11 Replies Latest reply on Apr 27, 2015 9:01 PM by Jared Conway

    Newbie to Simulation Module - need a little guidance

    Dave Krum

      Good morning All,

      Been using Solidworks for a few years now but have yet to experiment with the Simulation module.  I'm running SW2010 Premium and see that the simulation module is included.  I have a small project that the shop is building for the owner as an overhead entrance to his golf course.  I have all the steel components worked up to be made from the model.  The shop foreman thought it would be cool to see how much the overhead will sag under its own weight.  This is a multi-body assembly so I'm not sure if simulation even runs on with this configuration.  The columns could be considered fixed.  Looking for flex movement / displacement under its own weight on the crossbeams (figured carbon steel for everything).  Is this even possible to do some ROUGH calcs wtih the module just to get a ballpark idea?  If so, I can do a little reading up but like I said, I've never dabbled with it previously.  I've included a windows snip below of the basic layout as well as the finished plan plus have included the zip of the assembly with the the parts.  As always, thanks in advance!




        • Re: Newbie to Simulation Module - need a little guidance
          Chris Michalski

          Dave -

          That should be easy to simulate.  From a configuration with the steel parts of your first picture start a simulation. (true Simulation can do assemblies, Sim Xpress can only do parts)

          Leave Bonded Contact as the default (assuming all the parts are welded together)

          Add a Fixed restraint to the bottom of the 2 feet.

          Add gravity in the Forces & Loads

          Tell it to mesh & run.

          If you do it using the wizard it will be really straightforward.

            • Re: Newbie to Simulation Module - need a little guidance
              Steve Bizzarro

              Aren't the bars welded in place?  Using contact instead of welded will definitely give you a different result.


              it may be a good idea, just for practice, to change the contact from contact to fixed and Ramesh/run and see the difference.

                • Re: Newbie to Simulation Module - need a little guidance
                  Dave Krum

                  Hi Guys and thanks for the responses.  Everything is basically bolted (columns to long overhead beams, then cross bars on top to the long beams).  For the sake of simplicity, I just have the top cross beams mated coincident.  For the column to long beam connection, the plates are actually in there (see below) for a bolted connection.  Was hoping I wouldn't have to change any of that to do a simple simulation and just assume the connections are all rigid (welded in place).  Mainly want to see the drop in the middle of the overbeam since the span is 34' c/c of columns. I have some cross beams hidden and changed the transparency so you can see the connection.  I'll have to fiddle with later.  Thanks.



                    • Re: Newbie to Simulation Module - need a little guidance
                      James Riddell

                      More detail than you really need to get a feel for things but Chris is right.

                        • Re: Newbie to Simulation Module - need a little guidance
                          Dave Krum

                          Hello again guys,

                          Over the weekend, I've simplified the assembly based on what James and others said above.  Took out all the gussets and now there are only tubes and plates (column and highest tubes were generated from structural member tab and long beams and plates are just extrudes).  Now basically there are two tube columns, two overhead tubes, then 20 cross tubes on the very top.  The simulation study I have going I think is ok for material, fixed ends, and gravity for force.  I'm having trouble with the contact section though.

                          When I open the component contact dialog box and choose bonded then global contact, it says "global contact is already defined on top level component" so I'm thinking I don't have to mess with that area?  Then if I open the contact set dialog box, I'm not sure if what I'm selecting is correct. I thought by choosing "touching faces" then letting it automatically find the contact sets and selecting "touching faces" and then picking the assembly and "find faces" and bonded it would work.  It appears to correctly find all the contact sets and when I hit the green checkmark, everything seems find till I go and try to mesh it.  Then I get errors again about the mesh creation failed for the long overhead beams.  I'm thinking I have to right click the long beams and choose "treat as beam" or make this a structural member from the library to make it work?  I've attached the revised zip with the assembly and all the corresponding parts.  I've attached the updated zip with the assembly and all the parts.  Thanks.