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NX 11 Sketcher Enhancements Part 1: Scalable Groups


Sketch groups just got better. Starting in NX 11, you can create scalable groups to change multiple parameters at once, allowing greater flexibility and control with your model. Not to mention it’s a lot faster to make changes! See how to create your own scalable groups with the tutorial and video below.

 NX 11 sketcher 1.jpg


The example shown here starts with existing geometry that was modeled in NX based off of a sketch. In this case, we would like to increase the cutout in the center of this part to be 5% larger without affecting the size of the part itself.


To start, go into the sketcher to add a line below the sketch. This will act as a reference when scaling the sketch parameters, so it’s a good idea to use a number that is easy to calculate in your head. In this case, we make the line 100mm.

 NX 11 Sketcher 2.jpg



Next open the New Sketch Group dialog. Under Settings>Group Content there are various options for the types of groups you can create.  Select Scalable to begin creating a scalable group, and select any geometry you would like to include. Don’t forget the reference line created earlier, as this will help you in the next step. Select OK to apply the changes.


NX 11 Sketcher 3.jpg


Now that the scalable group is created, you can control the size using any geometry in the group. John Baker demonstrates this in the NX Quick Tips video when he drags the line out to enlarge the group. However, you get more accuracy and control when you add a dimension.



NX 11 sketcher.gif




Open the Rapid Dimension dialog and place a dimension on the line. Here is where basic math comes in. The line is 100mm and we want to make the group 5% larger, so we should change the dimension to 105mm. Now the group updates.


You might be thinking, “Wait a minute… I lost my dimensions!” but not to worry. Simply select the scalable group constraint, delete it, and the dimensions come back.


Scalable Groups are a quick and easy way to modify sketches using a scale factor. You can also control simple objects as part of a sketch with Scalable Groups. In other words, leave them grouped and modify them whenever you wish. See Scalable Groups used in a workflow by John Baker in the video below.


(view in My Videos)


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