Chapter 21: Using Mold Tools
In This Chapter
Understanding SolidWorks' capabilities with mold geometry Using Mold Tools manually
Mold geometry is one of the most difficult things to visualize. To make a mold for a plastic part, you have to be able to envision putting air where you want plastic and putting steel where you want air. You have to visualize your parts inside out, and in such a way that you can get each part out of the steel. SolidWorks Mold Tools help you with the visualization by providing a process for creating cavity and core blocks from the model of a plastic part. The process does not guarantee that the parts are manufacturable; you still need experience in the trade for that.
The SolidWorks Mold Tools give you a process by which you can take plastic parts and split cavity and core blocks for them, as well as additional core pins or slides. This process is usually not 100 percent automated, and often requires manual intervention. The overall process works, but users often find that they want to develop a hybrid system incorporating SolidWorks tools and their own techniques.
To work with the tools in this chapter, you need to understand how surfaces work. Features such as the Boundary surface, knit, trim, and others are covered in a basic way in the SolidWorks 2011 Parts Bible, (Wiley 2011) and are covered in much detail in the SolidWorks Surfacing and Complex Shape Modeling Bible (Wiley, 2008).
Manual methods also exist by which you can choose your own features ...