Thursday, 20 September 2018

Fusion 360 nuts and bolts

I have noticed a few posts recently on Facebook about drawing threads for nuts and bolts and the like. The easiest or best methods, to use for nuts and bolts and other threaded fixings, are not obvious from just looking at the Fusion 360 menus.

Creating threads is possible to do using the options in Fusion 360 but the method needs a little guidance and most people initially end up with cosmetic only threads rather than fully constructed models.


If you want to know how to create modelled threads from the 'Create' 'Thread...' option I suggest you read the tutorial I have linked to here:
https://www.autodesk.com/products/fusion-360/blog/tip-tuesday-making-real-threads-in-fusion-360/

There is also an add-in thread creation tool but, even more so than the above option, you need to know all the thread characteristics. Neither result is ideal and there is, in my opinion, a much better solution, that is very quick.

Off-the-shelf, Nuts, Bolts and Fixings

The following is useful if you want to include standard fixings, or slight variations of such, in to your designs. In my case, I usually want a commonly available bolt, such as recently an M6 bolt or a 1/4"-20 threaded screw. The simplest and probably the best way to do that is to take advantage of the McMaster-Carr parts catalogue included within Fusion 360.


It is on the 'Insert' menu, select 'Insert McMaster-Carr Component...'


Within the catalogue pop-up, navigate to the exact part you want and open up the individual 'Product Detail' page. On nearly all the parts pages there is a section showing the design drawing for the component along with a file type drop down and a 'Save' button.


Select the file type of 'STEP' and press save.
That will import the model in to your Fusion 360 design, as a fully modelled component.


Those I have used, so far, have all been beautifully detailed and precise models. Not only that but you know the component is available in the real world.

If I want something not in the catalogue I usually start with something close, say threaded bar, and then combine my requirements with that starting point.

I have found this works very well.

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