Pro/ENGINEER Users: New Sheet Metal Capabilities with Creo Parametric

Written by: Geoff Hedges

You may have already watched the comparison of sheet metal’s new capabilities in Creo 2.0 versus Pro/ENGINEER Wildfire. But you’re an engineer and genetically predisposed to asking why and how did sheet metal get so much better? Read on about the new features that make working with sheet metal twice as fast, or watch this quick video of PTC Director of Product Management, Paul Sagar, explaining key enhancements to sheet metall.

User interface

Dashboard-based commands make menus accessible and make sheet metal consistent with the rest of Creo 2.0. For example, quick access to the conversion tool lets you take an existing part and turn it directly into sheet metal. Also menu items, such as corner relief creation, are consistent across all sheet metal controls.

Helpful drag handles in sheet metal let you interact in real-time with your geometry on the screen. Drag handles have overhauled how you add bends and unbend parts in sheet metal, making one simple step from several previously complicated steps.

Flat pattern preview

The 2D flat pattern preview window may sound simple, but it’s a huge time saver. At its simplest, flat patterns present the sheet metal unfolded in a sub-window while you work. Overlapping geometry shows up in red so you can make adjustments. The flat-pattern preview lets you measure features and store those parameters for later. You can also use the preview window to refine the direction and angle of bends so you don’t have to recreate the bend.

Bends and intersecting walls

Speaking of bends, creating bend features is made simpler by snapping lines to the edges of walls, while the Join tool cuts out the lengthy process required in creating sheet metal for intersecting walls. When joining multiple disconnected walls, the system automatically adds a bend radius too.


Previously, to make bend reliefs or piercings, you had to create a separate model for your sketch form and assemble it into the sheet metal part. The Sketch form tool lets you sketch directly onto the sheet metal and define the draft angle and bend reliefs and even convert a sketched form into a partial piercing.

Some of these items may seem like huge changes, while others seem minute, but the reality is that the fewer mouse clicks and menus you go through, the faster you can finish sheet metal design – in fact up to twice as fast as Pro/ENGINEER Wildfire.

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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.