21 December 2016

Tips for Exploded views drawing


I got a couple of comments on this blog asking to deal with Exploded views. So, today, I will be covering on some tips for exploded view drawing. Note that these topics are not at all required for UCEED students, so they are not advised to go through this or any of sketch/design related post as of now. CEED and NID students would find this helpful. 

Before explaining exploded view, let me introduce you with assembly drawing, the most common term for mechanical engineers. 

Many of the products in our surroundings are made of several small parts. Take the example of a Pen. A typical pen is a combination of rifle, outer top case, outer bottom plastic/metal case, cap and a holder to the cap. A combination of these we call as a pen, and representing the parts together intact in their working position is termed as 'Assembling' or 'Assembly drawing'. 

Exploded view is quite opposite of assembling. Although the view should show all parts in unassembled part, the parts are not intact, meaning they will be shown separately, which are ready to be assembled. Again, let us take the example of a simple bolt-nut combination with a washer in between, as shown in the below image.

Clearly, the above product is an assembly of three parts, viz. bolt, washer and nut. (If you're not able to identify the three parts, check the below image). As indicated by the blue lined arrow in the above image, the two parts (nut and then washer) has to be moved in the direction in order to disassemble it (along the axis indicated by red line in the image). The separated parts would look something like below.  

The above picture could be considered as exploded view, since it clearly specifies the individual parts in their assembling positions. If we undo the process, I mean slid the washer and nut along the axis of movement (red line), then it will get assembled, right? This is a proper way of representing.

However, people often do the mistake the showing parts in different directions/axis not in-line with the assembly. For example, in the above image, we know that the washer and nut should lie along the red axis line to be assembled, now consider the below image 

Both the parts are on the other side of the bolt face, and if we try sliding it in the axis direction (along red axis as shown by blue arrows), we cannot assemble it, so, this is not a good way of representing. 

Also, check the below image, 

The axis of the two parts (green line) are not in line with the axis of the base part (bolt - red line), and so any movement of the nut/washer will not end in assembly, except you take it from green axis and place it in red axis. So, this also cannot be considered as a good exploded view. Now, check the below image which again violates and cannot support assembling of parts to form a single product with a single slide.

With the above simple example and several set of images, I hope you now got an idea of how actually to represent exploded views. Individual parts (that forms the complete product) has to be shown apart from the base part, such that they are inline (along the same axis) while during assembly. 

Below design is my solution to CEED 2009 product design problem in which we have to design a multi-purpose walking stick for the elderly, complete design and detailed discussion are available in this link

For the above design, one possible exploded view could be drawn as below

Although, I could've showed exploded details of more features/parts like the compass, mp3 player, switch, LED light in the top front as well as at the bottom etc, still it is valid since, whatever separate parts that I've shown including the screw, they were placed at the proper place in the proper direction.   

Below, is one more design question from CEED 2013 solution to Part B question paper, in which we were supposed to design a mop that will allow cleaning in nuke and corners of the home. 

For which, one possible exploded view could be 

Another example design (exploded view) that I did as part of My portfolio with tips and guide

Hope, you can now deal with exploded views easily. For more examples, just go through google images and type for any specific products exploded view say pens.


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