DTV Shredder Part Three: Assembly Design with 3DEXPERIENCE SOLIDWORKS

At this stage in the DTV Shredder design project, we’ve kicked-off the project on the 3DEXPERIENCE Platform and designed the board that the rider will stand on. The next challenge is figuring out how the rider will steer the shredder.

One concept is to have the Shredder steer like a tank, with one throttle for each track.


But what if we could transfer the controls to the rider’s feet? This would allow the rider to steer by leaning left or right, like skateboarding or surfing! The first task is to collect all of the necessary components from the 3DEXPERIENCE Platform, and use 3DEXPERIENCE SOLIDWORKS to design a simple hinge mechanism to mount the board to the frame.

Great! Now the board can roll left and right, but how do we translate the rotational motion of the steering truck to actuate the left and right drive clutches which power the tracks?

In a previous project, we used a tie-rod and push-rod assembly for a similar mechanism, so after doing a quick search in DTV’s cloud library… BINGO! That will do just fine.

Assembling the components is easy with Quick Mates. SOLIDWORKS suggests the most suitable mate types based on my selections.

Now, for those hard-to-reach faces, the Component Preview window allows us to rotate the rod independent of the rest of the assembly. The coincident and concentric mates are done in a snap, without having to move and rotate the assembly around, searching for the right faces or edges.

The tie rod we chose from our cloud library appears to be too short…  good thing we have multiple sizes to choose from. We’ll change the configuration on-the-fly, and finish mating the tie rod assembly.

The tie rod actuates a push-rod, which engages either the left or right side drive clutches and steers the Shredder left and right.

The push rod length needs to be PERFECT if we want a good rider experience. At the neutral position, the end of the push rod will need to be right between the left and right drive clutches, giving equal power to both tracks and making the Shredder go straight. Using the measure tool we can fine-tune the push-rod length to the neutral position. While we’re at it, we’ll create  a sensor to monitor the range of motion.

Now when we  move the push-rod through the entire range of motion and we see the rod end comfortably hits the turning limits. We’ve designed a mechanism that will control steering by simply leaning on the board – without building a single prototype!

For more details and to see the entire design process, check out the video or go to




Andrew Gross

Andrew Gross

Andrew is a Senior Territory Technical Manager at SOLIDWORKS, and lives in Los Angeles, CA. He has years of experience working with resellers and customers, and has a strong background in Engineering Simulation and Design Validation. More recently, Andrew has expanded his interest and passion into Industrial Design. Andrew holds a Master’s Degree in Mechanical Engineering from UCLA.