Engineering CAD Software
Published August 19th, 2016 by

From 2D to 3D: An Approach to Engineering CAD Software

From 2D to 3D: An Approach to Engineering CAD SoftwareIn today’s technological world, many significant changes have been applied on the way we live every day. At work, technology has the biggest influence in the way we go about our jobs. Technology experts are always on the hunt for new and innovative technologies to improve the overall quality of daily life. These technologies give the benefit of convenience at home, at work, at school or almost everywhere.

Same goes through the design industry. Technology through the aid of computers has made significant contributions in the field of design industry over the last few decades. Technology has helped develop tools for better analysis, data bases and majorly CAD (computer-aided design).

At the end of this article, you will be able to pick up knowledge on what CAD is and its significance to the design industry. You will also be able to know the difference of 2D and 3D CAD and its impact to the field.

Introduction to CAD

CAD (computer aided design) is the process of creating, modifying, analyzing or optimizing a design through the aid of computer systems. CAD software is used by most engineers and architects in making design projects. According to an article by Webopedia, CAD system is the use of both software and hardware. Through this medium, engineers and architects can design everything from the smallest furniture at home, the tallest building in town to the largest airplane in the sky.

Engineering CAD tools allow an engineer to view all different angles of a design with just a click or a push of a button. Engineers can have a better visualization on how the finished design would look like on the actual scenario; thus resulting to fewer errors and lesser design time.

It was mentioned in Webopedia’s article about CAD software that it was until the middle of 1980’s, CAD systems were originally special computers constructed to do the design process. But now, we can easily get access to it with just a simple download. Tons of engineering CAD services are now available on the web. You have the option to evaluate each software and pick the best engineering CAD software of your choice. Before picking your choice, try to consider this rundown of benefits and possible challenges embodied with using this tool.


  1. Time for planning and conceptualization for new designs is realistically reduced.
  2. Costly mistakes can be evaded through high accuracy rate out of using engineering CAD system.
  3. Quicker design production time.
  4. Design documentation can be printed or shared into multiple copies.
  5. Engineers can easily visualize the design from the graphic screen and see how will the design look and work on the actual manner.
  6. The quality of the design is improved. Through higher accuracy and efficient manufacturing of the design.
  7. Clear documentation, thus, resulting to better communication.
  8. The ease of access to the design and application of changes and enhancements.

These are highlights to the handful of benefits one can get out of using CAD tool as a medium for design process. This tool still has a lot more to offer that will surely give you lots and lots of benefits. However, there are also challenges accompanied with using this system; below are examples of disadvantages and its explanations:


  1. High Cost – according to an article by Lopol on CAD software, popular CAD software are usually high priced. However, this does not apply to all software available on the market. You may check out reviews of engineering CAD software to have a variety of option for affordable package prices.
  2. Perpetual Changes –This is probably the greatest factor why some are dismayed of using CAD tools. One must be aware of the fact that this platform requires system updates from time to time. These updates may also require the user’s skill to also upgrade. User must be willing to constantly learn to be able to adapt to these changes.
  3. Technical Issues – this challenge is seldom to occur but is also possible. The fact that when dealing with CAD system, you are also dealing with computers. Technical mishaps are inevitable to happen; if it does, there might be counter problems to occur such as system crash or losing of files which can result to bigger problems in the totality of the design process.

Those are a few instances that may happen midway of using engineering CAD software. Citing these possibilities is not for the purpose of putting you off in investing in one but a precaution and a way to make you aware that these things can happen. This is also a way to make you more careful and efficient with using this tool.

Going 3D

According to an article on 3D modelling, 3D (three-dimensional) modeling is the manipulation of polygons, vertices and edges in a simulated 3D space. 3D modeling can be manually achieved through the use of computer software also known as 3D CAD.

2D (two-dimensional) modeling is also widely used in many fields because of its simplicity and it takes lesser time to finish. However, the output will also be just in a 2D aspect which is practically not ideal for complex product representation. This is one of the many reasons why engineers and architects always opt to create a design in a 3D perspective. It is the most natural way we visualize the objects on our surroundings.

In creating a 3D model, engineers and architects follow certain procedures and strategies. Below is a list of three popular 3D modeling processes in the industry:

  1. Polygon method – Vertices are points in a 3D space which gets connected to create a polygon mesh. Most 3D models nowadays are formed as textured polygon models because of it flexibility and the ability of computers to render them quickly.
  2. Curve method – a surface is naturally defined through curves which are affected by massed control points. These curves follow the points. If you increase the weight for a certain point, the curve will be pulled closer to that certain point.
  3. Digital sculpting method – is considered to be the most popular of all 3D modeling process. There are three types of digital sculpting namely; displacement, volumetric and dynamic tessellation.


In today’s modern industry, engineers and architects face baffling challenges as the components of the design industry continues to broaden and become more complex. As an individual who aspires for quality and at the same time profitability, the help of 3D CAD is a life saver for you. According to a write-up published on 3D Connexion, there are things a 2D CAD cannot offer but 3D CAD can:

  1. Cost saving through minimal mistakes: 3D CAD modeling allows you to test the product and figure out its tolerances and a stress factor before it is built, thus, giving you the benefit of avoiding or correcting mistakes.
  2. Time and Work Efficiency: when using 2D CAD modeling there is a tendency that you will spend a lot of time and effort in ensuring everything from your design plan, elevation and section agrees with each other. In 3D, engineers can easily extract that information from a 2D model giving you the benefit to have more time to focus on your design process.
  3. More Control and Precision: One of the many benefits of 3D modeling in using engineering CAD software is precision. Through the aid of a 3D mouse, you will have more control over the designs as it allows you to easily zoom in or out or rotate the 3D model. The ability to have more control results to higher efficiency on the designer’s end.
  4. Customer Satisfaction: 3D engineering CAD modeling allows you to give your customers to have a virtual tour of their anticipated product. By that time, you already made your customers satisfied and if they want changes or other enhancements, it would be a lot easier on your part. 3D designers gets an advantage of offering more customized designs, since it is very easy for you to make changes in the current design elements. Making customers satisfied of your output is very important in a highly competitive engineering industry, going 3D is a great choice to achieve that.


Now that you have a bit of a rough idea about 3D CAD and how this stuff works with engineering CAD software, you are now ready to start planning about your next steps. It is highly important as an engineer or designer to know the basics of CAD tools so that they will have enough knowledge about the fundamentals which is necessary in going deeper with the course.

When choosing the right tool to use, reviews of engineering CAD software might help you choose what ones best fit your needs. Remember: always choose one that is within your budget and choose the one’s that provides easy to access features. The design industry is a highly complex field, computer-aided design tools should not make it more complicated for the user.

Seeking for the right engineering CAD software? Check out’s list of the best engineering CAD software and see who’s made it on top.

Keith Moore

Keith Moore has worked with several leading Android development agencies to build customized mobile apps enabling businesses to extend the use of their services to smart phones and mobile devices.

Our rankings are completely independent, transparent, and community driven; they are based on user reviews and client sentiment. These engineering cad software companies had to earn their way up and didn't just pay their way up.

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