CAD Wire Import

This project is about reading wire / tube models in IGES / STEP format and converting them to wire bending industry specific formats: XYZr / LRAr.

That is, given the following CAD model:

CAD model image

the output might look like this:

Imported model image

Note XYZr representation shown on the left. Screenshot is from BenderCad system that has CAD Wire Import module integrated.

Main project challenges were:

  1. Centerline construction in 3D, that is required as part of the import process, is extremely complex task if done in “generic” way, I’m not aware of any practical implementations that allow to construct exact centerlines for generic 3D objects. Therefore, it was obvious that some advantages of the fact that we know shapes type (bent wires / tubes) should be utilized to construct simpler algorithm.
  2. IGES / STEP formats are very complex ones, so reading them is all but trivial task. It’s clear that some existing solution should be used, so the task was to find the best solution for the task matching project budgetary and time constraints and properly integrate it.
  3. As a consequence of CAD formats complexity, interoperability between different CAD packages is far from ideal. Besides that, there are a lot of ways to produce broken or semi-broken resulting files even without considering compatibility issues, such as with self-intersected or sharp bendings. Of course these problems cannot be fully solved, but implementation should take these facts into account and use best-efforts approach to recover as much as it can even if file is partially broken.

All these challenges were successfully resolved, resulting system is successfully used in multiple software products of the customer to provide easy interpoperability path with “generic” CAD packages.

Products that feature CAD Wire Import module are available from Automated Industrial Machinery, Inc. CAD Wire Import is (C) Copyright 2005 - 2010 by Automated Industrial Machinery, Inc. All rights reserved.

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