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Inventor 2014 Essential Training
Illustration by Richard Downs

Extracting iFeatures for use in other parts


Inventor 2014 Essential Training

with John Helfen

Video: Extracting iFeatures for use in other parts

Now that we've learned how to create iParts and place What we'll do is we'll begin by simply selecting the features we want to export.
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  1. 1m 24s
    1. Welcome
    2. Using the exercise files
  2. 6m 20s
    1. Exploring major workflow steps
      2m 19s
    2. Reviewing different file types
      4m 1s
  3. 22m 3s
    1. Navigating using the ViewCube
      4m 56s
    2. Navigating using the navigation tools
      5m 31s
    3. Using the browser
      3m 34s
    4. Using the ribbon bar
      2m 47s
    5. Using the Quick Access Toolbar
    6. Using the Marking menu
      4m 33s
  4. 22m 6s
    1. Basic menu customization
      6m 40s
    2. Custom ribbon bar panels
      6m 22s
    3. Keyboard
      5m 9s
    4. Marking menu customization
      3m 55s
  5. 20m 24s
    1. Project file introduction
      3m 54s
    2. The project file: .ipj
      4m 4s
    3. Setting up the project file for this course
      7m 11s
    4. Frequently used subfolders
      5m 15s
  6. 22m 31s
    1. Introducing sketching
      4m 55s
    2. Working with origin geometry
      4m 46s
    3. Understanding constraints
      7m 39s
    4. Application options
      5m 11s
  7. 50m 43s
    1. Drawing lines
      6m 29s
    2. Creating rectangles and arcs
      9m 26s
    3. Creating splines
      6m 35s
    4. Creating slots
      5m 43s
    5. Construction geometry
      6m 18s
    6. Dimensioning
      9m 34s
    7. Parameters
      6m 38s
  8. 30m 33s
    1. Move, copy, and rotate sketch geometry
      7m 43s
    2. Trim, extend, and split sketch geometry
      6m 20s
    3. Scale, stretch, and offset geometry
      7m 47s
    4. Creating rectangular, circular, and mirrored sketch patterns
      8m 43s
  9. 19m 27s
    1. Understanding work features
      3m 58s
    2. Creating offset work planes
      4m 17s
    3. Creating work planes
      6m 59s
    4. Creating work axes and points
      4m 13s
  10. 16m 50s
    1. Projecting geometry
      7m 7s
    2. Importing AutoCAD data
      9m 43s
  11. 54m 31s
    1. Part feature introduction
      5m 14s
    2. Creating a base extrusion feature
      8m 46s
    3. Keeping extrusions connected with the To next face/body option
      4m 29s
    4. Creating revolves
      7m 42s
    5. Creating complex shapes with the Loft tool
      8m 50s
    6. Adding control to a loft by creating rails
      8m 40s
    7. Creating a sweep feature
      6m 16s
    8. Creating a sweep feature with model edges
      4m 34s
  12. 24m 44s
    1. Adding holes to a part model
      10m 10s
    2. Modifying edges with fillets and chamfers
      4m 18s
    3. Hollowing parts with the shell feature
      10m 16s
  13. 25m 37s
    1. Creating rectangular feature patterns
      9m 23s
    2. Adding intelligence to a rectangular pattern
      5m 45s
    3. Creating rectangular feature patterns along a path
      2m 22s
    4. Creating circular feature patterns
      3m 11s
    5. Mirroring part features
      4m 56s
  14. 31m 30s
    1. Understanding iParts and iFeatures
      3m 19s
    2. Creating an iPart from an existing part
      11m 0s
    3. Changing between versions inside an iPart
      5m 50s
    4. Extracting iFeatures for use in other parts
      5m 11s
    5. Inserting iFeatures into a part
      6m 10s
  15. 26m 23s
    1. Introduction to assemblies NEW
      1m 59s
    2. Placing components NEW
      7m 40s
    3. Creating components in the context of an assembly NEW
      8m 9s
    4. Placing fasteners from the Content Center NEW
      8m 35s
  16. 46m 14s
    1. The Mate/Flush constraint NEW
      9m 42s
    2. The Angle constraint NEW
      5m 34s
    3. The Insert constraint NEW
      3m 55s
    4. Driving constraints NEW
      10m 0s
    5. The Transitional tab NEW
      3m 50s
    6. The Motion tab NEW
      9m 18s
    7. Contact sets NEW
      3m 55s
  17. 18m 38s
    1. Adding materials to parts in an assembly NEW
      4m 3s
    2. Visual styles NEW
      4m 52s
    3. Enhancing the design experience with shadows NEW
      2m 9s
    4. Adding a ground plane, reflections, and perspective to a design NEW
      3m 34s
    5. Changing the lighting style to match a design NEW
      4m 0s
  18. 39m 11s
    1. Exploring initial drawing creation NEW
      5m 6s
    2. Placing base and projected views NEW
      9m 31s
    3. Creating section views NEW
      8m 0s
    4. Creating detail views NEW
      3m 56s
    5. Creating a breakout view NEW
      5m 41s
    6. Creating auxiliary and cropped views NEW
      6m 57s
  19. 25m 57s
    1. Creating general dimensions NEW
      9m 20s
    2. Changing dimension precision NEW
      4m 21s
    3. Creating baseline, ordinate, and chain dimensions NEW
      5m 51s
    4. Creating baseline, ordinate, and chain dimension sets NEW
      6m 25s
  20. 10m 43s
    1. Creating individual balloons NEW
      4m 34s
    2. Creating a group of balloons with automatic ballooning NEW
      3m 40s
    3. Adding a parts list to the drawing NEW
      2m 29s
  21. 30s
    1. Next steps

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Inventor 2014 Essential Training
8h 36m Beginner Apr 17, 2014 Updated May 19, 2014

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

Already up and running? This course is the next step in building your Autodesk Inventor skillset. Author John Helfen takes you through the interface and key processes of this parametric design system, including sketching, part modeling, assemblies, and drawings. Each process works in conjunction with the rest, allowing you to create parts and assemblies and document them in a way that they can be manufactured. Learn how to set up your project file; create and modify geometry; create extrusions, sweeps, and lofts; build parts with placed features and patterns of features; and create iParts and iFeatures. John also covers assembly visualization techniques, drawing views, and balloons and parts lists.

The course was created and produced by John Helfen. We're honored to host this training in our library.

Topics include:
  • Customizing Inventor's menus
  • Drawing rectangles, arcs, splines, and slots
  • Moving, copying, and rotating geometry
  • Trimming, splitting, scaling, and stretching geometry
  • Creating work planes
  • Projecting and importing geometry
  • Creating extrusions, revolves, sweeps, and lofts
  • Adding holes to a part model
  • Creating rectangular feature patterns
  • Creating iParts and iFeatures
  • Using constraints to position parts
  • Creating drawing views
  • Setting dimensions
Prototyping Product Design CAD 3D Drawing
John Helfen

Extracting iFeatures for use in other parts

Now that we've learned how to create iParts and place iParts, it's time to learn how to create and place iFeatures. iFeatures and iParts are very similar. But they do have differences, and we'll see that here. iFeatures are actually quite a bit easier to create. On the screen what you can see is a standard part I've developed from scratch. I created a new part. I drew a rectangle to create this base extrusion and then, I created a new sketch and I placed a couple of holes in that sketch and that you can see here.

And, the holes are the ones I'm going to use to create the iFeatures. But in order to do that, similar to preparation work you'd have to do on an iPart, there's a little preparation work that we need to do on this part as well. I'm going to go ahead and expand hole one and double-click on sketch two to edit it, because really, what I want to do is use this iFeature to automate the process of creating the sketch, placing these two hole centers, connecting it with a construction line, and adding this dimension.

While it might not seem like a lot of work, once you do it over and over and over again, or you have more features than just a couple of holes, it can became tedious. And this is a great way to speed the design process. But in order to do that there's some cleanup work we want to do. I don't know that this hole is always going to be positioned in this manner. I don't know that it's going to use this vertical line, I don't know that it's going to use this horizontal line to locate the distance. So what I want to do is start cleaning up by windowing these dimensions, and clicking delete on the keyboard to remove them.

Next, I want to strip out these projected edges. I'm going to highlight those through a window mode, and then delete it. And I'm going to select this by left clicking on it and delete it as well. And the reason for that is just for simplicity sake and clarity. I know I don't need any of that stuff so I don't want to risk clicking on something by mistake and adding it to any iFeature when I don't need it because it can just add a little bit of complexity and simply slow the design process down. So, I now have these two-hole points in a construction line along with a dimension.

And if I left-click and drag, you can see I can move it anywhere I want. And that's what I want in this case to set this up. I'm going to go ahead and finish this sketch by left-clicking on finished sketch. And you'll see that the holes move a little bit because I made some modifications. But what I've done is prepare that feature for exporting as an iFeature. So let's go ahead and look at how to do that. If you click the Manage tab, you can go back to the author panel, just like we did with iPart, but this time we're going to use the extract iFeature button in the upper right.

I'm going to left click on that to bring up the extract iFeature dialogue box. And what you'll find is we have a couple of different types of iFeatures that we can extract, standard features or sheet metal features. Both work in a very similar fashion, just in different environments. And sheet metal is beyond this course, so we'll skip that for now. What we'll do is we'll begin by simply selecting the features we want to export. Now I'm going to hover over the graphics window and select the hole. And by doing so, since we created two holes in that single hole feature, both holes are selected, and you can see what Inventor has done is split out some of the information it's going to need to place this or locate it when you put it into a new part file.

The first section is the size parameters. When I created that hole, we had a hole diameter dimension and we had a length between those two holes. And we'll be able to change those when we place those features. So, there are, are prompts that you can adjust based on your needs. You can, I'm going to leave it as the default of inner length or inner hole diameter, but you could change that based on your specific features that you're exporting. And then finally it needs something to position this. And that, right now, is just this sketch plane.

And it's going to ask you to pick a sketch plane by default. Again, the prompt can be changed very easily, just by left clicking here and replacing that text but at this point, that's all we needed to do. By clicking save, we can then go to our exercise file folder. And I'm going to save that here as iFeature one. Because it's the first one I've created. But you can name it according to whatever's going to make it easiest for you to identify that iFeature by the name.

It could be two-hole pattern. It could be a specific part number for the iPart you're going to attach to it. It could be a bunch of different things. It is up to you as the designer to pick what is most appropriate for your environment. I'm going to go ahead and save it as iFeature one and we now have that feature saved off in a folder. Here you can see that we have iFeature one along with the plate that we started with and we'll use that in the next movie to place that onto a new part.

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