HydraForce Insider Blog

8 Easy Steps to create a 3D Hydraulic Manifold Model

Posted by David Price on Wed, Mar 09, 2011 @ 14:03 PM

When designing a hydraulic manifold, engineers will use a 3D model of a cavity in their CAD/3D modeling software in order to model the proper flow paths of the manifold. Unfortunately, due to various software compatibility issues and inconsistencies in model configuration, the manifold designer has to copy the 3D outline of the cavity, make a 2D outline, then use the 2D outline to create a 3D model. Not only is this process time consuming, but it involves several unnecessary steps.

When designing a hydraulic manifold, engineers will use a 3D model of a cavity in their CAD/3D modeling software in order to model the proper flow paths of the manifold. Unfortunately, due to various software compatibility issues and inconsistencies in model configuration, the manifold designer has to copy the 3D outline of the cavity, make a 2D outline, then use the 2D outline to create a 3D model. Not only is this process time consuming, but it involves several unnecessary steps.


8 Easy Steps to create a 3D Hydraulic Model:


Logic would suggest that the easiest way to solve this issue would be to create a standard format and software for all 3D model creation. Until this happens, it would be much easier for a Manifold Designer to import a 2D outline of the cavity and use that to create a 3D model. DXF files of the cavity and 3D models of our valves can all be downloaded from our website or extracted from i-Design (you can find valve STEP models next to the appropriate valve on our website. Cavities are found in our Technical Reference section.

HydraForce webpage screen image

This is a very easy operation, just about anyone who knows how to use a 3D modeling system will be able to do it. Below are the steps to creating a cavity in a manifold block. Please note that the exact process will be slightly different for every CAD system, therefore explicit directions have not been listed.

1. Go to http://www.hydraforce.com/Techref/Techrefr.htm and choose the required cavity:



2. Double clicking on the DXF file links will bring up a zip folder with all available cavity drawings for a particular cavity size (the image below shows file icons for 08-size cavities):

3. Copy and paste, or save the cavity files to your computer’s hard drive:
           

4. Open and convert the DXF in Pro Engineer, or whatever design software you are using.
The cavity outline should look like this:

5. In your design software, create a block for the manifold:

6. To insert the cavity, create a ‘revolved cut’ and import the CAD geometry you saved into your manifold screen:

7. Once imported, the finished cavity should look like this:

For those of you who use i-Design, the manifold design is almost complete...

8. Repeat this process for every additional cavity, and then add the appropriate valves to your block.
• Configure appropriate components in i-Design.
• Export 3D files of the valves.
• Import the 3D files of the valves into your manifold.



*Thanks to Steve Walker for providing the process illustration images.*

 


About the Author:

David Price oversees training and marketing communication efforts at HydraForce Inc. Contact David

Tags: manifold design, creating 3D models