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Edg Project: From Table Driven Parametric Design To Rpt

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2001 Annual Conference


Albuquerque, New Mexico

Publication Date

June 24, 2001

Start Date

June 24, 2001

End Date

June 27, 2001



Page Count


Page Numbers

6.403.1 - 6.403.5

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Mike Aikens

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 3286

Engineering Design Graphics: From Table-driven parametric design to RPT

Mike Aikens Butler County Community College


This paper describes a project for students in a first semester Freshman Engineering Design Graphics course. The students use 3-D software to design a part and modify the design by changing parameters in a design table that is exported to a spreadsheet. A number of different designs are sent to two different rapid prototyping (RPT) design firms that build the parts and give the cost of building each part. A silicon mold is made and a quick cast prototype is poured. Students learn how to manipulate design parameters, evaluate “what if” scenarios in the design and relate cost to design.


In recent years the engineering design process has changed as the tools and methods for the engineer continue to improve. The traditional design process is linear in that one phase is often dependent upon the completion of the previous step. Today the design process is concurrent with iterations continuing to occur much later in the design cycle than was possible with the traditional design process.

The integration of rapid prototyping technology into the Engineering Design Graphics (EDG) curriculum is expensive and beyond the resources of this two-year college engineering program. The college instead sought partnership with local companies in order to add RPT to the EDG curriculum. The presentation will discuss how to facilitate industry support and expand the EDG experience to incorporate rapid prototyping and quick cast prototypes. An RPT model would serve as the positive for creating a mold and eventually a usable part. The models required for the project were; (many) isometric sketches of the design, 3D parametric models created with SolidWorks 2000, clay models, a stereo lithography model and a urethane model cast from a silicon mold.

The Engineering Design Graphics course described in this paper was developed to prepare the two-year engineering student for continued study at a four-year engineering school. The new engineer must now possess the skills necessary to shorten the design cycle and competitively run the “time to market” race. An understanding of the Design Process and skills such as; graphics skills both manual sketching and 3D computer modeling skills, design skills where design intent is understood and applied to the design

Aikens, M. (2001, June), Edg Project: From Table Driven Parametric Design To Rpt Paper presented at 2001 Annual Conference, Albuquerque, New Mexico.

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