Best Practices of CAD Migration


There are two key points that influence the legacy data / CAD data conversion are storage / maintaining of legacy data and advancement in the CAD/CAM/CAE technologies.

In today’s world the consumer market expects a superior as well as cheaper product with faster launches and new variations of the same product every day. This is impossible if we don’t align to the computer aided tools right from planning to launch.

This paper is a thought on why we need migration to compatible CAD systems and challenges faced as we think to match the customer’s satisfaction and compete in a world influenced by tough competition.
Data Migration Challenges:

The major challenges of CAD Data Migration are:

  • Clarity of CAD data
  • Type of data available (physical samples, solid, surfaces)
  • Understanding of legacy CAD data processes
  • Capability in understand the Legacy data
  • Occurrence of discrepancies between CAD systems
  • Incompatible design practices across different engineering groups
  • Higher cost of standard translation tools
  • Longer lead time of conversion process
  • Training of new CAD platform to engineers

Best Practices of CAD Migration

To collaborate and standardize the data resourcefully, Organizations are in need of CAD data migration from one CAD to another CAD system. Successful migration of CAD data to another new CAD system requires careful planning, preparation, in-depth analysis, logistics and complete understanding of future requirements.

If all the techniques are followed carefully, then the CAD conversion process maximizes returns than ever before. The key objective of CAD conversion is to focus on significant guidelines for a practical, resourceful, and effective strategy that helps to overcome key challenges and meets organization’s business goals.

The intended CAD conversion is assumed to be wide-ranging and encompass separate, independent, business units. It also allows standardizing the new software tools and, thus, re-defining engineering standards and processes to generate the greater benefits from the new environment.
Engineering Objectives of CAD Conversion:

The goals of the conversion project should coincide with the objectives that originally prompted the new software initiative. The strategy of CAD conversion should be a precise, recognized component of the overall engineering systems strategy. Thus, a proper understanding of the organization objectives will drive the process to ensure more effectiveness and accomplishments.
Efficient Processes and Best Practices

There are key aspects that are essential and to be considered while performing CAD conversion from one system to another:
Migrate only new products:

This means retaining all existing data in the old CAD systems. This is feasible when changes to old product lines are uncommon or new products are completely new. It is not a very safe approach since it already has modeled parts and suitable when the opportunity arises to reprocess earlier designed parts.
Migrate Products on the go as required:

This aspect is less strategic than a default resulting of not taking time to focus on existing business goals. Even though this method sounds feasible, it is not an effective methodology. It often results in

  • Ineffective use of technical team who should focus on developing new product rather than lowering component conversion
  • Product development disruptions resulting arriving late to market

Migrate Targeted Product Lines, and Projects

After revising the conversion costs and the value of existing data, it is lucrative to convert the product lines that give the best value on the investment. Focusing on long-term benefits usually brings about constructive results.
Migrate a Percentage of the Product Line

This approach targets a certain percentage of products chosen for their value. It converts a percentage of the product line that allows one to focus on broader picture. This strategy is an effective approach to get the maximum out of the conversion process.
Migrate based on sales volume of a product

The continuous accumulation of large legacy data makes difficult to identify which product portfolios can be chosen to convert. In this scenario, the sales history helps us to determine the right products that would be a better bargain upon conversion and yield us on the ROI.

The challenges are always need to be overcome and the best possible way to overcome is what we need to plan. The requirement of the organization, the nature of work products we produce and what type of complex data to be handled need to be considered on choosing the right CAD platform that we need to migrate which will reap the desired results as expected.