CAD Software Development

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Your CAD software does not always do what you want it to do? We can help you with that.

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What are the advantages of custom CAD software from SPI?

You are working with Solidworks, Autodesk Inventor or another mainstream CAD-System and reach the limits of this standard solution again and again? You are looking for features that are tailored to support your processes?

We are experts in CAD development with nearly 40 years of market experience. Our expertise covers:

  • Display, measurement, comparison, and analysis of 3D CAD or BREP models and 2D CAD data, in particular in the formats DXF and GEO (TRUMPF format)
  • Expansion of the functionality of CAD systems such as Solidworks, Autodesk Inventor, Autodesk AutoCAD, SpaceClaim etc. by including own design features
  • Solving complex geometric problems
  • Automatic assessment of manufacturability and part calculation
  • Automatic preparation of offers and manufacturing documents

We have extensive knowledge and experience in the sheet metal processing industry. Laser cutting, laser tube cutting, bending – no matter which manufacturing process you use, we ensure a manufacturable design and unfolding.

Development Tools

  • Visual Studio 2017 and 2019, Visual Studio Code (cross-plattform)
  • CMake
  • Subversion
  • Cloud

Frameworks & Languages

C++, C++ CLI

COM

Windows API

Microsoft Foundation Classes (MFC)

Boost (C++ Library)

C#

Windows Presentation Foundation (WPF)

.Net Framework

.Net Core + ASP .Net Core

ASP .Net MVC

Web/REST Services

Windows Communication Foundation (WCF)

Solidworks API

Inventor API

Powershell Cmdlet / Skript

MS SQL, SQL Server Compact

Angular7

NodeJs

Examples

Tube Construction for Trumpf with TubeDesign

SPI develops the Tube Design software for the machine tool provider TRUMPF: a CAD program that facilitates profile design for products manufactured with TruLaser Tube machines, or TruLaser machines with RotoLas units. The software specializes in the programming of tube cutting machines for processing tubes and profiles. The programming system is based on extensive technological knowledge. This allows it to, for example, analyze cutting geometries and calculate contours. The program performs complex tasks such as corner processing of rectangular profiles automatically. Bend connections are created with ease. Complex tube designs can be cut and assembled in high-quality thanks to the intelligent connection technology. Numerous automatic functions for the intersection of tubes facilitate design and programming. The ergonomic and efficient operation ensures a high level of user-friendliness.

TruTops Bend, TruTops Punch, TruTops Tube and other software modules of the TruTops series are trademarks of the TRUMPF company and are protected accordingly.

Machine Control with TopsUnfold from SPI
SPI GmbH developed the sheet metal unfolding software Tops Unfold for the TRUMPF Group. TRUMPF is one of the world’s leading manufacturing technology companies and their innovations have long set standards for sheet metal and material processing machines worldwide. The fact that TRUMPF has chosen SPI as their development partner for the Unfold solution distinguishes us as one of the most competent and innovative CAD software developers in the field of sheet metal unfolding. With SPI’s Tops Unfold, it takes just seconds to unfold 3D data with all production-relevant information. Tops Unfold uses the tried and tested shortening factors from the TruTops Bend database. For the calculation of reliefs, the user can additionally use punching tool data from TruTops Punch. The result of the unfolding is a 2D plate in GEO format that contains technology information necessary for further processing, for example for programming the press brake in TruTops Bend. Tops Unfold generates the blank with all bending lines in GEO file format. This format allows swift further processing in the programs of the TRUMPF TruTops software family. For example, all necessary bending information can be easily forwarded to TruTops Bend. This way, a bending simulation can be started immediately. The logic underlying the Tops Unfold program developed for TRUMPF is also included in SPI’s own SheetMetal Solutions software. The “unfolder” of SPI SheetMetalWorks and SPI SheetMetal Inventor is based on the same algorithms. Tops Unfold also includes SolidWorks OEM modules.
Heterogeneous Machinery and Distributed Manufacturing Sites

Several manufacturing locations with centralised construction, heterogeneous machinery as well as the opening of a central cutting centre for southern Germany presented the Bader Group with a technical challenge that was solved with the help of SPI.

When Bader opened a new cutting centre at the company’s headquarters in Senden, equipped with brand new automated punching and laser machines and a central raw material warehouse, programming with the existing OEM systems proved to be a bottleneck. Existing CAD parts had to redesigned for production in different sites. This, of course, could not remain a permanent state of affairs.

To provide the required process information and control the machines, Bader decided for SPI SheetMetal in conjunction with WiCAM’s PN4000 programming system. 19 SPI software licenses are in use today, an extension is already planned. The SPI sheet metal unfolding software ensures that the CAD data is provided with cutting and machining data and transferred to the programming system as an XML file that includes all information relevant for the manufacturing process The software also delivers GEO data that can be used in other Bader production sites without needing additional adjustments for the machines used there.

The next challenge was the heterogeneity of the machine park across the different production sites: it includes machines from Amada, EHT, Hämmerle, Salvagnini, and Trumpf.

“Our goal was to be able to manufacture every product at every location,” explains the Head of Industrial Engineering. “When we design parts here at the headquarters, the designer should not care whether the part will be manufactured in Germany or in Hungary. However, the different sites have different machines with different deduction values, so production location is certainly not unimportant.”

The Data Editor that is integrated into the SPI solution allows to manage and retrieve different material and bending tool combinations. It takes just the press of a button to create the necessary flat patterns with machine-specific deduction values for the various production sites.

An important further step for process automation is the introduction of the SPI solution for ensuring a manufacturable rebuilding of parts that took place in the summer of 2018. Regardless of how a part has been constructed, even if it contains false internal radii, inaccurate reliefs or bending lines, the SPI software will analyse the data and create not only a GEO or XML file but also a production-ready STEP file. This file includes all process information, correct reliefs, punching, and stamping data. The result is a virtual prototype that shows the part as it would be manufactured, including the accurate production radii. Potential collisions in the bending process can be easily detected and fixed in time.

Customer Projects - More Examples

Further examples of how SPI has implemented special customer requirements in the sheet metal processing industry can be found under References.

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sheetmetal@spi.de
+49 (0)4102 70 60

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