Perhaps you received a different part file that you need to use in your assembly. Or maybe your original file was lost and needed to be recreated. If the new file is saved as the same name as the original file, the next time you open your assembly get ready for some internal ID errors.
When using Shell elements in your Simulation studies it is important to define the offset of your shell to ensure that the geometry accurately represents the 3D model.
The default offset selection in a shell definition is Middle Surface. Therefore the defined thickness will have half of the material on either side of the surface. If you require all of the material on one side or the other, the Top or Bottom surface can be applied. The direction is defined by the orientation of the mesh. If the Top offset was selected, then the material will start from the Top surface of the mesh (part colour) and go below. If the Bottom offset was selected, then the material will start from the Bottom surface of the mesh (orange colour) and be above. Flipping the mesh or adjusting the offset definition may be required.
In SolidWorks 2012 and prior, the orientation was verified after meshing the model by comparing the mesh to the offset setting. New in SolidWorks 2013 is the ability to render the thickness in 3D to graphically see if the offset is correct. Please watch the following video to see this new functionality.
APRIL 22, 2013
Earth Day is almost upon us. April 22nd is a day to think about the world we live in. There are many events going on around the country to get involved. Browse to earthday.ca to learn more. Use this as a reminder to focus on the environment around you and think of ways reduce your impact.
Javelin always strives to be an environmentally-conscience company by having energy-efficient offices, web-based services and training, and providing you with products that reduce waste and move towards a paper-less design experience. This Earth Day, we are planning some events to help out a bit more.
- Garbage pickup event
- Environmental documentary screening over lunch
- Desk clean-out to recycle, reuse or donate those items buried under the mess
Consider starting an environmental team at your office to find new ways to reduce waste and save money. Encourage carpooling. Get energy-efficient lighting and appliances. Print on BOTH sides of the paper, or better yet don’t print that email at all.
Then take it personally by looking at home. Hang your laundry outside to dry. Walk to the grocery store for those small purchases. Bike to the exercise gym instead of driving (you may realize that you no longer need to jump on that stationary exercise bike!). Pick up some garbage around your neighbourhood. Reduce, reuse, recycle (in that order).
When using Solid elements in SolidWorks Simulation, it is crucial to have a well defined mesh in your study to obtain accurate stress results. Here are some items to check to see if your mesh is sufficient. If not, refine the mesh or add mesh controls to the specific areas.
SolidWorks has an eDrawings app that allows you to view your models and drawings anywhere! On the Apple App Store, there are two versions to choose from (similar to the PC eDrawings program). Check them out!
eDrawings for iPhone, iPod touch and iPad allows you to open your native eDrawings or SolidWorks files and use multi-touch gestures to pan, zoom, or rotate your model. Show your assemblies in exploded states and browse through the assembly component tree. Switch between configurations and hide/show or make components transparent. For your detailed drawings, easily switch between sheets and see all the dimensions. Play animations switching between 3D model views or 2D drawing views. A double-tap fits your models to the screen or zooms into drawing views.
eDrawings Pro for iPhone, iPod touch and iPad gives you even more functionality than eDrawings. Take dynamic cross section views, measurements, markups and annotations and share them to other users by email. Creating the markups in eDrawings files allow you to add text or freehand annotations. All the markups are saved in the eDrawings file for future review or comments.
As you create your exploded views, take a look at the options available. They may speed up the time it takes to generate your exploded model. Here are a few tips to help you on your way, along with a video demonstration.
- Explode Direction: If the reference triad is not in the correct orientation, you can specify the direction to explode by selecting an edge or face of the model. Another shortcut is to hold Alt, then drag and drop the blue sphere at the triad origin onto a face or edge.
- Auto-Space Components after Drag: This option allows you to easily explode multiple components at the same time along a direction. The slider bar gives you control of the spacing between the components. If some of the component spacing needs adjusting, just double-click on the component or the Step and drag the blue arrow. You can also drag the blue arrows to reorder the chain of components. Just drag and drop a component in between other components in the chain on the graphics window.
- Select Sub-Assembly Parts: When this is unchecked, the entire subassembly will be selected and moved. You can enable this option to move individual components from within the subassembly.
- Reuse Subassembly Explode: If you have already setup an exploded view in your subassemblies, there is no need to duplicate your work. Just select the subassembly and click the Reuse button to copy in the exploded steps.
- Editing steps: You can edit the order of steps by dragging them up and down in the list. To edit the spacing, double-click a component in the graphics view or the Step feature in the PropertyManager and the blue arrows and properties will be available. Click Apply and Done to save.
It’s one of the worst feelings when deadlines are bearing down on you. As you’re browsing through the directory of your current major project, you can’t find a file. Maybe someone deleted it or moved it. Or you open a file but it only gives you a message that the file cannot be opened. Murphy’s Law states that these scenarios always occur hours before your deadline. A little preparation and investment will turn these panic attack moments into a save the day hero moment.
First let’s look at a few scenarios. Did another user move or delete the files? Do you have a way of tracking these changes? Can you bring back a file that was deleted by accident? What if someone overwrites the file with a version that is missing a bunch of information? Can you open a previous version?
What about a file corruption? Although this is rare, it is something to be aware of and understand how to prevent it. Corruptions usually occur during the saving process. If there is an interruption as the data packets are being saved to the disk, a few missing ones and zeros may turn an awesome design into hard drive filler. Saving your files directly over a network has a much greater chance of corruption as there are cables, switches, routers, wall jacks, etc that can all introduce interruptions. See Chris’ post about how networks differ from local drives.
And finally the worst nightmare. A hard disk failure, a fire, a theft. All your data is lost.
Now that I’ve struck fear into your hearts and minds, use this to your advantage! Create a plan to ensure that no file is lost!
- A PDM system is the best solution as this keeps previous revisions of your files, tracks who makes changes, work locally then transfer the files to the network vault to centralize data for easy backups. For more information, see Eric’s post about Enterprise PDM.
- If you are unable to enjoy the advantages of a PDM system, you should always still backup your files. Use the SolidWorks backup tool (http://help.solidworks.com/2013/English/solidworks/sldworks/hidd_options_backups.htm), copy the files to external hard drives, do whatever you need to do so your files will still be there when you need them most.
If you haven’t heard of DraftSight before, take this opportunity to learn more about this amazing free 2D CAD program that has been downloaded millions of times. Read more about it at the following blog posts:
Once you’ve started using it, you may have some technical questions regarding the functionality. Join the free DraftSight Community to access training videos, tutorials and the iQuestion forums. The iQuestion database is filled with questions and answers by other users. Post new questions to start additional topics. Browse to swym.3ds.com to sign up for your free account.
Below is a video providing instructions on how to access the iQuestion forums.
Are you spending most of your day sitting in front of the computer? Does your back, neck and rear end get tired? Or maybe you’ve noticed the weigh scale slowly creep higher and higher. Over the years of technological advancement, we’ve become more efficient, more productive and more lazy. From a health perspective, sitting all day is horrible for the human body. There are many different studies that show how our sedentary lifestyles are affecting our wellness. Here is one article with a poignant message about how sitting is killing us (http://www.medicalbillingandcoding.org/sitting-kills/).
So as I’m at a computer 8 hours a day, I try to keep moving as much as possible. Get up and walk to a garbage can, walk for 1/2hr at lunch, bike to work, etc. But what about the time sitting in front of the monitor? How about working from a standing position! There are many models of stand-up desks out there but I had some criteria. It must work in my existing cubicle space, it must be adjustable so I can sit or stand (depending on my mood) and it must be cheap. I didn’t really find anything out there on the market.
Therefore it was time to turn to the Javelin solution. A custom-made standing desk contraption using SolidWorks 3D CAD to assist with the design, eDrawings app for the iPad for detailed drawings in the production shop (my apartment balcony), and the Stratasys Objet 30 rapid prototype 3D printer to create a monitor mount adapter. Read More »
When using Bend Deductions in sheet metal, be careful when you have corners that change directions. As shown at the bottom of the blog post Sheet Metal Bend Allowance Calculations, the Bend Deduction calculation is straight forward by taking all outside dimensions then subtracting the bend deduction values for each bend.
All Bends in the Same Direction
Here is a simple example as a base flange with material inside the sketch. The material thickness is 0.1″. For simplicity, the Bend Deduction value has been set as 0. Therefore the calculation of the flat pattern length is:
(Total Outside Dimensions) – (Bend Deduction * Number Of Bends)
= (1 + 5 + 3 + 1) – (0 * 3)