Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Redefining A Sketch Plane In Autodesk Inventor



  1. Download the dataset.
  2. Save it to a project folder of an existing Inventor project. Set the project active. Learn more about Inventor Projects and Project Files.
  3. Open the part file: Menu Browser menu browser > Open menu > Open > Redefining_A_Sketch_Plane_PivotBracket.ipt

To learn more about work planes, check out this lesson: Using and Understanding Work Planes in Autodesk Inventor.

You may also be interested in this lesson: How to Share a Sketch in Autodesk Inventor.


Any sketch in Autodesk Inventor is created on (or is based on) a plane. This plane is called a "Sketch Plane." A sketch plane could be the default work planes found under the Origin folder in the Model Browser, user-created work planes, or the planar faces of your models.

When you create a new part file in Autodesk Inventor, a new sketch, by default, is automatically created on a default work plane known as the "XY plane." These settings can be modified on your Application Options dialog box > Part tab > Sketch on new part creation area as shown in Figure 1.

Figure 1

So you will most likely begin the part by sketching (using the default settings) and then creating your base feature. But after creating the base feature (and probably other features), you discover that the part is not positioned in the coordinate system the way you intended it to. So what do you do? The answer is simple: redefine the sketch plane.

NOTE: Changing the view orientation of the model using the viewcube and locking the view as your Home View does not change the position of the model with respect to the coordinate system.


At the end of this lesson, the reader should be able:

  1. Change the Sketch on new part creation settings on the Application Options dialog box,
  2. Use the Viewcube to navigation to a required orientation of the model on the Graphics Area,
  3. Redefine the plane on which a sketch was created.


When you redefine a sketch plane, you are changing the plane on the basis of which it was created. For example, if a base sketch of a model, was created on the default x-y plane, you can redefine the sketch plane and assign it to say the default YZ plane or any other custom plane.

Let's see how we define the sketch plane of the base sketch of the model from the dataset. Figure 2 shows how we intend the model to be positioned after redefining the sketch plane of the base sketch (called Sketch1). Sketch1 was created on the default XZ plane

Figure 2

  1. On the Model Browser, expanding the Origin folder to reveal the default work planes.
  2. Still on the Model Browser, expand Extrusion1 (the base feature) to reveal Sketch1 (the base sketch). Refer to Figure 3 for guidance.

    Figure 3

  3. On the Model Browser, Right-click Sketch1 and click Redefine.
  4. On the Model Browser, click the XY plane.
  5. The model is repositioned with respect to the user coordinate system.
  6. Save and close the model.

Figure 4

I hope you learnt a lot from this lesson. If you have any questions, please drop a comment, and I will answer ASAP. Thank you.