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Solving SOLIDWORKS surfacing challenges when designing a Golf Club head [VIDEO]

Article by Jim Peltier, CSWE created/updated August 4, 2015

Since I’m pretty terrible at golfing, I’ve decided that designing a golf club head with SOLIDWORKS will make it easier for me to hit the ball. This is the shape of the club’s head:

Designing a Golf Club

I never said I could design a good golf club!

Creating the Golf Club Head in SOLIDWORKS

So having a concept for a golf club head, I quickly went about creating it in SOLIDWORKS. Given the very organic shape of it, a Loft feature seemed like the best command to use. Since I wanted this to be hollow, I tried a few techniques.

Surfacing Challenges

I started by using a Lofted Boss/Base. This created the solid as I would have expected, but I wanted to make a consistent wall thickness around this. My dimensions made up the inside, so I tried to apply a Shell feature with the option for Shell Outward. This failed to work, and all I got was an error message telling me that:

The shell operation failed to complete. One of the faces may offset into an adjacent face, a small face may need to be eliminated, or one of the faces may have a radius of curvature which is smaller than the shell thickness…

Needless to say, it didn’t work, and with the golf tournament a few weeks away, I don’t have a lot of time to figure out why.

Then, as you’ll see in the video, I try to create it using a Thin Feature without any more success.

Finally, I tried creating it using a Surface Loft. This worked nicely until I tried to thicken it. As you’ll see in the video below, I get an error message such as

Failed to offset or face could not be deleted

Solving the challenge with Offset Surface

So, although Thicken didn’t work, I was able to use Offset Surface in conjunction with a Split Line to narrow down where the problem was occurring. Sometimes, this method of dividing the faces can make it easier to perform the offset command. Even if it does not fix the issue, I am able to complete 90% of my offset, then perform other operations to manually fix up the region where the offset isn’t working.

 

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Jim Peltier, CSWE

Jim has been using SolidWorks since 2001, and has spent most of that time working in the design of industrial automated manufacturing equipment. He has been working as an Applications Expert at Javelin Technologies in Oakville, Ontario since July 2012 and is a Certified SolidWorks Expert (CSWE).

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