2D drafting methods are not able to relay the quality and quantity of design information because 2D methods will always rely on human interpretation or visualization skills to interact with a 2D design. This is always difficult for non design staff and almost impossible for computer systems to extract this kind of information, because computers do not have the ability to interpret.

As a result, many human errors can occur with traditional 2D design methods. In the past problems such as component collisions, incorrect quantities or parts that don't fit, would happen because a designer who works in only 2D is forced to hold much of the information mentally.

Reducing human error by using the 3D modeling design methods minimizes the need for re-work because the design quality is greatly improved. Using 3D design modeling greatly improves design quality because it is a more complete process than 2D design. One most important thing about 3d CAD design is that people can have view of the model from all possible dimensions. It is a highly detailed drawing of what your concept will look like as a finished product.

Whether you're designing a new innovative product, creating technical manuals, or requesting quotes from suppliers, 3D CAD design is extremely powerful. But when a 3D CAD design is transformed into a physical 3D print or job shops’ product prototypes, there is no substitute for the tactile and visual feedback a physical model provides to all participants in the design process.

Mechanical Designers usually share their work space with drafters or other engineering technicians in quiet, well-lighted surroundings separated from production areas. Working from drawings, sketches, planning sheets, and other engineering and shop data, tool designers must visualize the Design, do the panning, document and verify every step of the way.

Because of reductions in defense spending, jobs for mechanical engineering type work will decrease; however, the employment of mechanical engineers is expected to grow about as fast as the average for all occupations through this year due to the demand for new and more complex industrial machinery and tools resulting from the development of more sophisticated automated production processes.

The use of 3D modeling technology is essential when you want to develop a superior product. Such a product will not be influenced by human interpretation. Furthermore, it will look like the final model.

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Comment by Fred Vierheller on February 22, 2010 at 11:47am
Very good observation,
Even the DimExpertManager keeps all tolerancing in the 3D Model, a 2D drawing is needed for the part inspection.
People on the floor do not have computer access.
Comment by Hugh Thomson on February 22, 2010 at 11:23am
Everyone should have raised their hands! Cannot quite understand why it would be deemed to be shameful...after all one of the major improvements in Solidworks 2010 was in the creation of 2D drawings. In fact most 3d models are created from the essence of 2D...like I said they are complimentary.
Manufacturing directly from the 3D Model is fine, but without the 2d dimensional drawing, how do you convey tolerance data and conserve the dimensional record for reasons of quality records and traceability?
Comment by Fred Vierheller on February 22, 2010 at 8:49am
Back in the “2010 Solidworks World” I learned that the tendency on the market is to manufacture directly from the 3D Model. This is how Solidworks Corporation is encouraging the end user to follow.

A speaker race the question “Who does 2D Drawings today? Raise your hand” and a shamed minority raised their hands.
Comment by Kay Kucharik on February 22, 2010 at 7:13am
I have traveled the path from pencil and paper on a drafting board to 2D cad programs to "3D" wireframe to solids. Solids are the way to go.
I work in 2D and 3D. If it's a simple concept sketch, it goes 2D. If I'm unsure of whether or not the concept will be 'buildable', I'll do a 3D model. I've got the image of what I want in my head and just have to go through the mechanics of building it on cad.
I would absolutely HATE to have to try to draw some of these assemblies manually.
Comment by S Raghavan on February 21, 2010 at 8:13pm
Hello!
It is true that 3D model is a better approach to design then 2D. This is due to the fact that the design can be rectified and perfected when it can be viewed in multiple perspectives and by simulating assembly of the final product.3D can also help in identifying problems related to DFMA (Design For Manufacturing and Assembly), which is not possible in traditional 2D design approach.
Comment by thaksen ingole on February 19, 2010 at 10:18pm
Hello Everybody. I totally agree that a 3D model can be a solutions to most of the problems faced by 2D.But in our field ie (process industry) almost all the companies are completely relied on 2D drawings made from AUTOCAD.so it becomes compulsion for me to submit my design for approval of pressure vessel in 2D.Now i have been trying to make the process of drawing creation simpler with the use of different CAD SOFTWARE but the fact is that non of the 3D cad softwares are that efficient to produce a drawing & BOM that i can make from the 3D cad system and send it directly to the client.I have worked with 7 different CAD Systems right from CATIA,PRO-E,SOLIDWORKS,SOLIDEDGE,UNIGRAPHICS,INVENTOR and all of them are not capable to do a accurate DRAWING & BOM for my product.So even if we have such a good technology i am not able to use it.
My suggestion was that all the 3D software should also concentrate on their drawing module so that people in process industries should be able to take an advantage of this,
So to make the drawings & BOM automatic we have purchased a structural software and had configured it to such an extent that my complete model & drawings are created in 15 min ready to send to the client.The complete system runs through an excel files.
I wish that if some of the top CAD software should take the initiative and explore our way of work.
For any further query u can send it on t_ingole@yahoo.co.in
Comment by John Gibson on February 19, 2010 at 9:46am
Somehow, going to 3D in the concept phase seems to be less intuitive when
trying to visualize something original. With 3D you have to complete the process
in incremental steps. Does this limit creativity by causing the brain to focus on the
individual steps of this process?

I feel more creative and able to visualize alternatives with a pencil in my hand and a
blank sheet of paper to sketch in 2d or 3d. This may be just because my career has
spanned the time period from using pencils to computer graphics.
Comment by Jonathan Stone on February 19, 2010 at 9:08am
I have used 3D CAD for over 10 years and it matches the way I think, that is in 3D. However to blame poor design on the tool (2D) is bit off target. I have seen my share of bad designs done in 3D, and there are many examples of very good designs done without CAD at all. CAD is just a tool, it will not make a design, or the designer, good or bad.
Comment by Hugh Thomson on February 19, 2010 at 8:42am
Having evolved in my engineering career from the drawing board thru to 2D cad in 1985 and 3d in 1991 I can fully appreciate the comments on the 2D and 3D engineering processes, although they are not necessarily a new perspective.
In my opinion the application of 2D CAD and 3D CAD should be seen as "complementary" and not exclusively one or the other. Currently the 2D drawing is still used to convey the actual dimensional information pertinent to the manufacturing processes for many industries. Admittedly the capability of including dimensional information directly on the 3D cad model is now integral to most 3D cad software products, the end result does not compare to the clarity of a professionally prepared 2D drawing.
Comment by Gavin Allen on February 19, 2010 at 7:13am
I agree Gordon, I made the transition back on Inventor 5 and also have 3D models printed. Like the author said " there is no substitute for the tactile and visual feedback a physical model provides to all participants in the design process." I would like to also add that this model also gives your customers (or even potential customers) a look at what's coming, and boost your profile in the market place. Also if the model is finished to a good standard you can get a heads up on the marketing materials from use of a real object.

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