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Mechanical Designing, Is it all about knowing CAD ?

Vaishnav Mithun
19/11/2016 0 0

Whenever, I get chance to meet and interview any mechanical designer, I could see they will be more interested to showcase themselves knowing more about a different mechanical CAD software it could be Catia, Solidworks, Pro-E etc.

Resume will be filled with all the CAD software name but as soon as you ask them why did they use the particular software to design or if you have ask them about product function,manufacturing process or about tolerance & fit, people will start blinking their eyes,because every mechanical designer think designing is all about extrude,revolve ,sweep or blend option which is available on any CAD platform today.

But I have simple question how long can you survive with this CAD knowledge ?Answer may be 5,10 or 15 years but what is next ?

So to be good designer,you need to be follow or must adapt below thing with your CAD software knowledge

1. Understand the function of the product on which you are working

Before you start designing on any CAD platform, always ask below question

  1. What is the project all about?

  2. Why are we designing this product?

  3. What is function of the product ?

  4. Who is end user ?

  5. What is customer expectation from us on this product?

  6. Are we designing for the right functionality?

Because knowing the functionality is very important,ultimately customer is going to pay for the function, if you have product that look good and have nice aesthetic but did not serve the function for customer,product will fail in the market.

2. Manufacturing Process

Every Designer should and must be aware of the basic manufacturing process such as Casting,Injection molding,Machining & Stamping process, because most of the mechanical industries use it to produce your product from virtual CAD to real product which customer will use it as end user.

To be real product designer,he or she must be aware or have fair understanding how his product can be manufactured once it is out of the CAD platform,it will help him to make better design than others, by adding better features without increasing the cost of the product.

According to me, without knowing manufacturing process,"It is like heart without soul" for the mechanical design engineer. :)

3. Material Selection

It is very much important to have fair knowledge on the material selection,product which you will be designing on the CAD platform has to come to real world to the consumer,so it is very much important to know about what material you are going to select for the product.

We have seen lot of real life example of effect of the wrong material selection,product is either recalled from the company or failed in the market due to it.

Ultimately, Mechanical is all about reality, we cannot work on the virtual CAD world, Mechanical product will be feel by the customer in his hand.

4. Market or Competitor Awareness

This is one of the important parameter in today's world, as design engineer you should be aware of your competitor and their product & technology,you should always think beyond of your competitor to be succeed in the market. Always have greater vision.

Darwin theory - "Survival of the fittest" in the today market.

5. DFX

X-factor is very much important in the design process, when somebody design product it should have all the X-factor included in his design such as ease of manufacturing,assembly & mistake proofing (POKA-YOKE) etc.

6. Tolerance & Fits

Product design is all about the 3 F's Form, fit and function,if your product need to be function properly,you should choose right tolerance and fit ,it does not mean by tightening tolerance your product will function properly,it is one of the wrong perception of the people,please avoid it

Select right tolerance & fits because

Cost & Function is directly proportional to tolerance & fit. :)


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