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Indiawood 2020
22 - 26 February 2024 | BIEC, Bengaluru, India
International Trade Fair for Furniture Production Technologies, Woodworking Machinery, Tools, Fittings, Accessories, Raw Materials and Products

3D programs: What are the challenges for furniture projects

3D is today the reference standard for CAD / CAM solutions for the wood industry. However, in the context of complex and / or large-scale furniture projects, 3D modeling can be a source of difficulty and can pose limits. CAD / CAM systems must solve these problems in order to respond specifically to the challenges of designers and allow them to improve their performance. What are the essential functions to meet the 3D challenges for your furniture projects and what is the added value of the TopSolid solution in this context? Here's the answers!

3D programs: the key features for furniture
According to the needs of the designers starting from the pre-study phase up to the processing phase, the 3D program must have the following functionalities:

• The integration of the elements of the tender specifications: at this stage, the program must allow the 3D import of different file formats - for example: IFC format to the BIM standard, DXF or DWG, developed and used by Autodesk, very popular architectures among professionals in the sector.

• Modeling commands: the 3D program must be adapted to the furniture ecosystem - for example: creating walls, floors and ceilings with the integration of openings (doors, windows…).

• Design orders: the program must integrate the functionalities capable of designing the furniture in 3D, for example: defining the panels and the grooving, rabbet, profiling, assembly operations ...

• The integration of manufacturers' technology: the program proposes libraries of parametric 3D components.

• The customization of manufacturing processes in 3D: the processes must in fact be able to be customized to be adapted to the production tool.

• 3D visualization: for a relevant decision and effective communication, the program must offer a precise and ergonomic visualization of all the details of the project.

• The organization of the project by work areas: the areas are delimited by 3D volumes to simplify their design and modification, and above all to allow collaborative work on large projects.

• The inclusion of processing technologies: starting from a 3D definition of a project, the program must be able to adapt to the different processing technologies in order to automate manufacturing.

Integrated 3D and CAD / CAM programs: what are the advantages?
The benefits of 3D are numerous for an integrated CAD / CAM solution. Focus on 5 major contributions.

Greater ergonomics for each stage of the furniture project
Starting from the pre-study stage of the project, 3D allows you to precisely define the volumes in your environment. Secondly, 3D is indispensable for the research and development of new furniture assembly processes. 3D also represents a valuable ally for the development of machining programs for complex components on 5-axis numerical control. For each phase of the furnishing project, 3D, managed with the right technology, facilitates the work and thus allows a better performance.

An effective communication tool that all project participants benefit from
In the context of a global management of the furniture project, the 3D functionalities of the integrated CAD / CAM solution become a major advantage for communicating at all levels.

• For the technical aspects of the project: the 3D digital model to support the animation of meetings with the various players in the project. The integrated CAD / CAM solution, in this context, facilitates the decision-making process. In fact, the precise visualization of the furniture allows you to make good technical choices with greater awareness.

• From a commercial point of view: by generating 3D visualizations, the integrated CAD / CAM solution allows the customer to have a perfectly realistic rendering. The designer thus discusses more easily with his client and the project progresses more quickly.

The elimination of the risk of error:
Visualize in 3D the way in which the different components are connected in the context of a complex assembly project, animate an assembly articulated in a given space, analyze collisions in static or dynamic ... many 3D features indispensable for an error-free design of assembly and without having to make a prototype.
By eliminating the risk of error, the designer not only saves time, but offers himself a guarantee of reliability that reinforces his reputation.

An important time saving in preparation thanks to 3D modeling
Predict to save time during the delicate phase of product preparation: this is the promise of a CAD / CAM program that integrates 3D modeling. On the one hand, the 3D configuration in the design phase of a component allows for a realistic and detailed rendering of the component itself, in order to estimate its performance. On the other hand, the simulation of machining on the machine allows you to view the different phases and estimate their duration.
By combining CAD and CAM interoperability as well as the automatic generation of executives, the 3D program can anticipate machining processes right from the design stage. By eliminating errors and securing the data, the preparation phase is more reliable and faster. The organization gains in speed to respond to orders but also in quality and productivity!

Realistic and immediate 3D visualization of CAD / CAM changes with a 3D modeler
To respond effectively to the needs that may evolve during the design phase, 3D modeling needs maximum precision together with a responsiveness that is proof of everything. For this, immediacy and associativity are the foundations of an integrated 3D and CAD / CAM program. The parametric 3D modeler allows the studio to make the project evolve regardless of the complexity and number of elements to be retouched (dimensions, subtraction of matter, assembly of components…). According to the design rules established with the customer, the reworked element is displayed and verified automatically without adding to the workload. Design gains additional reliability and saves time. 2D tables, bills of materials and machining programs are updated in real time,

A fully understandable workshop documentation
The joinery that receives tables with 3D views immediately grasps the elements as well as the assemblies to be made. In this way, multiple exchanges are avoided, work in the carpentry shop is facilitated and the risk of errors is once again reduced. Excellent solution to save time… CAD / CAM very easily produces this type of more readable documentation and also offers 3D visualization tools directly in the carpentry shop.

TopSolid'Wood: a 3D solution to simplify your CAD / CAM processes

The technological choices of TopSolid'Wood , an integrated CAD / CAM solution, perfectly meet the needs of designers thanks to its advanced 3D modeling functions. Based on the exact and parametric modeler Parasolid, TopSolid'Wood is developed on the principle of functionalities related to wood crafts and also integrates import / export interfaces compatible with most CAD / CAM solutions on the market.

The TopSolid'Wood 3D program also makes it possible to respond effectively to the high demands of current projects, especially as regards customization, bespoke… and the multitude of modifications that can be linked to them. Indeed, the number of changes required, no matter how many they are, have significant consequences on the value chain:

• Dimensional modification: if only one dimension is modified on an element, the whole design / manufacturing chain must be revised
• Functional modification: more radical, and with greater impact, this affects the shape or function of an element. The configuration and arrangement of the products in the workspace must then be completely revised.
• Aesthetic modification: in this case, you have to expect anything and, above all, know how to adapt to every request in terms of color, finishes, matter, materials.

It is easy to imagine how preserving the quality of the project requires tightened control in order to avoid errors or data loss. Only in such a context, the loss of time and profitability are so evident.

To ensure the performance of CAD / CAM processes it is essential to simplify them. For this reason, the TopSolid'Wood 3D solution associates in the design phase the set of documents linked to a project (bill of materials, executive elements, assembly instructions…) in a single reference document: the master file. By eliminating the risk of error and the time required to retrieve data, the 3D program transforms modification limits into an advantage that makes a difference. The designer makes a faster and higher quality project. Whether you use the 3D modeling functions or import 3D geometry, the design of a furniture with TopSolid'Wood allows a simplified and infallible use of the technical data of your project. The carpentry and the suppliers, as well as the customer, derive a direct benefit.

The contribution of TopSolid CAD / CAM in large-scale furniture projects

A 3D program with CAD / CAM for the management of complex or large-scale furnishings? Yes, the tool allows the various professions involved to work in a collaborative and coordinated way. It's the least!

TopSolid'Wood not only integrates this imperative but goes further, offering designers of different horizons access to work by zones, on the same project.

How does it work? Different ergonomic workspaces are created, each with its own functional data. Each area is intended for one of the professional categories involved in the project.
These spaces are declined in the form of a construction diagram based on the specifications of the tender specifications, or of the master file, which among other things can be created starting from CAD files coming from external programs.

Designers have the possibility to choose different levels of design precision, according to their needs: simplified representation for a global work or finer with the visualization of the details on a precise area of a project, such as assemblies, moldings, materials used ... Each of them creates the furniture of their area on the basis of the data emerging from the master file. This means that any modification to this reference file generates an automatic update of the workspaces, thus allowing designers to quickly adapt their project… a real convenience. Once all the areas have been furnished, the user who supervises the project proceeds with the final assembly of all the files in order to check the overall coherence of the project.

This flexible operation is an effective means of accelerating and securing large-scale space design. Since each professional category has the same information at the same time, communication is more fluid and collaboration more effective.


The TopSolid'Wood 3D program with integrated CAD / CAM accompanies the most complex and high-end projects: designers respond quickly and precisely to the many and different problems of the wood industry, adapt to changes in real time and, in fact, they preserve the design performance in terms of time and quality.

By optimizing the design and production phases of standard or specific projects, the TopSolid'Wood 3D program considerably reduces the management time before starting the machining. Ultimately, choosing a combined 3D and CAD / CAM solution allows you to meet the profitability and competitiveness challenges of the wood industry.

For more information, please visit www.topsolid.com

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