(REQ) Inventor & MDT Integration advice.
(REQ) Inventor & MDT Integration advice.
Some here will know Im a fan of MDT & Ive been trying to persuade my company to buy a 'new' software package (ie a hybrid modeller) to replace an antiqated wireframe/mesh & 2d nightmare. I am indeed still split on the decision of what to recommend.
The management have indicated that they *DO NOT* want to fully move to 3d design for every job (press tools/jigs fixtures). They dont want to spend much money at all, (including hardware) and would like to install 1 station initailly to gain the benifits it offers and fulfill major tasks our current software can not do.
I am going to recommend either Inventor Series 5.3 or Solidworks as the main two players, with Think3 thrown into the mix too.
The benifits I see in Inventor Series is that you get four packages which will cover us in a wide range of tasks.
MDT6 for 3d hybrid modelling & 2d draughting.
Mechanical and Acad for 'normal' yet powerful 2d designs.
Opening Customer files successfuly.
Saving/exporting to Customers sucessfully - as our three main bread and butter customers use Autodesk products of some kind, although a new major customer uses Catia...
Seeing as Inventor cant do surfaces yet, MDT6 seems perfect for fulfilling all our requirements and I can be confident that generated views will be seamless into AutoCad LT - which the other draughtspersons could eventually work on.
I have already tried this to great effect.
This is of benifit to the management because we only really need one station capable of 3d work seeing as they mostly want to stick to 2d, AcadLT is inexpensive enough for them to buy for the other 3 or 4 workstations - whereas Solidworks would ideally require 4 stations at over £4000 to avoid in-house incompatabilities and having to learn yet another system just for 2d use! (ie be fluent in multiple brands and not use 85% of the product!). Also, if the need arose, the system can be upgraded more cheaply.
We have given the Inventor5 demo a brief test drive (incase of future 3d need) and the other guys in the office grasped the 3d concept easily on it (which came a bit of a suprise).
The only doubts in my mind are the continuance of MDT as a product, what surfacing tools will be available in future releases of Inventor and more importantly how these set of four packages will integrate. Also, what machining packages are there for the Series?.
Say we opt for the Series5.3 and we do some jobs in 3d using a combination of parts/surfaces/standard parts and related drawing views in MDT6- then 2 years down the track Autodesk pull the plug on MDT, how well HONESTLY will Inventor be able to use this data?????.
I know its a bit much to ask, but I would hope that all MDT features (history tree etc) will be maintained in the translation and that all related drawing views will be still associated to design changes.....is this the case???.
Somebody here must have migrated from MDT to Inventor - how well did it go? - I need an honest answer, not one of somebody who works for either Autodesk or Solidworks!!.
We tested an autocad 2d drawing on the demo, and it wasnt brilliant - it came in ineditable to begin with until we messed about and double clicked on it I think, also it was 25.4 times too big and we could not find a simple SCALE function anywhere!. A bit poor to what we expected from the same brand of software. I hope this would not be a taster of things to come!!!.
So far, things are swinging to the Autocad combo with management, and I dont wanna make the final decision - I dont want to be responsible if it doesnt work out!!!.
Next thing I am going to suggest is a head to head competition against our current system, MDT etc and SW if we can get our hands on a working demo - as management (who know nothing about CAD) want to see some 'real' benifits for the investment.... although this is obviously going to take time and use up 'valuable work's time'....
Any advice would be great regarding these sticking points, and I would appreciate it if this would stay in-topic and not become another SW/Inventor/MDT bashing post. Im sure you understand!.
Thanks for reading all that too!. I hope someone can give me some answers!!!.