Design for Additive Manufacturing in NX: Additive Validation Tools

This video examines the Additive Validation Tools available in NX, which makes sure your part meets the requirements for your 3D printer.

Within NX 12, there’s a new grouping on the Design Analysis tab, labeled “Design Validation for Additive Manufacturing.” The video, above, covers the five primary tools available within this tab. They are known as the Additive Validation Tools.

Wall Thickness

  1. Select a body.
  2. Specify the build plane CSYS. This looks for any faces on the X-Y plane normal, or the positive Z, that are less than the minimum thickness.
  3. Type in a minimum thickness.
  4. Calculate the thickness. This will show you the areas that are less than the minimum thickness you entered.

Overhang Angle

This commandwill let you know if you need to build any kind of support structure; it looks for any faces that exceed the overhang angle. The command will also show you the overhang area with the need for support so that you can create those structures.

  1. Select a body.
  2. Specify the build plane CSYS.
  3. Specify a maximum overhang angle.

The purplish color represents the area that requires structural support.

Minimum Radii

This is a dynamic command. Your part will update with your specifications in the “Check Minimum Radii” command as you enter and change them.

  1. Select a body.
  2. Specify a minimum radius.
  3. Check “Show Only Less than Minimum Radius” if you want to see only those radii that qualify for your specifications.

The red on this part indicates those radii that meet the specifications.

Printable Volume

This command checks to make sure your part can fit inside your printer.

With the Volume Display option, you can select the printable volume (the volume that can be printed by your printer), the product volume (the volume of your part), or both.

The blue volume indicates the printable volume. The gray volume with the part indicates the product volume.

Wholly Enclosed Volume

This command looks for a void or a cutout in your part to make sure that powder can be emptied from it. This technique is primarily used or a powder bed fusion 3D printer. You would not use this tool for a material extrusion.

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