By Anthony J. Lockwood
Dear Desktop Engineering Reader:
First things first: I wish I had come up with the idea for the “Let’s Go Design” interactive web series from SolidWorks. I’m telling you that so that you know my bias here. This is fun as well as informative stuff. I can even see it being a template for getting kids into engineering or maybe even a spark that gets some prematurely old fuss-budget (aka el honcho) back into the game. After all, it’s fun to team up with a bunch of engineers from all over the world to talk about designing something that has not been designed before.
Anyway, that said, the second project in the series has reached its grand finale. Project 2 focused on designing a single-person practice cage for football, soccer, and street hockey. The basic cage design and modeling of subsystems like ball returns were completed in Episode 3. Able assistance in the first couple of episodes was provided by a bunch of high school kids with cool Massachusetts accents, then a gentleman who believed that football meant soccer lent his mind in Episode 3.
In this fourth and final episode, Jeremy Luchini, the series host, validates the cage’s overall design and critical subsystems. To do this, he leverages some rapid prototyping with a Dimension 3D printer from Stratasys, which he uses to create a 1/12th scale model. He then simulates the ball-return subsystem using the motion analysis capabilities in SolidWorks Premium. Finally, after going back to SolidWorks to modify the design based on what he learned from the validation process, Luchini uses PhotoView 360 to do some photorealistic rendering of the cage.
And with that. Project 2 is a wrap. Viewers are invited to vote on the Most Valuable Player, a ballot that does not, alas, include me. As a bonus, Luchini provides some URLs so that you can download the practice cage design files as well as do an online walk-through of the practice cage.
Almost forgot: Luchini also drops a hint about the next project – which has something to do with tank treads and speed. Oh, and babies too. Project 3 is going to have something to do with babies. And tanks.
Oookay. Well, um, that project begins in late April. Most Valuable Player voting is open until April 20th. So, hit the link over there and watch the conclusion of Project 2 of the “Let’s Go Design” interactive web series from SolidWorks: "Design a Multi-Sport Practice Cage." Great fun. You’ll get a kick out of it.
Thanks, pal. — Lockwood
Anthony J. Lockwood
Editor at Large, Desktop Engineering