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February 21st, 2013

Design Engine Delivers Industrial Design Seminar @ Purdue University

With the advent of a new winter semester at Purdue University, brings in the unfortunate realization there are another three more months of limited sun. To break the winter funk Industrial Design professor Steve Vissor called on Design-Engine instructors to come down to Purdue (Lafayette) and teach a 1-day 3D modeling seminar to their junior and senior Industrial Design students. Design-Engine, more than willing to heed the call, traveled over the river, past the fields, and through the windmills to the ‘Crossroads of America.’ (Indiana’s state moto)

Purdue University Professor Vissor’s students primarily use Rhino 3D and Solidworks for their Industrial Design 3D modeling needs. Both the juniors and seniors were having issues with Rhino modeling and the transfer of 3D data between Solidworks and Rhino. Always willing to answer the call to help empower students and universities, Design-Engine sent their Industrial designer Alias-Rhino-Maya instructor, Joel Koster and Industrial designer Pro/E-Solidworks instructor Michael Vostal, to go down to Lafayette, IN. Our instructors goal was to demonstrate proper modeling techniques and workflows across different software platforms.

Arriving at the Purdue modern Pao Hall of Visual and Performing Arts building our instructors dived into a 3-hour seminar with Professor Steve Vissor’s junior Industrial Design class. Starting out with modeling tolerance issues between Rhino and SolidWorks, they went onto show more advanced Rhino modeling topics. The latter half of the seminar discussed proper modeling and surfacing techniques in Solidworks. After the lecture, the Design-Engine instructors went around the Purdue junior ID lab helping and advising students with questions and concerns about their current projects.

With only a short break, it was on to the senior design students computer lab next door for a demonstration of more advanced modeling concepts in both Rhino and Solidworks. Focusing on specific models using a Top-Down design methodology, Design-Engine Instructors showed the value of increased model flexibility utilizing a parametric software program like Solidworks. Joel and Michael both industrial designers stuck around after the class to help advise students with their models. It was great to see the modern lab facilities at Purdue as well as the enthusiasm of the budding design students and their ideas. After a long day of teaching, it was time to hit the local bbq joint, Southern Smokehouse, and drive back to Chicago through the ensuing gale-force rainstorm.

If your university or company is interested in having Design-Engine come out and teach classes or seminars, feel free to email us at or visit Or if you’re in the Chicago area, give us a call at 312-226-8339 and stop by our studio for a casual visit.

Consider taking a Design-Engine workshop tailored to your favorite design software package

Click To View Purdue Images:

PerdueUniv WindmillArray2The Junior Industrial Design labJunior ID students taking in the Rhino seminar. Instructor Joel Koster helps out a senior ID student with a Rhino model design Michael gives some advice to a senior designer Design Engine instructor Michael Vostal covers the finer points of parametric modeling in Solidworks Michael discusses top down design in Solidworks Instructor Joel Koster lectures on Rhino Modeling tolerances Rhino instructor Joel Koster walks around and reviews 3D models from senior ID class The Southern Smokehouse bbq hearse Joel bites into the long awaited brisket sandwich at Southern Smokehouse Lafayette, IN Driving back through the Indiana windmill array

Aticle Written by: Joel Koster

About the Author


Design Engine Industrial Design Training Pro Engineer


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One Comment

  1. Jay W

    How many Seniors does Purdue ID graduate each year?

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