I have been a user of AutoCad 2d for several years doing everything in "model" space. Recently upgraded to Design Suite including Inventor. My design layouts have always been 2d. Question is, should I continue as I have or should I venture into the unknown, ie, Inventor?
What kind of work do you do?
Why have you not already ventured into the 3D world in AutoCAD?
Inventor is a 3D modeler from which your generate the 2D drawings.
Kinematic motion analysis is a big plus to using Inventor over AutoCAD.
I was an AutoCAD only user for 12 years. For the reasons my previous employer couldn't justify the cost for IV, and we exchanged alot of drawings back and forth with clients, Architects, and Civil Engineers and they always requested native AutoCAD files. They would add data to our drawings and visa versa. Now that I use IV 99% of the time I only go back to AutoCAD for plant shematic type plan view layouts. There is a long learning curve, which I am still on. But you can learn it on your own as I have had to do because training seminars are too expensive. But with IV I find I can create more professional looking drawings with greater ease, reduce mistakes, and always provide 3D views to clarify geometries. IV is not as labor intensive to use as AutoCAD. Out of the box there is not much Auto in AutoCAD.
Good luck with your decision.
Autocad is still useful where I work for building layouts and quick sketches.
Inventor is fast becoming our preferred software as it automatically updates drawings when you modify parts or assemblies. Naturally you still need to tinker with the drawings to ensure that the changes haven't affected anything, but it is a darn sight quicker to generate 2D drawings than with CAD.
Inventor is also good for generating glossy rendered images which impress clients, alongside movie captures of processes or moving equipment.
AutoCAD offers a 2D FEA environment, whereas Inventor (thanks to tie ups with ANSYS) offers a 3D FEA integral package as well as easy interface with ANSYS.
3D modelling in any package gives the viewer/user a greater persepctive of what they are trying to achieve in a visual sense, whereas some tend to struggle with 2D ortho views.
Ultimately where I am based, it depends on what our client wants as an output as in some cases they take on the completed files for their records as part of contracts. This means that both packages are still actively required.
Without knowing a brief description (not wishing to know too much sensitive info of course) of your situation, there's not a great deal to add.
It really depend on what you need to draw..but i would say both
i'm in the curtain wall buisness and in the process of switching completly to inventor...
in the workflow i'm working on, i still use autocad but for the manage drawing part
i like using the sheetset in autocad to manage drawing, it efficient
if you need to draw a front, top and side view plus some section..it way easy with inventor since you dont have to draw each view.. you juste create the 3d model and show anything you need...
the part you dont need to see in 3d, can be add with 2d block or something
since to me what's important is having my frame in 3d so i cant extract part list..
i can do my 3d model, do my drawing views for it
then if i need to detail the connection to surrounding wall and structure, i can import the view of my frame as block in autocad (using design center) then do the detail in 2d cuz it easier and faster that way to add thing like isolation, walldetail ect...
i hope this help....
Thanks to all who have commented. I'm the proverbial old dog and new tricks guy. However, the more I use IV the more I like it. I may end up as some have suggested here using both packages however the expected outcome has already changed in that I new see most things being done in 3d and what's left in 2d as I've done for years.
Oil field equipment is perfect for 3D modelling. I have even used it for down hole tools and coil tube feeders but most of my work is more process related. You can do almost everything in 3D, even a lot of our civil work is done in Inventor. To prove a point I could produce equivalent drawings in Inventor for previous 2D only applications but I don't believe you need to use it for everything as a blanket rule. We still use AutoCAD for some applications, mainly based on client request or plant layout drawings. We don't do full plant design ourselves but if we did it would be in 3D. Most of the time it is only because we are dealing with legacy data from our clients for fuel terminals and the like.
Start tomorrow in 3D if you have the software and your management doesn't object. At the end of the day all your drawings produced from 3D models are still 2D and can easily be exported to dwg. Concepts can still be done in Inventor quickly, just go into less detail in the model or sketch some parts of it in the drawing. If you haven't already looked into the advantages of 3D over 2D I am not going to repeat them all but have a search on this site and you should find plenty.
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