The furniture industry is diverse, with the home furnishings market being the largest segment by far. But if you include contract furniture for hotels, schools, hospitals, restaurants, stadiums, and airports – plus office furniture such as desks, workstations, seating, tables, and cabinets – it’s easy to see why the furniture industry, with over $100 billion in U.S. annual revenues alone, is mammoth.

As with every other industry, competition is fierce and price is a huge driving factor. Therefore, keeping costs down and shortening design cycles is at the top of every executive’s priority list.

3D CAD helps deliver these cost savings and that's why it's widely used throughout the industry. And why not? There are great benefits from modeling your products virtually on screen and getting customer feedback before manufacturing.

Industry-Specific Design Tools

Every company faces unique industry-specific design challenges and some must adhere to strict industry or government standards.

Traditional feature-based CAD helps, but the limited set of generic features may not provide the most efficient way to design. A typical CAD user may need to repeat the same tasks and operations over and over again – which is not only tiring and time-consuming, but increases the odds of making mistakes.

With traditional CAD, you currently have two ways to accelerate the design process:

  • You can use macros and library features to automate common design tasks, but they usually only work well in specific situations. When design changes occur or unexpected geometric scenarios have not been accounted for, then it’s likely that the macro or library feature will fail and will need to be recreated from scratch. This in turn may cause other features to fail as new geometry is created and geometric references go missing.
  • You can buy expensive add-ons, modules, or “industry solutions,” but they will only take you so far. They never quite do things the way you want them to.

Onshape’s FeatureScript: Making Custom Features

Onshape has a truly unique solution to this problem. FeatureScript is a new programming language that Onshape developers use to create the standard features you use every day. You can use FeatureScript to enhance Onshape’s built-in features to suit your specific needs, or you can create your own unique features for your own use or to share with the Onshape community. Custom features built using FeatureScript are easier to use, update predictably, and are more robust than macros or library features.

FeatureScript and Furniture Design

In the video below, you’ll see a number of customer examples that show you how Onshape and FeatureScript can be used to speed up your design workflow and streamline common repetitive tasks. Check out these new custom features that automate the building of standard woodworking joints and flat-pack furniture:

Onshape is a powerful, professional 3D CAD tool that is already in use by companies in every industry. However, no CAD vendor can possibly cater to the feature wishes of every company in every industry. The beauty of FeatureScript is that you can make it do what YOU want – and if you’re not a programmer, you can hire one to bend Onshape to your will.

Raring to go? Check out the Onshape FeatureScript page for more information, or find these examples here