I use it all the time. I even put it at the top of my menus to readily access it.
Measure is very useful to verify the part thicknesses, or just everything. I find that I like to make sure that the parts are as I intended - say if I need a hole a certain size, or anything that interacts with the part - I want to readily know. It is much easier to interrogate the model by measuring it than by drilling down somewhere to the sketch. But I put the measure icon in many readily available places in my customization, so I am very happy with how easy it is to use.
(p.s. Still distracted about how to prevent the midpoint from flaring up everywhere.)
Thank you for your answer Jerry!
Do you feel the need of having the Measure Tool available while you are executing a command? If yes, can you share some scenarios where it will be useful to you?
I would have to think too hard on how I actually use it. But I don't think it is ever so urgent to measure that I would not be happy to just get out of whatever I was doing to r-click on the feature. I probably would not need to Measure unless it was for some larger purpose, like perhaps needing to look at a table of drill sizes, for example. Needing to stop in the middle of a command immediately does not seem like something that would be so urgent.
(now, if I could prevent the midpoint of a line from snapping, then I'd have something.)
I also use it all the time. There isn't an hour that goes by that I don't have the measure tool out at some point.
It would be very useful to be able to use it during any command but the most annoying time I have to realise I can't use it is during Hole Wizard and during sheet metal construction. The only time I know I can use it is while sketching but that's usually where it's most useful. I never use external references while sketching becasuse I feel they hinder the design later and the measure tool is just Handy in almost any Situation. Much faster than creating a Dimension in Sketch, as you'd then Need to delete that afterwards if you weren't going to use it.
The most useful time to use the measure tool I can think of is when I'm working on one Part and taking measurements from another. Here is an example where I have the file I'm working on on my left Monitor and the one I'm measureing on the right:
as you see I have the measurement tool in the middle of both of my Screens for easy Access.
This brings up another improvement I can think of and that is that you can't measure two open files simultaniously. In the example above if I opened measure in the left part and wanted to measure in the right, I'd have to deselct the tool in the left, click on the right and re-open it by clicking on the box once I'd selected the file I wanted to work on.
I also use Measure all the time. And I really imagine anybody doing serious work, who does not use it very frequently.
I never thought of using it executing a command, but I believe I would use it if it was available. Eg. making a Boss-Extrude while editing a part in an assembly. For various reasons I sometimes dont want external references and I want to extrude up to somewhere near (or a distance from) an other assembly item. In such a case I measure the distance first, memorize it and make my extrude. It would be nice to do this in one go.
I use the measure tool so much, that I run into a real annoying behaviour. I measure something in an assembly, and while the measure dialog is open I change window to a part already open, and the measure window stays put in a grayed out state. I then have to close and reopen it so measure again. It would be way better if the dialog stayed with the window like f.eks. the Exit Isolate dialog.
Being able to have the first selection in the tool determine which part we are measuring would be very helpful. I've noticed the same scenario as Mark where the measure tool can become quite annoying when I have multiple files open.
Personally I use a lot of shortcuts rather than moving the mouse, it would be really useful if after the measure tool becomes inactive and says: "click to measure" the command to open the measure tool should activate it, the same as clicking on it. Currently it closes the tool, which it makes more sense to just use escape for.
In terms of how I use the measure tool: most common would likely be comparing to a similar part when I am designing or modifying a separate one. So a lot of switching back and forth with measuring in both parts. It would be useful if when switching to a new part the measure tool kept the display of what was last measured or maybe a history option?
I will also use the measure tool when taking a referencing feature and changing it to a defined dimension. Typically cuts, extrudes, bosses etc that are up to next or up to surface constrained. During these edits it would be useful to be able to measure within the command. Currently we have to measure, memorize (since the measure tool can't be left open while editing) and then edit.
Other uses for measuring are checking thicknesses and clearances, distances between parts in assemblies. Can't say I ever really use measure in drawings.
I use measuring tool all the time, I use it in both parts and assemblies. With parts it's usually to verify feature placements or verify part dimensions. In assemblies, since I mainly deal with system design, I use it to verify distance between two components or again to measure features on individual parts in the assembly.
The one command that I execute quite a bit and I wish I could use the measuring tool would be mates. Since a lot of the mates I need to use are offsets I'll usually make 2 of my 3 mates then close mate command us the measuring tool for spacing then open mates back up and set my last offset mate.
Nimisha Nath wrote:
Do you use the Measure Tool in SOLIDWORKS? Yes, often enough that I have Mouse Gestures for it when working in Parts and Assemblies.
Can you please share some information on few queries below:
- How and when do you usually use the Measure Tool? To measure stuff. I know that's a simplistic answer, but I can't think of a better one.
- What is the most common scenario to use the Measure Tool? Measuring between components in Assemblies is probably the most common for me.
- Would you prefer to use the Measure Tool while executing a command?
- If yes:
- Please share few cases when you felt the need to launch the Measure Tool in the middle of a command execution
- Would you use it in Parts/Assemblies/Drawings? I can see times when it would be helpful to use it when in an active sketch (in Parts or Assemblies), and also while the Mate command is active, but it's not a big deal to me.
- What do you do with the copied dimensions/values from the Measure Tool? I rarely use those.
Please feel free to share any more information about the usage of Measure Tool. My biggest frustration with it is the way the Units settings seem to change on their own. I'd like them to always show inches, with four decimals, but they frequently change. I've never taken the time to investigate, but I assume it's linked to the document templates. I'd prefer that setting to be independent of the document settings, and instead remain at last used unless manually changed.
If I think of anything else I'll post again.
I use it hourly at least. I only wish "maximum distance" worked correctly. It does not work if you measure from a flat to the top of an arc...like a tombstone. It only give you the minimum distance in this case. I do like the fact that you can use it while in sketcher mode.
Here's an example of the tombstone.
meas.JPG 80.2 KB
I use the measure tool frequently for irregular cylindrical positions.
That being said about 90% of my measure needs are met by utilizing the dimension dialog at the bottom of my screen. See screenshot below.
This works well for diameter measurements.as well, and since I have dual units set up I get both imperial and metric numbers for what I am looking at.
I don't think it's exactly what you're looking for but if you click on the face of the flat then the center point of the arc edge you can get that measurement.
It would be nice if you could just click the face then hold shift and click the arc face like you can when you dimension in sketch.
You wouldn't have to be so precise in picking the arc edge center point.
I said I'd post again if I remembered something else. I use it frequently in Assemblies when I'm going to have hardware. I'll place the washers and nuts first, then use the Measure Tool to determine what length bolt I need.
I use the measure tool every model, every day, at least 3 times an hour. E
- I have a short-cut key for it, Q Because I use it to verify A LOT.
- Dual dimensions, all the way out to 8 decimal places as we often have things come in from DXF. DXF add or remove extra length at random occassions. It's always DXF's that cause the problem though. We've proved it (with a ORCAD, ACAD, and a bunch of other Softwares).
- Exactly as Glen Wrote above is another way I use the tool - almost always!
- I use it to verify concentricity a lot.
- I use it for verify tolerances with the minimum selection.
- Measure tool has one setback. It doesn't always select the closest or minimum location on round objects (whether full circles or not). It gets confused some times.