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Thread: Toolbox Setup Configure Smart Fasteners

  1. #1

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    Toolbox Setup Configure Smart Fasteners

    I am using a Solidworks Standard version which was so graciously part of my EAA membership benefits! However it seems that the Toolbox library or to configure for Smart Fastener is not part of the Solidworks Standard version. Therefore I have some questions.

    1. Is that correct that the Solidworks Standard version from EAA does not support or allow us to use Smart Fastener?
    2. Is there a way in which I could have Smart Fastener enabled which I am not aware of as part of the SW Standard version?
    3. Is there a hack someone could point me to?
    4. Does someone have the library to give to me?

    These are maybe not appropriate questions, and I know I could go to Master Carr to search for these fasteners to bring into my design, but somethings the SW Standard version is like buying a car without the steering wheel.

    However Thank You SW for the great EAA benefit; really is a great thing to allow us to have,

  2. #2
    cwilliamrose's Avatar
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    I'm no expert on the Toolbox. Here's what I think I know;

    The Toolbox is not really a collection of fasteners as much as it is a database of the fasteners you and your workgroup use in your designs. The database has many types of fasteners but the sizes you don't use literally aren't there. A size is added to the database when it is used in a model. In the past the library had fasteners with all the sizes of that fastener included as configurations in the part file. That, for reasons I don't really understand, makes for a large part file. The SWx Toolbox only adds the configurations that are in use and the other ones are not included in the part file. This keeps the part file sizes down and makes things less resource intensive.

    The down side is the fact that if you send your model to someone you have to also include the fastener files even if the recipient is also using the Toolbox because his database may not have the fastener size created that you are using. What happens on the recipient end is a default size of the missing fastener is used in place of the size specified. Generally this means some huge bolt appears where the 1/4-28 bolt in your model was placed. I work with a group of designers and engineers and my Toolbox has to be part of the vault system in order to avoid this problem. But this means my Toolbox has to talk to the master Toolbox 1000 miles away using the internet and that means there are delays in response which drive me crazy as a remote user.....

    And the Toolbox needs its own tools to make all this work. There is a 'browser' that must be loaded and there may be other parts of this system required to make it function. Like I said, there's a lot I don't understand about this but the bottom line is I like to avoid using the Toolbox fasteners whenever possible. They don't fit the way I work and they don't include AN hardware.

    I think smart fasteners are a separate issue, one you have control of in that you can turn then on and off and you can create your own smart fasteners. Look this up in the SWx help to get the basics of how they work.

    As for what is included in the EAA SWx offering, I can't really help you there because I don't use it.

  3. #3

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    Jan 2017
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    Ok thanks for that relay. I now understand it more. I guess I'll add fasteners as needed from McMaster Carr.

  4. #4
    cwilliamrose's Avatar
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    If you're looking for non-aircraft fasteners the old Palette Parts collection is what I use. It will be a lot easier to use than McMaster-Carr's models for garden variety stuff. For AN stuff there's a listing in this forum of sources for those models which is fairly complete. PM sent......

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