Cutting Parts in Inventor

I have been doing Vex for a couple of years now but just recently got into using Inventor to design robots. I figured out how to create an assembly and join parts together, but I can’t figure out how to cut parts.

Also, how do I specify centers on the metal parts, axles, bearing blocks, etc.?

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

I use solidworks but when I want to cut a part I will open the part, sketch a box around the area I want to remove and then Extrude Cut that sketch. Then I save As the part. I’m guessing the process in inventor is very similar.

I looked at it in Inventor and created a line like you said, and though there isn’t an extrude cut function, there is a split function which I think does the same thing. When I selected split and clicked on the line, it separated into two parts and then I just deleted one. Thanks for your help!

On cutting parts:

Cutting parts in Inventor does involve extruding a sketch. Here is one way to cut a shape into a part:[LIST=1]
*]Open part and save under a new name (i.e. “Cut_part.ipt”)
*]Create sketch on the face of the part you want to cut.
See attachments “Select Face.jpg” and “Draw.jpg”.
*]Finish the sketch
*]Extrude the sketch (the “Extrude” tool is found under the Model tab in the “Create” group)
*]In the extrusion, please note that the distance parameter should equal the width of the piece you are cutting. (for VEX metal, this is 0.046") Also, you need to select the option that makes the extrusion “cut” the part, otherwise you will get an error.
See attachment “Extrude.jpg”.
[/LIST]I’m using Autodesk Inventor Professional 2010 (Educational Version), so my screens may look a little different than yours.

Please let me know if this works for you!
Select Face.jpg


Just noticed that your first post also asked about center points…

Create a sketch to mark the center point. The “Pattern” tool can be helpful when creating center points for a large number of holes in a plate.

When you want to constrain to the center point, right-click on the sketch enable Visibility. Then you can constrain to the points you have marked.

I am very good with inventor and I can tell you that what your trying to do is very simple.

Robodesigners answered the question but I would like to add something

5.In the extrusion, please note that the distance parameter should equal the width of the piece you are cutting. (for VEX metal, this is 0.046") Also, you need to select the option that makes the extrusion “cut” the part, otherwise you will get an error.

In this step he said it has to equal the width for a cut away extrusion when it in fact doesn’t. You can put in a number ranging from anything above 0 to something ridiculously high. If you want to cut all the way through you could just put a distance that you know will cut all the way through like 1 inch or so that way you don’t have to know every little precise distance. On the other hand if you want to cut a depression or hole into the surface you would enter in something less than the width (something precise).

If you need any other help with inventor send me a pm I can help with most stuff.

None of your images work.

robofreak, I think that PMs are turned off (, so I’m responding in this thread. Anyway, I did have a question about Autodesk Inventor (see [\EDIT]]( Do you know the answer? Please respond in that thread to keep topics seperate.)

You are correct, they don’t work, but simply right-click on them and select “Open image in new tab”, they should work fine.

Yes it is available for download, however as he stated, he is looking for a Windows machine he can run it on, since he is using Linux, and it will not run on that OS:


See my next post I deleted what was here

I am using Inventor 2011 Educational Version.

After playing around with Inventor for a few hours after I posted yesterday, I figured out how to specify centers and cut pretty easily.

For the centers I did exactly what RoboDesigners said to do. I marked a center point and found the option that made it visible/invisible.

For cutting I found a really simple way to do this. I don’t know if this is just Inventor 2011. I took the part I wanted to cut and drew a line where I wanted to make the cut (I did this in a separate part file because I wanted the part available with the same cut later). I then clicked on “Split,” selected the entire object (In this case, a piece of 2-hole angle bracket that was 35 holes long), and then clicked on the line. This split the entire piece of metal into two parts (A 5 hole long piece and a 30 foot long piece). Then I just deleted the 5 hole part because I didn’t need it and saved the entire part as a 30 hole long piece of angle bracket. It was actually really simple once I found the correct function.

Edit: After looking more closely at Robodesigner’s way of cutting, I think I like it better. It is pretty simple and easy, but both methods do work.

These pictures will work. The reason the ones before didn’t work was because the website hosting them disabled remote linking which caused them to not show. They have now been placed on my imageshack account which has hosted some of my pictures for years with no problems.

I put description here again.

This is one of the more recent things I made with inventor, I know I am not a pro at it put I would say I am pretty good. Can’t wait to get my hands on the 2011 edition its just been hard to get a decent windows machine for it I run linux only and this software is windows only…

This is a prototype coilgun, in the back is a stepper motor and two double acting pneumatic pistons. The stepper motor spins a six round drum like a revolver in 60 degree increments. After each increment the top piston pushes a round through a pair of infrared break beams which starts the firing sequence. During this time the bottom piston loads a new projectile into the drum magazine and then they both retract. The mag spins another 60 degrees and the process repeats. With the correct setup it would be able to fire a few rounds per second and would sound very scary. Also notice the blue hoses they move very cold water over the very hot coils to maintain cool coils for rapid firing. I wish I made an animation but it would take really long to render…
By robofreak at 2010-07-26
By robofreak at 2010-07-26
By robofreak at 2010-07-26
By robofreak at 2010-07-26
By robofreak at 2010-07-26

There are many ways to do the same thing in inventor but you will find as you go on that some ways are much better than others. Each has there own unique pros and cons.

How would you bend parts?

Are you trying to bend an existing piece of metal, or a custom sheet metal part? There are a few ways of bending parts.

In a sheet metal part file you simply use the flange tool on an edge of a part and it brings up a nice menu giving you a lot of parameters that you can change to your liking.

In a standard part there are two ways to do it.

There is the fold tool (one that I use most of the time for things like this)

and the Bend tool… never got this one to work to well no idea what I’m doing wrong…

Anyway those are your tools if you need an explanation of how they work I’ll post back later today.

  • Andrew

Bending the vex metal. like the 1x5x35 bar.

I would use the fold tool in the standard part file

  • Andrew

Thank you! I plan on adding pictures of our robot soon!

Using the bend tool.

Open the part (or better a copy of it)

Crteate a 2D sketch on the part surface and draw a line at the bend position

Open the Bend Part tool from the modify menu

Select the sketch line you just drew, adjust the parameters


I use the bend tool, like what jpearman described and it works fine for me. I have never used the flange tool though. Also, not sure if this has been said but make sure to open up the part and save it as another part, if you do not then the original part will become bent and whenever you use that part again, it will be in bent form.