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  1. #1
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    How does expensive software suck so hard?

    I'm doing a pretty big project... a mold for a tank that's about a meter long. I scanned it with NextEngine scanner (with the HD Pro power up) and am using the $5k RapidWorks in my attempt to get the model to my tool maker. I've been on it a few months...

    I just can't say whether the money is worth it for RapidWorks. I think I may have been better off saving the $ and just getting solidworks instead. Then manually build the surfaces via sketches.

    Cons to RapidWorks:
    Only opens files from NextEngine scans or already saved from RapidWorks.
    Once the feature tree gets 50+ edits in it, the software crawls to a halt.
    If you don't save often enough when in the above step, it crashes and you might lose a couple hours of work (like I just did).
    Feature tree cannot collapse or combine.
    When you autosurf like their propaganda shows, the surfaces actually kinda suck. Easier to instead construct lofts and sweeps using ideal geometry so you can enforce symmetry and have a model that is actually straight.
    They never, ever reply to crash reports. At least the McNeel folks reading the incoming stuff for Rhino3D would occasionally reply.
    Buying this took away half the $ I need to buy SolidWorks.

    Rant over... guess I'm up working til sunrise again.
    Chris Kelley
    President
    ca-cycleworks.com

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by ca-cycleworks View Post
    I'm doing a pretty big project... a mold for a tank that's about a meter long. I scanned it with NextEngine scanner (with the HD Pro power up) and am using the $5k RapidWorks in my attempt to get the model to my tool maker. I've been on it a few months...

    I just can't say whether the money is worth it for RapidWorks. I think I may have been better off saving the $ and just getting solidworks instead. Then manually build the surfaces via sketches.

    Cons to RapidWorks:
    Only opens files from NextEngine scans or already saved from RapidWorks.
    Once the feature tree gets 50+ edits in it, the software crawls to a halt.
    If you don't save often enough when in the above step, it crashes and you might lose a couple hours of work (like I just did).
    Feature tree cannot collapse or combine.
    When you autosurf like their propaganda shows, the surfaces actually kinda suck. Easier to instead construct lofts and sweeps using ideal geometry so you can enforce symmetry and have a model that is actually straight.
    They never, ever reply to crash reports. At least the McNeel folks reading the incoming stuff for Rhino3D would occasionally reply.
    Buying this took away half the $ I need to buy SolidWorks.

    Rant over... guess I'm up working til sunrise again.
    I find RapidWorks to be VERY powerful, but it does require LOTS of computing horsepower to use effectively. I too wish the file import limits were not there, but considering the reduction in cost from the "real" package, it is certainly understandable! I have a Quad-Core hyperthreaded CPU and 32 GB of RAM, and use an SSD for file saving, all to get the most of RW. The software also has quite a steep learning curve. I was very frustrated with it for about a year (using it off and on) but finally have "gotten over the hump" and can do what I need to with it pretty well. That said, I also have SW. Trying to bring a pointcloud in to SW and use it to construct the geometry is NOT an easier path, in my opinion. SW is not good at all in working with pointclouds.

    With respect to RapidWorks support, I agree. I think the NextEngine community is tiny for them, so we are basically ignored. Certainly no where near as responsive as the NextEngine guys...
    CAD, CAM, Scanning, Modelling, Machining and more. http://www.mcpii.com/3dservices.html

  3. #3
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    Hi McPhill, oh wow, hey thanks for replying! Instead of a point cloud, I could see using NextEngine CAD tools to export a mesh... Import that into Solidworks? Then build up a model accordingly? The only thing I'd miss would be the accuracy analyzer, which proved pretty awesome for making the 1/2" outer shell for the mold... (I'll build some pics and post)
    Chris Kelley
    President
    ca-cycleworks.com


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