Inventor IdeaStation
Share your ideas about how to improve Inventor with the Development Team.
13 Kudos

Add a "width" constraint

Status: Duplicate
by Distinguished Contributor sps_cad_guy on ‎11-02-2012 06:10 AM

I would like to have a width constraint added, so that when two parts are mated together, they remain centered with each other even if one, or both, part sized changes.


Status: Duplicate

After reviewing this thread, I would agree with Jim that this is a request for a symmetrical constraint type. See duplicate idea requested here. Please cast kudos to the Master idea as to not split the votes.


by Contributor jhunt107 on ‎11-02-2012 08:09 AM

Can you explain this in more detail or provide a screen capture?

by *Pro on ‎11-09-2012 06:23 AM

I bet you use offset constraints don't you?


This is a big no no use sketches to control the placement of parts.

by Distinguished Contributor sps_cad_guy on ‎11-09-2012 06:42 AM
I have no idea what you mean by offset constraints. I am a former SolidWorks user that is now using Inventor. SolidWorks has a width mate that I used all the time. It would be handy if Inventor had such a mate.
by *Pro on ‎11-09-2012 08:18 AM

How do you constrain it now?

by Distinguished Contributor sps_cad_guy on ‎11-09-2012 08:21 AM
Either offsetting a distance from an edge (which doesn't work good if part sizes may change), or I'll stop my assembly, open the part files and add a plane.
by *Pro on ‎11-09-2012 08:38 AM

Yep thats what I mean offset constraint from the edge this is not good practice. And using a plane is not as good as using a sketch. Plus offsset contraints can cause issues when using adaptive in assemblies.


Have you ever seen an assembly explode and wonder why and if you crab a part and try to move it they all snap back into the right location?


This is caused by offset constraints. In the help I believe it says to use face to face rather than offsets.

by Contributor MDS-MQ on ‎11-14-2012 09:28 AM

Model things about the origin planes. Use the origin planes to constrain parts together...

by *Expert Elite* on ‎11-15-2012 05:33 AM

hi sps,


the key word is symetrical i think. ie as some of the guys say, best using orign & mid planes.


(there is another post about that, just a click or two away from this one)!

by Distinguished Contributor sps_cad_guy on ‎11-15-2012 05:37 AM
Ok, I get it. I do use the mid planes, etc. I'm just saying that a width constraint is MUCH easier to use and more user friendly.
by Distinguished Contributor JimSteinmeyer ‎01-18-2013 02:30 PM - edited ‎01-18-2013 02:30 PM

Sometimes the surface to surface fit is part of the design intent. If parts are mated to work planes or datums and a part grows they will over lap without giving an indication. If parts are mated surface to surface and one grows you have an indication of the effects of the part growing. That said I center on datums (work planes) as often as possible.


I think the request is for either symetric mating or tab and slot mating where you select two sides of a slot and then select two sides of the tab that fits within. This can be VERY useful!



when mating to sketches, do you show a sketch of an existing feature and then mate to something like the midpoint of a line? Do you need to project geometry or something for that? This is something I may have to try.

Thank you

Submit Your Ideas

Share and shape product ideas.

New Idea
You are not logged in.

Log into access your profile, ask and answer questions, share ideas and more. Haven't signed up yet? Register

Inventor Exchange Apps

Created by the community for the community, Autodesk Exchange Apps for Autodesk Inventor helps you achieve greater speed, accuracy, and automation from concept to manufacturing.

Connect with Inventor