Can a History-Based Move Face Command Match Synchronous Technology?

There is an on-going discussion about whether a history-based “move face” feature can be as effective as the Synchronous Technology Steering Wheel.

Let’s take a couple of specific examples.

SNAG-00001. Starting with the end of a block with rounds and an angled face. It doesn’t matter if this part is native or imported, just that the history-based move face feature is the only thing used to make the edit.

Solid Edge accomplishes the task easily. And it offers several options for the results, including changing the angles of the sides, not changing the angles of the sides, lifting the flat face up (adding sides).

BrandX with Move Face fails. It fails because of the fillet. But you could make the fillets move if you selected them, except for the angled face. The angled face forces the fillet to change during the move, so it doesn’t work.

2. Use Move Face in the context of an assembly

Solid Edge can change multiple parts in an assembly at the same time without needing complex external references between the parts.

BrandX can’t do it. BrandX could do something like move one face from one part, and then have external references from other parts in the assembly, but this requires the relationships to be set up before hand, and the relationships have to be managed.

3. Use Move Face to get a flexible result, as if you were moving underconstrained sketch entities.

Solid Edge again does this easily. You can constrain faces in Solid Edge the way you would constrain sketch entities in BrandX. You can decide to use or not use those relations on the fly.

BrandX cannot do this. Once a face is created, you have to go back to the feature definition or the sketch to change it.

4. Make a change using driving dimensions on the 3D model.

Solid Edge can do this all day.

BrandX doesn’t have any such functionality. You can place a driven dimension on the model, or a driving dimension on a 3D sketch, but no driving dimensions on the model itself.

5. And then of course are the file size and rebuild time issues. every “move face” feature you add to a history-based model leaves another feature in the tree that has to be rebuilt. 5 changes, 5 extra features in the tree and 5 extra rebuilds. SE w/ST doesn’t have this overhead. after every edit, the model is just geometry, just like it was before. The file size remains the same and Synchronous Technology doesn’t even have the concept of “rebuild time”.

The move face techniques are powerful, but they are nowhere near what Synchronous Technology brings to the table. In my former life using other software, the move face tools came to be known as something you’d use here and there if you had an imported part. On a native part, it was considered very sloppy practice, generally because it severely extended rebuild times, and was just a crutch because you couldn’t figure out how to do something the “right” way.

I’m glad now to be working with software that doesn’t force you to make decisions about edits when you first start making the model.

10 Replies to “Can a History-Based Move Face Command Match Synchronous Technology?”

  1. Interesting to me how Solid Edge has taken the Parasolid Kernel capabilities to another level. SolidWorks made a choice to not do this, a poor decision in my opinion.

    Devon Sowell

      1. ….so much so that when the company founders have to start again they immediately want to use it regardless of whether it has new capabilities or not… yeah OK going now …(Devon hope you and yours are doing OK there in SC)

        1. Matt-My point was not to praise the Parasolid Kernel, but to comment how Solid Edge has improved it’s capabilities while SolidWorks hasn’t.

          Neil-We live in Southern Calif. I’ve started a new Medical Coding & Billing company. With all the huge changes brought on by “ObamaCare”, there are many challenges & changes. I’m helping companies make these changes. Hope you are well, my friend.

          Cheers, Devon

          1. How true Devon. I just grin when I hear all the clap trap about old geometry kernals and the need for new powerful ones to replace the old end of life ones. But somehow SE pries new things out of it where others fail to do so.

            I doubt in my life time the perfect math solution for CAD will be arrived at so I will go with the ones trying the hardest to get there. They wont succeed but they will advance to my benefit above the others.

  2. Hi Matt,

    can you show as an example with the Sync Technology in an complex plastic part with draft angles and radius?

    My experience so far is very bad, changes will not be executed or need a very long time.

    1. Donceod,

      I don’t have any of those in SE. My idea of a complex plastic part like I’ve done for the past several years involves a lot of surfacing. Surfacing is still an ordered operation in SE. If I did have a Synchronous plastic part, I would add the fillets as ordered, which would allow the main body of the part to be more editable with Synchronous.

      Can you show a picture of a part that you didn’t have good success with?

  3. “I’m glad now to be working with software that doesn’t force you to make decisions about edits when you first start making the model.”

    Ain’t that the truth…

    Yesterday I used ALL of these edit with a project I’m working on for a client. After reviewing my first Design Concept, the client realized they had left out a few details in our earlier discussions, and therefore my design approach needed a bit of tweaking. After about 20 minutes in Solid Edge I was able to make these changes and get back to the customer. This would have been hours in History based design.

    But that’s not the big value here, although it does impress my clients as to how efficient we are… what really is most valuable is that these edits were not just “pretty picture” tricks in order to satisfy the customer. They were true Part edits, that didn’t “blow up” the history tree. And the best part is many of these edits I did from the Assembly level. Out of the dozen or so Parts that needed updating I think only 2 were done from the Part Environment. And if you go into those parts, you’ll see that not one Feature in the Tree has failed, and ALL your dimensions have been updated to reflect the edits as well.

    And the best part… it’s a freak’n blast doing it. I’ve been using CAD for 30 years, and this is the most design freedom and fun I’ve ever had.


Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: