Bolt Panel

Use the Bolt panel to create connectors which will be represented as a 1D element construct.

Location: Connectors module

There are three base methods to determine the nodes to be connected: hole detection, cylinder definition, and a combination of both. Shell holes can be connected by their edges and/or any washer nodes. The default behavior for bolt holes is to connect every node within the solid hole, but if you add the line *ce_fe_solid_bolt_setup(0) to your hm.cfg file, then only the nodes of the top and bottom rings are connected.

When the Bolt panel is active, only bolt-type connectors display in the modeling window; graphics for other connector types are suppressed until you exit the panel.

Subpanel Organization

The Bolt panel is arranged into several subpanels. You can move freely between subpanels. Your work on one subpanel will not be lost if you switch to a different subpanel.
Bolt Subpanel
Create and realize bolt connectors.
Create Subpanel
Create, but do not realize bolt connectors.
Realize Subpanel
Realize existing bolt connectors (no creation or editing possible).
The Bolt, Create and Realize subpanels use the same set of options.
  • The first column contains everything related to connector creation and link detection.
  • The second column contains everything related to realization type, post script and property assignment.
  • The third column contains everything related to the final connection to the link entities.

Connector Creation and Link Detection Options

Option Action
location Specify the location of the connector to be created.
Select an existing node (also temp nodes).
Select an existing point (fixed point or free point).
Select a node list and specify spacing or density and end offset.
The selected nodes are used to create internally a smoothed line, which is used exactly as a real line. The connector doesn’t remember the selected nodes.
Select a line and specify spacing or density and end offset.
Distance between each weld location on the line.
Number of weld location on the line.

The number of bolt points is approximated to the closest integer, based on the length of the line and spacing given while considering the end offset value given (or half spacing).

The spacing is also calculated based on the length of the line and density for the half-spacing option on the Options panel.

Note: Only available when location is set to lines.
split to points Split the line into individual points and create bolt connectors for each resultant point.
Note: Only available when location is set to nodelist/nodepath or line.
connectors Select the connector(s) to be realized.
connect what Select the link entities which should become link candidates.
Link candidates are certain entities of a chosen Link Type, which are supposed to be connected during the realization. Entities outside the tolerance are not taken into account.
Select components to be added as link entities.
You can choose to connect to either the geometry or elements of the selected components.
Select assemblies to be added as link entities.
You can choose to connect to either the geometry or elements of the selected assemblies.
Select properties to be added as link entities.
You can choose to connect to either the geometry or elements of the selected properties.
Select parts to be added as link entities.
You can choose to connect to either the geometry or elements of the selected parts.
Select attachments to be added as link entities.
You can choose to connect to either the geometry or elements of the selected attachments.
num layers

Define how many thicknesses (layers) have to be connected at the connector position.

When link detection is performed the valid connector links are established with respect to the given tolerance and the selected link candidates. By default the links are reduced to the minimum needed. The number of links is typically higher than the number of layers, because a valid pair of projections need to be found per test point.


Define a distance from the connector location (per each test point).

Only entities within this tolerance can be taken into account for the link detection and the final realization. Thus, the tolerance is used twice: first for the link determination and again for the realization. In the second step the tolerance is used to verify whether adequate link candidates are available to be connected.

During pure connector creation on the Create subpanel, the tolerance is used for the link determination, but not necessarily stored on the connector unless the checkbox in front of the tolerance field is marked. In this way different tolerances can be used.

The tolerance used during the realization process is always written to the connector.

This approach is the same for all connector types. For most of the bolt realization types the approach is the same, though further requirements like holes of certain diameters on the links might be required for a successful realization. For cylinder bolt realization types a cylinder volume is defined by a diameter, a length L1 in the positive and a length L2 in the negative connector direction. Only links penetrating this cylinder volume are considered for the realization. If the tolerance value is lower than L1 or L2 it is updated to the higher of both values during realization.

connect when
Select when to perform link detection.
Add link entity information now, directly together with the connector creation.
at fe-realize
Create a connector without any specific information regarding its links.
Links are determined when performing the final realization with respect to the connector position.
Using this option defines the re-connect rule at-fe-realize for all created links.
reconnect rule
While realizing the connector, HyperMesh looks for link entities based on the re-connect rule.
Tip: This option is useful in situations where the parts to be connected have been changed/replaced.
No re-connect rule is defined. If the link entity is not currently in the model, the connector with this re-connect rule will fail to realize.
If no re-connect rule is defined for a link, this link disappears from the connector when the linked entity is deleted.
use id
Use the selected link entity’s IDs to re-connect. If the link entity is not currently in the model, the connector with this re-connect rule will search for entities with the same ID.
use name
Use the selected link entity’s names to re-connect. If the link entity is not currently in the model, connectors using this re-connect rule search for entities with the same name.

Post Script and Property Assignment Options

Option Action
Select the realization type which should be used. The realization type is a description of the FE representation.
Note: The available realization types are dependant on the configuration file loaded under fe file on the general connector Options panel.
post script treatment
Choose whether or not a post script has to be used for the specific realization type. These scripts are used to automatically create materials, properties, and/or contacts necessary for realizing the connectors.
default post script
Default for any realization type having a post script defined in its FE configuration.
user post script
Select your own .tcl file which should be used. Such a file can perform a special treatment on the FE representation.
no/skip post script
Default for all realization types without any post script defined. No post script is used.
elems to current comp / connector comp
Select which component the FE representations are stored in once they have been realized.
current comp
Store newly-realized connectors in the current component.
connector comp
Store newly created FE representations in the same component that the connector was originally created in.
Note: Only available in the realize subpanel when post script treatment is set to no/skip post script.
property treatment
Select a property treatment.
Click property= and select a property to assign to all newly created elements.
no property
No property gets assigned.
Note: Only available when post script treatment is set to no/skip post script.
direct property assignment
Directly assign the property, otherwise assign the property to the destination components.
Note: Only available when property treatment is set to property =, and the solver interface is Nastran, OptiStruct, Radioss or Abaqus.
use dynamic vector/use existing vector/define a new vector Select how to determine the bolt direction vector. Every bolt connector gets a vector associated during its realization.
use dynamic vector (default)
Automatically determine the connector vector dependent on the projection directions during the link detection.
use existing vector
Use the existing vector associated with the connector to define the bolt direction during realization.
If no vector is associated so far, the dynamic vector option is used instead.
define a new vector
Define and associate a new vector with the connector, then use it to define the bolt direction during realization.

Final Connection to Link Entities Options

Option Action
mesh dependent/mesh Independent
Determine whether the realizations require a node connection.
mesh independent
For a realization which does not need any node connection and the connection is primarily defined via a solver-specific card or the nodes which need to be connected are defined by just a cylinder.
mesh dependent
All other cases.
thread length Define the dimensions of the rigid elements connecting the bolt shaft models as bar.
consider existing holes only/create hole, if none/use hole, if available/fill and remesh hole, if available In the past a bolt realization always required a hole for each layer existent in the initial mesh. For 2D meshes this is not necessary anymore, because the imprint capability allows punching the needed holes into the mesh before the final realization is performed, so the mesh can be manipulated in a pre-step. This makes it possible to punch holes, to move holes, to close holes, to create washers, and so on.
realize and hole detect details Open a temporary panel, from which you can define hole detection requirements.

Command Buttons

Button Action
create Create the connector(s) with provided input (if sufficient).
realize Realize the bolt connector.
reject Revert the last action.
preview Analyze bolt connectors that contain some sort of cylinder definition in the modeling window.

Once you click preview, HyperMesh unrealizes and updates the selected connectors to reflect its realization type. HyperMesh also updates all of the cylinder dimensions (diameters, lengths, factors) and displays the appropriate cylinders.

options Open the Connector Options panel, where various settings can be defined.
return Exit the panel.