Scaling Models in Inventor 2016

10 August 2015All, Manufacturing


Scaling Models in Inventor 2016

One of the new features in Inventor 2016 is the ability to scale your models.  You might be wondering, why didn’t Inventor have this ability prior to the 2016 release? Well, it does exist in prior releases of Inventor, but it’s just much easier to Scale an object in 2016.  In previous releases of Inventor, a simple Scale command does not exist, but you can achieve the scale by creating a Derived Part.  It takes several steps to accomplish, and is done by creating two files, so it does leave a lot to be desired.  The good news is that Inventor 2016 solves that issue.

In this example, I’ll be opening a non-native CAD file and then applying the scale to it.  The first step is to open the file that you want to scale. You can choose a single part file or an assembly file.  I’m going to choose an assembly file. From the Open button, change the files of type to either read “All Files” or the specific file type you are looking for. For my example I’ve selected “All Files” and am selecting a solenoid assembly STEP file.

After clicking the Open button, the Import dialog box will appear. By default, the Import type will be Convert Model. We’ll leave all the options at their defaults.  Next, we’ll click on the Select tab to select only the part that I want to convert.

Next, we’ll click on the Select tab to begin selecting which parts to convert.

Finally, we’ll click the OK button to finish the Import/Convert process.  Because we imported an assembly, the resulting file is an assembly file.  In this case, the part file that we want to scale is in a sub-assembly, so we’ll need to use the Open or the Edit command to get to the part level.  The easiest way to do this is to double click on the part file in the Model Browser.  Once there, we’ll begin the scale option using the Direct Edit command.

From the 3D Model tab, select the Direct Edit command.  The Direct Edit command mini toolbar appears.

Select the Scale option, and then select the part in the graphics window.

One of the nuances of the Direct Edit command is that the mini toolbar will jump to a new location once the part is selected, and a triad will appear on the part.

Now we need to select the Locate button to specify an origin from where the scale will take affect.  I’ve included a snapshot of possible selection scenario, but we will actually let the default stand as acceptable.

With the origin point selected, we now have the option to select a Uniform Scale or a Non-Uniform Scale.  If a Uniform Scale is selected, you enter a value and the whole part will scale accordingly.

Once we are done specifying the scale factor desired, click on the (+)plus sign, which is the Apply button.  The Mini Toolbar jumps back to it’s previous position.  At this point we just have to click the (x) Cancel Command.  We have successfully scaled our new part.  I hope you can see that the new scale command is flexible and powerful, and eliminates the need to create a Derived Part.

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