Expanded Metal

Creator
Creator

Hi All, I've made drawn expanded metal in the part and sheetmetal enviroment successfully, however as the size of the sheet gets bigger, above about 200mm x 200mm the updates and modifications get slower and sssllllooooooowwwweeeeerrrrrr. To the extend that it can take 15 to 60 minutes to recalculate. Thats if edge dosent crash beforehand. I'm operating on a high end cad designed pc with lots of processing power.

 

My question is :- is there a better way to pattern cutouts or soilds to make this mesh. I've tried both cutting the holes as well as making just one diamond of the mesh and then patterning to make a sheet. The end product looks good. just really slow. I'm not interested in textures as I'm printing this mesh with a 3D printer so I need the mesh to be modeled correctly.

 

Sorry for the long description, and Thanks in advance to any advice that anyone may have,

 

Nev

7 REPLIES

Re: Expanded Metal

Honored Contributor
Honored Contributor

I did exactly the same thing but because we are using purchased expanded metal, I went with the bit map rout and created some false materials that give a decent representation of the expanded metal for weight, display, and thickness. I have yet to make hatch patterns for expanded metal and diamond plate.

 

My suggestion is put in an enhancement request for patterned sheet materials. This way expanded, perforated, and diamond plate could all have real models but not take up huge amounts of processing.

 

Call up GTAC and ask for a person who knows sheet metal.

 

Did you model just the diamond shape cuts or did you also add the bevel cuts of the non-flat expanded metal? Are the cuts all a single sketch and single cut operation? I found that to be the fastest to calculate.

 

One method I did not try is modeling one "diamond" then assembling multiple diamonds together. This could be faster as it's multiple instances of one small file vs. one large file.

 

Just a suggestion since you have a 3D printing requirement. How that would impact the printing file size and smoothness would also need to be figured in.

 

 

 

Re: Expanded Metal

Creator
Creator
Thanks for your comments. I will let you know how I get on.

Cheers

Nev

Re: Expanded Metal

Esteemed Contributor
Esteemed Contributor

Hi Nev,

 

This is more a computational issue with "real" models versus "representative" models......as you have discovered, and has always been the case, the more fine detail, as in model faces, that are added, the more the system has to work to acurately display this. This is also why "simplifiy" is an option for models, by having the option to remove some of excess detail in larger assemblies.

 

All of this doesn't help you exactly.....but what @12GAGE says, is probably your best course.....applying a texture to the faces. Check his post here, for more. [there are other threads on the subject]

Sean Cresswell
Design Manager Streetscape Ltd
Solid Edge ST10 [MP2] Classic [x2 seats]
Windows 10 - Quadro P2000

Re: Expanded Metal

Honored Contributor
Honored Contributor

Hey Sean, He has a 3D printing need for an actual model. Bitmaps wont help that.

Re: Expanded Metal

Esteemed Contributor
Esteemed Contributor

12GAGE wrote:

Hey Sean, He has a 3D printing need for an actual model. Bitmaps wont help that.


 

Ah, well......I missed that aspect somehow. Perhaps I should stop "pretending" to work while playing on the SE-Community. Robot Embarassed

 

 

Well,in light of my new found knowledge..... @Nev maybe you might try modeling a smaller patternable segment instead, and then make an assembly covering the extent you need for 3D printing, which should reduce the individual file size, and system drain.

Sean Cresswell
Design Manager Streetscape Ltd
Solid Edge ST10 [MP2] Classic [x2 seats]
Windows 10 - Quadro P2000

Re: Expanded Metal

Creator
Creator

Thanks @SeanCresswell I did try the assembly patterning option. This was good up to about 200 patterns. Then everything just went down hill and changes became very slow.

 

I also tried a part copy of the assembly, This was slow to load and still slow to cut and fold.

 

Thanks everyone for your comments.

 

Nev

Re: Expanded Metal

Genius
Genius

No easy way......Generaly "Cutouts" hold less information than "Holes" do, so use "Cutouts" instead of "Holes". Is there any chance you might be able to apply the holes/pattern in the "Flat Pattern" mode? it may or may not help.