Archive for January, 2010

Bike Frame Tutorial

Tuesday, January 26th, 2010


Below is an excellent three part tutorial on how to use an image as a starting point to create a 3D model.

In this example, Nick Johnson of CADSoft Solutions Limited in the UK uses a jpeg as the basis to recreate the 3D frame of a mountain bike.

The movies are high definition so feel free to enlarge when you play.


ACIS: Sixteen Years and Counting!

Monday, January 18th, 2010

I was first introduced to ACIS in 1992 by Bruce Morgan of Spatial. punch_sideFor those of you unfamiliar with ACIS, this is the underlying modeling kernel in ViaCAD and Shark. At that time I was responsible for Lockheed’s internal CAD development group. Bruce came in with his ACIS sales hat on with the mission to get Lockheed to incorporate ACIS components into our CAD tools.

What he set into motion though was something quite different!


Shark V7 Reference Card

Tuesday, January 12th, 2010

Do you keep forgetting where the thicken surface to solid tool is located? The reference card which comes with all our ViaCAD & Shark products may be the thing you’re looking for. We recently updated the Shark FX card for V7. This reference card is a handy reminder for keyboard short cuts, mouse functions, viewing commands, as well as tool palette locations for tools. Click on the image below to download the Shark FX V7 reference card in PDF format.


Student Design Contest

Friday, January 8th, 2010

Design8 bv, our Shark distributor in the Netherlands, is hosting a student design contest using Shark FX V7. For more information and design rules visit the link below.…mpetition.html

Design8 website:

What’s New in Shark FX V7

Friday, January 8th, 2010

Punch is pleased to announce the beta of Shark FX V7.  The beta contains over 100 improvements or features relative to V5 that include updates to modeling, drafting, photorendering, and interoperability.  Some of key new features (some with videos) are listed below:

Key New Features

Check out the full release notes which over over the 100+ new features.

Shark FX V7 Release Notes

The CATIA V5 and Inventor translators are available only on PC.  However with Shark’s hybrid licensing you can install the PC version on your Mac (VMWare, BootCamp) to access these features.

Shark Technology Overview & Demo

Friday, January 8th, 2010

Many thanks to those of you who participatedrendu2 in our first Shark webinar.  This webinar provided a technical overview of Shark FX and demonstrated several of the new features coming out in V7.  One of the key features of Shark is its ability to work with three integrated modeling methods that include associative NURBs, history based solid modeling, and direct face editing.

The webinar also includes some demos showing several of the new features in V7 such as G2 blending, interoperability with Inventor 2010 parts and assembly import, HDRI rendering, and The Gripper.

Shark Webcast Playback Link

Shark In Action: F-35 Full Scale Display Model

Friday, January 8th, 2010

I enjoy hearing back from users on how they are using ViaCAD or Shark.


If you have an interesting use please drop us an email so that we can share your experience with others.

This week’s Shark In Action features a full scale display model made by a major aerospace firm using Shark.  As the former Chief Engineer for this company’s CAD group, I know from experience how hard these guys can push a CAD system. This task was no less demanding than I’ve come to expect from these guys!


Top 10 Tips for ViaCAD / Shark

Friday, January 8th, 2010

Below are 10 very useful tips regarding the user interface for ViaCAD and Shark.

10.   Using the Mouse for Viewing

Pan View: Press space Bar AND the left button at the same time.

Zoom View:  Roll the scroll the wheel forward or backwards.  Select Preferences:User Interface: Reverse Mouse Wheel Zoom  to change of zoom relative to roll direction.

Rotate View: Press and hold the Scroll wheel.  If something is selected, that becomes the center point for rotation.

Arrow Key:  Pan View

Shift Arrow Key: Rotate View


Tip: Blending Two Bodies

Friday, January 8th, 2010

The blending tools in ViaCAD and Shark are blendTwoBodiestypically used to blend edges.  However, the blend tool can also be used to blend the faces of two separate bodies.   The trick  is to hold the shift key when you select the items to blend.

Click on the image to see a video demonstrating this feature.


Friday, January 8th, 2010

High Dynamic Range Images (HDRI) is a specialhdri image format that accurately specifies brightness values in a scene which create subtle lighting effects without having to specify light positions.  The Shark Rendering Library provides access to a variety of interior, exterior, and studio HDRI maps which can be quickly dragged and dropped into a scene.

The article provides a brief overview of the HDRI types supported by Shark, some interesting links,  and where to place custom images such that they will show up in Shark’s Render Library.