Best Practice for Creating a Hole in a Solid

Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor



As a new user of Femap I was wondering what is the best practice for creating holes in a solid part. I recently came across a problem where I imported an assembly and the placementment of the bolt holes was not confirmed yet. I had to run the analysis and based on my analysis I had to suggest possible bolt locations within the design constraints.


The went about the task using the following steps:


1. I created the holes (using curves) at the desired location. 

2. Geometry -> Solid -> Extrude -> Extruded the Curves (step 1):

                 Material -> New Solid

                 Direction -> Negative

                 Length -> To Depth

                 Surface -> Select the surface bounded by the curves (step 1)

3. Geometry -> Solid -> Remove


Let me know how you would approach the issue.







Re: Best Practice for Creating a Hole in a Solid

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Solution Partner Phenom

Dear Saptarshi,

If I have to create a hole in a solid part I will use the following method:

  1. Create the curves of the circle using GEOMETRY > CURVE-CIRCLE > CENTER, you need to define previously the workplane using F2 key.
  2. Make an imprint of the circle edges in the solid surface by GEOMETRY > CURVE - FROM SURFACE > PROJECT projecting curves on surface, normal to surface.
  3. Use GEOMETRY > SOLID > EMBED FACE, this command extrudes a face into a new solid and embeds it into the solid that contained the face. You must first select a face, then you will have several optional methods that you can use to embed the face. Usually you will simply want to use the defaults, by pressing OK. If you choose Automatic, the surface normal will be used as the embedding direction, and the face will be embedded through your entire solid.
  4. Simply delete the solid in the inner hole and you have created a HOLE in a solid, OK?.

Best regards,


Blas Molero Hidalgo, Ingeniero Industrial, Director
Blog Femap-NX Nastran:

Re: Best Practice for Creating a Hole in a Solid


I would also recommend the method suggested by Blas to create the hole.  

If the hole is a blind hole, rather than a through hole AND/OR if you need to create numerous holes in one go, then after Blas' Geometry -> Curve from Surface -> Project step, you could use Custom Tools -> Geometry Processing -> Extrude Multiple Surfaces to extrude all the imprinted hole faces into the solid, thus creating all the solids representing the holes in one go.  Then you can use Geometry -> Solid -> Remove to subtract all the hole solids from the main solid in one go.


Finally, if part of your analysis is to move the holes, take a look at the Meshing Toolbox -> Feature Editing ... Translate or Rotate Surfaces.

This allows you to move the holes around the solid, and if the basic topology remains the same, it is the quickest way to make your modifications, and will preserve all your loads and constraints and automatically remesh the part.  It gets a little more complicated if you have any rigid elements connected to the solid mesh, but that's another topic.