Inventor 2014 Essential Training
Illustration by Richard Downs

Inserting iFeatures into a part


Inventor 2014 Essential Training

with John Helfen

Video: Inserting iFeatures into a part

Now that we've learned how to create the eye feature, let's go ahead and look at how we can place the eye feature. We're going to do this by starting with a blank part. We'll click New on the toolbar, select standard.ipt as the template and click Create. Now to begin, we're going to need a base feature. In the previous movie when we were authoring the part, the holes were placed on a flat plate.
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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
      1m 59s
    2. Placing components
      7m 40s
    3. Creating components in the context of an assembly
      8m 9s
    4. Placing fasteners from the Content Center
      8m 35s
  16. 46m 14s
    1. The Mate/Flush constraint
      9m 42s
    2. The Angle constraint
      5m 34s
    3. The Insert constraint
      3m 55s
    4. Driving constraints
      10m 0s
    5. The Transitional tab
      3m 50s
    6. The Motion tab
      9m 18s
    7. Contact sets
      3m 55s
  17. 18m 38s
    1. Adding materials to parts in an assembly
      4m 3s
    2. Visual styles
      4m 52s
    3. Enhancing the design experience with shadows
      2m 9s
    4. Adding a ground plane, reflections, and perspective to a design
      3m 34s
    5. Changing the lighting style to match a design
      4m 0s
  18. 39m 11s
    1. Exploring initial drawing creation
      5m 6s
    2. Placing base and projected views
      9m 31s
    3. Creating section views
      8m 0s
    4. Creating detail views
      3m 56s
    5. Creating a breakout view
      5m 41s
    6. Creating auxiliary and cropped views
      6m 57s
  19. 25m 57s
    1. Creating general dimensions
      9m 20s
    2. Changing dimension precision
      4m 21s
    3. Creating baseline, ordinate, and chain dimensions
      5m 51s
    4. Creating baseline, ordinate, and chain dimension sets
      6m 25s
  20. 10m 43s
    1. Creating individual balloons
      4m 34s
    2. Creating a group of balloons with automatic ballooning
      3m 40s
    3. Adding a parts list to the drawing
      2m 29s
  21. 30s
    1. Next steps

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Watch the Online Video Course 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
John Helfen

Inserting iFeatures into a part

Now that we've learned how to create the eye feature, let's go ahead and look at how we can place the eye feature. We're going to do this by starting with a blank part. We'll click New on the toolbar, select standard.ipt as the template and click Create. Now to begin, we're going to need a base feature. In the previous movie when we were authoring the part, the holes were placed on a flat plate. That was the base feature. So let's go ahead and create that. I'm going to go ahead and right click into graphics window and select create new sketch. And I'm going to select a plane to sketch on in the graphics.

Next I'm going to right click in the graphics window and select two point rectangle. And I'll left click on the center point to locate the starting point of the rectangle. From there, I'm going to use my head's up display. I'm going to enter three as my value for my length. I'm going to hit tab on my keyboard and I'm going to enter two for the height. And then I'll hit enter on the keyboard to create that, and I'll finish the sketch to return to the modelling environment. If you click home, you can zoom out and see all of the items you just created.

And we're ready to extrude this. So now I can right click in the graphics window Extrude. And I'm going to enter a value of .125. And his Enter on the keyboard to create the base feature. We now have Extrusion one, which is our base feature in the browser. And we're ready to place our iFeature. The eye feature can be placed from the Manage tab under the Insert panel here at the top, Insert Eye Feature. And by doing that, it's going to bring up the dialog box, and I'm going to go back to the location where we saved our eye feature.

And this is in the exercise folder. And you can see iFeature one. And I'm going to select that by left clicking on it. And you can see the insert iFeature dialog box. Now, when we were authoring the iFeature, there were a couple of prompts that were added. And there was a couple different items in the dialogue box that were set up. There was positioning, and there as sizing. Here in the dialogue you can see that position is highlighted, and is looking for the same plane that we would have selected had we drawn all of this information on our own.

So it's looking for a flat sketch plane. You can select the face that we want this on. You can select the edge. You can select the other edge as well, and any flat face at this point would be valid. And we're going to simply left click on the one we want. After doing so you can see that we have the sketch page selected and we now have the ability to move this around on this face by selecting the arrow and then moving our mouse. So if you want to position it a little more close to where you think it's going to be located You can do that, or if you click the arrow and then move your mouse, you can change the angle.

So, it is possible to position this at any location and in any angle you want, depending on your designs. I'm going to locate it there and go back to the dialogue box because you can manually override that with an exact value here as well in the dialogue box. I'm going to go ahead and set it back to zero because I want to keep it in it's original position and I'm ready to continue by hitting the next button. Now you can see the additional prompts that we had and the different items for sizing. We had the ability to change the length between the two holes and we have the ability to change the whole diameter.

And here you can see when we select one of these, the prompts that were entered into the authoring tool when we created this iFeature. If we select the second one, it says enter how old I am. And I could change this to three, for example, if, for example, I knew the iPart that we were going to attach to it was longer, but in this case, I'm going to go ahead and leave the values as they were. And continue on by hitting Next. The final item is to decide whether you've positioned it where you want, and that's final, or whether you want to activate the sketch immediately to begin editing.

Either one is completely fine. If you choose not to activate the sketch, you can simply double click the sketch in the browser to edit it. Since I know that I don't have exact positioning set, I'm going to go ahead and select Activate Sketch immediately. And when I hit finish, is going to automatically rotate me into a normal view of the sketch and begin editing the sketch. You can see here that I didn't have to create the whole centers, this construction line or this dimension for this item.

What I do have to do, however, is locate this. Because if I left click and drag this is free floating anywhere. But you can see here that using eye features might not be appropriate when you're going to just simply place two poles. But you never know, if you place this over and over and over and over again. In the end, it would save you significant amount of time to not have to click to create each of these items in the sketch plane and all of that information. If you could just use an iFeature to do that. But, what's nice here is I can right-click in the graphics window General Dimension, and I can use this sketch to locate this specifically where I want.

In this case I'll go ahead and enter .5 from the edge, and I'll left click on the construction line and then left click on the horizontal line to enter, let's see, .375. By doing that I've perfectly located this item, and when I hit finish sketch you can see I've placed the eye feature. It shows up in the browser, and you can see the sketch here that drives it. At any time, you can go back and double click this sketch, and make edits to it. If I finish that sketch, you can also go back and right click on this, and select Edit iFeature to return to the creation dialogue box where you could edit the lengths just like you did when you were creating it.

I am going to go ahead and cancel that, but hopefully you can see how iFeatures can speed your design process if you have features that you are creating over and over again.

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