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IndustryArena Forum > CAM Software > ZW3D CAM > ZW3D 2022 First Impressions
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2008

    ZW3D 2022 First Impressions

    ZW3D seems to have given up on the US market. I have been using it for nearly 20 years when it was VX and I started with Version 7. So seeing how there is little activity I thought i would start one some people may enjoy. I just upgraded my Version 2015 version to the latest 2022 version and will post my thoughts and some projects to generate some interest. I do not work for, with, or sell ZW and have received any compensation in any way.

    First look... After upgrading my computer with a new 4X screen I was anticipating scaling issues. And there were. I have had problems with scaling with Solidworks and MasterCAM so this is not unique to ZW. I put the resolution down to 1080 which takes care of all the problems but a bummer that we can't take advantage of the 4K screen.

    Using two screens works well and allowed me to put the manager box on the other screen leaving the entire workspace clear. The ribbon layout is the same as the previous versions. The icons are large and clear.

    I tried importing SOlidworks 2021 files. Most of the files opened just fine. Even the assemblies. Some didn't but those files contained imported surfaces. And as in previous versions ZW still maintains links to imported geometry. So if you go back in to Solidworks and change the part the ZW file checks back to the file. This was especially valuable when I used ZW for toolpaths. It shows it will direct open NX, CATIA, SolidEdge, ProE, and Inventor but I don't have those so if anyone wants me to test that out attach a file.

    There seems to be a lot of new background organization tools and design tree feature management. I don't have time to look in to those today.

    All the usual tools are in the design environment. The number one reason for me to keep ZW is the surfacing. Especially the healing. It is very powerful.

    That's all for today. I'll add more as I work more.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2008

    Re: ZW3D 2022 First Impressions


    Today I decided to try some of the new configuration manager features. It’s much cleaner now. For this I just made a few “expressions” and configurations to generate a neck loft like I would if I were starting from scratch for a new guitar neck.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    ZW has changed how the parts and assemblies are kept. It use to be all the parts, cam pans, and drawings were kept in a single file name. Now it uses single part names. Maybe there is a way to go back to the old style I was use to but I have not found it. It is now more like all the other programs where everything has it’s own name and own file.

    I inserted the same model part driven by each configuration. Configuring each component is hidden but not too hard to find See screen shot. UH OH!!! When changing the configuration of a patterend part makes everything disappear. Off to the bug reports… BUT it works copying as individual components.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Links to drawings work…I made a drawing and tested the linking
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    I made a tool path and tested the linking… UH OH. Configurations do not regen in the CAM plan mode when the assembly is used for geometry.… Toolpaths are linked to the component. I really want to be able to use different configurations of the same part in the CAM plan. This is very handy for short runs of similar parts that I use all the time with HSMworks and Solidworks. Maybe there is a way. Interesting result of using an assembly for drive geometry… Close but no cigar.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Hopefully some ZW people follow as I have a habit of finding every bug in the first few days of new software.
    That’s all I have time for today.

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