This is a feature in SolidWorks, available in all the versions, this features lets you calculate the cost of fabricating your design. In SolidWorks 2014 the tool is upgraded by adding straight up volume as a price tool.
This tool can estimate costing factors for operations like turning, milling etc. This tool is letting you compare prices of an upgraded design to an older version of a similar design.
For better understanding of this tool, this model will be used to demonstrate the working of this tool in SolidWorks.
This model contains a welded part, machined part, drilled part and a bent plate.
Step by step use:
First let’s open this tool, by clicking on ‘costing’ under ‘evaluation’. If it is not present under evaluation tab, right click on evaluation and find and check ‘costing’.
Now that we have run this tool, costing will show up.
This costing is measured using default template.
Here it is around 244 USD.
Know that you can change the currency by providing the conversion rate from USD to required currency.
In this feature, different custom operations can be applied, for example welding operation to the required part, for this weld length has to be defined.
Beside the application of custom operation we can also provide the cost of it.
In this example, part is given 2 custom operations, namely, welding and paint job.
Paint job is provided with a custom cost of 15 USD.
As highlighted in the graphics area of solidworks, sheet metal part of our model can be given a custom cost too.
On the right side of graphics window, there is the menu for costing, in this example, it could take 52.47$ to fabricate the model.
As a designer, the job is to limit this cost to a minimum without compromising the function of the model.
If you double click on the sheet metal part, it will open the part separately, now remove the drilled holes from the bent part by deleting the feature (cut extrude) from the left menu.
Now we can see that cost is reduced to 49.64$ as drilling operation is not required after deleting the feature.
But it will compromise the function of model. So we will keep the drilled hole.
Next, you can set the original material from which the alongside part is cut.
It can be a plate, or a disk.
Arrow showing another drilled hole in the model, which adds to the cost.
when the current cost goes up from the previous cost, the cost is shown in red representing increase in expenses.
You can change the template of costing by clicking on ‘launch template editor’ this will open up a window to which you can set the values/cost of different basic operations.
In SolidWorks, there is one more feature in this tool, this feature helps in hiding the details of the procedure of estimating the cost, which means that the person fabricating your model will not be able to deduce how you got the estimated cost. To enable this open ‘launch template editor’ and save as limited access copy.
After you have saved it, SolidWorks will hide the template manager.
Giving designer the privacy on costing method.
Next we can save the costing report,
This is an exceptional feature in SolidWorks as the saved report is detailed report of costing and cover all areas even remotely related to costing.
Arrows in the figure show important things covered in the report like logo of company and model views, all basic operations, all custom operations like paint job etc.
It even covers the sheet metal part of our model and unwraps it and shows the default plate from which the bent part is made.
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