10 Replies Latest reply on Mar 8, 2013 5:49 PM by Torie Hadel

    Simulate Forces Due to Screws

    Torie Hadel



      I am an electrical (not mechanical! hence the need for solidworks help) engineer and I am designing some enclosures that will house microstrip components. Basically, there are two halves that come together and they are held together by screws. I am trying to analyze how these screws might warp or deform the two halves when they are screwed together. I looked into simulationxpress and I don't think it is the right application. Can anyone point me in the right direction? Unfrotunatly, due to security reasons I cannot post the solidworks file itself so please let me know if I can clarify my drawing in any way.

      Thanks in advance!!

        • Re: Simulate Forces Due to Screws
          Jared Conway

          hi Torie, you're going to have to step up from simulationXpress to the full simulation product to do the analysis you're looking for.


          once you move to simulation, you can run an analysis on an assembly and use virtual bolt connectors.

          • Re: Simulate Forces Due to Screws
            Jerry Steiger



            If I were in your shoes, I would get some help. Lots of mechanical designers struggle when they start doing FEA. The tools are easier to use than in the bad old days, but it is still really easy for an unsophisticated user to completely blow it, thinking that they have a good design when they don't or thinking that the design sucks when it is actually quite workable.


            Jerry S.

              • Re: Simulate Forces Due to Screws
                Torie Hadel

                Hi Jerry,


                This type of "clamshell" design has been done in my lab several times before with no problem. I am not really too concerned about it bending too much as I am only using small screws and the material is quick thick in comparison. I was able to run the simulation with the bolts and I got the results I expected. By this I mean the part was deforming in the places I expected as I had put in pressure ridges etc. into the design.


                As far as the results go, when I look at the deformation it seems it is giving it as an absolute number. My main concern is to see where the two faces of the objects are in contact and where they are not after the screws are put in. Is there any way to see this?


                Also, Jerry, I would get help if I had any avalaible to me. The mechanical engineers at my school are mostly taught how to do analysis using ProE and I don't have time ot learn a whole new program. We also don't have a budget for consulting someone about it. This is why I am consluting the Solidworks forumn.


                Thanks again!


                Attached is a screenshot of the results I got. As you can see the deformation scale is given all in positive numbers so I don't really know how it is deforming.