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How to define a zone for penetration, not a fixed port?

Question asked by Tom Gagnon on Dec 21, 2017
Latest reply on Feb 23, 2018 by Tom Gagnon

A pipe fitting elbow has a clear and distinct point where the pipe goes. This is (one of) its connection point(s).


Some electrical items have areas where penetration is allowed, without any actual holes to locate and constrain a connection point to.

Is there a 'zone' or 'area' or 'boundary' definition I can apply to my useful version of someone else's component which we assemble into our projects?


Sidenote for comparison, perhaps a different topic: Other electrical items (thinking of Circuit Breaker Panel as easy example) have multiple pseudo-concentric punch out rings for variable sized and variably located conduit connections. I find it troublesome if I'd have to have separate configurations for each available size and location. Extrapolate that with possibility of multiple penetrations, and this is quickly more complicated than a library part needs to be. At least with multiple fixed locations, I could just place a central point in each available location, and mate another component's axis to that.


Per attached PDF, this Square D transformer component has two marked Conduit Entry Zones, in two external faces. How can I define this component to represent this and carry it forward usefully for attaching conduit to this?


I already have the component built as a sheet metal part, with a rough rectangular block of copper inside of it to approximate mass and CoG without overrides.


I've considered the following possibilities:

* Sketch placed upon its face(s). Offset towards its inside with a configured or variable dimension per variable applicable conduit radii.

* Reference planes parallel to face and coincident with variable sketch, available for distance limit or symmetry mates.

* A split, or cut and non-merged extrude replacement, or extruded surface, or planar surface, or offset surface: basically a separate or independent (but coincident) body to mate to.

* (entirely undesired level of effort but realistic:) Breakdown and reverse engineering of purchased product for more accurate internal modelling which is not conveyed in any product drawing. Include terminal connections for wire. Then model the actual wire at actual radius and minimum bend radius constraints to mock up actual function and assembly procedure, and figuring out where to penetrate from there.

* Ignore it and design it contrary to manufacturer's instruction, effectively voiding warranty.

* Ignore it and design it poorly for someone else to figure out. Our shop guys are pretty adaptive.


Clearly some of these are either just the start of a useful idea, or just plain bad practice.

Was there a user challenge this year involving a mates of an object within an object without escaping its 3d zone? Is that even relevant?


Thanks for any help. I'm trying to extend our design capabilities, and encountering ill-defined but practical distinctions.