Global multi-channel distributor, RS Components (RS), has unveiled a new version of DesignSpark Mechanical, the leading free-for-download 3D CAD modelling tool. Now available in Version 4.0, the first update of the tool for three years, offers new functionality and a more intelligent design engine, as well as delivering faster overall performance.
Launched in 2013 and developed in conjunction with SpaceClaim, the leading provider of flexible and affordable 3D modelling software for engineers, DesignSpark Mechanical targets students, professional designers as well as mechanical and electronic engineers working in companies of any size, and enables users to rapidly prototype or reverse engineer any physical object.
This latest version offers a range of enhancements to the user interface and introduces a blend (or loft) tool that enables creation of rotational, periodic or sheet metal blends. As well as these improvements, RS is introducing a new auto-save function and various enhancements to existing tools within the software, plus the ability to analyse solid body geometry for errors, including tips to fix them. These additions and enhancements are based on feedback from DesignSpark Mechanical’s wide user base.
In addition, DesignSpark Mechanical Version 4.0 is the first free software tool to seamlessly integrate the popular open-source Ultimaker Cura slicing software. This major new feature is the result of close collaboration between RS and Ultimaker, one of the biggest 3D printing companies in the world. The feature enables users to optimise their designs using expert-tested profiles for 3D printers and materials, and to streamline workflow for maximum efficiency.
Other key features of Version 4.0 include: support for 4K and ultra-HD monitors, switching between multiple graphics-rendering drivers and modes; the ability to export 3D geometry into the DreamWorks open-source OpenVDB file format; and various fixes of minor software bugs. Additionally, the tool now supports 14 new languages: Czech, Dutch, Finnish, Hungarian, Korean, Malay, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Slovak, Slovenian, Spanish, Thai and Turkish.
“This new version of DesignSpark Mechanical further raises the bar for free and low-cost 3D CAD modelling tools in terms of usability and performance,” said Mike Bray, Vice President of DesignSpark. “The update to Version 4.0 is another example of our commitment to continually enhancing and improving the DesignSpark suite. Furthermore, maintaining its underlying philosophy, our software is absolutely free for use – not just for our customers, but for everyone. Our fundamental aim is to reduce barriers for engineers, removing prohibitive costs that can often stop many of the best ideas from becoming reality.”