Graphics Programs Reference
Working with Plastic Parts
So far, everything you've done has focused on machined, cast, or sheet metal
parts. Every type of material or process affects the way that you defi ne a compo-
nent, but people who create plastic parts work with a different approach and even
have a language all their own. I won't attempt to describe how it's all done, but I
do want to walk you through some of Inventor's specialized features that help
the experts in this fi eld work more effi ciently.
A workfl ow called multibody modeling can be used in a number of situations.
I've mentioned it before, but now we'll take the time to explore it.
The Multibody Part
Many consumer products appear to be single monolithic components even
when they're made up of several parts. Although these components are an
assembly, it can be very frustrating to have to edit the individual components.
This is the case particularly if the change is to the overall contour and must be
repeated for each part.
The concept of a multibody part allows a Part fi le to simulate an assembly for
the development process. After the elements are developed, you can use the sin-
gle fi le as a source for an assembly that remains associative to the single part
much as drawing views are based on the parts or assemblies they represent.
The Browser has a Solid Bodies folder that contains information about the
body (or bodies) that make up the part. As a single solid is broken into multiple
bodies, this folder acts as a resource for isolating which body you want to work
with or give a special appearance to. It's also dynamic. Because you're really
working with a single part, if you edit a feature that existed before a part was
divided, you'll see that the folder presents only the single body while you're edit-
ing that feature. The process is easy to follow but extremely powerful.
Building the Basic Part
In this exercise you will build a simple part that you will eventually transform
into an assembly of complex parts using automated tools.
1. Open or activate the Fan.iam fi le.
2. Set Level of Detail to Fan Drive.
3. Use the Create tool in the Component panel of the Assemble tab to
add a new component to the assembly.