AutoCAD 2011: Migrating from Windows to Mac
Illustration by Richard Downs
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Creating a solid model


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AutoCAD 2011: Migrating from Windows to Mac

with Jeff Bartels

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Video: Creating a solid model

The Mac edition of AutoCAD contains the same 3-D functionality as the Windows version. This means you can leverage your existing 3-D skills to produce accurate and compelling conceptual designs. In this lesson we are going to run through a typical 3-D workflow. On my screen I have drawing of a mechanical part; this geometry represents a plastic pedal similar to what you'd see on a child's bicycle. As you can see we have a top view and two section views as well as a 3D view of the object.
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Watch the Online Video Course AutoCAD 2011: Migrating from Windows to Mac
2h 45m Beginner Oct 29, 2010

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AutoCAD 2011: Migrating from Windows to Mac with Jeff Bartels covers the fundamental differences between the 2011 Mac OS X version of AutoCAD and the venerable PC edition, allowing designers to leverage existing AutoCAD skills and easily transition to the new environment. This course runs through both a typical 2D and 3D design workflow, covering its workspace, tools, customization options, and strategies users can apply working in a mixed Windows and Mac environment. Exercise files are included with the course.

Topics include:
  • Adjusting preferences
  • Customizing the interface
  • Opening and managing drawings
  • Constructing a 2D drawing
  • Creating and inserting block references
  • Building a library using the Content Manager
  • Making references to external files and images
  • Plotting drawings
  • Creating a model in 3D space
Subject:
CAD
Software:
AutoCAD AutoCAD for Mac
Author:
Jeff Bartels

Creating a solid model

The Mac edition of AutoCAD contains the same 3-D functionality as the Windows version. This means you can leverage your existing 3-D skills to produce accurate and compelling conceptual designs. In this lesson we are going to run through a typical 3-D workflow. On my screen I have drawing of a mechanical part; this geometry represents a plastic pedal similar to what you'd see on a child's bicycle. As you can see we have a top view and two section views as well as a 3D view of the object.

I'd like to construct his part as a solid model and as I do that I'll be referring to this geometry for my dimensions. Let's start by splitting the screen in half. To do that I will open Viewport menu and I'll come over and select to vertical then I will click to ensure that the focus is in this view on the right and I will center this geometry on screen. Next I'll click in his view on the left and I'll pane this geometry over to give myself some room.

Configuring the screen this way allows me to work in 3-D while still being able to see the dimensions. Since we were working in 3D, I am going to make sure that the modeling tool Set is Current and I'll start by creating a rectangle that represents the overall shape of the part. I will launch the Rectangle command I'll click to specify my first corner and then I'll right-click I'm going to use the Dimensions option. I know this rectangle has a length of 2.75 and it has a width of 2.

I will then click on screen to finish the rectangle. Let's zoom in and I'll center this in the view, next I am going to fill up these ends if I look over here I can see I'm going to be using a Radius of 0.4. Let's launch Fillet command I'll right-click and select Radius I will enter the value of 0.4 and press Return and then I'll click this edge this one I'll press my Spacebar to go back into the command and I'll select this one and this one.

Let's go back in the Fillet and I'll change the Radius. This time will use a radius of 0.2. I will select this edge this one I will press Spacebar and I will do this edge this one. Now let's offset the shape looks like I can use a Distance of 0.15. If I come over the tool Set the Offset command doesn't appear to be readily available exactly right down here, if I click the arrow we can find in the Copy group.

I will enter a Distance of 0.15 and press Return I offset this geometry to the inside and I'll press Esc. All right now that the base of the part is finished I'm going to hold my Shift key and the scroll wheel and I'll orbit this drawing such that I can see it in 3D space. Now I am going to be constructing this part as a solid model and the tools associated with solid modeling are at the top of the tool Set palette. If I were creating this part using surfaces I could use this next group of tools a little farther down.

At this point you may be wondering where the Mesh tools are. The tools for creating and editing meshes are only found in the pull down menus. If I open the Draw menu and select 3D modeling I can find the Mesh creation commands right here. If I open the modify menu, you can find the Mesh editing commands right here. All right let's get back to work; I would like to extrude this outer boundary to match the height of my part. So I will launch the Extrude command I'll select this geometry and press Return and I will pull this up a height of 0.62.

I am going to re-launch Extrude by pressing the Spacebar and I will select this inner geometry and I'll pull this up a height of 0.26. I'm getting that measurement from right here in Section B-B. Next I will launch the Copy command and I like to copy this new extrusion. I will copy it from the endpoint here and I'll pull this up that mean lock my Ortho. I'll pull the straight up a distance of 0.36.

When I am finished I will press Esc. At this point I'm going to change the visual style to Shaded with edges to make my solid little easier to read on screen. I'm going to click and hold on this icon to open up the Boolean commands and I'll select Subtract and will then select the large outer object and press Return and then I'll make a window selection to grab the two inner parts and all press Return.

That removes their volume from the overall part. Next I'd like to tackle the cylindrical shape that runs across the part, to create the shape of using a solid primitive but before I launch the command let's check some of our settings. I am going to expand this status bar and I want to make sure that my Dynamic UCS is turned on. This will ensure that my UCS will align itself to the geometry. Take a look to this icon in the end, this guy represents a 3D running object snaps.

I'm going to click to turn this on and then I'll right-click on it and make sure that center of face is selected it should be by default. Okay, now let we finished our housekeeping, I am going to move up and launch this Cylinder command. I will orbit the geometry around and I would like to start my cylinder at the center of this face. The cylinder has a radius of 0.31 and I am going to pull this all the way through the part a distance of 2.75.

Now let's union these objects together. I'll launch the Union command I'll select both objects and all press Return. Let's orbit is back around. I'm going to create another cylinder on this end. We'll snap it right to the center. This cylinder has a diameter of 0.5. So I'll right-click and select diameter. I'll enter 0.5 and press Return and this guy has a height of 0.1. Let's union these parts together.

Once again I'll launch the Union command and I'll select my geometry and press Return. Finally I need to drill a hole in this pedal. I am going to use this Cylinder option again. I will snap my cylinder to the center of this face. This cylinder has a diameter of 0.35. I will pull this through the part a distance of 2.5 and I'll press Return. Now to create the whole, I will subtract the geometry from the overall part, now select the part and press Return and then I'll select my cylinder and press Return.

Now that the part is finished, let's set this drawing back to a single viewport. I will do that by opening the Viewports menu and select Maximize Viewport and to give this drawing more of a dynamic appearance I am going to right-click on the view cube and I'll select a Perspective View. As you can see the Mac edition of AutoCAD has the same intuitive 3D toolset as the Windows version, this means you can easily leverage your existing skills and quickly move your conceptual designs into the world of 3D.

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