I like tools that increase productivity by reusing existing work. Using the Design Library for SOLIDWORKS Motion components is one example of a productivity enhancer that I think users should take advantage of. I guess the best place to start would be a quick description of the two tools mentioned. SOLIDWORKS Motion is an analysis tool that utilizes assembly mates, part contacts, and driving forces to accurately predict mechanism performance. SOLIDWORKS Motion included in SOLIDWORKS Premium and all three SOLIDWORKS Simulation packages – Standard, Professional, and Premium. The Design Library, available in the Task Pane, is a common location for reusable design elements such as parts, assemblies, and even sketches.
One possible reason for creating Motion Design Library components is ease in replicating a common performance test setup for a company’s product line. After you have set up the initial Motion Analysis, the Motion – motors, springs, dampers, and forces – can be added to the Design Library for reuse. In my example, I have a motor assigned in the Motion study that I have named ‘Catapult-Motor’. Later, I will create new Motion studies that will use the same motor profile of variations of my design. The process for adding the ‘Catapult-Motor’ to the Design Library is simple. It starts with a right mouse click on the motor feature from the Motion study feature tree, selecting ‘Add to Library’
After waiting a few seconds, the ‘Add to Library’ property manager will appear. At this point I can choose to assign a new name to this reusable Motion motor. Also, because I am creating the library feature from SOLIDWORKS Motion, the correct folder location inside the Design Library is automatically selected. After confirming the motion element name and folder location, click the green check mark to finish adding the motor to the library.
Now that the ‘Catapult-Motor’ has been successfully added to the Motion Design Library, it is ready to be reused. When working on future Motion studies that require this specific motor, just click and drag the library feature onto a component face in the graphics window to reuse it.
Now that you understand the procedure for adding a Motion component to the Design Library, I think it is only fair to note there is a faster method. If you have your Task Pane expanded and can see the Motion folder, you can drag the Motion element from the feature tree directly into the Design Library instead of using the right-mouse-click step. So if you need to set up several similar Motion studies and want to reduce the risk of errors in your studies, you should definitely consider implementing Motion Design Library components. Now go make your products better with SOLIDWORKS Simulation!