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How do you set up FEA on Extruded Al T-Slot Frames - Non Welded Construction?

Question asked by Allan Bowers on Mar 14, 2016
Latest reply on Apr 6, 2016 by Jim Riddell

I am designing a frame with T-Slot extruded Al which has several types of connection fixtures. These can be T-Nuts, T-Bolts, Gussets etc and are bolted connections.


See eg here: or here:


The frame is required to mount a vertical plate on one side and connect to L-Track on the other side where the L-Track is fixed.


I assume I should use Beams for the FEA, and as the connections are bolted together I will need to add Bolt fixtures?


I have to have a deflection of less than 0.5 inches at the load point in the design and the reaction load and moment limits for the L-Track must be within tolerances, (I am unsure how to conduct the FEA for. the L-Track).


A minimum factor of safety for yield and a factor of safety for ultimate stress is required for the analysis too.


I am quite new to FEA. I can set up a static study OK for a part but am unsure how to approach this problem of a bolted together Al T-Slot frame.


The atch pic gives and idea of a butt connection fixture. Other connections are more simplified T-Nuts and Bolts etc.


EAS T-Slot Hinge and Butt Joint.JPG


Here is the L-Track with its connector type:


EAS Mil Track & T-Slot.JPG


Any help on how to set up such an FEA would be much appreciated.