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Project 2: Constraints

Matt Lepine
ME 5401
October 10, 2016

MODELING AND CONSTRAINT STRATEGIES


I used four global variables as driving dimensions for the model of this
chair. These include the height from the ground to the seat (Seat Height),
the width of the seat (Seat Width), the height of the back of the seat (Seat
Back Supports Height), and the height of the seat back (Seat Back
Height).
I defined most of the dimensions in this model to remain constant
through any shape change of the chair. However, I did include 15 equations
that define various dimensions throughout the design, some involving the
global variables, and some involving other dimensions.
I began this model by extruding a surface to be the top of the seat. The
length of this extrude was driven by the Seat Width variable. I made sure
that the origin for the part was in the center of the bottom of the seat. I then
extruded the seat up to the surface and down from the Top datum plane,
using the Seat Width variable to define the width of the seat. I originally
had this variable defining the length of the seat as well, but when I went to
create the bench configuration, the seat became incredibly disproportionate.
I then cut out the bottom of this extrude, offsetting the cut 0.25 inches from
the side of the extrude feature and up to the Top datum plane.
After the seat was modeled, I began to model the legs. I started with
the front legs, constraining them to be coincident with the inside corners of

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the cutout. I then extruded these 1.5-inch squares out to the value of the
Seat Height variable. Then, I moved onto the back legs.
I first cut out the square profiles through the seat, where these legs
would go. I then extruded the center part of the back legs. Since the top and
bottom parts of the back legs are angled, I wanted a section that would be
vertical and would pass through the seat neatly. After this, I created a datum
plane that was coincident with the back edge of the mid-legs extrude and
offset 5 degrees from the Top datum plane. On this plane, I created a sketch
that was coincident with the back edge of the mid-legs extrude and included
two 1.5-inch squares, which lined up with those on the mid-legs extrude. I
then extruded this sketch up to the value of the Seat Back Supports Height
variable. Since this extrude is only coincident to the back edge of the mid-
legs extrude, I had to create two more triangular extrudes to patch these
sections.
I nearly completely repeated this process for the bottom of the back
legs. The plane I created was again coincident with the back of the mid-legs
extrude (but on the bottom this time), and was offset -5 degrees from the
Top datum plane. I then created the sketch, extruded it, and created the
extra extrudes to patch the gaps. For this extrude, I had to create a plane
to simulate the floor, since the back legs are at an angle and cannot be
made parallel to the front legs without adjusting for this angle difference.
This plane is coincident with the bottom of the front legs, and the extrusion
for the back legs was set to extrude up to this surface.
Next, I moved to the seat back. I also used a surface to create this
element of the design, although I thickened it on top of extruding it. I made
sure that the height of the seat back was constrained by the Seat Back
Height variable. It was thickened 0.25 inches towards the back of the seat.
Next, I created the geometric pattern on the back of the seat by sketching
the design on the front-facing plane of the top back leg supports and

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performing an extruded cut operation. For more information on how this
feature was created, check out the Decorative Cutout Strategy &
Calculations section, below.
After the seat back was finished, I moved onto the leg supports. I
started with the front support, which I made the same width and height as
the legs (1.5-inch squares). I made the bottom of this square dimensioned
from the origin by 80% of the value of the Seat Height variable. Then, I
made the back support, which I dimensioned similarly, except that the
bottom front corner of this sketch I made horizontal with the bottom back
corner of the front support.
Next, I worked on the side supports. I first created a plane that was
constrained halfway between the right and left faces of the front left leg. On
this plane, I drew the path sketches for the side supports. On the back face
of the front left leg, I drew the profiles for the feature, 0.75-inch squares that
are constrained to be half the width/height of the other legs and supports. I
then used a sweep feature, with a 90-degree twist, to create each of the side
supports on the left side. I then mirrored these features over the Right datum
plane to create the supports for the right side of the chair.
Finally, I applied fillets and chamfers to the seat. I applied a small
chamfer to the bottom of the legs, a small fillet to the front and back edges
of the bottom of the seat, and a fillet to the top of the seat that is equal to
25% of the value of the lower extrusion of the seat.
The final product in its default configuration can be seen in Figure 1.
The three additional configurations I decided to adjust the model to are a bar
stool (Figure 2), a bench (Figure 3), and a seat for a child (Figure 4).1

1 Note: The smallest values that a user can input without model failure are:Seat Height
= 2 inches (although I recommend no less than 5 inches)
Seat Width = 15 inches
Seat Back Supports Height = technically no limit, as long as its a positive number
Seat Back Height = 4 inches

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DECORATIVE CUTOUT STRATEGY & CALCULATIONS
For the decorative cutout, I decided to model a circle/diamond
combination shape with four rectangular cutouts, two on either side of the
main shape. Pictures of this pattern can be seen in Figures 5 and 6.
The global variables used to dimension this pattern are the Seat
Width and Seat Back Height variables. The circle is centered on the seat
back, vertical with the origin to set the x-value and half the value of the
Seat Back Height variable to set the y-value. The radius of this circle is a
constant 1.50 inches. The rectangle that intersects with the circle was
modeled by using four perpendicular equal-length line segments, whose
vertices are coincident with infinite vertical and horizontal centerlines going
through the center of the circle. Each of these extreme vertices is 1.85
inches from the center of the circle. Both the circle and the diamond were
dimensioned and constrained as construction lines, to more easily ensure the
structural integrity of the sketch. Then, a circle was drawn to be coradial with
the construction circle, and the top-most line segments were added from the
top point of the construction diamond and made perpendicular and
horizontal to each other. These segments were then patterned with the
Circular Sketch Pattern tool, around the circle; the necessary coincident
constraints were added once this was complete. Finally, I cut away the parts
of the circle that remained on the inside of this main shape.
Next, I made the rectangular sketches. I made the top left one first,
dimensioning it 2.00 inches away from the center of the circle in the
horizontal direction and 0.50 inches from the center of the circle in the
vertical direction. I decided to make the height of these rectangles the same
value as the distance from the center of the circle in the vertical direction. I
also decided to dimension these rectangles 0.25 inches from the outside

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vertical edge of the seat back, so that it adjusts size horizontally depending
on the value of the Seat Width variable. Once I made the top right
rectangle, I mirrored it over the vertical infinite centerline. Finally, I mirrored
both of the top rectangles over the horizontal infinite centerline. This
completes the seat back decorative cutout.
In this sketch, there were 9 different geometric constraints used
(horizontal, vertical, coradial, perpendicular, tangent, coincident, equal
length, symmetric, patterned), in addition to the distance and radial
dimensions.
There are 29 characteristic points in this seat back design. Twelve of
these points come from the center circle/diamond design, sixteen of these
points come from the rectangles, and the final point is the center of the
circle. For my calculations, I set the (0, 0) origin to be at the center of the
circle. The actual location in the sketch of this point can be calculated
depending on the Seat Back Supports Height and the Seat Back Height
variables. When these values were 16 inches and 7 inches, respectively, the
center of the circle was at (0, 14.62617118).
The four extreme vertices of the circle/diamond shape were fairly easy
to calculate, since they are simply 1.85 inches away from the center of the
circle in a vertical or horizontal direction. The other characteristic points for
the circle/diamond shape were more difficult to find. To do so, I solved the
following system of equations:

x2 + y 2=1.5 inches
y x= 1.85 inches
The first equation is a distance equation, stating that the distance to
the point is going to be equal to the radius of the circle. This equation would
normally be in the form below, but since I am assuming the center of the
circle to be at (0, 0), the x0 and y0 values are equal to zero and can be left
out.

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( xx ) + ( y y ) =1.5inches
0
2
0
2

The second equation in the system of equations above is a


modification on the slope-intercept form of a line. Since the two line
segments that make up the triangular point are at 45-degree angles from the
horizontal/vertical, these slopes are equal to 1. Which way the line segment
slopes determines the positive or negative value of the +/- in front of the x-
value (if the slope is negative, take the sum of y and x; if the slope is
positive, take the difference of y and x). The positive or negative value of the
1.85 inches value is determined by the y-intercept of the line segment (if the
line would intersect the top-most vertex, the value would be positive; if the
line would intersect the bottom-most vertex, the value would be negative).
Solving this system of equations solves the remaining eight characteristic
points of the center shape.
Calculating the values of the rectangular section is even simpler. The
eight points closest to the vertical infinite centerline have either an x-value
of 2.00 inches or -2.00 inches; the value is positive if the point falls on the
right of the line, and negative if the point falls on the left of the line). The
eight points closest to the supports on the side of the chair (farthest from the
vertical infinite centerline) can be defined by the following equation:
x=Seat Width4.5 inches0.25 inches
The Seat Width variable is user-defined, the 4.5 inches accounts for the
distance from where the Seat Width variable was used to the outside
vertical edge of the seat back, and the 0.25 inches is the offset from this
edge. Similar to the x-values of the other eight points, this value is positive if
the point falls on the right of the vertical infinite centerline, and negative if
the point falls on the left of the vertical infinite centerline.
The y-values of the characteristic points on the rectangles are even
easier to calculate. Each of the points has a value of 0.50 inches or
1.00 inches. The eight points closest to the horizontal infinite centerline have

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a value of 0.50 inches (positive if the point falls above the centerline and
negative if it falls below the centerline). The eight points furthest from the
horizontal infinite centerline have a value of 1.00 inches (positive if the
point falls above the centerline and negative if it falls below the centerline).
The values calculated for this sketch from these equations can be
found below (Figures 7 and 8). The values in Figure 7 show the values from
the equations above, which assume the center of the circle to be at (0, 0).
The values in Figure 8 show these values after being adjusted for the values
of Seat Back Supports Height and Seat Back Height, as 16 inches and 7
inches, respectively.
In the center shape, there are 4 arcs and 8 lines. In each of the
rectangular shapes, there are 4 lines. The degrees of freedom calculation,
therefore, is:
DOF=2 L+3 A
DOF=( 28+34 ) +4( 24 +30 )=60 DOF

IMAGES

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Figure 1: Default Chair Configuration

Figure 2: Bar Stool Configuration

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Figure 3: Bench Configuration

Figure 4: Child's Chair Configuration

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Figure 5: Seat Back Pattern

Figure 6: Seat Back Pattern with Dimensions & without Relations

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Figure 7: Point Calculations without Figure 8: Point Calculations with
Adjustment Adjustment

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