Measuring Coping

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Vtube-step logo 1.96.png Vtube-laser logo 1.96.png

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This article discusses how to measure a coping along with the tube shape in VTube-LASER. The method used is to measure the coping as if it were an additional straight on the end of the tube.

In order to do this, an adapter pipe that joins the main pipe at the coping can be treated like and extra end-straight on the pipe in VTube-LASER

STEP 1: Design a Coping Adapter in a Solid Modelling Program

In this example, we designed an adapter in SOLIDWORKS that simulates the joining pipe to the main pipe.

This adapter acts like an additional leg on the end of the tube (see the red section).

Remember that, because VTube calculates diameters on the fly, it never matters if the adapter diameter is the same as the main pipe. VTube-LASER will be able to find the centerline of this geometry - which is exactly what you need to check the coping.

The length of the adapter is not important - but the longer it is, the more accurate the VTube math engine can be in projection to the centerline.

Now, export this model to a STEP file for import into VTube-LASER.

Solidworks coping adapter in pipe.png

STEP 2: Import the Model with the Adapter into VTube-STEP

VTube-STEP is included as one of the modes with every VTube-LASER. Switch to STEP mode, then clear the project, then import the STEP model created in the solid modelling program.

Vtube-step v2.3 import coping adapter part.png

STEP 3: Collect the Surfaces with the Adapter in VTube-STEP

Use the Collect feature to build a collection of cylinder surfaces. Include the adapter as the end straight.

Vtube-step v2.3 collect coping adapter part.png

STEP 4: Rebuild the Model in VTube-STEP

Right click and rebuild the model.

Vtube-step v2.3 rebuild coping adapter part.png

STEP 5: Confirm the Parametric Model in VTube-STEP

You can now confirm the new parametric model (the model that is controlled by new XYZ coordinates) by pressing F9 to turn on and view the point labels.

Vtube-step v2.3 pointlabels coping adapter part.png

STEP 6: Switch to VTube-LASER Mode and Measure the Part

Switch to VTube-LASER, attach the adapter (temporarily) to the coping on the part, then measure and qualify the entire part with the adapter.

It is not a problem that there is no radius at the first intersection between the first and second straights. The measurement and qualification will still produce useful information about how to adjust the tube and the coping.

Vtube-laser v2.3 measure coping adapter part.png

STEP 7: Setup and Align the Measured Part

In this alignment, we used 321 Plane Line Point alignment to lock the tube to itself, and allow all the error to float to the coping end of the tube.

The pink tube is the measured aligned tube. It allows you to visualize how far out of the envelope the coping is when the adapter is attached.

Vtube-laser v2.3 align inspect coping adapter part.png

STEP 8: Get the Rotational Adjustment

You can also print out a Bender Corrections Only report to see the exact rotational adjusting to make to the part when cutting the coping.

Vtube-laser v2.3 report coping adapter part.png

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