If my memory serves correctly CATIA used to have a feature pattern type that allowed for the selection of two sketches (or something along these lines, my memory is fuzzy). One sketch contained the feature profile, and the other contained points where you wanted the patterned features to plop out at. Is there any similar function in IV?
In case there's another way to accomplish what I'm trying to do, I'm drawing a piece of roll formed sheetmetal with a crap load of slots with non-uniform spacing. I would really prefer to not have to create a sketch and draw all these slots. Especially when there's not even a legitamate slot command. I could probably draw one and then copy it around a bunch of times, but I'm hoping for something a little more tidy and clean.
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Sounds like Punch tool might do your job.
Can you attach an example here?
Sorry for the late reply, my spam blocker grabbed the e-mail.
I attached an example. How I have it now works, it's just ugly. The slots running along the length of the part is what is in question. The spacing changes as the patterns cross each quadrant.
I suspect that what you want to do is place sketch points in your Unfold condition at the slot centerpoints and then use the Punch tool to place the feature (just like placing Hole features). You can specify the punch size (slot length and width) when placing the Punch feature. If a particular Punch feature doesn't already exist - you create it the first time.
That is exaclty what I wanted to do.
I'm not familiar with the punch feature, I'll have to give it a look. It sounds like it would be 100% perfect for these applications. Just for my information though, there isn't any way to drive a pattern with points? Say like if I had a different sort of feature like a threaded hole (I'm assuming punch won't do threads) or a flange or whatever, and I wanted to pattern it with points?
The sketch points are points for placing the features.
WIth a bit of clever design you can use Punches for about an feature (or combination of features) that I can think of. They key is understanding how Punch features work. They are a special type of iFeature.
I use Punch features to create slots (and other types of features including additive rather than only subtractive) in parts that are not sheet metal and not uniform thickness. On trick is you have to fool Inventor into thinking it is a sheet metal part by temporarily converting to sheet metal and then back again.
The beauty of Punch features is they are place and sized as easily as hole features.
So all of my iFeatures are actual created as Punch Features.
I'll try to post a typical example later.
I didn't think punch features would be so flexible, I assumed it would only be good for things like louvers. I'll have to play around with it tomorrow morning, it's almost EOB for us here..