Once you have a model loaded and materials selected, the next step before running a simulation is to generate a mesh. This is done by selecting Model… Create Mesh… from the menu bar.
The system will display the meshing screen. This is where you describe how the mesh is to be generated, and it may appear as follows:
Here you can enter a descriptive name for the mesh. You can also select either the Number of Nodes (elements) or the size of the Nodes (in inches or mm). Generally, most simulations are run with between 500,000 and 20,000,000 elements. A “chunky” casting will generally require fewer elements, while a thin-section casting will require more elements. The maximum number of elements allowed depends on the amount of installed RAM.
The system will automatically create a mold around the casting if you want it to. (Note: You can create the mold as part of the model, in which case you would NOT use the automatic mold creation feature.) You have three options here:
If you are going to have the system create a mold, you can select the Mold Material, the Mold Thickness (this is the minimum thickness in the case of a rectangular mold, or the shell thickness in the case of a shell mold) and also whether or not the top of the mold is to be considered open.
After making these selections, click on OK.
The system will first mesh the casting model and display the mesh as it is being created, as seen here:
Next, the system will mesh the mold around the casting, as shown below (in this case, a rectangular mold):
When the meshing process is complete, the mesh name will appear on the project tree on the SOLIDCast main screen.