How to create a SOLIDWORKS rolled component that can be flattened
A recent customer query had us considering a number of different methods to create a roll of material. After a number of attempts using various methods, the following suggestion was to create a SOLIDWORKS rolled component using the sheet metal functionality, this technique came from technical sales manager Elton Smith at DS SOLIDWORKS. The advantage to this method is that the roll can be unrolled using the sheet metal tools within SOLIDWORKS.
To create the desired spiral component, we will need to form two sketches on offset parallel planes. Each sketch will contain a copy of the original spiral, inserted into the sketches with the Convert Entities tool.
Once the sketches are complete, it is time to use the Sheet Metal Lofted Bend tool. This will create a lofted section from your two projected sketches.
The final result should be a rolled component.
The Bonus to this method is that the SOLIDWORKS rolled component can then be unrolled, using the sheet metal Unfold tool.
This can especially useful for locating and punching holes in the sheet. Once the holes are created, the Fold tool may be used to roll up the flat sheet.
We hope that the above methods lead you toward some new ideas regarding part development with SOLIDWORKS.
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