Repositioning an In-Process Workpiece in a Manufacturing File

How to Reposition an In-Process Workpiece in a Manufacturing File

This blog is designed to assist CAM programmers in repositioning an In-Process Workpiece (IPW) using Assembly Constraints and Dynamic Positioning in a manufacturing part file, offering more flexibility during machine operation setup.  For example, a component may require a manufacturing process outside the machining process during production.  This method allows the programmer to reposition the In-Process Workpiece in any part file quickly.

The following steps will help you create a part file (.prt) and assign the correct Reference Sets to an InProcess Workpiece.

Setting Up the In-Process Workpiece

See the example below to create an In-Process Workpiece from the desired machining operations. Verify the selected operations and create the In-Process Workpiece. In this case, Adaptive Milling and Planar mill have been used.


You may also like to refer to the How to Setup IPW in NX CAM article from Swoosh’s Tutorials and Blogs page.

  1. From the Operation Navigator, highlight the NC program or the desired operations. Use the right-hand mouse button and select Tool Path, and then Verify.
  1. In the Tool Path Visualization dialog box, highlight the 3D Dynamic Tab.
  1. Press Play.
  1. When the program is complete, press Create.
  1. The In-Process Workpiece will be visible in the view.
Setting Up and IPW

Once complete, the In-Process Workpiece has been animated. We can now create a part file that contains the In-Process Workpiece.

Creating a Wave Geometry Linker

  1. In Modeling, highlight the Assemblies tab, press the WAVE Geometry Linker icon, and the dialog box will appear.
Wave Geometry Linker
  1. Select Body in the drop-down menu.
  1. Select the Part to create the Linked Body.
  1. Press OK.
  1. The Linked Body is highlighted in Magenta.
In-Process Workpiece


You may also like to refer to the Wave Geometry Linker article discussing more on this process from the Swoosh Tutorials and Blogs page.

How to Create a Part File Containing a Linked Body and In-Process Workpiece

  1. In the Assemblies tab, press the New Component icon, and the dialog box will appear.
Part File with In-Process Workpiece
  1. Expand the Settings
Settings Menu
  1. Pick the Linked Body and the In-Process Workpiece (Facet Body) 2 and 3.
  1. Note the MODEL name; this will appear in the Assembly Navigator.
  1. Press OK.
Repositioning IPW in CAM
  1. Check the Part File has been created by making MODEL1 the Work Part.
  1. Highlight MODEL1 in the Assembly Navigator.
  1. Right-hand mouse button press Make Work Part, note the vice has greyed out.
  1. Save the Part file and close.
Part File with IPW and Wave Geometry

Assigning a Reference Set to the In-Process Workpiece

Next, assign the correct Reference set to the In-Process Workpiece.

  1. Open the part file MODEL1.
  1. In the Assemblies tab, press the Reference Set.
  1. Highlight the Model (“MODEL”) in the reference set table.
  1. Select the In-Process Workpiece using the left-hand mouse button; if necessary, use shift and the left-hand mouse button to deselect.
  1. Save the Part file and close.
Reference Set to In-Process Workpiece

Using the In-Process Workpiece to Reposition a Manufacturing File

We can now use the In-Process Workpiece in any manufacturing file and reposition using Assembly Constraints and Dynamic Positioning.

  1. In Manufacturing, add the In-Process Workpiece to the desired manufacturing file.
  1. Browse for the In-Process Workpiece Part file.
  1. In the Assemblies tab, press the Add Component.
  1. Pick the Component Anchor and Assembly Location.
  1. Press OK.
  1. Pick the Placement method Move or Constrain.
Repositioning an IPW

Repositioning – Option 1

Using Reference Sets, make sure the Linked Body is visible for repositioning.

  1. In the manufacturing Geometry tab, select Move Component.
  1. Select the Motion type, in this case, Dynamic Positioning.
  1. Highlight Specify Orientation.
  1. Click and drag the part in any direction using the Dynamic.
  1. Press OK.
Specifying Orientation

Repositioning – Option 2

Another option for repositioning is Assembly Constraints.

  1. In the manufacturing Geometry tab, select Assembly Constraints.
  1. Select the Constraint from the constraint window. In this case, Distance has been picked.
  1. Select a face on the Linked Body and specify a face on any other object in the Assembly Navigator.
  1. Use any Constraint type to achieve the position you require from the constraint window.
Assembly Constraints Repositioning

In Summary: Repositioning an In-Process Workpiece in a Manufacturing File

To summarize, this is an alternative method of repositioning an In-Process Workpiece when the standard method is not desirable.  This approach allows the programmer to move from one machining process to the next, quickly repositioning the In-Process Workpiece in any part file.

NX CAM Resources

To learn more about product features like this blog tutorial explained, visit the Tutorials and Blogs page, see the latest Upcoming Webinars, watch videos on the Swoosh YouTube channel, or Sign Up for the Swoosh Newsletter to see the latest and greatest updates.

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Post by Alex Stoermann

I'm the Marketing Manager here at Swoosh Tech and I have over 15+ years in marketing with 6.5 years dedicating my time to the Siemens Design & Manufacturing industry. I possess ample knowledge of the Siemens Design & Manufacturing industry and consistently strive to create and execute effective marketing strategies. I believe that my dedication and skill set are valuable assets in my role, as they allow me to effectively facilitate the digital transformation of Siemens Digital Industries Solutions.

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