I need to develop a collapsible metal construction. I have a few specific prerequisites. Generally speaking, it will be something like a big construction toy, but not be a toy. It has the specific purpose - the basis of the obstacles for a cycling trial. biketrials show enter image description here

Many riders over the world make their own huge welded constructions. Usually they are heavy, unstable and cannot be completely disassembled.

The construction shall be based on standard square tubes and be

  • fully collapsible, up to individual pipes and connection points
  • based on triangles to provide rigidity, but the triangle must be able to disassemble into individual tubes
  • has maximum possible rigidity assembled
  • based on common tubes, bolts, connection points
  • easy to assemble and disassemble
  • has only a few universal types of elements
  • take up as little disassembled space as possible
  • has the opportunity to assemble in several ways
  • has the opportunity to easy assemble several concrete obstacles variants

The list above is just to show what kind of task I'm dealing with.

The rough sketchy set of the required obstacles ideas enter image description here

Of course I cannot easily resolve the issue.

I'm not a design engineer. I searched for engineering CAD systems. I like the Autodesk Inventor functionality and ideas. The problem is that I don't have completely idea of the elements in my mind, and therefore I cannot just model the components. Furthermore, I have no experience in engineering systems, only a little experience in 3ds Max. But I hope a modern engineering systems could have the functionality to help the engineer invent the construction, not just create a model.

I need advice on how to build a workflow in Autodesk Inventor (or in some another software may be) for such the invention process. Automatic element updates, checks, suggestions in the software, some way to invent via top down design. What would your first step in the Inventor for such a task?

  • $\begingroup$ Most cad apps can do top down modeling. Its just that you need to learn bottom up modeling first. Since the top down relies on bottom up tools for execution. Anyway your problem is entirely structural so learning basics of analysis of stresses is way more important to the conceptual design phase than modeling. Beca Yu se that allows you to attack the weight issue in a way like nothing else can. $\endgroup$
    – joojaa
    Jun 30 '20 at 22:17
  • $\begingroup$ @joojaa Analysis of stresses is a useful thing, but not the main for me. Сan you advise me some more key concepts and steps than just learn top down and bottom up modelling? For example, what would your first step in the Inventor for such a task? $\endgroup$ Jun 30 '20 at 22:42

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