Previously, I used the SolidWorks freebie FEA version. Then my boss sent me to training so I could use Simulation. I just got personal training on Simulation "beam elements" and am starting to use it. I learned both Beam, Solid Body and mixed element methods. We build large weldment frames (stages) where I work and if I try to use "Solids" it take entirely too long to run the analysis (Yes, I have a powerful SW computer). So we use the default "Beams" method.
I used the Beam element method on my first frame with great results. It was really fast solving it even if I made the mesh smaller than the default "fine" setting. On my second frame, I am having a lot of difficulty with it. When I create a new study, Simulation doesn't pick up all of the joints. The frame is perfectly symmetrical, one side of it has the joints perfect, the symmetrically opposite side completely misses them. It also misses one beam in center. Consequently, no matter what I do, when it runs the analysis the beams without the joint fly out into space considerably and gives bad results. I need good results because the Simulation report goes to our P.E. so he can stamp it, government officials, and our customer.
Here is a pic of the frame (it is shown upside down):
I have tried everything I can with SW Simulation help files, Right Mouse Clicking, Googling, deleting study and making it new. Sometimes when I make a new study, the joints may change a little, in other words, the beam next to the one shown below may have the joint, but its neighbor will not.
I have gone back into the original model and deselected the beam members, then adding them back again in the weldment. None of the beams were "mirrored" when I created them. They are created from a sketch. In other words, I didn't create half a frame and mirror it.
I've tried to create a bonded "contact set", but it gives me this error (see pic):
So my question is, "Can you create a joint if Simulation doesn't automatically pick it up during the creation of the new study?"
I have sent this problem to my VAR, but he hasn't replied back yet.
I am on SW 2013 & 2013 Simulation. XI Computer, Windows 7 Pro, Intel, 16 Gig RAM.
Thanks for any consideration you may give me. If you want the file, I can send it to you or post here.
Rochester Hills, MI