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Argon™ 3D Modeling
Feature List

Read about OS support

History-free, precision 3D modeling.™

Argon 3D modeling offers precision 3D modeling without the parametric history or associativity that can be cumbersome to those just beginning their journey in 3D. Argon uses the same intuitive user interface found in Cobalt and Xenon to provide wire-frame, solid and surface modeling, full rendering and camera animation, but at a lower price point. Available on both Mac and Windows, Argon is an excellent way to step into the world of 3D modeling using our unique Organic Workflow™ non-linear design process.

  • Unique Working Environment featuring Organic Workflow™
  • Unified Drawing & Modeling Tools
  • Holistically Integrated Tool Palette for Wireframe, Surfaces & Solids
  • Vellum Drafting Assistant™ for Intelligent Snaps and Alignments in X,Y & Z
  • Unique Hybrid Mac/Windows, Office/Home Licensing
  • Complete Set of Precision Import/Export Translators Including ACIS SAT, Parasolid, IGES, STEP, DXF, DWG, EPS, AI, and more
  • Class-A, NURBS Surface Modeling
  • True Solid Modeling
  • Surface Analysis
  • Full Photo-realistic Rendering & Camera-based Animation
  • 2D Drawing Snapshots
  • True Associative Dimensioning
  • Associative Assembly Tools
  • Object & Assembly Properties (CG, Volume, Weight, etc.)

3D Modeling as Flexible as Clay

Luc Heiligenstein designed this sports watch using both Ashlar-Vellum drafting and 3D modeling software.
Just extrude in any direction to get a product shape very quickly. It’s as flexible as modeling clay.
Read more about Luc’s success with Ashlar-Vellum CAD & 3D modeling

General Features

  • Direct 3D Modeling
  • ACIS Modeling Kernel from Spatial
  • 16 Place Floating Point Accuracy
  • Hybrid Mac/Windows, Office/Home License
  • 65,000 Hierarchical Layers
  • Unlimited Colors
  • Unlimited Number of Objects and Drawing Size
  • Single File Holds Drawings, Models, Assemblies, etc.
  • Direct Multi-sheet PDF Creation
  • Universal Binary Support for Intel Mac

Available Accessories

  • Graphite v8
  • Cobalt Share™ for Viewing, Printing and Exporting at Client or Manufacturing Site (Free)
  • Vellum:environments™
  • Vellum:tracks™
  • Vellum:materials™
  • Vellum:decals™
  • Tutorials (Free)

Sheer Value of Ashlar-Vellum Translation Tools

Designer Kevin Quigley produced this line of Optima Mugs for Village Mill.
There is nothing to match the flexibility and sheer value of Ashlar-Vellum translation tools for 3D geometry — and then there’s the modeling.
Learn how Kevin uses Ashlar-Vellum 3D modeling software.

User Interface

  • Updated Intuitive Vellum Interface
  • Drafting Assistant™ for Automatic Snaps and Alignments
  • Smart Cursor Changes Shape Indicating Active Tool and Operations
  • Strokes and Short Cuts Provide Instant Access to Commands
  • Tear-off and Auto-hide Palettes
  • Dockable Tools and Palettes
  • Palettes can be Flipped Vertically or Horizontally
  • Resizable Dialog Boxes
  • Status Line to Specify Object Parameters
  • Message Line Provides Tool Instructions and Options
  • World and User-defined Coordinate Systems
  • All Data Entry Fields can Perform Numeric Calculations
  • TrackBall for View Selection and Dynamic or Step Rotation
  • Show/Hide Palette
  • Selection Mask for Easier Selection of Specific Entity Types, Layers, Colors
  • Grid (User Definable)
  • Object Editor
  • Support for SpaceMouse Device on Mac and Windows
  • Easy Update Installer

Object Management Tools

  • Design Explorer™:
    • Layer Tree
    • History Tree
  • Object Properties Dialog
  • Show/Hide Palette

Display and Visualization

  • Scene Display Modes:
    • Flat Shaded
    • Gouraud
    • Gouraud w/Edges
    • Phong
    • Phong w/Edges
    • Hidden Line Dimmed
    • Hidden Line Removed
    • Photo-realistic
  • Scene Display Options:
    • Anti-alias
    • ZBuffer Curves
    • Clip at Eye Point
    • Transparency
    • Reflected Environment
  • Real-time Object Display Options:
    • Display Iso Lines
    • Silhouettes
    • Transparency
    • Direction
    • Curvature Comb
    • Surface Analysis Display (Gaussian, Mean, Min/Max, Zebra, Normals, Curvature, Draft)
    • Object Display Resolution (Coarse, Medium, Fine, Very Fine, Super Fine)
    • User Definable Object Colors
  • Adjustable Perspective
  • Infinite Pan and Zoom
  • Section Profiles and Cutaway View in the Edit Window
  • Real-time 3D Display:
    • Curves
    • Surfaces
    • Solids
    • Meshes
    • Text
    • Bitmaps
    • Dimensions

Everything in One Package

In only five months from concepts through distribution, Nick Dearden brought this ice cream dispenser to shops throughout the U.K.
Ashlar-Vellum software is the heart of our virtual prototyping design and development process, supplying all our solid modeling, 2D drawing and image rendering needs in the one package.
Read more about Nick’s success with Ashlar-Vellum’s 3D modeling

General Transform Tools

  • Move
  • Copy Along Path
  • Rectangular Array Duplicate
  • Feature Array
  • Rotate
  • Polar Array Duplicate
  • Scale (Uniform or Differential)
  • Mirror
  • Align

Object and Assembly Properties

  • Material
  • Center of Gravity
  • Volume
  • Weight
  • Density
  • Moments of Inertia
  • Principal
  • Axis

Wireframe Creation Tools

  • Point
  • Points on Curve
  • Points on Surface
  • Line
  • Mid-point Line
  • Connected Line
  • Arc
  • Circle
  • Ellipse
  • Conic
  • Rectangle
  • Polygon
  • Arbitrary Polygon
  • Star Polygon
  • Sketch Spline
  • Through-point Spline
  • Vector Spline
  • Bezier Spline
  • Helix
  • Spiral

Easy to Learn 3D Modeling

Jason Pippenger, manufacturing engineer and manager for TSS Technologies.
Argon is our software of choice — there is very little training required before our new team members are productive on the program. It is amazing how quickly people grow and learn with Ashlar-Vellum.
Read more about Jason’s success with Ashlar-Vellum 3D modeling.

Wireframe Editing Tools

  • Fillet
  • Chamfer
  • Trim
  • Relimit/Extend
  • Break
  • Offset
  • Join
  • Extrude
  • Revolve
  • Project to Plane
  • Extract Edge of Surface or Solid
  • Increase Order
  • Fair Spline
  • Add/Remove Spline Points
  • Modify Spline Slope
  • Curve by Intersection of Plane and a Curve, Surface, or Solid
  • Project Curve onto Surface/Solid
  • Intersect Two Curves
  • Create Points by Intersecting Surfaces or Solids

Surface Creation Tools

  • Surface Primitives:
    • Sphere
    • Block
    • Cylinder
    • Pyramid
  • Infinite Plane
  • Lathe
  • Extruded Surface
  • Sweep:
    • In Place
    • Perpendicular
    • Ridged
  • Sweep Along One Rail:
    • Full Rail
    • To Entity
    • Between Rail Points
  • Sweep Along Two Rails:
    • With Maintain Height
  • Skin, Skin w/ Guide Curves
  • Tangent Loft
  • Cover Surface, Tangent Cover
  • Net Surface
  • Revolved Surface
  • Tube Surface
  • Offset Surface
  • Drafted/Extended Surface
  • Fillet Surface

Surface Editing Tools

  • Freeform Deformation (Push/Pull Surface Points)
  • Deform to a Point, Factor, or Curves
  • Add/Subtract/Intersect Planar Surfaces
  • Join Surfaces
  • Trim/Untrim Surfaces
  • Match G1 and G2 Tangency
  • Insert Control Points
  • Elevate Degree
  • Rebuild Surfaces
  • Add, Remove, & Replace
  • Curves of Associative Surfaces
  • Imprint Profile Sketches for Surface Subdivisions

Solid Creation Tools

  • Solid Primitives:
    • Sphere
    • Slab
    • Block
    • Cylinder
    • Cone
    • Torus
    • Prism
    • Pyramid
    • Ellipsoid
  • Lathe Profile:
    • With Draft
  • Extrude Profile:
    • Distance
    • Vector
    • To Entity
    • Mid Plane
    • Thin Wall
    • With Draft
  • Skin, Skin w/ Guide Curves
  • Tangent Loft
  • Sweep Profile Along One Rail:
    • In Place
    • Perpendicular
    • Ridged
    • Full Rail
    • To Entity
    • Between Rail Points
    • With Draft
  • Sweep Profile Along Two Rails:
    • With Maintain Height
  • Pipe Solid
  • Thicken Surface into Solid
  • Stitch Surfaces into Solid

Solid Editing Tools

  • Boolean Add/Subtract/ Intersect Solids
  • Constant Blends:
    • Radial
    • Elliptical
    • Vertex
  • Variable Blends:
    • Linear
    • By Position
    • To Curve
    • To Fixed Width
    • To a Hold Line
  • Constant Chamfers:
    • By Length
    • Two Lengths
    • Length and Angle
    • Vertex
  • Variable Chamfers:
    • By Lengths
    • Four Lengths
    • Lengths and Angles
    • By Position
    • To Fixed Width
  • Holes:
    • With Bore
    • With Sink
    • To Depth
    • Through
    • First Blind
    • To Face
    • With Draft
  • Bosses:
    • With Specified Fillet
    • With Draft
  • Profile Cutout:
    • With Draft
  • Profile Protrude:
    • By Vector
    • To Face
    • With Draft
  • Split:
    • With Surfaces or Solids
  • Trim:
    • With Curves, Surfaces or Solids
  • Shell:
    • With Independent Face Offsets
    • With Core/Cavity Options
  • Parting Line:
    • With Draft
  • Local Operations:
    • Taper/Draft Face
    • Move Face/Edge
    • Offset Face
    • Remove Face
    • Replace Face
    • Match Face
    • Deform Face (By Factor, To Point, To Curves)
  • Bend Solids
  • Twist Solids
  • Stretch Solids

Independent 2D/3D Drawing Creation

  • Predefined and Customizable Layouts
  • Create 2D/3D Drawings w/o Building Models
  • Stored in Same File as Model

2D/3D Drawing Creation from Models

  • 2D or 3D Views from 3D Wireframe, Surfaces, and Solids
  • Sectioning Capability (Manual)
  • Automatic Hidden Line
  • Predefined Layouts

PDF Integration

  • Directly Generates Non-tessellated Arcs and Splines (SP1)
  • Multi-sheet (SP1)
  • Imbedded Exports Optional

Camera-based Animation

  • Fly-by
  • Walk-through
  • Sunlight Timeline
  • QuickTime Object VR
  • QuickTime Panoramic VR
  • Direct Event Journal Recording and Playback
  • QuickTime Event Recording and Playback

Work Any Way You Please

Retired Automotive Designer John Houlihan took on the challenge of designing these new-model Studebakers in Ashlar-Vellum Argon.
I used surfaces almost entirely and then thickened the surfaces to make them into solids, because they were more free-form.
Read more about John’s use of both solid and surface modeling capabilities in Ashlar-Vellum 3D modeling products.

2D/3D Drafting & Detailing

  • Available for Independent and Model-driven Drawings
  • Smart Dimension Tool Automatically Creates the Appropriate Dimensions
  • Dimensions:
    • Linear
    • Angular
    • Diametric
    • Radial
    • Spline Length
  • Standard and User-definable Tolerances and Settings:
    • ANSI
    • DIN
    • ISO
    • JIS
    • Dual
    • Architecture
    • Stacked Fraction
  • Balloon and Callout Dimensions
  • Predefined and User Created Hatch and Fill Patterns
  • Predefined and User Created Line Weights, Colors, and Styles
  • All Dimensions can be Associative, Dynamic, or Static

Photo-realistic Rendering

  • Drag and Drop Materials
  • Drag and Drop Decals (with Alpha Channel)
  • 3D Wireframe Interleave
  • Realistic Texture Maps and Procedural Textures:
    • Wood
    • Marble
    • Granite
    • Leather
    • Plastic
    • Glass
    • Metal
    • Brushed Metal
    • Automotive Paint
    • and more
  • Advanced Material Editor:
    • Color
    • Reflectance
    • Specular
    • Diffuse
    • Ambient
    • Roughness
    • Bump
    • Transparency
    • Refraction
    • Texture Orientation
    • and more
  • Interactive Materials Display
  • Environment Maps
  • Customizable Scene Presets
  • Editable Light Sources:
    • Spot
    • Bulb
    • Distant
  • Photo-realistic Sunlight (Location/Date/Time)
  • Photo-realistic Tube and Area Lights
  • Adjustable Hard and Soft Shadows
  • Visible Volumetric Light Effects
  • Sketch Effects (SP1)
  • Fog Effects
  • Backgrounds
  • Raytracing with Anti-aliasing
  • Production Quality Resolution & Output (bmp, tga, tif, lwi, eps)
  • Multiprocessor Photo-realistic Rendering (Mac SP1)
  • User-defined Presets

Text Tools

  • Normal
  • Along a Path
  • Keep Screen Horizontal
  • At an Angle
  • Set:
    • Font
    • Size
    • Style
    • Color
  • Thicken
  • Extrude
  • Revolve
  • Sweep

Import/Export

  • ACIS SAT
  • PDF (Export Only)
  • DWG/DXF
  • IGES
  • STEP
  • Pro/E (via SAT)
  • Parasolid X_T (Windows Only)
  • SolidWorks (via SAT)
  • Catia v4
  • 3D Studio (Import Only)
  • Rhino 3DM (Import Only)
  • Facet
  • STL
  • Adobe Illustrator
  • EPS (Export Only)
  • CGM
  • VRML
  • ShockWave 3D (Export Only)
  • Bitmap:
    • BMP (with Alpha Channel)
    • JPEG
    • PNG (with Alpha Channel)
    • PPM
    • XPM
    • XBM
    • GIF
  • PICT (Mac Only)
  • Spline (Import Only)
  • RAW Triangle (Export Only)
  • ASCII Text
  • Grid Surface (Import Only)
  • Other Ashlar-Vellum Products

Localized User Interface

  • English US
  • English UK
  • French
  • German
  • Italian
  • Portuguese
  • Russian (Windows only)
  • Swedish

System Requirements

  • Windows / Macintosh
  • Windows XP / 7 (x32 or x64)
  • Mac OS X 10.4.9+ / 10.5.8+ (PPC); 10.5 / 10.6 / 10.7 / 10.8 / 10.9 / 10.10 (Intel only)
  • 32 MB Accelerated Video Card w/ Open GL (Standard on all business-class systems since 2005. Additional RAM will not improve performance.)
  • Medium- to High-performance Workstation-class Graphics Subsystem Recommend for Real-time Environment Mapping on Complex Files
  • 512 MB RAM Required / 2 GB Recommended
  • 1 GB Free Hard DriveSpace Required / 4+ GB Recommended
  • DVD Drive or High Speed Internet Connection

Graceful Shapes Precisely Modeled

Violet perfume bottle modeled and rendered by Marc Caloren of Marc 3 Designs.
I work with the Ashlar-Vellum products for the specific reason that I can work within one application and explore the forms that I have in my mind…whether it’s surfaces, solids, even the wireframe tools.
See more of Marc’s designs in our Gallery

Buy Argon v8 3D modeling software. Special use pricing, upgrades and e-only versions available.