I need to create an overlay/coating body, over an existing body, at a consistent thickness. At first this sounds relatively easy using the Shell command with the option to shell outward. This is essentially what I want. However, due to the geometry, this is not really possible.
To be more specific, I have a circuit board model containing all of the circuit components (see image). This model started out as several hundred bodies, as expected. I have combined them into a single body. What I need to do is create a body of a coating that will be applied, as if the entire board was dipped into a solution that dried to a consistent 1/8" thickness. The problem is that there are many vertical walls of the components that produce much, much less than a 1/8" gap. These gaps would obviously be completely full, which is fine. This is where the shell outward command is failing. The closest gap between components is somewhere around .020. If I set the thickness to less than half of this minimum gap, it will succeed. But it's nowhere near the thickness that I need. As I increase the thickness to half the minimum gap or more, the offset walls that the shell command is producing penetrates itself and fails.
I've tried several other methods to try to accomplish this consistent thickness coating body, but have failed with each.
I tried creating a large body and subtracting the board and components. This gives me the inside face geometry of the coating body. However, I run into the same problems trying to shell the outer faces to create consistent thickness.
I tried using various surfacing techniques. The ones I've tried have failed.
Someone mentioned using the Intersect command. However, I don't know what this command really does or how to use it. And the help file is very vague.
Does anyone have any ideas on how I can accomplish this consistent thickness coating body? This one has me stumped.