Racecar Designing 101

Jordan

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What programs do you "fabricators and builders" use to calculate the geometry and visually create your trucks? I have heard of some using CAD systems and others MEC systems. I know that most cannot build a racecar simply by eye-balling it so what do you use? Also, if you know of any websites online that I could preview these programs please post it. Thank you very much!

Jordan
 

In_the_works

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check out Solidworks, I've just been playing around with it for a few weeks, but if you get the hang of the tools, you can build 3d models of just about anything.

'96 F-150 4x4 ex cab
'02 Maico 250
 

KitRacer

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Trying to make tubing with solidworks can become a nightmare, i dont have much experience with the program, but was told to use a different one for tubing. Pro-Engineer was one suggestion
 

evan_clanin

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i had the same question a few months ago, try searching for cad programs, on rdc there were some good programs listed, and some of them u can find on kazza

Can blind people be dyslexic when they read Braille?
 

Brian Mapes

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Autocad Inventor 6. It is brand new and takes a lot of time to figure out all of the commands but it will do whatever you want it to. I think it sells as a student model for $175 but I am not sure but can find out on monday. I will also get the phone # if you want. It is a pretty good program if you figure it out.

What should I put here?
 

ntsqd

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Picture a small CMM digitizer hooked to a laptop with SolidWorks on it. There is now a program that goes directly from the probed surface to an SW sketch. Saw it demo'd at work today. Built the complex surface on the front of a C5 upright in about 5 minutes. Sounds like we're going to get one. ohboyohboyohboy......

I've spent that last 2 years designing with SW, from what I've seen a tube chassis would make you crazy unless there's a third party package that supports this use.

You can do a lot of linkage pivot point design & testing with AutoCAD, AutoCAD LT, or similar. It's not super zippy or crazy fast, but it'll get the job done.

TS

I used swerve around my halucinations, now I drive right thru them.
 

hoeker

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solid works is a great program, not sure how it interfaces with tube, can't see why it'd be a problem, all tubing is a simple extrusion, easy for any solid modeler. i had several guys offer to help with my new chassis on Pro-engineer, swore it'd be a piece of cake, didn't take anyone up on it because it was easier to do it myself on mastercam. mastercam is primarily a machining software, but has surfacing and solids. i am not familiar with the solids, so i surfaced every tube on the truck to figure out bends and miter cuts. this was probably very time consuming compared to a solids package, but because i know the program better than most, it was the proper tool for the job.

the point is simple, use what you know. there are literally hundreds of packages that can aid you in the chassis design. all of the best fabricators i know don't know how to touch a PC. we will see this change, but for now that's the way it is. they go from experience and common sense.

if you don't know jack about CAD, take a class at your local junior college, and buy the student version of whatever they teach (hopefully Pro-E or solidworks). a semester or two and your on your way to designing some killer stuff. start with simple parts and work your way up to the entire chassis. you'll be amazed what you can do, that some of the best fabricators in the country have to hire out.

Autocad is typically over rated and under powered. autocad has been triving on their name and uneducated buisiness owners for years, avoid it if possible. the first out is not always the best.

ntsqd--- was that a faro arm?? never used on but they are great for alot of things. most cup teams have one now. not super high tolerance, but lots closer than a straight edge and level.

<A target="_blank" HREF=http://www.rosshoek.com>www.rosshoek.com</A>

"to be successful, you must first learn to disagree without being disagreeable."
 

Kritter

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Inventor is great if yo invest a lot of time to learn it, Solidworks you can pick up faster and build parts easier given the same amount of time. In inventor there is a slight advantage on assembly layout and time but it is only if you are a professional that you will notice any difference. I use both but prefer Solid work 100 times over.

As for the digitizers...they are great. I have two friends who work in industry as mechanical engineers and they use it often and I will soon be too. It saves tons of time.

As for space frames being"just an extrusion" it is much tougher then that when building a space frame because there are bends, but it saves a lot of time when you have all your tube layed out on paper with the coping and all taken care of before hand.

PM me and we maybe I can help you out with some software.

Kris
<A target="_blank" HREF=http://www.barneysprecision.com/fabproducts.htm> Fab Parts</A>
 

Brian Mapes

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Yea, see I have never used Solidworks. Your right about the time issue. There are sooo many different commands that it takes a while to know it all. It is still a pretty good program though. If you learn how to use it then it comes pretty easy though. Another problem with Inventor is that it takes up a lot of memory on your computer cuz instead of one file is makes 4, just for one drawing. Just my input.

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Racing5150Guy

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we just got solidworks here at work. started playing with it a few days ago. its pretty sweet. build componets and it will tell you if they are going to work and how much they can take and where they will break. its the new 2003 one. comes with a few new features.
 

AZmiik

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Re: You can do a lot of linkage pivot point design & testing with AutoCAD, AutoCAD LT, or similar. It's not super zippy or crazy fast, but it'll get the job done.

Are you saying that you can Link the parts of a drawing and get them to rotate as one unit to model SLA desings. I am asking becuase I have spent hours making refrence points moving one arm to it then moving the upright and then ploting countless circles to deturmen the angle of the upper arm the new agle of the upright trying to figure this all out. I talked to a guy from ASU and he said this was possible with Soildedge(their choice of software) but he wasn't sure you could do it with Autocad.

Mike
 

Bob_Sheaves

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<IMG SRC=http://www.race-dezert.com/wwwthreads/files/6-17620-pt001.gif>

Kinematics, finite element analysis and other functions have been discussed previously on the board- for examples, go to the search page here and type in "CATIA". Just as information on what can be done with other programs that you can lease time on, instead of purchaseing the program.

Best regards,

Bob Sheaves

<P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1>Edited by Bob_Sheaves on 01/24/03 12:06 PM (server time).</FONT></P>
 

Kritter

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In solidworks you can do all the motion effects in 3d and can dimesion at any time
you want to, too can check angles, clearance, etc...

Kris
<A target="_blank" HREF=http://www.barneysprecision.com/fabproducts.htm> Fab Parts</A>
 

Dylan

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I have the piping package supplement to Solid Works but haven’t messed with it yet.
Has any one tried to lay out a space frame using the piping package??
I know that doing it in the basic program would be a lot of work.


“Those of you who think you know so much really annoy those of us who do!”
 

In_the_works

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What directory is the piping add-on under in solidworks? I know I downloaded it, but I can't find it to access it.

'96 F-150 4x4 ex cab
'02 Maico 250
 

KitRacer

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i tried using the piping add-on, whenever you go to start a piping segment it wants you to start with a flange. i have figured out how to eliminate fittings at the bends and at the intersections though. has anybody used pro-e to build a tube frame. i know a-arms and spindles are easy to build, stress analyze, and cycle with solidworks, i just wish tubing was that easy to work with
 

hoeker

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why is tubing a problem?? it is an extrusion along a center curve. both ends are cut by the mating extrusion. it should be simple?? or are you having a problem creating the drive curve in 3d space? that is probably the tougher part.

as i said i have minimal solids experience, but it requires the same inputs as i needed to use to surface my chassis. add in the history and motion analasys features and life should be grand. i'm not trying to be critical, i am very curious because i have Cimatron solids, but don't know how to use it. cimatron can't collision check like solidworks, so i was kicking around learning that instead of cimatron.

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"to be successful, you must first learn to disagree without being disagreeable."
 

Kbach66

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As a former fulltime Solidworks user, and now a part time CATIA user...I must say that solidworks is the way to go. If you want to do basic to semi difficult solid modeling, SW can usually do it. It's relatively cheap, and pretty powerful for a PC based modeling program. I used Pro-E in school to design and analyze a tube chassis for our Formula SAE car and had tons of problems. Granted, it was my first use of a 3D modeling program, but it was still a pain in the ass. I finally had a friend help with the analysis on Nastran.

I know CATIA was mentioned in the other thread....stay away from it!! In my personal opinion....it's the devil. I've never used a "stock" version of the program, but I use the version that all of Honda uses with all of it's add-ons and modifications to the program and it's confusing as hell!!

Now....for my sales pitch!!! J/K My good friend works for a company that sells solidworks(GoEngineer), so if any business' or anybody for that matter isinterested, PM me and I can get you in touch with him. He's a racer as well, so he's really good with hooking up people in the industry.

Happy Trails!
 

CRAIG_HALL

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I use autocad 2002 at my work everday. We are a shet metal shop so we dont need to use the 3-d part of any program .We do have solid works also but all drawings are done in the flat no need to draw a part all bent up in 3-d,just side views or an occasional isometric for more confusing parts.
All parts are laser or waterjetted out w/any bend allowances subtracted out.

Now personally I do use autocad to make tube frames and it is very easy if tube is in the same plane, if not you just rotate at the bend. Autocad will extrude an entire tube, bends and all, just join the pieces.
Also seems simple to draw a flat part ,tab,bracket,bulkhead, check to make sure all dimesions are good, parts fit then extrude it to a drawing that your 3-d project is on.

Also if your drawing your complete frame,tabs and all most shops cutting out flat parts(non cnc mills)
would rather have a 2-d drawing for easier import to laser or water jet software. As for autocad being overrated I'd say it depends on what you build,my shop is a job shop and we deal with many other sheet metal shops and they all use autocad, some even on release 14 still. All of our customers also use autocad ,retail stores,rv manufacturers,automotive aftermarket and hundereds more.
Basically it depends on what your going to use it for, but autocad has done everything I personally need.

Craig
 
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