Our Product Design Software Plays Well with Others
Written by: Peter Sutton

As a product designer, you probably spend a great deal of time trying to get files from different 3D CAD software systems to play nicely together. Or worse, simply recreating the models in your own system from scratch. Like this guy:


No doubt he used his CAD system’s “import” function, to bring in the non-native designs. Unfortunately, that ultimately creates two different files that need to be managed separately.

The good news is that Creo makes that work a thing of the past. With Creo, opening those “other” files becomes much more straightforward. Here’s what you should know about PTC’s solution for multi-CAD.

Don’t File Import; File Open!

With the File Open function, you easily open and manage files from CATIA, Siemens NX, and SolidWorks.

It’s all part of Creo’s Unite technology (introduced in Creo 3.0), which is designed to make it easier to work in a multi-CAD environment. While other CAD systems allow you to import files created with other CAD systems, only Unite technology’s File Open capabilities give you the ability to work with that data without any conversion effort. So you can now incorporate CATIA, Siemens NX, and SolidWorks data directly into your designs without creating additional business objects or having to repair imported geometry.

Watch this quick video to learn more about Creo with Unite technology:

Unite to Collaborate or Consolidate

PTC Product Manager Marc Schuetz says that Unite technology works well whether companies want to collaborate or consolidate.

Tired of trying to maintain multiple CAD systems? You can turn design files into Creo data when needed. “Consolidation brings all of your formats into just one format and just one CAD system (Creo),” he says. “We include data converters for CAD systems, and we give them away for free.”

Plus, users convert only the parts and parent assemblies needed, as opposed to an entire assembly. This dramatically cuts the time and effort spent on data migration.

Trying to maintain versatility with your own customers? Consolidation isn’t for everyone, and Unite technology supports those who need to work with multiple systems. Schuetz says PTC is committed to making sure you can work seamlessly across CAD platforms, too. “The need to collaborate effectively is essential to productivity, competitiveness, and profitability for many manufacturers,” says Schuetz. “Unite technology provides efficient cross-platform collaboration, unique to Creo.”

An Early Adopter Speaks Up

At Boston Engineering, Will Ober says Unite technology will ease the headaches associated with working in multi-CAD environments.

Ober, a mechanical engineer, says “Boston Engineering is mostly a services firm and we have to use the software that the client uses—every desk is using a different type of modeling software. Creo 3.0 will allow us to move to just one CAD platform and that saves a lot of time, training, and cost.”

You can learn more about Unite technology in our free eBook, Designing in a Multi-CAD Environment. This eBook looks at the problems designers face when they work with CAD data from multiple systems. It explores the problems engineers encounter when they exchange and translate designs between 3D CAD software packages. It then gives insight into recent advances that address these problems and how these advances help engineers and their collaborative partners involved in the product development cycle. Download your free copy today.

Download the Designing in a Multi-CAD Environment eBook

Tags: CAD Retail and Consumer Products Connected Devices
About the Author Peter Sutton

Peter Sutton joined PTC in 2011 as the Director of Product and Solutions Marketing for CAD. He has over 15 years of experience in product marketing as well as five years as an engineer in the energy industry. Peter holds a MBA from the University of Connecticut and a Bachelors of Science in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Rhode Island.