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What scares History-based users about Synchronous Technology?


Often when I talk to history-based users about using Synchronous Technology, they say they are afraid of losing control. It's hard to give up sketches, and the recipe method of defining and changing a 3D CAD model.


I know there are some legitimate concerns people have, such as what to do with non-prismatic geometry, or what to do when changes are required to add topology.


But what I'm interested in here is really the other stuff, like "push and pull seems so approximate", or "how can you be sure your model is fully defined without a bunch of sketches telling you it is". I'm just collecting arguments, if that makes any sense. So what are you or your coworkers afraid of?



Retired Community Manager for Solid Edge. This account is no longer active.

Re: What scares History-based users about Synchronous Technology?

PLM World Member Phenom PLM World Member Phenom
PLM World Member Phenom

Live Rules.

Those accidental changes that occur because something was planar or coincident off the screen that I didn't realize when I made the change, only to be caught after I've produced the hardware, costing an expensive change order and tooling rework.

--Scott Wertel, P.E.

Re: What scares History-based users about Synchronous Technology?



I thought that was the excuse used for parameterics. I made a change to the size of the hole and its location change and wasn't noticed...because I made the location 1.5*holediameter!

Smiley Wink


Re: What scares History-based users about Synchronous Technology?

Gears Esteemed Contributor Gears Esteemed Contributor
Gears Esteemed Contributor

For me, it seems I still have to fall back on Ordered for my sheet metal creations, largely due to our work flow, with Insert Part Copy.....and this also helps me develop the manufacturing sequence in doing so.

The face & feature consumption in Sync is a hard one to deal with, as is a Live Rule that takes control of another feature without you realising it.


I'd be the first to admit, that more training is most likely required, for me to make BETTER use of Synchronous, then become the "dominant" drawer accessed in the Solid Edge tool chest.

Sean Cresswell
Design Manager Streetscape Ltd
Solid Edge ST10 [MP8] Classic [x2 seats]
Windows 10 - Quadro P2000

Re: What scares History-based users about Synchronous Technology?


I am relying on the computer to be as smart as me and I don't like that idea!


And CAD design process has been a religion! Don't kid yourself it is.


I would say the biggest fear is the fact that you have to unlearn 20+ years of habits and learning a "new" way to design. That is to says you have to have 2D to drive 3D and you have to modify 2D to change your 3D. It is a religion. 


I still think it is the fear of having to make those huge changes of relying on actual 3D geometry for checks and forgetting that you don't have to go back to a 2D sketch to make a change to your 3D geometry. Most users have been beaten to death with the:


CAD Commandment:

1. Thou shall not have any other CAD beside me

2. Thou shall not evaluate any other CAD besides be

3. Thou shall not curse thine CAD software whilest reboots unexpeditly

4. Thou shall attend all CAD user meetings and keep them holey (especially on tapdrill day)

5. Thou shall honor thy CAD standards and administrators

6. Thou shall not remove parameters or assign new parameters to dead solids

7. Thou shall not committ CADultry by working with another software

8. Thou shall not steal thine neighbors hardware

9. Thou shall not falsely boast about your productivity using thine CAD software

10. Thou shall not covet thine neighbors workstation


Then we get to Leviticus:

1. Thou shall fully constrain thine sketch

2. Thou shall use expression names that thine neighbor can understand- who isn't as smart as you

3. Thou shall fully predict all changes

4. Thou shall fully constrain thine components in thine assembly

5. Thou shall fully name thine features

6. Thou shall constrain thine first sketch to the principle planes

7. Thou shall not use primitive features to define thine part

8. and on and on


Humor aside, there is a lot changes that have to occur. Your deisgn process is changing back to a true design process that allows for quick alternate designs. Instead of a linear, how would I build that so it doesn't blow-up when I make a change process to make the feature I need for that design element and stretch and pull (or modify a dimension in a non-sketcher environment) it until it fits my design requirements.



Re: What scares History-based users about Synchronous Technology?

Honored Contributor
Honored Contributor

Four issues for me:


1. Learning curve. I have yet to work out the commands for the following sequence: 1. Get part in place, 2. stretch the part to fit. 3. Created mates to keep the part in place and force re-size as what it's mated to changes.


Note: Re-sizable sheet metal is everything to me because I have to a very complex method of creating bend tables......huge can of worms. I do everything with plane control right now.


Assembly contains planes. Parts in place are sized from the planes (includes and || sketch lines)


Also, I never use holes. All sketch driven cutouts allow me to go to one sketch to re-position many cut outs. I will lose sketch control going to sync.


I don't have time to learn new tricks. Manufacturing flows no matter whats going on with the software.


2. many common features in sheet metal must be Ordered, why use since at all? (I'm 90% sheet metal)


3. There is no method of controlling the flat and bend seporatly with Sync. I need to control the flat size and the bend locations seporatly. For sheet metal that is not box size driven, I typically use s sketch that includes all the bend lines and cutouts in a single sketch. then make the part from that. Example, I want a 6X6 sheet with two opposit sides bent with a 5/8" set back front the edge of the part to the bend line. easy in ordered. Tough in Sync.


In general, Sheet size, bend lication, or finished dimensions may be in control of a sheet design. Controlling the flat size has to be done with entereing in odd ball flange sizes in sync...yuck.


4. Scared of moving to unknown ground. What new bugs will pop up trying to use sync? I can bairly get ordered to do what I want it to. Even in ordered I find many things I want impossible, why move to an unknown path that is less traveled and as a result, be less capable of accomplishing things I already can't get done. A flat failure can cost me time of re-programming bend table variable (Note: I'm required to provide back gage and stick outs on drawings).


In general, it's taking me about a year to developed a good system to manage re-sizable sheet metal box drawings that include real bend tables. Why would I mess that up?

Re: What scares History-based users about Synchronous Technology?


I really wasn't looking to ignite a b!+¢# session, just wanted to get some ideas. I recognize some of these are legit. Sheet metal still has some limitations, but every release sees more power in Synch.


What gets me is that when you start looking rationally at the limitations that we have decided to live with with history-based modeling, the limitations of sync look pretty tame.


Should have heard the reasons for not wanting to go history-based 25 years ago. And the truth is that most people don't even use the power that exists.


I'm not here to argue with anyone, just wanted a list of arguments, if that makes any sense. I'm developing some responses to some of these. Some of the complaints are just emotional reactions, which to me are the easiest to discard. Engineers should be about demonstrable efficiency.


While I'm here I should mention a couple of things:

  • synch is parametric.
  • synch is more intuitive by far, in my view
  • The constraint paradigm in history-based modeling creates incredible over constraint
  • The thing RyanM said about 2D. Even in 3D, people still cling to that 2D sketch.

CAD has become such a thing unto itself that many of us have based our careers on CAD rather than on design. It's taking me some time to realize that is mostly wasted effort. The CAD should disappear. I realize that's easy to say, but I've written a lot of pages about CAD while very rarely even mentioning design. You have to be a specialist to run this stuff. To me, anything that allows me to interact directly with the geometry  - the design - gets me further from being just a CAD jockey, and more of what I really got into this for in the first place - design and engineering.


If a guy like me who had so much invested in the history-based way of doing things, with 20 years experience, the books and the consultancy,  can make this jump, so can you.

Retired Community Manager for Solid Edge. This account is no longer active.

Re: What scares History-based users about Synchronous Technology?

Gears Esteemed Contributor Gears Esteemed Contributor
Gears Esteemed Contributor

My history with history based solids spans about 20 years. My history with sync is less than 1 year. I like sync...usually. Sometimes I can't figure out why it won't let me do the simplest things without getting errors even if I turn off live rules, dimensions, etc. Sometimes it does great things, other times it just seems stuck in a world of its own.

So that can be frustrating. But I do a lot of importing of vendor models and for this sync is wonderful.

Bruce Shand
ST10 MP7 - Insight - Win10 - K4200

Re: What scares History-based users about Synchronous Technology?


One of my big gripes with sync sheet metal, (And there are many), is that I cannot create contour flanges the same, such as composed only of curved members, as I can in ordered. I use sheet metal contour flanges in an assembly context CONSTANTLY for 'skirt' pieces that follow complex edges, and right off the bat I cannot design that shape in sync.


Because of the rules of sheet metal, sync is more difficult to implement, and this implementation is inconsistent and more difficult for the user to understand than part modeling. Trying to get what I want when tipping an edge trim that goes through a bend (or, woe is me, 2 or 3 bends) is an exercise in frustration that often causes a complete redraw in Ordered to allow me my needed design flexibility. Again, because of the rules of the sheet metal environment, it is much easier to destroy a model through a bad edit than in a regular part and not be able to get back to where you were, whether you dive into "Used Sketches" or not. Combine this with the nagging bug chasing us through several SE versions now where "Undo" will grey out occasionally for no reason despite no autosave, and you have a bitter pill to swallow if you decide to do complex, frequently edited sheet metal shapes in sync.


The base tab surface is always selectable and always getting in the way, despite the user not being able to edit the thickness by dragging it. We have to right click, go into material properties, select gage tab, and change there...another workflow that is far from optimum. Do something to smarten the selection, or allow sync to actually edit the thickness through this method. Don't give me a steering wheel tug option that you KNOW is a design dead-end.


These all cost me time, and a sheet metal model that takes me longer to create in sync than ordered and STILL ends up not being easily editable is what scares me about Synchronous Technology.

-Dylan Gondyke

Re: What scares History-based users about Synchronous Technology?


Apart from having less than the 20 years experience with ordered, I feel the same about synch as bshand does.

585 ST9 Win 7