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Expanding or shrinking a box using a relation to what's being put inside.

Question asked by Phil Greer on Jul 11, 2011
Latest reply on Jul 14, 2011 by Alan Stoldt

Hi there guys,


I'm trying to figure out the best way of achieving a large box (think of it as a cutlery draw) with other boxes inside of it (the 'cubicles' for each kind of item - i.e. knives, spoon - created using dividers), in such a fashion that the assignment of each cubicle to a particular implement dictates the size of that cubicle.
Whether by design table or equation or combination of both?

What we have created so far together: You start with the perimeter of the cutlery draw and make it the size required, which then will generate evenly sized cubicles to fill out the draw (their size = perimeter / number of columns & rows).

Now what we want to be able to do is assign a cubicle to take an eggbeater. It will need to be both wider and longer, but that needs to be automatic so that if we shuffle components around it auto-resizes the cubicle they're in to be as close as possible to appropriate size.
How do you reckon this could be done? We're taking baby-steps, so I should ask how would we achieve the first part, or something quite like it?


Our early way of thinking was that the objects coming in would have a relationship with the dividers which doesn't take effect until inserted, and that defines the size. But we don't know if this is possible and if so, how to get it up and running. Another thought was that since we actually know what dimensions are best for different utensils and tools, we can enter our data into a design table and apply it to the cutlery draw. Would we be able to do this, to tell it what goes where and see how it goes with that? Or does SolidWorks only have this level of functionality after many hundreds hours of involved programming?? We'd rather not reprogram the entire thing as we go, but we have got many hours though we can spend on setting it up.