Mold Design

You create a mold using a sequence of integrated tools that control the mold creation process. You can use these mold tools to analyze and correct deficiencies with either SOLIDWORKS or imported models of parts to be molded.

Mold tools span from initial analysis to creating the tooling split. The result of the tooling split is a multibody part containing separate bodies for the molded part, the core, and the cavity, plus other optional bodies such as side cores. The multibody part file maintains your design intent in one convenient location. Changes to the molded part are automatically reflected in the tooling bodies.

The process is as follows:
Tool_DraftAnalysis_View.gif Draft Analysis Examines the faces of the model for sufficient draft, to ensure that the part ejects properly from the tooling.
Tool_UndercutAnalysis_View.gif Undercut Analysis Identifies trapped areas that prevent the part from ejecting.
Tool_PartingLineAnalysis_View.gif Parting Line Analysis Analyzes transitions between positive and negative draft to visualize and optimize possible parting lines.
tool_Parting_Lines_Mold_tools.gif Parting Lines This tool has two functions:
  • Verifies that you have draft on your model, based on the angle you specify.
  • Creates a parting line from which you create a parting surface. The Parting Lines tool includes the option to select an edge and have the system Propagate Propagate.gif to all edges.
Tool_Shut_Off_Surfaces_Mold_Tools.gif Shut-off Surfaces Creates surface patches to close up through holes in the molded part.
tool_Parting_Surfaces_Mold_tools.gif Parting Surfaces Extrude from the parting line to separate mold cavity from core. You can also use a parting surface to create an interlock surface. See Interlock Surface.
tool_Ruled_Surface_Mold_tools.gif Ruled Surface Adds draft to surfaces on imported models. You can also use the Ruled Surface tool to create an interlock surface.
tool_tooling_split_Mold_tools.gif Tooling Split Creates the core and cavity bodies, based on the steps followed earlier.

You can save each tooling body into a separate part document by right-clicking the body in Solid Bodies FM_solid_bodies.gif and selecting Insert into New Part. Then insert the new parts into an assembly, where you can add other supporting hardware, create mates, and so on. The new parts have external references to the original model, so changes to the molded part are automatically reflected in the tooling parts in the assembly.

The Mold Tools toolbar also includes additional tools common to the mold process, such as Scale tool_Scale_Features.gif and Move Face Tool_Move_Face_Features.gif, as well as surface modeling tools such as Planar Surface tool_Planar_Surface_Surfaces.gif and Knit Surface tool_Knit_Surface_Surfaces.gif.
Mold Design Tools Overview has more information on when and how to use the various mold tools.