Volumetric Mass Properties (and an excuse to use Style Spline and Conic Fillet) – SolidWorks 2014 #solidworks

BottleSolidWorks 2014 see’s the introduction of volumetric measurement to Mass Properties.    So whilst enjoying a post dinner “Merlot” (which I just so happen to have the bottle on hand) I thought I would see if I could accurately fill the bottle to the correct volume!

The bottle itself is just a Sketch with a Revolved Boss (Feature).   The shape of the bottle presents the opportunity to use the new ( SolidWork 2014) Style Spline.   The Style Spline tool produces a single-span Bézier curve which allows for a smooth transition between the body and the neck of the bottle.   In the past I would have had most likely used a series of arcs (with tangencies) so I could adjust and control the shape.  Simpler than trying to control a spline!  Right!   Bottle SketchHowever the Style Spline allows for far greater control being able to adjust the vertices with references and dimensions (of the controlling polygon).     (Charles Culp on his SWtuts site has a good video showing the use and control of a Style Spline)Style SplineI also took the opportunity to use a Conic sketch to create the “Punt”.  (Yes I had to look that one up to see that it was called that!)   Although Conic sketches were added in SolidWorks 2013 this would be the first time I’ve had to use for a practical purpose.   I didn’t sketch fillet the base of the bottle as it allowed for the use of the new (for SolidWorks 2014) Conic Fillet Feature.    When using the Fillet Feature you can Select the Fillet Profile from the Fillet Parameters Options.Conic FilletA couple of additional fillets and a Shell feature and we have the bottle!    What I need, however, is the liquid volume size!Surface OffsetSelecting the inner surfaces of the bottle and using the Surface Offset Feature – with 0mm Offset creates a copy of the Surface.  Create a sketch and Surface Trim Feature to the “fill” height for the liquid.  Then “seal” the surface with a Surface Plane Bottle VolumeSurface Knit the Surface Offset and the Surface Plane – Select> Try to Form Solid.  Which creates the solid “volume” of the fluid.Surface KnitNow that we have the “Fluid Volume” SolidWorks 2014 can calculate with Mass Properties.    Tools> Mass Properties> Options Mass Properties.   Select> Use Custom Setting.   Under the Per Unit Volume there are numerous Units to select from.   For those of us who speak Metric, I want to use Litres (we can argue over the spelling of that unit of measurement later)per UnitEnsure that we have the correct body selected and the Mass Properties displays the Volume: 0.70 Litres /700ml  (mililiters)   Just a sip or two short of a full bottle!Volume IncorrectSo I go back and adjust a few of the dimensions in the sketch (of the bottle).   Increase the “shoulder” length and decrease the “neck” length and have the Mass Properties re-calculate.   With as much by good luck than good management we now have the correct required Volume: 0.75 l/ 750ml or if we change the unit of measurement 25.46 fl ozVolume

Fluid OuncesI don’t know that I have a career in bottle design but calculating volumes using SolidWorks 2014 has made things a whole lot easier!

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