Many Weather Shield custom orders require engineers to vertically combine ("stack") windows, or to mix ("mull") windows and doors for specific home or business requirements. The process often requires wholesale reconfiguration of height, length, width, depth, angle, and grille patterns.
"Two-dimensional sketches help line up centerlines and grille lines, but 3D models effectively handle our form, fit, function, and testing work," said Steve Jorgensen, engineering IT project leader for Weather Shield. "I've used nine different solid modeling programs, and SolidWorks is by far the easiest to use. For that reason, it is the product I recommended when I joined the company."
Weather Shield has standardized on SolidWorks for all of its new design work and is steadily converting 2D components designed with AutoCAD(R) software into 3D designs. With SolidWorks, the company expects to significantly accelerate its design work through increased automation.
"We'd like to get to the point where we're creating all window types in 3D," Jorgensen said. "Then we can start combining multiple window designs in a parametric environment, modify the assembly as needed, and take these parts out onto the shop floor with a bill of material detailing specified cut lengths."
Weather Shield is using COSMOSWorks(R) design validation software to test the strength of various window configurations in hopes of reducing simulation and prototype costs. Designers use the eDrawings(TM) e-mail-enabled drawing and model viewer to share models with the shop floor and to quickly preview designs stored in their document database. These approaches promise to save Weather Shield significant time in bringing new products to a door and window market projected to top $32 billion by 2009.
"The door and window market is a highly competitive one, and both design quality and timing can have an enormous impact on the customer experience," said Bertrand Sicot, SolidWorks' vice president of North American Sales. "We give companies like Weather Shield the tools to compete aggressively in this market with creative designs executed quickly."
Weather Shield works with authorized SolidWorks reseller Graphics Systems for ongoing software training, implementation, and support.
About Weather Shield Mfg., Inc.
Owned by the Schield family, Weather Shield Windows & Doors is one of the nation's leading window and door manufacturers. Based in Medford, Wis., the company operates manufacturing facilities in Ladysmith, Greenwood, Park Falls, and Medford, Wis., and in Logan, Utah. The Schield family also owns The Peachtree Companies, Inc., consisting of Peachtree(R) Doors and Windows, Crestline(R) Windows & Doors, and Vetter(R) Windows & Doors. The Peachtree Companies operate facilities in Norcross and Gainesville, Ga., Huntington, W. Va., and in Mosinee, Wis. For more information, visit www.weathershield.com.
About Graphics Systems Corporation
Graphics Systems is the Midwest's leading provider of CAD/CAM/CAE/PDM solutions for business and industry with over 15 years in business, and over 125 years of combined engineering experience. Major product offerings through Graphics Systems include SolidWorks, COSMOS FEA software, PDMWorks(R), DBWorks, MoldWorks(R), Teksoft CAM, Dimension 3D printers, and more. Graphics Systems has offices in Menomonee Falls, Madison, and Green Bay, WI in addition to Oakbrook Terrace, Ill. For more information on Graphics Systems Corporation, contact Nicole Dzimiela at 800-454-CADD ext. 117 or visit http://www.gxsc.com.
About SolidWorks Corporation
SolidWorks Corporation, a Dassault Systemes S.A. (Nasdaq: DASTY, Euronext Paris: #13065, DSY.PA) company, develops and markets software for mechanical design, analysis, and product data management. It is the #1 supplier of 3D mechanical design software for the mainstream market. SolidWorks leads the market in number of users in production, customer satisfaction, and revenue. For the latest news, information, or a live online demonstration, visit the company's Web site ( www.solidworks.com) or call 1-800-693-9000 (outside of North America, call +1-978-371-5000).
SolidWorks and PDMWorks are registered trademarks and eDrawings is a trademark of SolidWorks Corporation. COSMOS and COSMOSWorks are registered trademarks of Structural Research and Analysis Corporation. Other brand and product names are trademarks of their respective owners. Copyright (c) 2005 SolidWorks Corporation.
SolidWorks Corporation Laura Kozikowski, 978-371-5077 Email Contact or Beaupre & Co. Public Relations, Inc. Darby Johnson, 603-559-5809 Email Contact