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Unigraphics translation problems

Unigraphics translation problems

Unigraphics translation problems

(OP)
The company that I work for has multiple seats of Unigraphics, Pro-E and MasterCam.  We are continually importing and exporting files from one software to another and are having sizable problems with files coming into and out of Unigraphics.  All of our initial files that we receive into our company are either native Pro-E or STEP files.  Has anyone experienced problems bringing files into UG in the STEP format?  This issue seems to be compounded when we export files to MasterCam. The files don't come into UG perfect and are worse when they are converted a second time.  Does anyone have a solution for getting good clean files from UG to MasterCam?

Thanks
 Jake

RE: Unigraphics translation problems

Jake,

have you tried exporting Parasolid from UG to Mastercam?

Henry

RE: Unigraphics translation problems

(OP)
Hi Henry,
     Yes we have tried parasolids.  They are drastically cleaner, but still not as clean as what the Mastercam guys are used to getting out of Pro-E.  We have had Pro-E for years and UG only for about 2 years, so we are expected to output the same quality files and we haven't been able to so far.

Jake

RE: Unigraphics translation problems

Our mold maker uses Mastercam & we supply them with Parasolid files out of UG.  Haven't heard a complaint in about 5 years.  I would say it's a matter of modeling a clean model in UG to begin with.  Be patient, model at a similar tolerance as you do in Pro/E & see if that doesn't help you out.

Tim Flater
Senior Designer
Enkei America, Inc.
www.enkei.com

RE: Unigraphics translation problems

If I understand you Moldguy2, data recieved in is either ProE or Step.  Part of the problem is system tolerance, and both system should be at the same level.  Another problem is that The incoming ProE files will accept non-manifold solids.  Unigraphics does not.  Another thing to look out for is sharp corners and spikes in the surface data.  These will case major trim headaches if system tolerance are not identical.  Use UG's Analysis->Examine Geometry to check for these errors and a few more to give yourself a fighting chance.

Talbot Teboe
Cad Design
J.L. French Corp.

RE: Unigraphics translation problems

Part of our deliverable for GM are NC blocks (part contact).
We manufacture these blocks from MasterCam.

Our deliverable to MasterCam is IGES.

Keep in mind, that these NC blocks are very small in file size.

RE: Unigraphics translation problems

Have you tried the external translators?

RE: Unigraphics translation problems

What do you mean sizeable problems?    I've done alot of translations to/from Pro with UG and experienced few problems.  Please explain your problem in more detail.
Are you using STEP203 or 214? What versions of UG, ProE, and Mastercam are you trying to move files to? What type of data are you trying to translate, Solid geometry or 2D Wireframe etc.?

  Jay Peterson
  Moog Inc.

RE: Unigraphics translation problems

(OP)
Hi Jay,
     According to our CNC department, on some files at least, there are surfaces flying all over the place.  Any surfaces that are out of place have to be rebuilt so they are spending time rebuilding surfaces in the files they receive from UG and they don't have this problem with files coming out of Pro-E.  As tteboe mentioned above, we have used Analysis->Examine Geometry to check for errors in the step files we receive from Pro-E.  Examples of the errors in an imported step file are: Objects-tiny, Bodies-consitency, Faces-self intersection, Edges-smoothness and tolerances.  Also as tteboe states, part of the problem is system tolerance.  As we understand UG's workable tolerance is much tighter than that of Pro-E.  There are 3 designers using UG; I'm not sure which step each uses (I assume both have been).  Does one work better than the other, what is the diffence between the 2?  We have been using UG NX1 and are in the process of getting all of us onto NX2, Pro-E is currently using Wildfire and Master Cam is on version 9.1.  All of our problems are with solid databases.  What is the complexity of the files you have had success translating?  What industry are you in?  Our company designs and builds plastic injection molds; we don't have problems with the mold plates; it's the core and cavity blocks we have problems with (basically any components that have feature on them from the imported step file).
Thanks
 Jake

RE: Unigraphics translation problems

Sounds like modeling technique in Pro/E might be getting magnified in UG.  First thing I would try is tightening the UG STEP import tolerance.  If that doesn't help, see what 0.02 mm does for you on STEP import.

If possible, see if the designers can eliminate most of the blends or fillets on the Pro/E files & apply them in UG.  Also, see if the Pro/E models can be modeled at a tighter tolerance.

We used to use Pro/E to model aluminum wheels & I did notice that at times, UG didn't like the Pro/E STEP models....plus Pro/E models seemed to have many more faces than a UG model would have modeling with the same techniques.  The increased number of faces increases the chance that something is at a high tolerance or not smooth.

It would probably be a good idea to take a model that has given you problems in the past & see if it can be modeled in Pro/E using different or cleaner techniques, then importing it into UG followed by a test to see if Mastercam 'likes' that any better.

Tim Flater
Senior Designer
Enkei America, Inc.
www.enkei.com

RE: Unigraphics translation problems

Perhaps you might try removing some of the variables.

Try creating a file in UG and exporting it to MasterCam.  This should indicate whether the issue is between UG and MaterCam.

If the above works, try creating the same part in ProE and exporting it to MasterCam.  If all is well, it begins to appear the issue is between ProE and UG.

Export the ProE part to UG and do an Examine Geometry to determing whether there are any problems in the model as it now exists in UG. (You might also try a Part CleanUP) If problems do exist, it appears that the problem is in the ProE translator and UG translator settings or in the original model.  At that point, I would send both parts to both ProE and UG support and ask how to resolve the issue.

I know UG's support has been excelent if you explain the problem and provide files they can review.

The errors you report in UG must be resolved.  It make very little sense to export a model with those errors.  What you don't know is whether those errors were present in ProE prior to the translation.  I've know users that don't check their models and let others inherit their problems.

Other comments:

Try using a very basic solid body at the beginning and move towards more complex bodies until you observe the "problem".

I always pays to have a test part created in each CAD software's native format (no translations).  

Translators have always provided a challenge.  Don't let anyone convince you otherwise.

Iron out the translation issues before you need to translate "real" work.

RE: Unigraphics translation problems

Hi Jake,

We are in the Motion Control industry. We make actuators, valves, fluid control stuff.  I agree with Tim and rghay in what they both put forth. I would offer that you need to validate the data to and from UG.  One good way is to STEP it out of UG then STEP it back in to see if the translation itself was good.  Chances are it is.  As rghay said translations are always a challenge trying to get the receiving system to read the data properly.  It may be that the translator interface with Mastercam may be at fault. It depends.  Tolerances used for sewing the boundaries between surfaces may need to be tweaked.  Are you translating complex or simple solid geometry?  Do the parts your translating into MasterCam always go from ProE to UG to Mastercam?  If so, does this need to always go this route?  
If you would like send me a part or 2 and I'd be willing to try a few translations for you and send them back for you to test in Mastercam.  

           Jay Peterson
           Moog Inc.
          Email:  jpeterson@moog.com

RE: Unigraphics translation problems

Since you have ProE Wildfire, you should be able to export a parasolid file.  Reference Looslib thread 561-93475 from 4/24/2004, "config Pro setting 'enable_parasolid_export yes'" Data from that should be cleaner than STEP.

We have our own issues with ProE, at least once per month we end up translating an engine block from ProE to UG.  There are two surfaces that are self intersecting. And we either, fix the data in ProE or repair it in UG.

As we don't have a STEP import for UG, we import the data into IDEAS, which still shows the problem and export out a parasolid, or IGES to UG.


 

Talbot Teboe
Cad Design
J.L. French Corp.

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