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Concurrent Engineering Blog

How to solve the problem of transitioning between 2D and 3D

Posted by Emma Rudeck on 13-Jun-2013 15:05:00

transitioning from 2D to 3DDoes your company still use a standalone 2D CAD tool before working on the design in 3D? Even though 3D solid modeling has become the standard for complex engineering tasks, your company may still have a 2D CAD system in your tool set. It’s fairly common to use 2D for upfront conceptual engineering. The problem that this has traditionally caused is that when you finally want to transition the concept from 2D to 3D, you either need to perform a complicated import of 2D data into a 3D tool or manually recreate the design from scratch in 3D. 

The other common headache when working with fundamentally different 2D and 3D tools is that any changes you make to the 2D design will not be automatically propagated to the 3D environment. You either give up on the 2D design earlier than you would otherwise want to or you have to make the change twice.

Why do companies still want to work in a 2D environment?

Ultimately, you do want 3D solid models as your final deliverable. But, in the early stages of design, you may feel an unconstrained 2D environment provides you with the right amount of speed and flexibility to make large and unpredictable changes. It can also give you more freedom to explore design alternatives.

Creo solves the problem of transitioning from 2D to 3D

The sophisticated 2D drafting environment in Creo allows designs created in 2D to be seamlessly reused as the basis for 3D models, without the need to import or recreated the 2D drawing. Also, by using Creo, you are directly reusing the 2D design in 3D. So, any subsequent changes to the design in 2D are automatically propagated to 3D. Creo preserves the association between the 2D data and the 3D data.

It also enables any changes made to the layout in 2D to be automatically propagated to 3D, saving you the effort normally needed to keep the 2D and 3D in sync. And, even if a model is already in 3D, you can use a 2D view of it to be the basis of a new 2D concept. This means that you can contribute to a design success in the tool that you feel more comfortable using for a longer period of time. And, by tracking and accepting changes, you control what is updated.

When everyone in your team works in the best environment for them, you can explore more alternatives and deliver better concept designs.

To find out more about using Creo, get a free 30-day trial:

Creo Free Trial