MATWEB materials library

Hello, all.
Has anyone has any experience with MATWEB's (http://www.matweb.com ) new Soliworks material library feature? They say that for $50/year you can
have full iste access and can download material properties in Solworks material libray format.
I tried the sample libray and it worked, at least.
Wher's everybody else get their properties sets? Anyone fdevoted to stricty putting in what you need "by hand"?
Tom
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We created our own custom material list. I used some of the info from www.matweb.com for a few of the materials we use. I didn't think it was a big deal to manually enter the info. You do it once and your done. Put it on the network and share it with all machines.
I decided to go with a custom material list because I needed the name of the materials to be a specific format so that when I open a sheetmetal part in SigmaNEST, our laser cutting software, the name matches the format that I need to import it correctly.
Richard

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Thanks, Rich.
I've tried a couple, but it's interesting - not all the variables are always there, and I can't seem to be able to add new/missing ones, or to find a list of variable names (i.e., EX, ALPX, etc).
It's never easy...
Tom
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Yeah, I know what you mean. Some of the variables need to be converted to. I haven't added any new materials in a while, but I probably will be very soon. Our company bought a few other companies over the last six months and we're revamping our wood products line, so we'll be adding a bunch of new woods and some other sheetmetal properties to out list.
Rich

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What flabbergasted me is the lack of a real editor. I use COSMOSWorks, which uses temperature dependent materials properties (and perhaps time dependent as well), and that's in a sldmat file as well. But no real editor, no documenation as to allowed material propeirs & names (at least that I've found). Ya know, it's areas like this (and my nags on the BOM) where the rubber meets the road, and what happens? Incomplete stuff that requires you to be a VBA wizard to work around.
Tom
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I was poking around in the sldmat file in 2005. This is what I found:
<physicalproperties> <EX displayname="Elastic Modulus" value="0.69E+11"/> <NUXY displayname="Poissons Ratio" value="0.33"/> <GXY displayname="Shear Modulus" value="0.27E+11"/> <ALPX displayname="Thermal Expansion Coefficient" value="0.23E-04"/> <DENS displayname="Density" value="0.27E+04"/> <KX displayname="Thermal Conductivity" value="0.17E+03"/> <C displayname="Specific Heat" value="0.10E+04"/> <SIGXT displayname="Tensile Strength" value="1.10297E+8"/> <SIGYLD displayname="Yield Strength" value="4.13613E+7"/> </physicalproperties>
The capital letters such as EX, NUXY, etc. refer to standard material property nomeclature in Cosmos/M. If you can get a hold of the Cosmos/M documentation you will find all of the material property designators. This documentation can typically be downloaded from SRAC.com. Whether CosmosWorks will support a particular designator is something you will have to determine by reading the CW docs or by testing. The units used above are MKS units so IPS units will have to be converted.
The sldmat file itself appears to be in XML format. It resides in \lang\english\sldmaterials with the sldmat extension. Any file with the sldmat extension will appear in the materials list box if it is in that directory. TOOLS/OPTIONS/SYSTEM/FILE LOCATIONS/MATERIALS can be pointed to multiple directories with sldmat databases as an alternative to the above directory.
My guess is that the <material> tag and the <physicalproperties> tag are all that are needed to add a material to SW. The <material> tag has two parameters, name="" and matid = "". It would appear that the matid must be sequential.
I don't know if Access or Excel have the ability to read in an XML file and make sense of it, but if they did this would be a convenient way to manage your properties.
This API example could also be useful: Get Material Database and XML Schema File Names Example (VB)
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You da man, TOP. For some reason I thought the sldmat file was binary- I thought I did a quickview... Still, what is up with the XML stuff lately? Why not just read flat text, that's just about wat you're doing anyway...
Thanks,
Tom
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I supposed because it creates a standard format for transfering data. Most of your MSoft applications like Excel, Word and Access can read and write these things. If SW provided the Schema I think Excel could be used to manage XML data.
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OK, here is some flat text. Pretty handy.
http://www.varmintal.com/material.txt
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Holey moley! I'll be a while just wading thru all that!
Thanks!
Tom
(who still gets cranky about the demise of flat text data files!)
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You can use internet explorer to read the sldmat file and look at it in native xml format. Also you can use visual studio .NET to extract the schema for the xml file.
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I used gawk to massage that list a little and then sucked it into access. There is a little inconsistency in the format of one of the fields, but I could probably wring it out into a sldmat file with a little more work. And as always with a list like this you have to check out the data before you use it for design purposes.
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Ok. I was feeling ambitious and wrote a solidworks materials gizmo in LabVIEW to manipulate these files. It reads sldmat files and writes flat csv files, or vice versa.
In any event I sucked the reference file into Excel and parsed it to create categories and such. You can download a copy at http://www.dubea.org/longmaterials.csv
Then I pushed it through my converter and created a sldmat file. You can download it at http://www.dubea.org/longmaterials.sldmat
Be forewarned it takes a few moments to load up.
Have fun. ==========================================================================Chris
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I had a problem loading it into 2004.
dubea.sldmat The attribute 'matid' on this element is not defined in the DTD/Schema. line 9, column 38
I used a text editor to remove the offending property. The sldmat file then loaded. However 2004 showed the modulus for aluminum to be 1.221e+007 N/m^2 no matter which system of units was set for the documents. This number is appropriate for psi, not metric. Apparently 2004 converts the mks units in the sldmat file to ips but appends mks units regardless of the units that are set in the model.
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I'm running into all sorts of issues regarding the units in the library. Also the format evidently has changed as well because it loaded just fine in 2005 SP3
Thanks for the feedback.
==========================================================================Chris
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I mentioned this because too many people will just load up the material library and blindly use it for mass properties or in CosmosExpress without ever checking to see that it was correct and giving the right answers. I don't think that you will find in the help any documentation whatsoever on the format of the sldmat file, changes between different revisions, methods of calculating conversions between units or the source of the data and whether it is average, maximums or minimum properties. For plastics you don't know at what temperature the properties are valid. So the user is responsible for checking anything that is used.
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Confirmed. Use at your own risk!!!!!! ==========================================================================Chris
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On Wed, 08 Mar 2006 20:39:03 -0600, Chris Dubea

Geez did I screw this one up. Boy. I'll repost it when I've finished fixing it.
My apologies! ==========================================================================Chris
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I've uploaded new copies. These seem to correlate well with the original values.
The values for thermal conductivity and specific heat are zeroed out because they weren't in the original list.
Please check these values before you use them. I cannot be responsible for the validity of the data. All I've done is reformat them and parse them into the proper file schema.
The download links are:
http://www.dubea.org/longmaterials.csv
and
http://www.dubea.org/longmaterials.sldmat
It might make some sense to break this up into separate files for the separate categories. It would load faster that way.
If you want to update the values, please so, but I would GREATLY appreciate if you would e-mail me a copy.
My e-mail address is chris.dubea at gmail dot com
Cheers, ==========================================================================Chris
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