|Page (1) of 3 - 03/01/06||email article||print page|
Add 3D CAD data to PDF documents
Adobe has released Acrobat3D to address the CAD market and the way in which CAD users collaborate on 3D CAD data. The application has been beefed up to handle most 3D CAD files in a way that enables users to see the entire structural makeup of CAD files and make comments on virtually any aspect of the file. Within the scope of this first look, we'll take a look at some of the workflow tools that make Acrobat3D a unique tool for the CAD design, review and approval process.
Acrobat 3D enables you to add 3D CAD files, complete with full interactivity from most Windows and UNIX-based CAD applications into PDF documents. This enables users to better share and comment on file progression without requiring the application that created the files to be located on the commenting computer. To achieve this you simply drag the CAD file that you wish to convert into Acrobat 3D. The Acrobat 3D conversion dialog box will open.
From here you can further tweak the conversion settings via the five tabbed interfaces; General, Import, Optimize, Enhance, and Transform. The General Tab enables you to change the background color, tweak the lighting (lights from file, no lights, white lights, day lights, bright lights, primary color lights, night lights, blue lights, red lights, cubed lights CAD optimized lights, and headlamp); rendering style (bounding box, transparent, wireframe, shaded wireframe, solid, solid wireframe, transparent wireframe, line illustration, solid outline, shaded illustration, hidden wireframe); and animation style (loop or bounce).
You can also add default views as well. Import offers the capability to adjust surface and normal tolerance, import hidden objects, sheet bodies, and wireframes. Optimize enables you to make changes to the file to make the size of the file more compact. For example, you can reduce the polygon count, remove parts that are smaller than a percentage specified by you, collapse the hierarchy a number of levels, remove duplicate parts, and remove duplicate and unused materials. Under geometry options, you can also choose to export normals and adjust the mesh quality. Under Texture Compression, you can choose JPEG and adjust the texture quality. This is all to streamline the file for easier portability. Enhance offers the capability to remove animation, create exploding parts animation stages, or export and rescale animation. When you choose to rescale the animation, you can adjust the length of the animation by seconds or by percentages. under Material Options, you can choose to assign random colors to parts of the CAD file. The Transform Tab features to commands. You can transform the file by Scale and Units by setting a custom scale. Transform Model enables you to scale by X, Y, Z, or fit to. You can also change the rotate settings as well as translate via units.