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The modeling and simulation of flexible bodies within a multibody dynamic system is an important capability that enables users to obtain more accurate results from their simulations. RecurDyn offers two methods to do this: Reduced Flex (RFlex) and Full Flex (FFlex). RFlex can quickly simulate models where there are well-defined attachment points where the other bodies connect to the flexible body, where there is no contact with the flexible body, and where deformation is small and within the linear range. FFlex, on the other hand, can handle rolling and sliding contact with the flexible body, as well as large deformations of the flexible body which exhibit nonlinear behavior.

Once a flexible part has been simulated during a single work cycle, the user can easily predict the lifetime of that part using RecurDyn/Durability. This fully-integrated RecurDyn module seamlessly transfers dynamic analysis results into a fatigue analysis, allowing the user to choose from dozens of fatigue models most commonly used in industry to predict fatigue life. Also included is a fatigue material library containing 180 common materials based on the SAE J1099 technical report.

The example used in this tutorial will be the connecting rod in a four-cylinder engine. This component, for obvious reasons, goes through many cycles of loading from the combustion force produced in the piston chamber.