Part Modeling > Using Part > Planning Your Design
Planning Your Design
You can immediately begin designing models in Creo, and with product deadlines, it is tempting to jump in and start creating models. However, to build value in your designs, you need to create products that can keep up with the constant design changes driven by market demands. You need to build flexibility in your designs. Flexibility is the key to a friendly robust product design while maintaining design intent, and you can accomplish it through planning.
To plan your design, you need to have a basic understanding of your model from a broad perspective. In other words, understand the overall function, form, and fit of the product. This understanding includes the following points:
Overall size
Basic model characteristics
The way in which the model can be assembled
Approximate amount of components the assembly would contain
The way in which the model can be manufactured
Design Approaches
Even the best plans are imperfect. However, you can eliminate many future modeling issues if you think out your model before starting your design. The following two design approaches can help you in determining your planning strategy:
Top Down Design—Analyze your product from the finished product and work down. You begin with the master assembly and break it down into assemblies and subassemblies. Then, identify the main assembly components and their key features. Finally, understand the relationships within and between assemblies, and assess how the product will be assembled. With this information, you can plan a design and leverage overall design intent into your models. Top down design is the industry paradigm for companies that design products that undergo frequent design modifications or for those companies that design diverse products.
Bottom Up Design—Analyze your product from the component level and work up to the master assembly. Note that successful bottom up design demands a basic understanding of the master assembly. Designs based on the bottom up approach do not fully leverage design intent. Even though the end result can be the same as using top down design, you increase your risk for design conflicts and errors that result in a less flexible design. Bottom up design remains the most used paradigm in the design industry today. Companies that design similar products or products that do not demand frequent modifications during their life cycle use bottom up design approach.