CAD/CAM discussion forum > 3D CAD/CAM > 3d parts libraries

3d parts libraries

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cutter

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Message 1 of 21

 3d parts libraries
27-02-2008 08:36 . am | View his/her posts only
I am trying to find a good 3d parts library that I can use in conjunction with VX. Bearings, 4 bolt and 2 bolt flange bearings and pillow blocks. Tri-clamp sanitary tube weld fittings. Standard weld and threaded pipe fittings. roller conveyor parts. Quick release pins. In general I am looking for a good all round MCAD parts library that I can use in designing various bits of equipment for customers and looking on the web is getting very tedious. Does anyone have a suggestion on where to go and how to incorporate such a thing into the rudimentary parts file inside of VX?

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ChrisWard2k2

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Message 2 of 21

27-02-2008 11:34 . am | View his/her posts only
Hello cutter

Well, some of the items in your list are not fully defined by a standard and therefore manufacturer specific. These days, most manufactures have CAD data available for their products, so rather than a broad web search, visiting a specific manufacturer's website is an easy way to go in these cases.

There are some good websites that can quickly lead you to a variety of manufactures:

http://www.thomasnet.com/browse/hardware-1.html

TraceParts is an online service that offers many free CAD models from a variety of manufacturers. You can also subscribe to get access to a wider range including standard parts:

http://www.tracepartsonline.net/(cr24diujfooig145aih23045)/global/index.aspx

VX is compatible with the popular Part Solutions MCAD Parts Library (it is huge), which includes catalogs of a very wide range of standard components and also many popular commercial parts. VX integrates Part Solutions via the "Applications" menu and is famous in Europe for having the fastest integration. VX is also compatible with most other libraries, both on CD and the internet. These libraries typically output a neutral format file such as IGES, STEP, DXF, which you then simply import into a VX file. You can make many imports into a single VX file or collection of VX files as required, using these as your own VX library files (use right-mouse-click "insert component" to place an Object from a library file into your current work-in-progress Model).

For VX v14 we will also make our own basic fastener library available.

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cutter

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Message 3 of 21

29-02-2008 08:13 . pm | View his/her posts only
I do currently use both of these sites for files but finding something in them can be a REAL chore. One of the items I use is a "tri-clamp" weld fitting for sanitary piping in food production in various diameters. After about a day of looking I did find a vendor that listed [ at Thomas Register] these parts but their specs are different than any other vendor I have ever bought these things from and so I still have to fool around with the part after I download it. I was shown the parts library in Solid Edge recently and was dumbfounded by the amount of searchable categories including all the ones I need and these were parts that corresponded in size with the ones I currently buy. I was hoping that someone would know where to get such a thing without having to spend gobs of cash to get another cad program just for the parts files. Trace parts has been very tough to use for me and I have ended up going straight to the vendor site, Reid supply is one, to get a usable search interface. Wanted a bearing the other day and Trace Parts had the category but only one size and that was it. Went to Reid Supplies site and the rep there laughed at my description of how hard it was to get around at traces site. He demonstrated to me how to use Reids own site and it is an example of how to do it. But I still have to go on line. I am really interested in a comprehensive CD of parts more than anything. Any tips on this? Thanks

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ChrisWard2k2

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Message 4 of 21

29-02-2008 09:01 . pm | View his/her posts only
Hi cutter

The most obvious question to ask you then is, who are the manufacturers of the tri-clamp tube fittings that you use, and/or what standard are they (ASME ???)

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Robert

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Message 5 of 21

01-03-2008 07:45 . am | View his/her posts only
Hi Cutter,

We're working on an "easier-to-use" part library solution in Version 14.

Have you experimented with building your own library within VX using the part table stuff?

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Paul

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Message 6 of 21

03-03-2008 01:10 . am | View his/her posts only
I use SKF for bearings. They can supply the parts as packaged VX Neutral files. You have to run the files as a macro to create the model which is quire neat and a big file size saver. Beyond that don't, have alos found the whole parts things a bit convoluted.
Love the idea of a built in fasteners library though.
Cheers

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cutter

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Message 7 of 21

03-03-2008 02:47 . pm | View his/her posts only
Alfa Laval and TriClover are the two companies that produce the sanitary tube fittings. As of yet they do not have any 3d info on line nor do they have a cd you can get. The similar parts I can find allmost allways require rework to get them to match what I order from local vendors. In General on things like bearings I use Reid Supplies site as I can look a part up in the catalogue, reference the part # on their search engine and it takes me right there. Much easier to use than any other site I have found. I suppose over the course of a couple of years I could continue to go on line and build my own library but since I know that comprehensive libraries exist my choice FIRST is to try and get my hands on one of these and save myself the couple of weeks worth of effort that will take. And if you have spent time looking for parts on line you know what I mean. So back to my original question, does anybody know where I can get a comprehensive MCAD parts library? I really don't want to have to rely on the web for this as time is money. The reason I mentioned solidedge earlier is last year when I was looking at other cad programs I saw this one and had a user sit down with me and show me the parts library. I was completely blown away with the proof that every part I have ever used and expect to use was all there. Pretty darned handy timewise and since some of what I do is design work in the field where I expect my customer to view the final cad part/assembly and issue approvals based on this before I leave. And there is no web access in many cases so web searches are out. I am sure that I could with time and effort create a library but as sure as I am breathing it would not have a part I need and all I can tell a customer at that time is "just imagine that ------- is right here even though you can't see it" I do not desire to do that. Gotta line on a big parts Library without having to spend 5 0r 6 thousand anyone?

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Robert

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Message 8 of 21

03-03-2008 03:28 . pm | View his/her posts only
Hi Dave,

I hear you loud and clear.

We're working to create a mechanical library for VX 14 for exactly the reasons you've stated.

I'll be monitoring this thread closely to see if you're successful in your quest.

Thanks,

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cutter

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Message 9 of 21

05-03-2008 06:39 . am | View his/her posts only
If I can find a good free parts library I will definitely post the info here.

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ChrisWard2k2

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Message 10 of 21

05-03-2008 10:01 . am | View his/her posts only
Hi cutter

If Alfa Laval and TriClover (aren't they the same company?) do not have any CAD data to publish, you are not likely to find them in any Mechanical Parts Library, since somebody has to spend the time and money to create the data and that is usually the manufacturer. There can be exceptions, if someone regularly uses their data and has created their own CAD models, they might make files available to save others the hassle. The Solid Edge Library is nice, but it does not feature tri-clamp fittings. Is there an ASME/ANSI standard that Alfa/Triclover have to comply with? It may be that a rival manufacture uses dimensions that are compatible.

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ChrisWard2k2

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Message 11 of 21

05-03-2008 10:13 . am | View his/her posts only
Hi cutter

I see that the Tr-Clover Tri-Clamps are a proprietary standard. That possibly explains why you cannot find files or even dimensional data - they do not want their products to be cloned.

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cutter

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Message 12 of 21

05-03-2008 07:43 . pm | View his/her posts only
Chris, Actually these fittings, Triclover, Triclamp, Alfa Laval etc for example are manufactured to an NSF [ National Sanitary Foundation] standard that is recognised industry wide and adhered to by all. And the fittings in the Solid edge library are dead on physical measurements from parts I have bought and are based on these. Or at least the ones this guy had [V20] were. I did take the liberty to verify some dimesions when the guy showed me the sanitary fittings so I know this to be true. Swagelock is the company in Thomas register that has the triclamp style fittings but their OAL is allways for some reason different than the others I have seen. And to top it off I have never had fittings made by them supplied to me by vendors so I am not sure what is going on here. Yes there is a standard for these and no for some reason the manufacturers will not give you cad files. It is silly as if I were to want to manufacture these it would not be to difficult to get sizes and do so. For some reason they are just singularly uncooperative. Triclamps are not proprietary, Just the TriClover name and there is more than one company making them. They are making virtualy all of these in China now so they can't be too worried about clones now can they. Can you say run that third shift part in a two shift plant ha ha. You know, you have to admire the Chinese who have taken total advantage of beancounter idiots running these companies who think their production lines are only running authorised parts. A fair number of fittings now come in with no origin marked on them and I woooonder why.

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ChrisWard2k2

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Message 13 of 21

06-03-2008 04:35 . am | View his/her posts only
Hi cutter

The tri-clamps are listed in the Alfa Laval brochure without reference to a standard, alongside other systems that are, though that could simply be a typo. If the NSF standard is published, it should be possible to find somebody out there that adheres to it, but much depends on the dimensional demands. If it is possible to be dimensionally different and still comply with the standard, the shape is proprietary and you need models of each manufacturers part used (= nightmare).

It might be the case that contracted manufacturers overseas make clones to sell back to the same market. I'd expect Alfa to be wise to this, and it should be easy to investigate (not so easy to find the people that copy software!). China itself is a huge market and it is very likely that they have always had similar piping systems. When you see Chinese manufacturing first hand, you can better understand why they are an attractive proposition to partner. The shear volume of production is there of course. More than that, it is supported by good quality systems practice and engineering ingenuity. Of course, that doesn't mean that bean counters are not wet behind the ears

When you say the manufacturers are silly to not supply CAD data, I have to agree that they are missing an opportunity. There cannot be many among their customers that are not dependent on CAD-CAM. The manufacturers are likely to be dependent on CAD-CAM themselves. I imagine though that many components pre-date CAD and have never required a design modification, so it all comes back to costs. Some companies realize that technical support is not an overhead but a positive contribution to sales and marketing.

So, you have struggled to source tri-clamp information but hopefully this will not be the norm in your quest for good data on other components. I have put some feelers out, if I get any good data on tri-clamps you will definitely be the first to know.

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cutter

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Message 14 of 21

06-03-2008 07:47 . am | View his/her posts only
Chris, Google NSF and it will take you to the authority that oversees sanitary standards for this stuff. Now for the most part they create the conditions needed for safe processing and the actual size, diameter for instance is left up to industry. However, a company that decided to create their "own" sizes would be out of business in quick order. Tubing is manufactured to specific od's and wall thicknesses and there is no variance here. All fittings are made to match this and the only difference I have seen is the length of things like "ferrules" where one companies may be longer or shorter than anothers but will still work with anothers products. Its kind of like all 3/4" pipe nipples will fit all 3/4 couplings and if your's doesn't you wont be around long. But differing lengths of course mean having to redo 3d cad parts to the standard of parts supplied to you to get accurate assemblies. The only difference in triclamps is in the hinge and the tightning thumscrew, and low preassure/high preassure. All will fit like categories from other companies so any difference is trivial. Alfa Laval does not list a standard as such except of the sanitary standards and in contact with them in the past they do not have any cad files to release even though I know they have them. I would differ with you on the Chinese a little by the way. quality is improving but one of the largest souces of counterfits is skimmed off production and knock off factories the owner investors do not know about. The quality I have experienced in parts from them is not good and how in the world they got their ISO's I have no idea. It is bad enough that I spend more money to buy from elsewhere as it saves me money in the long run with better fitup or durability or both. If you do find standard cad files for this stuff I need both DIN and ISO as both are in the plants I contract to. Thanks

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ChrisWard2k2

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Message 15 of 21

06-03-2008 10:28 . am | View his/her posts only
Hi cutter

I have had confirmation from Alfa that they do not have CAD files (but they know they need to do something about that). The tri-clamp does pre-date their CAD system, hand-drawn in 1986.

VX Assemblies have a cool facility called "Alternate Component". If you initially use the fittings of one manufacturer but later need to specify those of another, you can swap-out the components with this function.

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cutter

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Message 16 of 21

08-03-2008 03:12 . am | View his/her posts only
Hi Chris and thanks for the amount of time you have spent on this. It is hard for me to imagine that they have moved their factories around the world and still do not have their production in cad yet. It was my assumption that they had these files but rather than be bothered with a request they offered an excuse. What you found out was even worse and more than I certainly got out of them. Still wandering and looking and wondering why this has to be so much darned trouble. I am about to just get a catalogue with 2d specs in it and just start my own library. Which brings me to this idea, If I do start to do such a thing, and others find this concept interesting is there a possibility that VX might be willing to create a subset in the forums or elsewhere for "user parts libraries" where users can post their parts files for the benefit of other users?

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ChrisWard2k2

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Message 17 of 21

08-03-2008 06:59 . am | View his/her posts only

Hi cutter

That sounds like a good idea to me.

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Robert

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Message 18 of 21

10-03-2008 07:14 . am | View his/her posts only
Hi Dave,

Brilliant idea. I've got a new web guy starting in a month or so and I'll make sure he adds this to his list.

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Kevin

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Message 19 of 21

10-03-2008 10:38 . am | View his/her posts only
I like the sound of this. A set of parametric ISO fasteners would be excellent as a downloadable option.

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ChrisWard2k2

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Message 20 of 21

10-03-2008 03:06 . pm | View his/her posts only
Hi 3D monkey

They will be a VX library item in v14.

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ChrisWard2k2

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Message 21 of 21

12-03-2008 08:37 . am | View his/her posts only
Hi cutter

The Alpha Laval catalog is available as a PDF file, which is handy since the dimensioning is not detailed but there are line drawings that can be traced and then scaled to size.
See also