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CAD program update


#1

I stated a few days ago that Rhino can do everything that Matrix can
do and that Rhino is less expensive, THAT’S ALL I MEANT, I was not
by any means knocking Matrix. Matrix is BY FAR much easier to use
and is much more user friendly than Rhino. Matrix has its automatic
builders, its stones, pearls, heads and profile library that takes a
lot of the guess work out of working and developing these items on
your own. Anyone considering purchasing CAD for jewelry designing,
rendering or manufacturing, I have to say that Matrix is the way to
go as far as I’m concerned. Sorry, again, if that I say earlier was
miss
interpreted by some. Jon Barry DiNola


#2

Difficult to purchase to good product… My question is, why matrix ?
Why not jewelcad or jewelspace?? I’ve test jewelcad that i’ve found
very complicated and not very intuitive. So, there’s no demo for
matrix (i thing) and the price is quite high, can anyone tell me what
is the advantage of matrix software??

and if there’s a way to test it.

thanks,
Rodolfo from Belgium.


#3

Rodolfo, Any of the Matrix reps can give you an on-line demo of
Matrix, if you call them at the number listed on their sire,
wwwgemvisioncom ONE of the primary differences of Matrix is that it
is built on the Rhino code and contains all of the excellent
surfacing tools found in Rhino (by the way, Rhino has been re-written
from the ground up, and Matrix is doing the same as we speak) Matrix
includes a set of “Builders”, which are li ke scripts, that automate
certain modeling procedures You can choose from a pull-down list of
menus, for insatnce, to build a signet ring with a six sided top
shape, perhaps morphing to a smooth oval profile down the shank,
choose the ring size, shank width, etc and click “GO” and Matrix
builds the ring accratelt to 0001 mm This process in Rhino or
JewlSpace or any other CAD might include a couple hundred individual
steps, taking hours, I just built a signet ring in Matrix while the
customer watched, took under three minutes There are many, many
features in Matrix to aid the jeweler to accomplish accurate models,
to build them FAST, and the menu is VERY intuitive BU T, learning
it on your own, while possible, is not recommended The classe s are
very professional and the tech support is awesome I did enough wor k
in three days on matrix last week to pay for the whole system In
Rhino , I’d still be working on the models!! You can buy cheaper, but
you woill NOT get the speed or accuracy or advanced features found in
Matrix

Wayne


#4

I stated a few days ago that Rhino can do everything that Matrix can
do and that Rhino is less expensive, THAT’S ALL I MEANT, I was not
by any means knocking Matrix. Matrix is BY FAR much easier to use and
is much more use r friendly than Rhino. Matrix has its automatic
builders, its stones, pearl s, heads and profile library that takes
a lot of the guess work out of working and developing these items on
your own. Anyone considering purchasing CAD for jewelry designing,
rendering or manufacturing, I have to say that Matrix is the way to
go as far as I’m concerned. Sorry, again, if that I say
earlier was miss interpreted by some. Jon Barry DiNola


#5

Dear Bozo, I am like most manufacturing jewelers, am thinking
seriously about jumping into a full CADCAM manufacturing setup. We
cast and manufacture a lot of one of a kind platinum pieces and have
three very good jewelers. I have not made a purchase on a full 3d
system but I will do everything in house. One major factor in my
final selection will be the service and training from the vendor.
While I have not purchased anything yet, GemVision and Jeff High will
be at the top of my list. What I have purchased from him in the past
has worked beyond my expectations and his training and support from
his staff is top knotch. I am not trying to knock anyone else only
stating my past experience.


#6
Ian, can you please expand on this? In what ways do you see Rhino
as traditional? 

Hi,

Rhino CAD works in much the same way as Autocad, Intellicad etc. in
that, when you are drawing, particularly in 2D, you use the ‘old
fashioned’ CAD techniques. For example, to draw a square, you would
draw a line, offset it by the width of the square, draw another line
near one end crossing both lines and perpendicular to one of them and
then offset this by the length of the square. Finally, you would trim
each of the lines back to the others so that your finished square
would be exactly closed at all the corners - I know it takes longer
to describe than to do, but its still quite a long winded way to
carry on. Also, Rhino uses virtually all the same keyboard shortcuts
that Autocad does - ‘circle’, ‘line’, ‘trim’ etc.

In 3D you have to build the model using very basic shapes, adding or
subtracting as required, but, all the time being aware of whether or
not the pieces actually coincide in 3D space or unexpected results
can occupy some time in trying to sort out what has gone wrong. When
it comes to more complex surfaces like revolved shapes, getting from
a 2D polyline to a 3D solid can be quite problematic.

In SolidWorks or its equivalents, however, you design things more as
you would if working on the material. Lets take a simple example - a
simple round, flat machine baseplate with various holes…

For this, you would draw a line representation of half the cross
section (say a couple of parallel lines with an Ogee shape for a
decorative edge to the disk). The actual size and proportion is
unimportant as the next step is to define the critical sizes in
dialogue windows and to set the location of the lines in physical
space. Now, you rotate this line which produces an image of the solid
disk. If you now want to put holes in it - say, a series of
countersunk holes for M6 screws, you define a starting point on the
surface of the disk, bring up the ‘holes’ dialogue box and check the
boxes for M6, countersunk and the depth you want (or ‘right
through’). Hit the OK key and a finished hole appears throught the
solid plate. This can then be arrayed or copied just as in Rhino.

All the functions are there in both programs but its the way you get
at them that varies - in Rhino, you start out by making line drawings
and, from them, generating an image of the solid whilst in
SolidWorks, you start out by drawing the solid parts, assembling them
on screen and, only as a final step, automatically generating line
drawings in any of a variety of standard formats and already fully
dimensioned.

Its all a matter of personal preference really, I have used
’traditional’ CAD programs for many years and I have only just
started playing around with SolidWorks but, from an engineering point
of view, I wish I had found it much sooner - I find it much easier to
look at the solid picture I am drawing on screen than to try to
visualise the solid part amongst the forest of lines on the Rhino
screen or continually waste time rendering it to check that the
cylinder I have just subtracted from the box did, in fact, go right
through.

As before, usual disclaimers - no affiliation with any company
etc…

Best wishes, Ian –

Ian W. Wright
Sheffield, UK


#7

Ian, I don’t mean this as a personal attack, but what you wrote in
your post concerning Rhino is complete misI am
wondering if you have spent much time with the program?

 For example, to draw a square, you would draw a line, offset it by
the width of the square, draw another line near one end crossing
both lines and perpendicular to one of them and then offset this by
the length of the square. Finally, you would trim each of the lines
back to the others so that your finished square would be exactly
closed at all the corners - I know it takes longer to describe than
to do, but its still quite a long winded way to carry on. 

Nothing could be further from the truth! In order to draw a
square/rectangle in Rhino, you would click somewhere in the viewport
and move the mouse down and over to where you want the other corner
to be. A cube is done much the same way, with the addition of the
third dimension, easily generated by another mouse click. Of course,
the dimensions can be keyed in for accuracy at the command prompt.

When it comes to more complex surfaces like revolved shapes,
getting from a 2D polyline to a 3D solid can be quite problematic. 

Again, I have to disagree. A revolved shape requires a very simple
procedure. Draw a profile curve, indicate the rotation axis by
picking out two points, and key in the degrees of rotation. Complex
surface generation is far from problematic; this is where Rhino
really excels. There are many users of expensive parametric CAD
programs that rely on Rhino to easily generate complex organic
shapes.

I have only just started playing around with SolidWorks but, from
an engineering point of view, I wish I had found it much sooner -
I find it much easier to look at the picture I am drawing on
screen than to try to visualise the solid part amongst the forest
of lines on the Rhino screen or continually waste time rendering
it to check that the cylinder I have just subtracted from the box
did, in fact, go right through. 

Rhino allows modeling in shaded mode, and has for quite some time
(Version 1.1 I believe), so there is no need for getting lost in the
forest while you are working on an object. I have been checking out
the Beta version of the upcoming Version 3 release, and have been
impressed with the various shaded modes that have been added. It is
now possible to model in a mode called Emap, which maps an image
around the object. This can simulate a highly reflective surface
which can aid in modeling smooth, uninterrupted surfaces. I am
totally enthralled by this! It is like pushing around a piece of
liquid metal!

Rhino is not, and never will be a parametric CAD program. If I want
to move a hole in a surface, I have to do it manually and then
rebuild the surface. If I want to resize an object, I have to do it
by scaling, not by typing in new dimensions as you would in a
parametric program. This is where I get envious of parametric CAD
users. However the folks at McNeel & Associates, the publisher of
Rhino, have stated that advanced editing abilities will soon be
added that will satisfy some of the wishes of customers that are
asking for parametric features. McNeel has a reputation for
delivering more than they promise, so whatever they have up their
sleeve must be good.

I am not trying to be argumentative, I am only concerned that
someone might get the wrong idea about one of the best low cost CAD
programs available for jewelers.

-Tom Murray


#8

Ian, No offense, but you must be using a different Rhino from me!!

In 3D I use many solid objects as drawing tools, and most certainly
do not do as you described What a time waster that would be!
SolidWorks is great as an engineering tool For jewlery design,
however , it has many limitations Note that GIA has dropped using
SolidWorks to teach CAD to its students, and is now using Matrix, the
plug-in for Rhino The speed is incredible, the jewelry-related
builders are incredible, just a whole new ball game Made for
jewelrs, by jewelrs, world-class customer support Wayne


#9
    SolidWorks is great as an engineering tool  For jewlery
design, however , it has many limitations Note that GIA has dropped
using SolidWorks to teach CAD to its students, and is now using
Matrix, the plug-in for Rhino The speed is incredible, the
jewelry-related builders are incredible, just a whole new ball game
Made for jewelrs, by jewelrs, world-class customer support Wayne 

Wayne, What you fail to explain, is the differences offered by
several CAD packages by their fundamental direct intent. I agree that
for the rapid generation of one off models, then we are safe to say
that Rhino with the Matrix solution is an excellent choice. However,
if the intent is to have a single design with multiple configurations
that will not only control the design intent, but also control
additional features and parts as in the production of metal molds for
example, then Solidworks is without a doubt the way to go. The
reality is to identify the needs of an individual or Company, and not
treat each and every situation in the same manner.

Granted, it would take longer in Solidworks to accomplish an initial
design than in Matrix, but again, what is the intended direction for
that part?. If it’s a single custom design, which will have no merit
or function in other parts then yes Matrix again is the winner. If
you require the part to control other entities within the assembly,
and by dimensionally driving the model and have everything update
accordingly, then this would put Solidworks and its Parametrically
driven environment way ahead. If like myself, your business is to
manufacture hard tooling and fixtures for production, then there is
no way that the Rhino and Matrix solution would come anywhere close
to the productivity ratio offered by Solidworks. Within the
Solidworks environment, I can create the part, and all of the tooling
necessary to manufacture/machine the part, and as a finger size is
changed, it will then of course, update the ring and its related
parts and also all of the tooling needed to produce the part.
Further, if you have a CAM solution that operates within the
Solidworks environment, then all toolpaths will update accordingly.
It is of paramount importance to have the tool that fits your needs,
and your needs are determined by your daily tasks and duties. A
friend of mine who is a Matrix user took up the challenge to compare
functionality between the two programs.

The task was to draw a class ring. Then from that same design,
create the variants that were controlled by the stone sizes and the
engraving area. This equated into 5 rings that reflected 2 boys and 3
Girls all of the same style. At the end of 1 hour, I had one Ring
that was fully related geometrically with 2 equations to control many
tasks simultaneously, and he had all five rings. Conclusion for phase
one was Matrix was ahead by number of rings finished.

The second phase was to take the 5 rings and create 8 different
sizes each which equated to a total of 40 rings in all. In the time
it took me to add a configuration, name it and change the dimension
values which were 2 for the first 8 and only one for the remaining 32
I was done in 30 minutes, and he was still going and in reality had
accomplished only 20% of what I had done in 90 Minutes. Clear winner
here was Solidworks. arate rings then Matrix would have been the
winner. But when it comes to families of parts then Solidworks is the
winner and kicked butt. Therefore, it is important to establish, what
the true direction of accomplishment really is. Neither is better
that the other for what is was designed to do. For you Matrix fits
the bill. For me Solidworks fits the bill.

We can therefore take it to the bank that there are no winners or
losers, it just means you need the right vehicle to do the job. You
are not going to drive a Toyota Camry in the same way as a Ferrari,
and a Ferrari is not going to fill the need for a family car either.

I think it would be fair to say, that any smart discussion in
general regarding both CAD and CAM needs each and every situation
addressed accordingly so that individuals have a clear understanding
of what each offers as specific intended directions.

The CAD environment should be treated much the same way as buying a
Car. Multiple choices, multiple applications and multiple levels of
options. Which is the right vehicle for you? Best Regards. Neil George

954-572-5829