Design Engineering

Mastering the Range Offset command in Solid Edge ST4

By John Pearson, Senior Technical Trainer and Application Specialist, Designfusion   

CAD/CAM/CAE CAD Design Fusion John Pearson Solid Edge

Controlling the range of allowable motion helps prevent over extension, or collisions, of parts in assemblies.

In Solid Edge ST4, it is now possible to create an offset to control the range of allowable motion in relationships such as mate, planar align, axial align and more. This can be particularly useful when you wish to control or limit the motion of moving components. It allows you to prevent over extension, or collisions, of parts.

How to set a range offset

In the following example we want to set a range of allowable motion for the hydraulic cylinder, which controls the handle movement.


Step 1: Apply assembly relationships as normal.

• Here we created an axial align and mate relationships, to position the moving part of the cylinder.

Step 2: Edit the mate offset.

• Select the “Mate” relationship from PathFinder . Notice that it is a fixed relationship set at 20 mm.

• Click on the “Fixed” icon and change it to range as shown.

Note: The “Range” toolbar appears showing first the current position (20mm) and then the range which starts at zero to 20.

• Set the range value. In this example, we changed the 20mm value to 50mm and select “Enter”.

Note: You have to use the Enter key or it will not take the entry.

Step 3: Test the range setting.

• Select the drag component command and use the “Freeform Move” option.

• Drag the black handle back and forth and notice that motion is limited by the range that you set.

• The handle now has a 50 mm range of motion.

Note: Range offsets are not intended to be used for geometric tolerances, as over constrained components can occur.

John Pearson is a Senior Technical Trainer and Application Specialist at Designfusion. He has over 24 years’ experience in the CAD/CAM industry, is a Certified Adult Trainer and has taught evening CAD courses at colleges in Ontario. He is also a major contributor of articles on the Design Fusion blog.


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