(Story about success of promoting SolidCAM at the university)

During our history of selling SolidCAM in Czech Republic, Slovakia and Hungary (called SolidCAM CZ area) we always put a great importance to technical schools as a source of informed and skilled people. As a result, today we take care about 115 schools in Czech Republic, 60 in Slovakia and 28 in Hungary – altogether over 200 EDU licenses of SolidCAM.

It would be good to explain a little about our educational system. After 9 years of basic school, you can start a 3 years practical school, 4 years of high schools of all kinds including gymnasia. After that it is either bachelor or master degree at the university. Our focus is mostly directed to technical high schools. From these schools comes most of our CAM programmers.

Universities are very important, just the approach to them must be different. They are source of specialists, which will be possibly deciding which software the company is going to buy. Universities are also a path to higher levels of company management and cooperating with companies on research programs. Their opinion is highly respected. The downside of universities – it is much harder to get there with SolidCAM, because their relationship with big companies is forcing them to use software from Catia, Creo or NX mostly.

Therefore, when the Western University of Bohemia in Pilsen informed me, that while they still use Catia and NX in CAD activities, they scrapped their use in CAM – both research and teaching process – and will be using SolidCAM only, it was like a heavenly talk to me. The path to this success was, however, very long.

It all started with meeting some people many years ago and showing them – guess what – iMachining. IMachining at its basis is a very scientifically programmed tool. As such it was a challenge to university teachers. They learned that I have very intensive relationship with company Iscar (based also in Pilsen) and became curious. This very first stage led to the first purchase of SolidCAM to the Western University. The relationship with teachers responsible for CAM and CNC programming become better and better (I am sure you know the importance of good relationship). They used iMachining on their machines and like it a lot.

Next level was when Mickey Berman, iMachining Chief Scientist, asked me if I know where to make tests of newest iMachining versions. I recommended Western University in Pilsen and one of the teachers, Mr. Jan Hnátík. Mickey has worked with Jan Hnátík many times since and they also had a great relationship. When you start iMachining today, it was partly developed and tested in Pilsen.

Finally, we run an iMachining competition at Western university. If you expect some student competition – don’t. It was competition between SolidCAM software and the best knowledge of Iscar people to cut the test part (4 different materials). Iscar was using their best monolithic tools with classic technology, while we were using iMachining. The result has been so overwhelmingly good for iMachining, that Iscar never doubted it since and became our best promoting partner. Mr. Jan Hnátík was a referee, his machine was the testing machine.

This development ended as I wrote above – today SolidCAM is exclusively the only CAM at this university – and it is an important university. For our CAM it is great success and help for all other activities we do here.

Ivan Cimr