I'm trying to build a rectangular (wheeled) frame assembly with an enclosure atop. The frame is built of T-profile struts connected to each other with bolts and brackets. I would like to know the following:
What is the best top-down approach so as to allow for changing of a length and having the whole frame update after a regenerate command? I have a similar situation to this user. Will this be complicated to do without the Advanced Framework Extension? I have the student version (am a student) but can still use Copy and Public geometry, skeletons, etc. Will I need to use coding for the Relations box or can this work another way, for eg. by choosing suitable references?
To continue: I thought I could use the vertices of the enclosure as references? So if I change the length between 2 planes in my main skeleton, it changes the length of an extrude feature in my strut part which has those planes in Publish geom. Accordingly, one vertex has moved now, and thus pulls the others as well. This means other struts, brackets, holes and bolts move too. My question is how can I make this last bit happen?
I have also thought of just going with a bottom up design, because the assembly does not contain many parts that will be re-used outside this assembly, and the design is relatively fixed. Do you think the time saving is worth going this route? I do not think I will have many length modifications anyway. I would like to practice the top down approach though I feel that it will take some time to apply.
Similar situation to what you're trying to do, doesn't require advanced assembly module. I've used this technique for support frames made out of extruded aluminum struts (80/20, Rexroth, Misumi) and it's been a really good time-saver.
As you suspect, it takes a bit more work in the beginning, but when you need to make changes, having everything determined by the "master" assembly saves a huge amount of time.