The software takes the challenging task of designing products from T-slot aluminum and makes it as simple as building with snap-together blocks. Available as a free download on the Parker website, the software has been lauded by Parker design centers, professional users, and DIYers for its simple, easy-to-use interface, on-the-fly BOM generation, and instant quote capabilities.
Parker’s T-slot aluminum framing is the material of choice for assembling an unlimited variety of bases, frames, linear slide systems, safety guarding, enclosures, worktables, material handling systems, and other structures. The modular T-slot aluminum profile system offers so much flexibility and cost savings in engineering, fabrication, and assembly that it has become the preferred material for a multitude of applications.
Formerly, to design a product with T-slot aluminum, engineers would create the various profiles, connectors, fasteners and accessories within their CAD system. They would then create their design by manipulating each component. Upon completion, they would manually create a bill-of-materials and send to Parker for a quote. If the user did not have CAD access they would often send Parker a “napkin sketch,” for the Parker engineering team to interpret, design and quote. This would often need three to five iterations, taking significant time and effort for the customer and the Parker team.
“It’s so easy, anyone can do it,” says Mario Mitchell, Parker’s T-Slot Aluminum Framing product manager. “The entire process has been streamlined and simplified with the end- user in mind. This simple, standalone system requires no CAD access or previous engineering experience; they download and start creating in minutes. Designs will be more accurate the first time and iterate much faster. One of my favorite features is how all of the fasteners and connectors are automatically generated for the design and everything is added to the BOM. When they are done designing, the user can email the BOM to us and we can get a price quote right back to them.”
While no CAD access or experience is needed to use the tool, there are advanced features and outputs that will appeal to professional engineers and systems integrators, including .stp files and native CAD output to Dassault SolidWorks, Autodesk Inventor, and PTC CREO.
“This tool isn’t just for the home user,” adds Jay Hopper, COO of CADENAS PARTsolutions. “There are some powerful features that will really appeal to pro users. For engineers who are integrating their Parker T-slot aluminum assembly into a larger design, they can instantly export projects from the T-slot aluminum design architect to their CAD application. If they’re looking to share the design with a purchasing department, they can instantly generate a 3D PDF cut sheet, with all of the details for their specific design. Anyone who has ever used T-slot aluminum profiles is going to love this tool.”
Parker Hannifin T-slot Aluminum Design Architect Features:
- Free download; easy to use
- Standalone tool — No CAD required; system preloaded with Parker components and guidelines
- On-the-fly BOM (bill-of-materials) with quick quote capability
- Instantly populates necessary connectors and fasteners
- Native CAD output to Dassault SolidWorks, Autodesk Inventor … and PTC CREO
- Tailored 3D PDF data sheets for every project; 2D cut sheets for manufacturing