Am I Using Solid Inspector Effectively?

I endeavor to create clean geometry, always. Part of my workflow is to create Solid Groups/Components whenever possible ( Thanks @DaveR ). I also utilize 3D Warehouse models whenever possible ( big time savings ). I also use tools like SI1/2 ( use both per @CAUL for better results ) to examine my own geometry as well as external content. Up to this point my method of using SI was to single click on the group/component ( component from 3DW ) and open SI. Typically, this provided a result like:

Did you notice the discrepancy between SI2 and Entity Info? But, that is the topic of another post. :thinking:

If I open the component for editing and select all, I get the following:

If I then right-click on the component, I get the following:

And If I click on one of the errors ( Reversed Faces, click again to see 2nd error ) I get the following:

As you can see, this component has many surprises. So, back to my question. Is this the best method to use SI for troubleshooting solids? Up to this point I have been using the single-click method and being often faced with limited/no help. Am I missing other capabilities of this excellent extension? How do you use SI for troubleshooting solids? As always, thanks for your help.

We’ve already boiled-our-cabbages on this topic in a parallel thread…
Why do you insist on making a solid of every component ?
That approach offers no advantages to you as a user or those who might receive your files.

The illustrated ‘strap’ could easily be a 2d-object which shows others where they go, and can be ‘counted’ in any take-off…

So why do you think you need things like this to be ‘solid’ - I don’t expect that you are going to 3d-print them ??

The 3dWH is full of bloated [rubbish] models… so you need to be selective, or remake your own copy from content downloaded into an empty model and recreated to be minimal…


More preferred than insist. Maybe I am wrong in thinking that solids (generally) represent cleaner geometry.

Absolutely correct. In a recent roof design that required hundreds of “hurricane straps” (the H2 component) I downloaded the dwg files and re-created a 2-D placeholder (much like yours). The placeholder was used in a detail call-out only, omitted entirely in the 3D model of the roof.

Right again! But in some cases I will download a 3DW model and clean it up using tools like SI and others, saving time.

Thanks, appreciate your insight …

Unless I plan on printing an object(and even then there is some wiggle room) I generally do not bother myself about making things “solid”, nor do I bother modeling general objects like that strap with such detail. While it’s true that making a set of geometry solid often takes care and careful modeling, and so in that sense is an indication of clean modeling practices, it’s also true that in many cases there is no perceivable advantage to having an object be a solid, and considerable time disadvantage in attempting to do so.

It sounds like you are using SI2 as intended, the only thing I can think of that you did not mention was using the Tab key to zoom to each error in sequence.

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Please remember that you are making a model, you are not trying to recreate reality.
So you’d not expect to model every molecule in your detailing.
Remember that in whatever you do, ‘sufficient is fit’…
Just do the minimum needed to communicate your intentions and be useful to the recipient…
It’s less work for you and likely to meet their expectations better.

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An important communications principle, that I will emphasize in my future client interactions to be sure. At my current beginner level, a basic understanding of the tool is my overriding goal. Developing sound modeling skills, for me, comes from practice, practice … Modeling in excruciating, exhausting detail presently is for my development only. This un-natural attention to detail develops understanding of the basic tools and their application. So, please excuse the very basic questions and simplistic modeling views. Hopefully I will advance to a more “mainstream” workflow once these educational steps produce tangible skills. :wink:

As always, very much appreciate your feedback and guidance.

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If we are not modelling for 3D printing or other direct manufacturing methods, we all are more or less stage designers. Whatever looks acceptable and conveys our message is correctly modelled
The best excuse for modelling with solids is that the boolean tools only work with them, as some operations that are easy with them. The downside of too “correct” modelling is that you lose flexibility and editability.

An example. When a model is intended purely to be rendered, it is of no importance if objects intersect correctly. Two intersecting cubes. Left, as separate objects that can be manipulated at will. Right, combined with the Union command. Rendered result below.


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