<img height="1" width="1" style="display:none" src="https://www.facebook.com/tr?id=445056146107513&amp;ev=PageView&amp;noscript=1">

Autodesk® Inventor® 2016 AnyCAD Technology

Hagerman & Company

Many large companies work in a Multi-CAD environment, consisting of departments, divisions, and vendors all using unique CAD systems. Autodesk® Inventor® 2016’s new AnyCAD technology allows users to work more efficiently in these wide-ranging situations.

AnyCAD provides an associative connection with other 3D CAD applications to Inventor, without the need to translate files. Inventor will directly open the files as a reference file. This reduces the need to maintain multiple CAD systems. This also eliminates manual file translations and updates. In Inventor 2016, AnyCAD technology is now provided as core functionality at no additional cost.

There are multiple ways to work with files from another CAD system. In an Inventor assembly, there is a new command, “Place Imported CAD Files”, on the flyout of the Place command.


Once the Place Imported CAD Files command has been started, there are a few options available. Inside “Options”, you may choose a new option, “Reference Model, which will bring in the native CAD model without translating it.

On the “Select” tab, use the selected import options to choose only the components that you want to work with. This eliminates the need to reference every component in the native CAD file. Simply choose the components needed for the current task.


Once the assembly is developed, any design changes can be made back in the original CAD application and the design in Inventor automatically updates. Any downstream data, such as a drawing, will also automatically update as changes are made to the 3D model.


Changes made to metadata, such as iProperties, will also automatically update.

Another process available in AnyCAD technology is to use the Inventor “Open” command to directly open a model from another CAD system. Similar to placing imported CAD files into an assembly, there is a new option “Reference Model”. If you choose the Reference Model option, there is no translation. If the original CAD model changes, the Inventor file will automatically update.

Multi-thread support has been enabled. This allows Inventor to more efficiently use the available hardware on which Inventor is running. As a result, you will experience improved performance when working on files from other CAD systems.

AnyCAD is a welcome change to the old method of translating files. It allows for efficient workflow with multiple CAD systems and speeds up the revision process. AnyCAD in Inventor 2016 is a game changer.

Submitted by Gary Bergero, Manufacturing Solutions Engineer, Hagerman & Company, Inc.