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Show Thickness by Color displayed resolution.

I have been testing a lot of different 3d verify configurations and am a lot more comfortable with the results but I haven't seen much for controlling how Show Thickness by Color is displayed.  IPW settings do not seem to affect the thickness output.


Am I missing a setting for this?  Or are the settings hard coded for the time being?  I was thinking the latter is probably the answer since simulation is going through major changes these days.

NX 11.0.2

Re: Show Thickness by Color displayed resolution.

Hi, have you gotten to the bottom of this?


I'm drafting ISV guidelines for the other CAM guru here at the office and having a hard time to get any analysis out of the "Thickness by Color" feature. We wish to implement the process for turning to visually detect material left by wrong rad, tol, etc.


Note: IPW works and display just fine, saves a nice and accurate part, wonderful. Our NX's tolerance IPW settings are all pretty much max'ed (chordal 0.01, needles 2000, facet set to ultra fine, etc) but regardless we are still getting circular parts looking like an hex bolt when processed in the Show Thickness by Color :/


Any other TOL/settings, anywhere, that needs tweaking to make use of this Show Thickness by Color feature?








Re: Show Thickness by Color displayed resolution.

[ Edited ]

Hello Charles,

I have not come across other settings which affect it unless the IPW tolerance settings affect it.  I have not tested that yet.  As for typical settings I typically use them as shown in my image.  (Units are inches)  I change the #8 color to a dark color so excess is a bit more visible to me.  Note the setting I have for #8; I have it set to .002".  It's basically the zero stock amount but at zero it has a bit of "noise" on the displayed result.  On large models I'll have to use a bit more to get rid of the noise, perhaps .003-.005",  but on small parts I can get by with .001".  The yellow in my image is the expect excess.  This image is zoomed in a bit so usually the yellow is more defined.  So far my prismatic parts seem to be a no-brainer for ISV and Show Thickness.  My milling is 3-axis so conics and free form faces are where I am seeing noise. 


On my parts which  are cut with negative stock I use a bit different settings.  I have to think about it because I don't have an example at hand to show you...For negative stock parts I believe I set the #8 field to what my finish stock amount is.  For example: on a part cut finished at -.010" I will set #8 field to .010" plus .002" (to help eliminate "noise") so my setting would be .008".


As mentioned before the amount to eliminate "noise" might be .001" on small parts, .002-.003" on my medium parts and perhaps .005" on large parts.  Unless I'm seeing it wrong this would be the error in the displayed model.  Once in a great while I cannot get a very large part to clean up the "noise" but generally Show Thickness by Color has been working well for me.  All my parts are milled so I cannot comment on turned parts.


(Edited 5/4/2016 8:56,  I had to upload a better image and change some text)

NX 11.0.2

Re: Show Thickness by Color displayed resolution.

Too cool - too kind, thanks for the great help. I have to send a few kudos your way for that, you've just tipped us on how to 'effectively' use this tool


I understand now. Pulled up a milling part today and ran it into the thickness color tool, as you've recommended I've played with the check tol & contrast colors and there it was, shining from behind the undercuts! No one here ever used the tool before this week in fact. Not entirely sure how we'll proceed for the turning parts however, as those turn zebra using similar technique.


Now that I understand the tool, I'm sure I'll find a way to get it to work as good as it does for planar parts. I'll share the magic colors and tol for turning when I'll find them... sort of the same as what you did here Man Wink


thanks again

Re: Show Thickness by Color displayed resolution.

You're welcome.  That's what working for me at the moment and I hope Siemens isn't cringing about it, LOL.  If something is amiss in how I'm using it perhaps Siemens would chime in.


I just want to mention a couple things.  On straight walls sometimes it generates an error message but I think this might be from profiling straight walls and it is seeing the shank rub.  In reality my operation is using a tool with an undersize shank (inch inserted tool with metric shank) and I didn't define that so that's probably what's going on; and expected I suppose.


Rarely it will see a holder collision on a roughing operation where there is none.  When it does occur for me it seems to happen mainly on cavity milling operations and I can clearly see the holder is above the part.  Like I said it is rare and it has never collided and NOT generated an error so overall I'd have to say it has been working well for me.


NX 11.0.2

Re: Show Thickness by Color displayed resolution.

If an up-to-date IPW is there, whether from a path generation or inside the visualize dialog, then Thickness by Color should use it. If there is no IPW, then I think it uses the operation tolerances - it not, it may default to medium.


I urge you to experiment with the limits in the dialog - by narrowing in on and area of interest, you can get some usefull displays. A reminder - you can save these as customer defaults. 

Mark Rief
Retired Siemens

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