One of the most important steps when inspecting a part is ensuring that the part scan is properly aligned to the CAD drawing. Fortunately, you have many alignment techniques to choose from. Try using different techniques to see which is easiest and most accurate for your particular part.

Before you begin, you will need to import the CAD file into FARO® CAM2® Measure 10. On the File tab, select Import/Export, then select CAD from the Import column. Select the desired file and click Open.

Method 1: Using “Align my part – Surface Point” wizard
1. Pick 6 points (Inspect Surface Points) on the CAD model. You will need to pick points to constrain all degrees of freedom.
2. Click “Next”.
3. Measure the points in the order they were created. As you measure the features, the software begins to compute an alignment.
4. After you measure all of the features, the Alignment Results dialog displays each measurement along with the standard deviation, number of iterations, and maximum error. From here, you can re-measure all features, re-measure out of tolerance features, or click Finish to accept the alignment.

Method 2: Using “Align my part – 3 feature alignment” wizard
1. Pick the Primary, Secondary, and Tertiary features on the CAD model.
2. After you have picked the three features, the ”Measure the alignment feature” button will appear. Click this button and begin your measurements.
3. After you measure all of the features, the Alignment Results dialog displays each measurement along with the standard deviation, number of iterations, and maximum error. From here, you can re-measure all features, re-measure out of tolerance features, or click Finish to accept the alignment.


Method 3: Alignment using the World coordinate system

One of the easiest methods to align is to use the world coordinate system that the CAD drawing is based on.

1. Measure features such as a plane, a line, and a point that can be used for the world coordinate system.
2. Create a coordinate system based on your measured features and click on “align with world”.
3. Your part will align to the coordinate system.

Method 4: Alignment Using Nominal Coordinate Systems
1. Create a Coordinate System from the Nominal CAD data. This is known as the Nominal Coordinate System (NCS).
2. Measure features and then create a Measured Coordinate System from the measured/constructed data. This is known as the Measured Coordinate System (MCS).
3. Go to “Manage Alignments” and select Coordinate system.
4. Select the corresponding coordinate system, and click “solve”.

Method 5: Iterative alignment
The Iterative alignment command allows the use of several point-reducible features to best-fit them to their corresponding nominal values. This alignment is very versatile because it can work with all kinds of pieces-simple to complex.

1. Pick at least 4 point reducible features from the CAD model. It never hurts to have too much data so try to use as many features as possible. The outcome may result in a tighter fit.
2. In the Features panel, highlight the point reducible features.
3. Right click, add measurements to those features.
4. On the Alignments menu, click Iterative Alignment and add your selection.
5. Click “solve”.
6. Filter out the worst points and recalculate. This will ensure a more accurate fit.

Method 6 : Vector point alignment
1. Pick 6 vector points on the CAD model. You will need to pick points to constrain all degrees of freedom.
2. In the Features panel, highlight all vector points.
3. Right mouse click on the features and select “Add Readings”.
4. Measure the surface with a single reading for each vector point as prompted. Place the probe on the corresponding surface and take a point. The probe only needs to be in the general area of the nominal point at this time.
5. In the Features panel, again highlight All Vector Points.
6. On the Alignments menu, click Iterative Alignment.
7. Click the Add Selection button to add the vector point.
8. Click the Apply/Solve button. Notice the max error and standard deviation. Do not worry about it being high, as we will re-measure.
9. In the Features panel, select All Vector Points.
10. Right-click and select Re-measure.
11. The software will rotate and zoom into the point that is currently being measured. A circular zone around the vector point will show up when you are getting closer to the point. You will also hear a sound.
12. Solve the iterative again, this time you should be closer.

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