Revolutionize Your Design Process with Autodesk Inventor Shape Generator

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Revolutionize Your Design Process with Autodesk Inventor Shape Generator

Table of Contents:

  1. Introduction
  2. Using the Shape Generator
  3. Methods to Access Shape Generator
  4. Assigning Materials and Safety Factors
  5. Adding Constraints
  6. Applying Loads
  7. Preserving Regions
  8. Symmetric Plane Selection
  9. Mesh Generator Settings
  10. Generating and Analyzing Results
  11. Extruding and Cutting Excess Material
  12. Final Optimization and Analysis


In this article, we will explore how to use the shape generator option in Inventor, a software tool used for 3D modeling and design. The shape generator is a powerful feature that allows users to optimize their designs by automatically reducing material and manufacturing costs while ensuring structural integrity. We will cover various aspects of using the shape generator, including accessing the tool, assigning materials, adding constraints, applying loads, preserving regions, selecting symmetric planes, adjusting mesh settings, generating and analyzing results, as well as extruding and cutting excess material. So let's dive in and learn how to make the most of this innovative tool!

Using the Shape Generator

The shape generator in Inventor provides an easy-to-use interface for optimizing 3D designs. It allows users to automatically reduce material and manufacturing costs while maintaining structural integrity. To access the shape generator, there are two methods available:

  1. Method 1: Go to the "Environments" tab and click on the "Stress Analysis" option. Then, select "Create Study" and choose the "Shape Generator" option.

  2. Method 2: Navigate to the "3D Model" tab and click on the "Shape Generator" option.

Assigning Materials and Safety Factors

Before using the shape generator, it is important to assign materials to the model. In the material assignment section, users can choose from various predefined materials or create their own. Additionally, safety factors can be specified to ensure designs meet required durability standards. Different materials can be tested using the shape generator to analyze the impact on design optimization.


  • Allows for the optimization of material usage
  • Ensures designs meet safety standards


  • Material selection and assignment require careful consideration

Adding Constraints

Constraints are used to fix specific areas of the model during analysis. In the case of the shape generator, constraints are applied to the fixtures or points that are fixed in place. Constraints can be added by selecting the fixed constraint option and choosing the desired points or surfaces to fix.

Applying Loads

Loads are the external forces or pressures applied to the model for analysis. The shape generator offers different types of loads, such as force, pressure, bearing load, and gravity load. Users can select the load type and specify the magnitude and direction. The loads are applied to the model to analyze its behavior under specific conditions.

Preserving Regions

While the shape generator optimizes the design by reducing material, certain regions may need to be preserved. These regions can be selected using the preserve region option. Users can choose specific features, holes, or areas that should not be removed during the optimization process.

Symmetric Plane Selection

The symmetric plane option is used to define a plane about which the optimized design should be symmetric. This feature is useful when designing objects that require symmetry. By selecting the appropriate symmetric plane, the shape generator will ensure symmetry in the final design.

Mesh Generator Settings

The mesh generator settings determine the level of detail and accuracy of the analysis. The settings include options for mesh resolution, element size, and other parameters. It is important to strike a balance between computation time and accuracy when choosing these settings.


  • Allows for control over analysis accuracy
  • Balances computation time and accuracy


  • Choosing the optimal settings may require some trial and error

Generating and Analyzing Results

Once all the required settings are configured, users can generate the optimized shape based on the selected loads, constraints, and material assignments. After generating the shape, the results can be analyzed. Inventor provides various tools to view stress, strain, displacement, and other factors affecting the design.


  • Provides insights into stress distribution and displacement
  • Allows for optimization of designs based on analysis results


  • Results may require interpretation and analysis expertise

Extruding and Cutting Excess Material

After analyzing the results, it may be necessary to refine the design further by removing excess material. This can be achieved by using the 3D modeling options in Inventor. Users can employ tools such as extrude and cut to eliminate unnecessary portions of the design, resulting in a more streamlined and optimized structure.

Final Optimization and Analysis

Once the excess material has been removed, a final analysis can be performed to verify the optimized design's performance. This analysis ensures that the modified design still meets all the necessary requirements and is structurally sound. By iteratively optimizing and analyzing the design, users can achieve cost-effective, efficient, and durable results.


Q: Can shape generator optimize any 3D design? A: The shape generator can optimize most 3D designs, provided they meet certain criteria such as constraint and load requirements.

Q: Is it possible to manually adjust the optimized shape generated by the tool? A: Yes, users can manually adjust the optimized shape by preserving specific regions or modifying the design using 3D modeling tools.

Q: Does the shape generator account for manufacturing constraints? A: The shape generator primarily focuses on material optimization, but users can consider manufacturing constraints during the design refinement process.

Q: How can I ensure the structural integrity of the optimized design? A: By performing multiple analysis iterations and refining the design based on the results, users can ensure the optimized design meets structural integrity requirements.

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