If you’re missing Showcase, help is at hand

“Help, I’m using Product/Factory Design Suite/Collection 2018, but I don’t have Showcase 2018”

With the introduction of the 2018 release of Autodesk Collections, Showcase has been dropped, but fear not there is light at the end of the tunnel…

All you need to do is install Inventor 2017 R4

R4 introduces additional ‘AnyCAD’ functionality which allows Inventor 2017 to reference Inventor 2018 files.

It’s as easy as A B C ( D )

Showcase to inventor 2017-

  1. Create a new assembly in Inventor 2017, this will be the container file.
  2. Use ‘Place Component’ to place the Inventor 2018 part or assembly you wish to render in ‘Showcase’.
  3. Save the 2017 assembly.
  4. Open the Inventor 2017 assembly in Showcase 2017.

Voila – Your Inventor 2018 data opened in Showcase 2017.

Click here to install Inventor 2017 R4

As the ‘AnyCAD’ technology is associative, any modifications made in the Inventor 2018 model will filter through into Showcase, just make sure that once you’ve changed the original 2018 file you open the 2017 ‘container’ assembly and save it, this will signal to Showcase that the scene needs to be updated.

For assistance with the solution above please contact the support team on 01254 301888 or support@quadrasol.co.uk. If you do not currently have an active support contract with us please speak to the sales team for details on the benefits of Quadra Assurance.

Meet Bob – Quadra’s IPC CID Trainer

This month we speak to Bob Sadowski, Quadra’s IPC CID Trainer and Applications Consultant for CADSTAR PCB Design Software.

Tell us a little bit about yourself?

Well, I originally hail from a small town called Bishops Cleeve near Cheltenham but I now live in beautiful Ross on Wye, Herefordshire. I have been with Quadra for over 8 years and in that time, I have spent the majority of my time working as an Applications Consultant for CADSTAR PCB design software, with specific focus on technical web content and application support and training.

So where did your interest in electronics come from?

My father worked as an Electronics Technician so I grew up around components and electronics from a young age. I was fascinated by how things worked and have always had a keen interest in the technical side of things. I then gained an ONC in Electrical & Electronic Engineering, my CID, CID+, and CIT and entered the electronics industry, migrating swiftly from hardware to software and applications.

Has your job/industry changed much since you started?

Since I started in the industry it has undergone some huge changes. Miniaturisation is now a huge part of electronic design and this is driven both by demand from the end-user and the highly competitive and dynamic nature of the industry.

Computing performance, interconnected products and portable electronics have also made a huge difference to the industry and have in turn meant that the technology needs to be quicker, harder wearing and cost effective, especially considering the quick turnaround times the market and industry expects.

The big industry developments such as platform standardisation, integration of applications (CAE/CAD/CAM/MRP) etc. are also having a major impact on electronics and PCB design. This necessitates the use of SI and PI analysis and planning tools, which can be complex tools to utilise.

So onto IPC CID, why was it so important for you to gain your CID, CID+ and Trainers qualification?

IPC CID and IPC CID+ are the only industry-recognised qualifications for the PCB design, layout and manufacturing industry and underpinned by the global trade association, the IPC. These courses enable designers to identify, develop and utilise best practice when designing PCBs. The course seeks to provide designers and the wider professions involved in electronic design, with the fundamental principles of good design, layout and effective manufacture of PCB’s.

What skills to do people and business gain by completing this course?

Once the course has been completed, delegates are better equipped to question, develop and improve existing working methods, whilst improving their productivity. And for businesses, they can reap the benefits of improved staff productivity, less re-work and errors and hopefully an improved relationship with vendors and suppliers.

So what’s next for you?

My next challenge is to qualify as CID+ trainer and build on the successful courses we have already run. I am also hoping to help train others within Quadra to deliver future courses.

The next IPC CID courses are the 12th – 14th September and 7th –  9th November and places are filling up fast. For more information contact ipc-cid@quadrasol.co.uk  or go to www.quadrasol.co.uk/ipc

BIM – Change is inevitable, Progress is optional

Building design
High-rise building made to look hand-drawn using software.

Building Information Modelling – Change is inevitable, Progress is optional

This phrase has never been truer than when related to Building Information Modelling (BIM). BIM has dramatically changed the way organisations operate within the built environment and its impact is a permanent and long-lasting one.

So what is BIM?

BIM is a process used by architects, contractors, engineers and builders, to design a wide array of buildings and structures. This process creates and manages all of the information related to a building project before, during and after construction. The end result is the Building Information Model, a digital description of every aspect of the built asset, bringing together planning, design, construction and management while reducing costs and creating efficiencies.

The challenge

The UK Government embarked upon a four-year programme of modernisation with the key objective of reducing the capital cost and carbon burden of the construction industry. BIM’s inter-connected approach has been adopted by a wide range of stakeholders to inform effective decision making, while ensuring the construction model is consistent and coordinated. Ultimately – it allows architects, structural engineers, contractors, product manufacturers and project managers to collaborate, coordinate and communicate more effectively.

The BIM solution

Autodesk ‘s Architecture, Engineering and Construction Software Collection allows users to quantitatively measure a project’s KPIs based on selected parameters, allowing multiple options to be compared and evaluated. Designers can create, visualise and modify digital models, while viewing as little or as much detail as required.


We at Quadra Solutions are specialists in CAD software solutions. Our consultative approach has supported numerous partners to implement processes, which have enabled them to secure new business and improve their organisational efficiency, through training and technical support.

We regularly hold Information Events that prepare organisations for the changes they will face and identify ways in which they can prepare for BIM compliance and take advantage of opportunities in the future. For more information about our solutions and how we can help you progress with your BIM plans contacts us 01254 301 888, go to www.quadrasol.co.uk/aec or bim@quadrasol.co.uk.

More about Quadra Solutions

Quadra Solutions Ltd specialise in design and data management software solutions for the manufacturing, construction, engineering and PCB design industries. Quadra is a Gold Autodesk Partner, an accredited training centre and specialists in electronic and PCB design. We provide Autodesk Design software solutions for the Construction and Manufacturing industries. InventorRevitAutoCAD, Collections and Vault software helps our customers design, visualise, innovate and implement solutions that help customers grow and develop their business.

Our software solutions, consultancy, training and technical support to the manufacturing, architectural, construction and product design industries is some of the best in the industry. With a wealth of experience and knowledge, Quadra specialises in helping businesses adapt and adopt efficient and effective design workflows, innovate and embed data management solutions. We pride ourselves on our consultative approach to working with customers as their technology partner.

Talk to our team  Click here for LiveChat 



CADSTAR, Let’s talk efficient circuit replication

CADSTAR is a well-established EDA tool with a comprehensive, generous feature list even at the entry-level license option.


This month I want to talk about efficient circuit replication and how CADSTAR can easily replicate circuit blocks, providing a quicker path to completion, an increase in productivity and a reduction in possible errors. In just a few easy steps we are able to quickly replicate circuit placement and tracking.

Starting with a completed donor circuit, group the devices and select replicate circuit. The next stage is to define your required matrix in the replicate circuit dialogue and click ok.

Once this has been completed transfer the circuit to a routing environment. Then window select the copper elements, copy them and paste them onto the awaiting placed circuits.

Note that you do not have to be accurate with the paste feature as the routing tool will snap the copper elements onto the pins for you. It also ‘intuitively’ inherits the net name from the pin automatically, saving time and effort.

Or Click here to watch it on YouTube.

In the next Blog we will continue to focus on efficient circuit replication but this time focusing on a feature that enables a designer to have a source or donor design which automatically feeds satellite designs that are already in situ as part of a main design.

For more information about the capabilities of CADSTAR PCB Design software click here

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