Site Material Library in NX – Getting Started

How to use NX Site Material Library

Setting up a site material library can be a great way to make precise adjustments and create materials in a custom material library. This example is in NX 12 but is very similar across newer versions.

Some file setup is required outside of NX.

Getting Started with Site Material Library

1.First, copy the material library from the original folder. If it’s reorganized by the size, the physical material definitions file should be towards the top, given its large size.

Site Material Library - copy the material library from the original folder.
  1. Copy and paste the xml file into a new folder. See my folder tree as a guide. Rename the xml file to keep them separate.
material site library - xml file location
  1. Once the file is renamed, right click and select properties. Uncheck the “Read-only” attribute to give NX the proper access to the file. Select Apply.
site material library - read only attributes
  1. Then open NX and enter the Customer Defaults.
material site library - Customer defaults
  1. Under Gateway, select Material Mass. Then enable Site MatML Library, allow user control, and browse for a MatML File Name. Select the recently created material library file.
site material library - matml library
  1. Then select Manage Library Materials, in the more tab of the Utilities group.
Site Material Library - Manage Library Materials
  1. Right click on a material and select Edit Library Material.
Edit Material Library - Site Material Library
  1. All of the material properties can be adjusted, using multiple different units. Feel free to explore all of the different categories of properties NX has to offer!
Site Material Library - adjusting material properties

Creating a Material with NX Site Material Library

1.To create a material, make sure the Site MatML Library is checked under Libraries, then select Manage Materials, in the more tab of the Utilities group. Click the lower right button to create a material and add all the characteristics.

Create a material using site material library
  1. Click OK to add the material to the Site MatML Library.

Assigning a Material

3. To assign, select Assign Materials in the more tab of the Utilities group.

site material library - assigning a material

4. When assigning a material to a part, select the body, then the material library, the material. The material attribute carries into the assembly when that part is used.

Enjoy customizing material libraries using Site Material Library! And join our NX University Alumni group to join other engineers who use NX as we continue to grow our manufacturing and design knowledge.

Post by Dominic Santoro

Dominic's approach with CAD software is influenced by his heavy background in mechanical engineering. With his career beginnings at Eastman Machine to providing his expertise at Calspan to joining the top tech team at Swoosh, he offers fellow NX CAD engineers best practices in 2D design, concept layout, additive manufacturing, and structural design modifications.

6 Comments "Site Material Library in NX – Getting Started"

  1. Since you are creating a new local material to then add to an existing library, you have to have “Allow Local Materials” checked under Materials/Mass as well.
    This was not selected by default and isn’t mentioned in the steps above.

  2. Hello, excellent tutorial.
    Now I have a question referring to materials:
    – It is possible to change the color according to the type of material, for example:
    -Steel will always be yellow, that is, when applying the material to the model, it will be colored yellow.

  3. Creating a Material with NX Site Material Library
    this does not work, it creates local material. How do I actually add material to a specified library?

  4. I followed your process exactly up to step 7. I did it 3 times to make sure that I wasn’t doing something wrong. In the Material Manager I can see all the materials showing in your window. However, my window under Name displays “XML_InProcess” and under Library it displays “mymateriallibrary.xml”
    I’m not sure what’s going on, but if you could point me in the right direction it would be greatly appreciated.
    Thank You,

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