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Distinguished Contributor
Posts: 138
Registered: ‎04-07-2005
Message 11 of 19 (92 Views)

Re: I use IV 2009. Why do most of my clients use Solidworks?

03-11-2009 09:21 AM in reply to: m.granata
Out of curiosity, what part of the USA are you located in. I am in California and from 1994 to 2004 I was employed at a company that manufactured food processing equipment and we also did complete plant designs for food processing. But in California, manufacturing of that magnitude seems to have has come to end. I don't know, it seems now as I seek out new clients in my area for my business, SW is popular among small to medium manufacturers. I wish Autodesk would increase there market share in California. Speaking for myself and my prior employer, we would not consider SW for two reasons, first the SW people would lie and constantly harass to make a sale, and second, quite often there are Civil Engineers and Architects involved on projects and they tend to want dwg format files. Not certain if SW will make a successful dwg conversion. I understand from several sources that Inventor will open the SW part files. But that is not any help if assembly and drawing (.iam and .idw) files will not convert. On a last question, does your company also use IV for the plant layouts when designing a plant? Unless multiple plant layout views are needed it seems that would be much more time consuming than just AutoCAD.

*Expert Elite*
Posts: 6,374
Registered: ‎12-01-2004
Message 12 of 19 (92 Views)

Re: I use IV 2009. Why do most of my clients use Solidworks?

03-11-2009 10:52 AM in reply to: m.granata
I work closely with over 100 manufacturing companies/vendors and not a single 1 uses Inventor.. They are all 90% solidworks and maybe 10% Pro/E.. We went to Inventor because we had tons of autocad drawings and thought it would be easiest to stay with the same companies 3d software..

I just had a vendor come in the other day to demo another program and he had solidworks on his laptop and it blew me away how much better it seemed than Inventor. SW dimensionXpert (or whatever its called) is simply amazing. I only looked for 5 minutes but I was seriously contemplating getting a demo and looking into switching to SW.
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Down with IDW/DWG files..... Long live 3D PMI... Hurry it up already..
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Distinguished Contributor
Posts: 1,447
Registered: ‎12-12-2003
Message 13 of 19 (92 Views)

Re: I use IV 2009. Why do most of my clients use Solidworks?

03-11-2009 11:03 AM in reply to: m.granata

He's in Silicon Valley, maybe San Jose or Santa Clara if i had my guess. But then theres 4 or 5 other cities in the valley he could be in. While i still lived there i was in the local users group and we had a hard time getting more then say a dozen people to show up on a regular basis and half the time we had IV people from Oregon fly down for us. That's pretty bad considering we were in Autodesk's back yard. Group only lasted like 2 years back around 2001 or so. Even the VAR that i got my training at and supported Applied Materials (Intervision) is now gone as far as cad concerns.

Distinguished Contributor
Posts: 191
Registered: ‎08-08-2008
Message 14 of 19 (92 Views)

Re: I use IV 2009. Why do most of my clients use Solidworks?

03-11-2009 01:11 PM in reply to: m.granata

I'm in WA state and we have seats of both, but mainly Inventor. Inventor became our preferred program after doing a "head to head" comparison. And I'm very happy about it now that I've seen SW2009 as opposed to what Inventor 2010 will be offering next month. SW2009 is for the most part about 3 yrs behind Inventor 2010.

We have much more flexiblity with Inventor for what we do and how we do things. Every "new" point that SW pointed out for 2009 was offered by Inventor or Pro/E years ago. We too have numerous vendors that use SW or P/E and most of the people we find for employment are SW people. Those who we bring in that are willing to learn Inventor say now they they'd rather not go back to SW. Granted we still and will most likely always have a few that refuse to learn anything new from SW. If you listen to them, SW can butter your toast in the morning.

But if you are looking to provide services to the vendors in your area, you might want to get what they have and be able to do both.
*Expert Elite*
Posts: 1,465
Registered: ‎07-30-2007
Message 15 of 19 (92 Views)

Re: I use IV 2009. Why do most of my clients use Solidworks?

03-11-2009 03:34 PM in reply to: m.granata
Autodesk actually has a book for users transistioning from SolidWorks if that is any indication of the demand users have had in previous years for switching. I will say even if you choose SW, buy a seat of Inventor too, it will be the one of the cheapest translation packages you will find that will also do a dynamite job with 3D modeling as well. I mean, how silly is it that SW can't read Catia files, but Inventor can? Guess it stinks to have a bigger brother that you can never aspire to become because it will devalue the higher end software. I am glad Inventor is a flagship product for that reason alone, there is no ceiling.
Mark Flayler Application Engineer - Manufacturing Solutions Division
IMAGINiT's Manufacturing Solutions Blog:
Distinguished Contributor
Posts: 138
Registered: ‎04-07-2005
Message 16 of 19 (92 Views)

Re: I use IV 2009. Why do most of my clients use Solidworks?

03-12-2009 01:34 AM in reply to: m.granata

Your close, I am about 30 miles south of San Jose, CA. From reading all these replies, it seems geographic location has had a significant impact on what CAD package is most popular. I have used Autodesk products since AutoCAD R11 and I like IV. But it's starting to look as if IV is not as popular as SW in my area. I too used Intervision as my VAR. I changed to IDEATE shortly before they went out. Now IDEATE sold their Autodesk Mechanical products division to Hagerman. Crazy. Is the economy causing this? I know the economy is really bad in my area. Is it worse in Silicon Valley than other parts of the country? Fortunately, the salesman I worked with at IDEATE is now with Hagerman. Otherwise, I would have never renewed my IV maintenance contract. I may end up also needing a copy of SW to get more clients. My past experience with a SW salesperson was nothing short of harassment. For that reason I am reluctant to contact them.

Distinguished Contributor
Posts: 1,447
Registered: ‎12-12-2003
Message 17 of 19 (92 Views)

Re: I use IV 2009. Why do most of my clients use Solidworks?

03-12-2009 07:02 AM in reply to: m.granata

Catia is why the spread between SW and IV will only get wider as time go's on. Can't have SW invade Catia's low end sales, and probably bigger profit margin. It's just took IV some time to catch up for those 4 or so yrs head start that SW had in the beginning.


New Member
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎10-09-2002
Message 18 of 19 (92 Views)

Re: I use IV 2009. Why do most of my clients use Solidworks?

04-28-2009 10:07 AM in reply to: m.granata
Inexpensive self study training.

I have used Inventor for hundreds of projects and still use it to maintain them. A few years ago when it came time to upgrade it was either Inventor or Solidworks. Both are equally good programs. And both were continuing to become more complex.

Staying current with new features and learning the more advance techniques such as complex surfacing, photo rendering and others can take quite a bit of training. For small companies VAR training can be either too expensive or perceived as too expensive to those writing the checks. So self study is often a more economical route. VAR training may be faster once approved but often one can do a lot of self study while waiting ( months, years?) for the training requests to be granted.

Both programs have a large range of books available, but SW had several that stood out above the rest. SW also has SolidProfessor which is fantastic set of video tutorials. For less than the price of one VAR class a full library of well made videos are available. And I eventually did get to a VAR class to compare.

Lastly is the range of websites available. I had looked for sites on both IV and SW and I really liked the SW resources I saw. Solidsmack is one that really stood out.
Active Contributor
Posts: 45
Registered: ‎10-27-2008
Message 19 of 19 (92 Views)

Re: I use IV 2009. Why do most of my clients use Solidworks?

04-29-2009 11:46 PM in reply to: m.granata
Well... Inventor is good, it's very good, but SolidWorks is just love.

I can't really describe it - but in Solidworks everything seems more polished.

Like the user interface, though IV2010 is a substantial improvement on previous IVs.

But especially the feature dialog boxes, which seem to lack options when compared to SW.

It's just lots of silly little things really but - they can mount up.

In the end Inventor has some stuff SolidWorks doesn't have and vice-versa, at least comparing the most recent versions. But overall I'm still inclined to use Solidworks more than Inventor when projects come in (we use both)

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