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Modeling a wire cable and take-up drum


Good afternoon everyone. I am making an effort to try to model a motorized shade assembly and it is comprised of idler pulleys and a takeup drum, as well as the shades. I managed to model the SS wire rope that provides the linear motion to the shade (Lifting up and down) and made my best attempt to model the wire rope from the shade mount around the idler pulley and winding around the takeup drum that is connected to a servo. I did this with a simple 2D profile and 3D sketches. It's tedious and not very precise.


2 Questions:


  1. Is there a better way to model a wire rope in that winds around (really a helical path) a takeup drum and over an idler pulley than how I did it? It's helpful to estimate cable lengths and see a precise makeup without doing too much math manually with different iterations/placement of components.
  2. Is there any way to animate this? I can spin the shaft, pulleys, sheaves, that's all rather trivial but not sure on how to deal with the rope. The rop is static or a solid part so I assume this is only possible in a more feature packed SE version. (I'm using SE foundation). 


Thanks for your feedback and help.


Re: Modeling a wire cable and take-up drum

Honored Contributor
Honored Contributor

I don't think a different version of SE will help.

You will need to model each layer of the winding seporatly and manually connect them.

Animation would be tons of work when going from one layer to the next.


I don't have harness design, but it's possible it would help.