PTC Creo View MCAD: Detect and Report Clash and Clearance Issues without 3D CAD

Written by: Geoff Hedges

In a world where product designs include parts from different sources and designers, it’s not unusual to find pieces that collide or don’t leave enough space. That’s why most 3D CAD systems include tools for finding interferences and checking clearances.

But here’s the problem. Most people who take part in design reviews and validation processes don’t have 3D CAD engineering software or training. In truth, most companies simply can’t afford to buy a seat for every person in every role: Quality Control, Manufacturing, Purchasing, Management, etc.

And there’s a second problem. Because those people don’t have 3D CAD software, engineers and designers end up spending a lot of time preparing data for others.

That’s why we offer PTC Creo View MCAD, a viewing app for anyone on the product team, from management to documentation to tooling to the assembly floor. The app can upload 3D data from a variety of sources (not just PTC Creo) as well as 2D drawings and documents.

Team members can use it to review, interrogate, markup, and validate models any time in the development process.

Of course, for some team members that won’t be enough. Think about a packaging engineer who needs to see how a new medical device fits in a shock mount containers, or a truck manufacturer who wants to digitally check the fit of an air conditioner next to an engine. For these situations, we recommend an extension called PTC Creo View MCAD Interference Analysis.

This extension checks for interferences, touching parts, and even clearances between components. The type and number of interferences, as well as the components that are involved, are all identified by PTC Creo View MCAD Interference Analysis.

You can also set up dynamic groups. For example, suppose you don’t want to check everything in the assembly—just the electrical and HVAC systems. PTC Creo View MCAD Interference Analysis can isolate specific components or systems for analysis.

All that said, anyone who’s ever participated in a design review or validation process can tell you that finding problems isn’t the same as getting them fixed effectively. You’ve got to communicate clearly and effectively.  And this is where this software shines.


PTC Creo View MCAD Interference Analysis extension

Once the analysis is complete, you can easily navigate through the results and see the problems, compute and display interference volumes,, mark issues up, and share in 3D.

That’s not all. The extension is a sophisticated tool that, when integrated with PTC Windchill, can automate the process of interference checking.  Issues can be routed to appropriate people and will be tracked to completion to ensure designs are correct before reaching manufacturing.

And because it’s an extension of PTC Creo View MCAD, the interference analysis tool has all the benefits of the viewer. That is, you don’t need a full-blown CAD license (or expertise). It works with 3D data from multiple sources and formats, and it’s accessible to everyone on the team—no matter their geography.

With PTC Creo View MCAD Interference Analysis, more of your team can participate in design validation and review. They will be able to find problems sooner, save the company money, and free up CAD design engineers to continue designing.

To learn more about PTC Creo View MCAD Interference Analysis, visit the resource page.

Tags: CAD Retail and Consumer Products Connected Devices

About the Author

Geoff Hedges

Geoff Hedges is the founder and major contributor to, a CAD focused blog that’s reached over 1 million visitors since launch.

In his current role as Program Marketing Director for the PLM and ALM businesses, he is responsible for demand marketing, including developing and executing demand generation campaigns, web site experience and product launch.

Geoff has more than 30 years of experience working in the areas of CAD, PLM, and PDM software; he holds an Honors Degree in Mechanical Engineering and currently lives in Stuttgart, Germany.