Grain direction and oversize control

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As mention in the section about the calculation of part and workpiece size, two factors have direct impact on the size of workpiece used to produce a constructed part of furniture. These are grain direction of the material and additional oversize assigned by the user for performance of one or the other operation. Woodwork for Inventor has a command that allows the user to control these factors.


To open the command, go to:

Woodwork Design –> Material –> Grain grain_direction32


In this case, the command is activated using an active grain control TAB.


Grain Control TAB




Woodwork Design –> Material –> Workpiece Oversize material_oversize32


In this case, the command is activated using an active oversize control TAB.


Oversize Dialog TAB



In any case, the active tab can be changed and grain adjustment and oversize assignment tasks may be performed without closing the command.


hmtoggle_plus1Working with sets


At the top of the command dialogue, there is a zone for managing the creation of component sets. The term “Component” used in the description means a part or part surface, which is coated with some cover. The type of components you work with depends on the selection mode the command is working in (see the description below). These component sets will be subject to operations provided for by the command.


Oversize and Grain Direction Selection Set Control 





Switches the dialogue mode to control of fill workpiece grain or oversize. In this mode, only part-type components are available for selection.




Switches the dialogue mode to control of cover workpiece grain or oversize. In this mode, individual surfaces with any type of cover are available for selection.



Material Picker

The Picker allows the user to select the filter material by specifying the Woodwork for Inventor component on the screen.



Pull Down List of Filter in Grain Control

Allows the user to configure the filter, which will be used for selection of components in oversize and grain control. If the filter value is set to “Any”, this means that any component that matches the Woodwork for Inventor mode settings may be picked.  For example, in fill workpiece control mode, setting the filter for laminated boards only allows selecting only laminated boards for component sets. The picker function allows the user to set any specific material as a filter.



Select All 24x24

Selects all components according to set filter. A set may also be created using the cursor, by specifying individual elements or selecting them in the window. Components may be removed from the set by selecting them using the cursor while holding the CTRL key.



Deselect All 24x24

Removes components from the set.



hmtoggle_plus1Grain direction control




Grain direction can be controlled from Grain control TAB. Grain direction may be controlled for multiple selected components. In order to understand the control of grain direction, the user should be aware of several concepts and how they affect the mechanism of changing grain direction.


Imaginary crossing plane. The imaginary crossing plane is created by drawing it through the grain direction indicator vector X and the indicator coordinate system axis Z. This plane is intersected with the reference face of the component, which results in an intersection line. The direction of this line shows the grain direction of a particular component.


Grain direction indicator coordinate system. Grain indicator may be present on several coordinate systems:


1.Screen coordinate system.
2.Coordinate system defined by component grain direction.



Screen coordinate system



Grain direction indicator screen coordinate system 

Grain direction indicator screen coordinate system 



Grain direction indicator screen in arranged on the screen plane. Its axis X lies on the plane and is horizontal and axis Y also lies on the plane, but is vertical. Component grain direction is found according to the intersection line between the imaginary crossing plane with the reference face of the selected component (see figure above). Rotating the grain direction indicator changes the position of the imaginary plane and calculates different possible grain directions of the selected component. The command provides several mechanisms to rotate the grain direction indicator. As shown in the figure above, grain direction depends on the orientation of selected components in respect to the screen and the angle of rotation of the indicator in respect to the horizontal axis. By default, when working in assembly, screen coordinate system is automatically selected for determining the grain direction.



Coordinate system defined by component grain direction vector




Component grain direction coordinate system

Component grain direction coordinate system



Coordinate system defined by component grain direction is aligned according to the grain direction of the specific selected component. In this case, the grain direction is determined by the position of grain direction of the selected component. Just like in the coordinate system described above, the imaginary crossing plane is calculated using the indicator and indicator coordinate system axis Z. Grain direction for each component is determined according to the intersection line between the imaginary crossing plane and the reference face of the component.


Important! For components, where reference faces are parallel to the imaginary crossing plane of grain control indicator, the intersection is not possible. In such case, grain direction cannot be changed.


Grain control TAB


Oversize and Grain Direction Control



Rotate by



Specify the angle at which the direction indicator should be rotated.

Reset Grain Direction 16x16



Woodwork for Inventor automatically determines the grain direction.



Align by Edge

Allows the user to specify any straight edge and to have the grain direction indicator aligned with it.

Align to Display CS


Align ICS to Display plane

Switches the grain indicator (ICS - Indicator Coordinate System) to screen coordinate system.

Align to Grain Line


Select Grain Line align ICS

Allows the user to specify the component grain direction and to have the texture indicator (ICS - Indicator Coordinate System) aligned with it.




Allows synchronization of cover grain direction with fill material grain direction for specified components.

Desinchronize 16x16



De-synchronization of cover grain direction and fill material grain direction for specified components.

hmtoggle_plus1Oversize control

Oversize can be controlled in Oversize TAB.


Oversize Control TAB





This field lists the sides of workpiece which may be assigned additional oversize. It also has the Sizing field, which allows the user to specify the sizing oversize.



Oversize input field.

Oversize Symetry


The oversize value in the given field is transferred to the symmetrical oversize field of the workpiece.

Propagate same oversize to all sides


Oversize value in the given field is transferred to the fields of all sides.

Reset Oversize


Oversize value is set to 0. Clicking the button in the table header next to “Action”, all oversizes are set to 0.

hmtoggle_plus1Changing the reference face


Reference face of the part determines which side of the part will be considered top or bottom side. Their grain direction is used to calculate the size of the part, etc. During the initial assigning of material, the reference face is determined automatically. However, the constructor may for various reasons be not satisfied with the selection of reference face. The user can change the reference face of the part using Set Reference TAB.


Set New Reference Face





Select new reference face


Activates the mode where the user may specify a different surface to be the reference face of the selected part.

Reset Reference Face


Reset reference face

Automatically determines reference face for parts in a set.

hmtoggle_plus1Changing the direction of part size calculation


When a Woodwork for Inventor material is assigned to an Autodesk Inventor part, the grain direction is set automatically. Part size is calculated using this initial direction. As the user changes the grain direction, the calculation of the workpiece size also changes. The direction of the part size calculation remains the same. In most cases, this is acceptable for the assembly process. However, in exceptional cases, where the part size calculated based on the automatically set direction vector is not acceptable, the direction of size calculation can be changed. The part sizes exported to BOM are changed accordingly. This can be done using the Part Direction tab. The tab is activated by opening the part file separately


Set Part Calculation direction



Before setting the part size calculation direction, rotate the grain direction as desired. Choose one of the following options.


Parts Size Align to Workpiece direction

"Align to current grain Direction" - set the part size calculation direction according to the current grain direction of the material.

Part Size Reset

"Reset to standard Part Size calculation Direction" - reset the part size calculation direction to the standard Woodwork for Inventor direction calculation algorithm.