Skip to main content
Topic 13: Importing Coordinate Data

Below are screen-shots from a video tutorial I did back in 2006 for some fellow students working on an SAE Aero Design. The purpose of this tutorial is to demonstrate how to import a curve generated from Cartesian coordinate data.

Programs Used:

1. Cam Studio - http://camstudio.org/
- A video capture program. This is very useful for capturing video tutorials.
2.Microsoft Text Editor
3.Microsoft Excel 2003
4.Solidworks 2006: Student Edition (essentially Solidworks 2005)
-I purchased this from http://www.studica.com/ when I was in school. The license only lasted for two years, but it wasn't very expensive and I think it paid for itself.

Interesting Notes:

1. The data must be in a form that Solidworks can read.
2. It is helpful to pass the coordinates through Microsoft Excel, or Openoffice.org Calc.
-----These programs are extremely helpful when adding units or converting formats. To do this, go into the number format and add your units in quotes. (Example: 0.000"in")
3. I also found it helpful to import closed curves as two parts, so nothing weird happens at boundaries that are supposed to be sharp. Open curves don't typically need this extra attention.

Tutorial:


Finding the data:


Step1:
Navigate to the UIUC Airfoil Coordinates Database and download your favorite airfoil.
http://www.ae.illinois.edu/m-selig/ads/coord_database.html
*Note: This step may be skipped if you already have your Cartesian coordinates from some other data collection system.

Importing and Formatting the Data:

Step2:
Open the file with Microsoft Text Editor
*Note: The file extensions for these particular files is *.dat. If you right click and select "open with" then custom, you should be able to select notepad.



Step3: Delete the header information and save as text. The airfoil in this picture is in two sections, the lower camber and upper camber.



Step4: Open Excel, select the Data menu, select Import External Data, then select Import Data and navigate to your text file.



Step5: Select "Fixed Width", and separate the columns. You can also accomplish this by importing the file with tab-delimited, space delimited or comma delimited, depending on how your file is formatted.



Step6: Your data should now be in an X and Y column in Excel. If the data is 2 dimensional, create a third column of zeros (or whatever offset distance you want). Solidworks requires the data in 3D coordinates.


Step7: Highlight all of your coordinate data and format the cells. Select custom formatting and select your significant digits, followed by your units in quotes. (EXAMPLE: 0.000"in") Solidworks requires a units suffix.


Step8: Save this file as a .txt file (TAB Delimited)

Steps in Solidworks:

Step9: Open Solidworks and create a new part.

Step10: Select Insert, Curve, Curve through XYZ points.

Step11: Select Browse, change the filetype to .txt and select the formatted file that you saved. The data should now be imported, and you should see a curve on the screen.


Step12: You can use this curve for lofting, or you can open a sketch and project the curve for editing.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Extrude boss featured solidworks

When we create an extrude boss featured solidworks, we can determine the parameters for extrudes Boss with a lot of ways, To create an extrude feature: Create a sketch. Click one of the extrude tools: Extruded Boss/Base on the Features toolbar, or click Insert, Boss/Base, Extrude Extruded Cut on the Features toolbar, or click Insert, Cut, Extrude Extruded Surface on the Surfaces toolbar, or click Insert, Surface, Extrude Set the PropertyManager options. To extrude in both directions from the sketch plane, set the PropertyManager options in Direction 1 and Direction 2. To extrude as a thin feature, set the PropertyManager options in Thin Feature. When you drag the manipulator to set the size, an Instant3D ruler appears so you can set precise values. Click .Blind. Extends the feature from the sketch plane for a specified distance. Through All. Extends the feature from the sketch plane through all existing geometry. Up To Next. Extends the feature fro…

Solidworks tutorial Sketch smart dimension

To use sketch smart dimension is very easy. We dimension 2D or 3D sketch entities with the Smart Dimension tool. We can drag or delete a dimension while the Smart Dimension tool is active. Dimension types are determined by the sketch entities you select. For some types of dimensions (point-to-point, angular, circular), the location where you place the dimension also affects the type of dimension that is added Start program SolidWorks and begin open a new part. Select the Front Plane and sketching. Make a sketch of the line consisting of four rows and three dimensions. Make sure the lower left corner of the sketch is the origin. Click on the Arc Tangent in the PropertyManager. Click on the right end of the horizontal line above. Place the tip of the arc at the tip end of a horizontal line above. Press the button to end the command line. Set the dimensions for the bow that we just created Click on the Smart dimension in-Command Manager. Create a dimension for each line of 60, 30, 20 Cl…

Basic Concepts 3D Solidworks

Basic Concepts • A SolidWorks model consists of parts, assemblies, and drawings. • Typically, you begin with a sketch, create a base feature, and then add more features to your model. (You can also begin with an imported surface or solid geometry.) • You are free to refine your design by adding, changing, or reordering features. • Associativity between parts, assemblies, and drawings assures that changes made to one view are automatically made to all other views. • You can generate drawings or assemblies at any time in the design process. • The SolidWorks software lets you customize functionality to suit your needs. • Click Tools, Options on the main menu to display the available System Options and Document Properties tabs. • The SolidWorks software saves your work for you. The auto recover option automatically saves information about your active part, assembly, or drawing document so you do not lose your work in case of a system crash. To set this option, click Tools, Options. On th…