SpaceClaim gets repackaged & starts to make sense

Published 17 February 2009

Posted by Al Dean

Article tagged with: spaceclaim, direct editing, design. direct modelling

If there’s been something that’s troubled me of late, it’s where SpaceClaim fits into the 3D product development technology world. On one hand, the company has a fantastic product that, while still in its infancy, offers something different, something that, for a portion of potential users, is ideal.

On the other hand, the company itself has done itself very few favors. Bad marketing decisions are almost inevitable for anyone starting a new business, but when you’re trying to bring something ’sort of new’ to a mature market, then those mistakes are quickly become compounded.

Last year, the company went through a dramatic change, former CEO, Mike Payne, is out (but I’m told still present) and Chris Randles (formerly of Mathcad) is in – someone that has brought a new level of sensibility to the company, reigned things back in and the next rev. SpaceClaim looks like its finally getting its act together. Part of that repurposing process is that they’re relooked at how its products are packaged up and the new scheme makes sense – details are live today.

SpaceClaim is now available in two flavours: SpaceClaim Style and SpaceClaim Engineer. The basic difference between the two is functionality and cost. Engineer pretty much gets everything all in and costs $1,995 per seat (translators are not included in any package as is rendering). SpaceClaim Style ($895 per seat) and you’re missing Draughting, Sheet Metal, ECAD (IDF read), Model Clean up, CAE prep (model abstraction/defeaturing), no access to the API and no free home license.

No matter whether you’re using a mainstream modelling system, looking at 3D with fresh eyes, then you have to admit that this sort of price level is interesting and pretty attractive. While I’m never a huge fan of cut-down versions, the facts are that we’re talking about a $1,100 difference – in the grand scheme of things, that’s not a lot.


I've been using SpaceClaim for about a year and it fits well with SolidWorks. I can easily import a SolidWorks assembly or part into SpaceClaim, play around with it without having to worry about how it all goes together or was constructed. The core modeling makes SolidWorks seem clunky by comparison, but overall SpaceClaim still lacks a bit of polish and the detail drawing side of the package is still weak.

Posted by MatthewC on 01 January 1970 at 02:00 AM

I will tell you what was a full stop for me in investigating SpaceClaim... the fact that you had to "coordinate" your evaluation with a sales rep. Ugh. Just give me a link to download the eval and be done with it.

Posted by Anonymous on 01 January 1970 at 02:00 AM

I enjoy your blog, but the black background with the white text really hurts my eyes... when I look up all I see are nice lines everywhere...

Posted by Anonymous on 01 January 1970 at 02:00 AM

You can now download the SpaceClaim 2009 Engineer trial without a sales rep. Visit the front page of the website and download the trial. I did, and it took about 30 seconds to get the trial notification and I was using SpaceClaim within minutes. Awesome!!

Posted by Anonymous on 01 January 1970 at 02:00 AM

To anonymous who enjoys the DEVELOP3D blog, you'll be pleased to hear we'll be moving to black text on white background pretty soon.

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