Generating a Thickness

Thickness functionality:

  • Allows to create a volume type representation of a selected surface type model in order to perform realistic analysis (such as clash, contact check...) 
  • Offsets are applied on both faces of the original 2D surface 
  • Ability to define the orientation in which the offsets are applied. These orientations can be changed manually or automatically to correct the possible lack of uniformity between the orientations of the different surfaces.
  • This functionality is dedicated to all industries where the design is created using surfaces and where the user needs volume to perform realistic analysis such as clash checks or measures (volume, inertia...) on the digital mockup. This is for example the case for the body in white process.
For more detailed information, refer to More about Thickness.
Insert SCENARIO01.model from the samples folder.
Use the Fit All In icon I_ReframeP2.gif (216 bytes) to position the model geometry on the screen.
You can manage automatically your Thickness result as alternate shape of the initial component.

In this case, the thickness result will be automatically reinserted and will replace the initial component (provided the Activate check box is selected, it is by default)

Note: If your are not working in alternate shape mode, it is strongly recommended to use the Reference Product option to avoid positioning problems when reinserting products. Please read About Reference Product

In our example, the Manage Alternate Shape option is activated for Thickness.

  1. Click the Thickness icon I_DMOThicknessP2.gif (246 bytes) from the DMU Optimizer toolbar.
    The Thickness dialog box is displayed.

  2. Select the surface(s) you want to work on (i.e. SCENARIO01.model) in the specification tree or in the geometry area.

    Note: only 2D surface(s) can be selected.
    About selection:
    You can select any node within the specification tree (terminal/non terminal) and even multi-select them provided that you are not working in alternate shape mode.
  3. Enter the Offset values:

    For instance:

    Offset 1=2mm
    Offset 2=0mm


    Setting the Offset values:

    Depending on the surface design, you can define any value meeting your needs (negative, positive, or null). Please refer to More About Thickness

  4. Click Preview to generate the thickness representation. The preview window is displayed.

    dbpreviewthickness01NLS.gif (19965 bytes)
  5. Zoom to visualize better the thickness result:

    thicknessresult01.gif (15640 bytes)
    If you are not satisfied with the result (because of gaps between surface patches or bad offset orientation)
    You can turn on the Orientation constraints option
    Orientation Constraints

    • The Orientation constraints option is disabled by default. (The default normal vectors are used)
    • Through this functionality, you can define the orientation of the offset (on every surface patch).
      • If you select the Orientation constraints check box (without defining additional vectors): the normal vector orientation is done automatically. The first normal vector found defines the reference orientation which is propagated to the neighboring surfaces.
      • If the automatic propagation is still incomplete (for example, certain surfaces are not correctly connected), you need to define manually normal vectors.
    You are still in the Thickness command.
  6. Select  the Orientation constraints check box in the dialog box still displayed:

    orientationconstraintsNLS.gif (1964 bytes)
    ainfo.gif (980 bytes) If you change any of the dialog box parameters, the initial representation is displayed 
  7. Click Preview.

    thickness01.gif (19412 bytes)
    The Propagation is not complete.The surfaces concerned are highlighted.
  8. Select the Orientation constraints check box again to define constraints on the original representation.

  9. Define constraint vectors for the corresponding surfaces in the document window:

    • Drag the cursor onto the surface.
    • When you are satisfied, use the left mouse button.
      The constraint vector is created.


    akeypt.gif (932 bytes) At anytime, you can delete a constraint vector, what you need to do is to click on the white square
    Note that if you click the arrow, you reverse the constraint vector orientation.
  10. Click Preview when done. The calculation is based on the orientation of the constraint vectors.
    This time, the result is correct (there are not any highlighted surfaces displayed): 

    thicknessresult02.gif (43016 bytes)
  11. Click Save.
    The Save As dialog box is displayed:

    • Identify the folder in which you want to save the file
    • Enter a file name


  12. Click Save.

  13. Click Close to exit the thickness command

ainfo.gif (980 bytes)
Alternate Shape:

You can manage your Thickness result as an alternate shape

For this:

  1. Select Tools->Options from the menu bar.
    The Options dialog box appears:
  2. Expand the Digital Mockup category from the upper-left tree.
  3. Select  DMU Optimizer item to display the corresponding tab.
    The Alternate Shapes Management is available
  4. Select the Thickness check box: the thickness is automatically activated as an alternate shape

    The Thickness result will be added as a new representation of the initial component.
    For more details, please refer to Customizing DMU Optimizer Settings and Managing as an Alternate Shape.

ainfo.gif (980 bytes) Remember you can customize thickness settings at any time.