Copy banisters for steel handrailing in square tubing

hello people,

i’m trying to make some cutouts in square tubing for tubelasercutting. it is a pretty simple idea: i have an outside frame in square tubing, banisters are round and go in the square tubes, meaning the holes are angled.

my approach so far: import a dxf (a top view of the railing), extrude the outside frame, then i 'shell" the outside frame (3mm wall thickness). The banisters are lines, so i make a construction plane perpendicular to edge, make a sketch of the diameter of the banister (16mm) and extrude that in the outside frame, then i can use the subtract tool to make the cutouts, which kinda works.

problem is i have to do this probably 50 times, which takes,off course, forever. i tried with the translate tool (and copy) but i get error messages. i tried the linear pattern, but i can’t get the copies placed on the lines.

My guess is my approach is completely wrong, the million dollar question: anyone have an idea how this might be handled? I’m completely stuck actually :slight_smile:

Any help/thoughts greatly appreciated.



Can you make use of the linear array tool?

yes, if i first make a banister, then use linear array and then make the outside frame it more or less works but it’s a big workaround i think. i thought it would be possible to replace one line, make it a tube and then copy it to the other points it would be so much easier. I’m a shapr3d newbie, i have a lot of sketchup experience and it is quite difficult to get used to the fact that copying/arraying in shapr3d is just not that easy.

so here i kinda get the result i was after, but it is still quite the challenge to make an outside frame with the correct sizes and get everthing spaced out equally.

i need more practice, that is pretty obvious :slight_smile:

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Not so hard, I would say.

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Thank you so much for taking the time to make this video! This really helps and i’m almost there i think. only difference with my situation is that the frame is not square, i can’t start the extrude from a round sketch on the frame because the tubes are angled, so the holes are not round but more oval.

i’ll experiment further, again thanks.

That’s not a problem. Tell me which version you use so I can show you how to achieve the result (parametric or non-parametric)?

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i have acces to both versions, the parametric is still beta version i guess?
i don’t have a paid license (yet), but i don’t think that is a problem as far as drawing functionality goes.

You can also make a pattern follow an angle

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Here is non-parametric variant, history based version makes it a little bit easier.


thank you so much alex, this is very clear and very efficient. at 1:25 you extrude the tubes to/against the frame-surface, i don’t know if that is available in the non-beta version actually, i’ll check it out.

If it’s not you can extrude them through the frame and then cut by the frame (using subtract tool). Using this approach it will be better to draw full frame and extrude all banisters full length then cut them and then do shell on both fame and banisters

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