I'm trying to model a late model race car. I built heims, control arms, strut rods, spindles, wheels and tires, a frame, and the rear end. Ultimately I want to use SW Motion to analyze the model. I was able to assemble the front suspension (with difficulty), but I cannot seem to get the rear end assembly into the main assembly. I added the rear end assembly and the trailing arms and third link, but it seems I cannot mate more than one heim to the rear end assembly. I made sure all the links and heims were flexible. Sometimes SW lets me add a mate without error, but does not move the part to the mate location. Other times mates seem to disappear. I had a partial assembly that was error free until I closed it and re-opened it - then it was full of mate errors. Right now I'm looking at an empty dialog box that says "View Mate Errors" (meaning there aren't any?) I got it by clicking where SW told me to click to see the mate errors, of which there are many in the tree. The entire rear end assembly has disappeared, except for a handful of bolts from the toolbox that started floating around the assembly while I was trying to perform some of the first mates. I don't know why the bolts are floating around - they were mated in the sub-assembly. I also have had parts that were locked to each other with a "lock" mate re-align themselves - despite the lock mate still being active. Ctrl-Q doesn't seem to help.
I'm running SW 2015 x64 SP1.1 on Windows 7 with an Intel Core i7 CPU and an NVIDIA Quadro K2000 video card.
So, my questions are:
1) Is there a preferred mate for something like a heim? I tried concentric on the spherical surfaces first, then switched to coincident on the two pivot points. Both work on the heim itself and within the trailing arm sub-assembly.
2) How should I mate the heims to the assembly? I was using a slot mate (because the frame is slotted) and a distance mate from the slot face to the heim ball face.
3) Should I make all mates in one main assembly, or is it ok to build sub-assemblies and include them with the flexible option?
4) Are there other tips that would help me? Sometimes I cannot get the parts to move - they seem locked, and other times they jump - they won't move just a little.
Thanks in advance!