Join John Helfen for an in-depth discussion in this video Placing components, part of Autodesk Inventor 2018 Essential Training.
- [Voiceover] Let's take a minute to look at how we can place parts and sub-assemblies into this assembly. On the screen, I have a blank assembly file, and if you remember, in the introduction, I mentioned that an assembly file is just a wrapper. It's a container to hold other parts and other assemblies. There's a couple different ways you can initiate the placement of a component. First is to go the Assemble tab under the Component panel and select Place. The other would be to right-click and select Place Component from the marking menu. We're gonna go ahead and do that. On the screen, you can see the Place Component dialog box is presented and it's essentially just an Open dialog.
You can browse your hard drive, find the part or assembly you need. In this case, we're gonna left-click on the base and you can see a preview of the model, and we'll select Open to place it into the assembly. Now when we get back to the screen, in the Graphics window, you can see as I move my cursor, the part moves with it. But, it's zoomed in a little bit too far. So I'm going to go ahead and use my mouse wheel to scroll out and zoom out just a little bit. And then I'm gonna go ahead and use the View Cube and click on the Home button to change the orientation.
Now we have a good view of the model and as I move my cursor, you can see the model moves with it. One thing we'll call out is that there are two different coordinate systems here. The one in the far bottom corner is the coordinate system for the assembly file itself and the one near the cursor is the coordinate system for the part file. By default, Inventor's gonna set the orientation so that those two coordinate systems match. Depending on your type of design you're doing, you may want those to match up perfectly, but in this case, it's not super important. So I want to use some of the other functionality we have to change the orientation on the model and place it into the assembly.
To do that, we can right-click, and in the Heads Up Display or the Marking Menu, you can see that we have the ability to rotate x in the 90, rotate y in the 90, or rotate z 90 degrees. If you look at the Heads Up Display, you can also see the x-, y-, and z-coordinates clearly displayed on the part. I'm gonna go ahead and select Rotate x 90 degrees, and you can see the z-arrow is now pointing down because we rotated around the x-axis. If we right-click again and select rotate 90 one more time, you can see that the blue arrow is now pointing to the back of the Graphics window.
And if we repeat that one more time, you can see that the z-axis is pointing up, and our model looks like it's in the proper orientation. At this point, we could left-click to place our model, but I want to right-click on more time and look at another option in the Marking Manual, and that's Glace Grounded at Origin. What that's gonna do, if we left-click on it, is place the model into the assembly. And it's gonna place it directly in the center of this model. But not only that, but it also grounded it, so it's locked into position.
After placing it, it put us back into the Place Component command so that we can continue placing additional instances of this part, if we wish to. I'm gonna left-click one more time and place a second one, and then I'm gonna right-click and select OK. Now the reason I did that was really just to show you the difference between placing your first part and placing your second part. If you look in the browser, you can see base part one, or instance one, is grounded. You can tell because it's got a pin on the icon to the left. If we go back into the Graphics window and left-click on this and drag.
You can see that we get the pen icon with the grounded logo, which is an indication that this part is locked into position based on it being grounded. Now, if we go to the browser you can see base and version two is not grounded. It has a part icon, but it doesn't have a pin in it. That means if we left-click and drag this. It can be moved in any direction. If we wanted to lock that down, we could right-click on it and select Grounded from the right-click menu. And now you'll see they both match in the browser. If I left-click and drag, I can no longer move this one.
I'm gonna go ahead and right-click and select a lead to remove this one from the assembly, and now we have our initial component. There's another way you can add parts to the assembly. Now that we have a part in the assembly here in the browser. If you left-click and drag on that part and release your mouse button in the Graphics window You'll create a copy or an instance of that base part. Essentially we've returned to where we were just a minute ago. Now we have a grounded base and a non-grounded base. I'm gonna right-click and select Delete one more time I just wanted to show you that once you have a series of part in the browser.
You can use those as a way to insert into the assembly. Let's go ahead and right-click and select Place Component one more time. This time, rather than select a base at the top, let's go ahead and select the Universal Joint assembly down at the bottom. If we select Open Now, we're back into the exact same setup we were just a minute ago, where we're ready to place a part. But in this case, rather than it being a part, it's an assembly. I'm gonna right-click and select Rotate x 90. I'm gonna right-click and do that one more time, right-click and do it a third time.
Now we have it in the same orientation and we can left-click, and just like a part, when I move my cursor, I could continue adding instances of this assembly. Instead, I'm gonna right-click and select OK. And in the browser now, you can see we have base, and we have Universal Joint. and underneath that, we have all the parts that make up that assembly. Again, the assembly is just a container. It can have parts, it can have assemblies, and it can have constraints and several other items.
- Reviewing interface changes
- Projecting and importing geometry
- Working with Autodesk AnyCAD
- Understanding part modeling
- Building parts with placed features
- Working with partial chamfers