Today let’s consider the situation where you need to fill the external cavities from the Mr. Smiley model with discrete solid bodies in order to 3D print the end result with a bi-material printer from the Objet Connex family.
This video proposes two different solutions for this challenge. Can you think of more?
Imagine that you get this super complex model with a lot of intricate internal details from your customer or supplier. The file size is huge and the rebuild times are long, considering that you only need it for any one of these reasons:
Use your customer’s model as a reference for modeling a nest in a fixture or tooling. You need to remove all the interior details.
Use your customer’s model as a reference for modeling an enclosure around it. You need to keep only the external faces.
Insert your supplier’s model as one item in your assembly and BOM. You need to remove as many details as possible,
Just need to 3D Print it for your customer. You need to remove all the cavities (completely “fill” the model).
The first thing you will try is, of course, using the Defeature tool (introduced in SolidWorks 2011). But what can be done when defeature does not produce the expected results?
Starting with SolidWorks 2013 the answer is simple: use the magic of the new Intersect Tool to fill any internal cavities and also merge all the solid bodies that touch (on faces) or intersect each other.
Watch this video for a demonstration of this procedure:
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.
In previous releases of SolidWorks you may have noticed that dialogs did not always pop up in front when they are most relevant. For example, when you edited a design table in SolidWorks 2012 or older a new window, Excel appeared in front of SolidWorks, but the accompanying dialog came up in the back. As a result Excel seemed to be unresponsive and you had to return to SolidWorks window using the task bar, close that dialog, and then return to Excel for it to work again.
You have to upgrade to SolidWorks 2013 SP3.0 in order to have total control over the bend allowance for multibody sheet metal parts.
Note: Many thanks to Anna Wood for making me aware about this new functionality!!!
While the ability to control the thickness, default radius and the bend allowance at the body level has been implemented in SolidWorks 2013 SP0, the workflow was not really intuitive for the user (read this article for more information about how this functionality worked in SolidWorks 2013 SP0, SP1 and SP2).
Starting with SolidWorks 2013SP3.0, there is a new checkbox for the bend allowance at the body level that can control where the information is coming from: either from the Sheet Metal feature at the part level or from the one at the body level. Again, it is a good idea to rename your features accordingly.
There is still a little problem, this time with the way the sheet metal bodies with different K-factors are grouped in cut list items.
Watch this video to the end in order to see the problemand the workaroundI found for it:
A great new feature in SolidWorks 2013 is the ability to use Luxology native appearances for PhotoView 360 renders. This opens up to SolidWorks users the ability to make use of the huge selection of additional appearances in Luxology’s online library.
But even better, for customers with an active SolidWorks Subscription contract, the subscription now includes free access to that library. Here is how you can get access to that library and make use of the appearance files available there.
Shortly after I’d posted my last video, my good colleague Alin Vargatu asked me to do a “sequel” to the last video showing the Half-Section, and how it has changed since 2012.
The main takeaway is that now instead of selecting the sketch then activating your section view command, you now select the command then the centre point (in my video I select the sketch point which happens to be in the middle, but you can see a centre snap point appear). The sketch is totally unnecessary! I could delete it and create my half section in about 3 seconds.
My SolidWorks 2013 pick of the day is the new quick dimensioning mode in the sketch environment. Now you can dimension sketch entities as you draw them, while still being able to add inferred relations. Mastering this technique could generate huge time savings for most SolidWorks users.
If you want to have any chance at winning the Model Mania competition at SolidWorks World this winter, you need to watch this video for a comprehensive demonstration of the new functionality:
My SolidWorks 2013 Pick of the Day is the cleaner feature manager structure in the Sheet Metal environment introduced by SolidWorks 2013.
While the new folder structure is an important benefit for users, it introduces a major danger for people who are not familiar with the new interface. Trying to apply the old SolidWorks 2012 workflows for changing Sheet Metal settings might result in wrong Flat Patterns.
That is why it is extremely important to watch this video all the way to the end.
Note: SolidWorks is aware of this issue and will provide a fix in SolidWorks 2013 SP3.0.
Update (2013.Jan.08): Robbie Liotta from SolidWorks provided more information on how the new functionality is supposed to work in SolidWorks 2013. Please read the second half of this article:
marc: What if this doesn't work? I'm running windows 8 and i have ...
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