I have been tasked with flattening this .stp file for use in CNC machines. Doing the usual thickness adjustment in SM Defaults doesn't work. I've also tried to create a new model with uniform thickness using the Thicken/Offset feature, selecting surface, setting thickness to 0, deleting body, and then thickening back to the original .02 in. This new body still wont unfold and I'm at a loss. Any help would be great, even if it's just a link to relevant information as that too is eluding me.
--Using Inventor Pro 2013 Student Edition--
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You would have better luck just remodeling with sheet tools this part has a small twist to it that is why your method did not work.
Just don't put the twist in..
And that is the only way I think you will get it to work.
The twist is so small I really don't think they twist the part by bending I will almost bet the twist is done when they mount the part. He put the twist in so the model looks right. The metal is only .02 thick that is why I think they don't twist the part when bending.
As far as the dimension it would not be that noticeable as long as you can get dimensions. I would ask for a drawing then you can draw it from a drawing and you would know you are right..
Or ask him to give you a flat pattern then you can fold it with Inventor..
Thanks again! If it's not too much trouble, do you know where I can find a good resource to learn more about this specific operation (3D .stp file to flattend sheetmetal and ultimately .dxf)? I may be doing a great deal of this in the near future.
This (the forum) is a pretty good resource - just post your files and ask questions.
I have to run right now, but I'll come back and suggest a few more.
I measured 1° twist in that part. As stated in this thread - my guess is the actual part is manufactured without that twist and the twisting occurs just in the process of installation. The designer needed to model the twist for the part to fit in the digital assembly, but I'll bet the real world part has no twist until installed in the assembly.
Some Inventor sheet metal books here
Neutral format file (older) information here
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