Accelerating Industrial Design Concept Development with SOLIDWORKS Industrial Designer

Marc McCauley and Jesse Hahne, co-owners of the Center for Advanced Design (CAD), never know what projects are going to come through their doors. The product development firm has been involved in bringing more than 1,700 products to market. To be successful, they need to quickly create innovative design concepts and move those designs through client approvals and on to detail mechanical design, engineering validation, prototyping, and production. This often requires a variety of design tools, including the Alias and Rhino surfacing tools, as well as SOLIDWORKS their tool for mechanical design.

“We do a lot of up front sketch work and ideation, digital sketching, and rendering. With that, we have to be well versed with all aspects of software. We need the tools to enable us to go in and provide value for these companies and that’s what was so intriguing to us about this new Sub-D modeler from SOLIDWORKS,” said McCauley. “What really hooked us on Industrial Designer was a three second video of a surface being moved.”

After installing SOLIDWORKS Industrial Designer CAD realized that this new design solution could replace several disjointed, point design solutions that they were using for sketching concepts on a Wacom® Tablet, or creating complex surfaces, and rendering concepts to provide clients with high-quality photorealistic images.

In the past, these disjointed design tools required CAD had to find patches and workarounds to create fully dimensioned solid models whenever they dealt with complex surface geometry. This lack of integration between their industrial and mechanical design tools created a bottleneck in the development process. Design changes late in the development process meant starting over, creating new surfacing geometry that reflected the change, then moving it back into SOLIDWORKS.

“The ‘eureka’ moment was when we brought a surface created with SOLIDWORKS Industrial Designer software into SOLIDWORKS mechanical design software and watched the surface thicken into a solid model,” said Hahne. “SOLIDWORKS Industrial Design files feel like they were born in the SOLIDWORKS mechanical package.”

In addition to saving CAD time working back and forth between the industrial and mechanical design environments, SOLIDWORKS Industrial Designer provides one tool for sharing and communicating design concepts with clients and partners. An online design community provides them with the ability to communicate everything from quotes and scopes of work to industrial design concepts and modifications.

By implementing SOLIDWORKS Industrial Designer, CAD cut the industrial design time by 60 percent, completed the work of three people with one person in less time, while at the same time improving the communication with customers and partners, which accelerated their handling of client required design changes.

Watch the video to learn more about CAD’s use of SOLIDWORKS Industrial Designer:


Kristen Wilson

Kristen Wilson

Senior Manager Brand Offer Marketing, SolidWorks at Dassault Systemes
As the Senior Director of Communications, 3DEXPERIENCE Works, Kristen drives marketing strategy and oversees the team responsible for developing and executing multi-touch marketing plans across the Buyer's Journey, including 3DEXPERIENCE World.
Kristen Wilson
Kristen Wilson