November 21, 2013
A raft of new and enhanced functionality was unveiled at the world premier of WorkXplore 3D V4, due for release in February 2014.
WorkXplore contains many features usually only found in CAD systems, enabling the user to perform diagnostics, create assembly instructions and prepare the production of 3D models. The forthcoming version contains almost 30 items of brand new functionality, along with four enhancements to the Client Viewer.
The software features numerous display and analysis tools, directly importing and analysing complex data from all major CAD systems, and generating a neutral format output. While CAD data is used in almost every department, the formats of the major systems are rarely read by other software, so the WorkXplore 3D viewer means many users can avoid having to purchase multiple CAD systems.
New functionality includes five major items:
Composite Curves are a complete new type of entity, introduced in WorkXplore 3D V4, allowing several curves to be linked and merged into one. The creation procedure is easy to use and powerful at the same time; in addition to curve entities, solid edges and meshes can also be used. They can be created in two ways – automatic chaining and manual chaining. Automatic chaining selects and links joining curves after validation, while manual chaining is progressive after each curve is selected. If the latest curve to be added is not joined to the composite curve being created, a dotted line is shown. Dialog boxes allow removal of the last curve, changing the extremities of the last joining segment, and closing the current composite curve.
Curves can also be created by selecting edges from solids in two ways: individually, where only the clicked edge is selected; and the clicked edge can also be selected along with any edges that tangentially extend the curve.
A number of operations can be carried out on composite curves, including curve closure, extracting each curve forming the composite, inverting direction, cutting the curve at a point, and displaying the extremity points of each curve in the composite.
Composite curve analysis supplies some important information: length, planarity, area if it is closed and planar, as well as details of each element of which it is composed.
New measurement functions: The point, distance, radius and angle measurement tools have been replaced by two new functions – Measure on One Entity, and Measure between Two Entities.
The automatic default mode of Measure One Entity allows selection to be made according to the cursor position, such as a line extremity, line center point, line, or face. After validation, the measurement is then created in 3D space.
Selection when measuring between two entities can also be made according to the cursor position – and includes a plane if the face is planar, a cylinder axis if the face is cylindrical, and a face if it is neither planar nor cylindrical. Even though the automatic mode covers most situations, users can force a specific selection mode for entities such as points or planes which removes any restrictions concerning the entities used for measurements.
Measurement Display: Hidden parts of measurement graphics and dimmer and thinner than visible ones.
Complementary Angle Measurement Display: The context menu can display the complement of a measured angle.
A new Thickness Analysis is introduced in V4, with localized measurements.
Four major enhancements have been made to the Client Viewer, including the Assembly Tree Structure which can be retrieved as in WorkXplore 3D.
Labels can be added as a new annotation function by the end user. After defining the text, the label is created by clicking at a point in the viewing area, which can also serve as an anchor if the point is positioned on an object. The label can be moved around the viewing area.
Two new buttons have been added to the Measurements List, to delete all measurements in a list, and to edit text in a single, selected, label.
In previous versions, anchor points used for measuring depended on the tessellated model used for display purposes, but in In the Client Viewer V4 anchor points are now the summits and mid-points of model edges.
Application engineer Karl Kaminski says WorkXPlore offers interfaces for all current CAD systems on the market. “This allows users in all departments to read native data and to extract the required information. After opening the CAD file of a part, which is often much faster than the original software, the component can be examined in various ways, the information documented, and the whole project saved in a self-extracting EXE file. Whoever that file is sent to can open it on their own computer irrespective of their own software.”
And he says the new and enhanced functionality in V4 will make it even more powerful for the entire process chain – from purchasing through quotation and manufacturing, to marketing, when it is released on to the market in February 2014.