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ASME Y14.41-2003 Digital Product Definition Data Practices

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What is ASME Y14.41

The American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) issued the first version of this industrial standard on Aug 15, 2003. It was immediately adopted by several industrial organizations, as well as the Department of Defense (DOD). For many potential users, there remains some confusion about the content and purpose of the standard.

ASME Y14.41-2003 was born of the need to utilize 3D CAD (computer-aided design) data as a manufacturing and/or inspection source. In the late 1980s and early 1990s solid modeling and CAD were becoming important tools for engineers looking to create and define increasingly complex geometry. For example, ergonomic and aerodynamic contoured surfaces were extremely difficult to define on engineering drawings. In response to requests from various segments of the industry, a new subcommittee began development of the standard in 1998.

Since various companies (including Boeing, GM, General Dynamics, and Alliant-Thiokol) had already begun utilizing the CAD data for industrial purposes without a standard, several definitions needed to be established as the universal interpretation. Also, since CAD software varied in capabilities, the standard was written with a great deal of flexibility.

ASME Y14.41-2003 is also the basis for the international standard ISO 16792:2006 Technical product documentation -- Digital product definition data practices. Both standards focus on the presentation of GD&T together with the geometry of the product.

The standard is separated into 3 industrial practices

Models Only: These portions cover the practices, requirements, and interpretation of the CAD data when there is no engineering drawing. While ASME Y14.41-2003 is commonly called the "solid model standard," this is misleading. The standard was intentionally written for different user levels.

Models and Drawing: These portions cover what is commonly called "reduced content drawings" or "minimally dimensioned drawings," where an engineering drawing is available, but does not contain all the necessary information for producing the part or assembly.

Drawings only: These portions of the standard allow the historical practices of using engineering drawings to define a product. However, this standard adds to the practices defined in ASME Y14.5 for Geometric Dimensioning and Tolerancing with some additional symbols, the use of axonometric views as dimensionable views, and the concept of supplemental geometry -- all of which can help to clarify the drawing and its interpretation.

Industries using Y14.41 and intended users

At the time of this writing, ASME Y14.41-2003 is being utilized in the aerospace, automotive, defense, and medical industries. Several CAD software providers have taken notice of the general acceptance of this standard and are quickly expanding their respective software to capitalize on the abilities and requirements created through this standard.

The ASME Y14.41 Standard is for any company with engineering, manufacturing, or inspection practices that contain or utilize CAD data. If a company designs or creates mock-ups in 3D, then ASME Y14.41 is the standard of choice for universal interpretation and industrial practices. If a company employs CAD CAM manufacturing or computer-aided inspection (CAI), such as CMM (Coordinate Measuring Machine) inspection, then ASME Y14.41 is the standard of choice for universal interpretation and industrial practices.

  • Description: ASME Y14.41-2003 Standard on Digital Product Definition Data Practices
  • Order #: N17103
  • ISBN #: 0791828107
  • Published: 2003
  • Product Type: Print-Book
  • No. of pages: 102

External references

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