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Wrap Feature

Tuesday September 1, 2015 at 12:02pm
How to engrave text on a tapered diametric face using SOLIDWORKS. 

Sometimes it may be necessary to engrave text on a diametric face which is a simple enough procedure: Create a plane tangential to the diametric face, create some text constrained to a construction line and use the wrap feature. However what happens if the text is required on a tapered diametric face like in the image below?  


If the same procedure is used then the letters fall off the face, so to overcome this problem it is necessary to constrain the text to an arc instead. The next issue is how big or small does the arc need to be and where does the centre of the circle need to be placed? This example will run through on the procedure to follow to create text in this scenario.  

First it is necessary to draw a construction line that is collinear to the tapered face that meets the centre of the revolve. You will see why this is required later on. Then a point needs to be created where the bottom of the text is required. A reference dimension is then added showing the theoretical diameter at the bottom of the text, again we will see the benefit of doing this later on.   


A plane will then be created normal to the tapered diametric face. From there an arc is created which has a centre point that intersects the centre of rotation and the construction line we created, then in regards to the diameter this wants to be coincidental to the point we created for the bottom of the text.

Once the arc is created then how long should the arc be, there is only a certain distance around the part to potentially engrave on. Remember the reference dimension that was created, this is going to be used in aid to calculate the circumference based around the diameter of which the point was created.

There is a way to measure the circumferential length of an arc in a sketch. Firstly click on the arc, then click on the 2 end points of the arc, this will bring up a dimension box to insert a given circumferential length. However rather than manually inserting a value, a formula can be created for this dimension input. Using the formula π x d to work out the circumference of the circle, we will use the reference dimension of the theoretical diameter where the point lies and multiply by π.    


Once this is done please be sure to change all these line to construction lines before proceeding as this will affect the wrap feature.  

Once the work is done to create the arc then insert the desired text onto that arc. Providing it fits on the arc then there will be enough room to engrave the whole of the text. This is why the circumference was calculated and assigned to the length of the arc.

The wrap feature can now be used, either to emboss or deboss onto the tapered face.

Taking full advantage of knowing that the arc was created by referencing off the initial sketch for the revolve feature, if dimensions are changed in that sketch then the engraving should be still correct based upon the new values used.  


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