Computer Aided Design / Manufacture
CAD is the acronym for Computer Aided Design. Seldom used is CADD which is Computer Aided Design and Drafting. I often (and probably incorrectly) also tend to use the phrase Computer Assisted Design. No one has shot me yet…
50 some years ago when I was studying engineering, it was called “Drafting” and drawings were created using pencil and sheets of paper. Also, T-squares, triangles, large drawing boards and tables. It was very hardware intensive. I had all the tools.
Then I discovered computers.
Electronic CAD was originally a two dimensional drawing system. Then it became a three dimensional drawing system. Paper was replaced by video monitors. Output is sent electronically to printer machines.
But CAD is not just a drawing system. Because it is computerized, all types of data management and control has been integrated into CAD making it a powerful fully integrated design system.
My point here is not to describe all features of today’s CAD.
Everything I make at KautzCraft is now drawn using Three Dimensional (3D) CAD. Zero need for 2D CAD as the 3D version can output 2D drawings when required.
KautzCraft utilizes many different CAD “packages” made by different manufacturers. All create three dimensional output for a process called Computer Assisted Manufacturing (CAM)
Siemens says: “Computer aided manufacturing (CAM) commonly refers to the use of numerical control (NC) computer software applications to create detailed instructions (G-code) that drive computer numerical control (CNC) machine tools for manufacturing parts."
That’s what I do here at KautzCraft.
I have several CNC controlled 3 and 4 axis milling machines for jewelry wax carving and metal machining. I have a CNC overhead 3 axis router for wood carving. I have four CNC controlled FDM 3D printers. And one resin DLP 3D printer.
All those machines require CAD and CAM through many different computer systems to manufacture most if not all the products produced here at KautzCraft.
There are a few items I make totally by hand, and all CAD/CAM products must be assembled and finished with hand labor.
KautzCraft wouldn’t exist without the heavy dependence on todays’ computers and the various types software that is operating on them.
In my opinion, CAD/CAM is the way the creative world works today. It helps me make high quality, finely detailed products I could never produce by primitive manual methods.
I have a progressive disability (PN) that now limits many of my physical abilities. That’s not an excuse. I designed my computer automation to extend my skills past my limitations. It’s been my plan to take every advantage of creative computer automation tools. The plan is working just fine.
KautzCraft is a small hobby type business, making creative, professional quality products for the people who love what I create. Exactly how those products are made is not an important point in my marketing effort. I use the best tools and methods I have available. It’s the quality of the results where I judge my work.
I like to think, so do my customers.