a chance to explore the alternatives.

    I love the idea behind Onshape and the fact that I never have to worry about where it is installed or what version I have. I'm highly mobile, and love that I can use it from anywhere on any machine (I don't need a dedicated workstation anymore).
    As a small business, most of the software I use is subscription based -- CRM (Base CRM), Accounting software (Xero), Project management software (Asana), Website development (Squarespace), Adobe Creative Cloud, etc. The more software I can get this way, the less time I have to spend on IT issues.
  • kinsleymarkkinsleymark Member Posts: 35 ✭✭✭
    @3dcad That's a great system (creating a new concept in each tab within one project). I kept trying to create Versions for each new concept - but that was too hard to keep track of. Creating separate projects was not working either. I'll have to try out that workflow. Thanks!

    When you work with Keyshot, are you able to update the model with any changes you create in Onshape? (do you export to .STP or .IGES?)
    With Fusion360, there is a direct live-link so that any changes I make to the CAD (in Fusion) can get updated directly in Keyshot.
  • 3dcad3dcad Member, OS Professional, Mentor Posts: 2,432 PRO
    edited October 2015
    ..

    When you work with Keyshot, are you able to update the model with any changes you create in Onshape? (do you export to .STP or .IGES?)
    With Fusion360, there is a direct live-link so that any changes I make to the CAD (in Fusion) can get updated directly in Keyshot.
    This is something that Onshape should address pretty soon, there is something going on with Maxwell Render - but I haven't had enough time to give it a proper try. I hope we will have Keyshot live link into Onshape too and eventually I'd hope to see CloudShot with enormous power to render stuff with ease directly in Onshape with any device.

    Today, we need to export static model to render without link to original.
    //rami
  • robert_schicklingrobert_schickling Member Posts: 2
    I'm an ME who works on complex plastic parts. Very skilled in surfacing and working with ID folks, imports, etc. I'm interested in Onshape but see it as limited in its surface ability, need C2 surfs and rounds at least, etc.  More pro ID guys are going to Creo lately (ive been at Leapfrog and Microsoft recently). Yes, we get Alias imports too.  But better teams are using these to just guide the building of parametric native Creo that gets sent to us ME's. Now that Creo3 has sub-d surf modeling that you can align/tangent connect with good parametric curves or surfs done earlier, Creo has some cool ID ability. Especially with the new $2200/yr subscription pricing. But am eager to see Onshape become a player.  
  • brucebartlettbrucebartlett Member, OS Professional, Mentor Posts: 1,965 PRO
     Now that Creo3 has sub-d surf modeling that you can align/tangent connect with good parametric curves or surfs done earlier, Creo has some cool ID ability. Especially with the new $2200/yr subscription pricing. But am eager to see Onshape become a player.  
    I am also eager to see some of these ability's come into Onshape and sure the platform has been design to incorporate these features. However we still need some of the basic machine design components and I don't want to see advanced surfacing at the expense of say sheetmetal. Maybe with the new round of funding we will see a new team to develop these features. 
    Engineer ı Product Designer ı Onshape Consulting Partner
    Twitter: @onshapetricks  & @babart1977   
  • robert_schicklingrobert_schickling Member Posts: 2
    Yes, sheet metal is important as well as surfacing.  Unfortunately I cannot use this tool for real work yet as all my work involves complex surfaces.  
    I know i'm asking for more than they can provide now.  But I look forward to when they can.
  • andrew_troupandrew_troup Member, Mentor Posts: 1,584 ✭✭✭✭
    edited October 2015
    I agree that surfacing is a key capability, but it seems to me that there is plenty of opportunity to improve on the surfacing usability offered by other packages. One reason surfacing is seen as disproportionately daunting is that the user interfaces tend to present unnecessary cognitive barriers, often because they have evolved incoherently.

    3D sketching is an essential prerequisite for constructing efficient and well-behaved parametric "quilts". 3D sketches should provide a robust and yet versatile skeleton for excellent surface models. But their interface often cripples comprehensibility and undermines usefulness.

    I would like to see 3D sketching implemented in a way which was radically easier to drive. Other packages have stumbled here, and some great interface elements seem to have foundered by being shackled to legacy elements which prevented them reaching a wider audience (Microstation's Intellisketch springs to mind - not to be confused with Solid Edge's more recent and different use of the same term) .

    It would be great to see Onshape take careful heed of the end-game suite of surfacing tools, including those in the more distant future, and build from scratch a 3D sketcher which supported these elegantly and (as far as possible) transparently. The ideal tool would be able to do this with equal ease and in a consistent way for analytical and NURBS geometries.

     It becomes harder for the designer/user to make outstanding creative leaps when distracted by a toolset which repeatedly (and sometimes unexpectedly) demands big chunks of their cognitive capacity.

    The other big topic here is healing. Generally, capability here is focussed on imported surfaces, but there often needs to be more attention to resolving problems (such as edge mismatch due to different routines relying on different approximations of a 3D curve) with correctly modelled native surfaces. Too often the user needs to resort to an arsenal of workarounds to arrive at a watertight result.
Sign In or Register to comment.