11 Replies Latest reply on Jan 28, 2016 12:09 PM by Jim Sculley

    I'm looking to make a "dynamic" block for insertion into a drawing environment.

    Travis Heinicke

      I'm looking to make a "dynamic" block for insertion into a drawing environment. This block would consist of an editable text note which would "ideally" stay centered inside of a polygon shape (to be determined). At one of the vertices of the polygon, I'd like to attach a leader with an insertion point at the end. This way, when I insert the block, I can change the "tag" letter, and rotate the polygon and leader around the note to a specified degree. Does anyone have a similar block or know how I would go about creating one? See picture for example. Thank you in advance.

       

      note.png

        • Re: I'm looking to make a "dynamic" block for insertion into a drawing environment.
          Anna Wood

          Why does it need to be a block and not a note with a hexagon border and leader?

            • Re: I'm looking to make a "dynamic" block for insertion into a drawing environment.
              Travis Heinicke

              We design pressure vessels. In our views, these notes will indicate nozzles that are part of our vessel assemblies. In a large vessel, we can have upwards of 20 of various nozzles. We show them in several views, but one in particular shows the "right" side view of the vessel, and the angular dimension(s) as they relate to the nozzle. I need the leader to maintain the same angle as these centerlines, for the sake of our dimension/fabrication procedures. A block like I outlined above would require a lot less manipulation. In AutoCAD, I created a Dynamic block with an note. The hexagon and associated leader were able to be rotated to a specified angle without rotating the text. The text was able to be changed via the annotation editor. I'm just looking for the right steps to recreate this block in Solidworks.

               

              Thanks.

                • Re: I'm looking to make a "dynamic" block for insertion into a drawing environment.
                  Roger Reed

                  Can you not just use a Balloon and change the outside shape to hexagon and text, or BOM or cut list in balloon Text ? or you may have to go into gtol file and create something

                  • Re: I'm looking to make a "dynamic" block for insertion into a drawing environment.
                    Glenn Schroeder

                    Travis Heinicke wrote:

                     

                    A block like I outlined above would require a lot less manipulation.

                     

                    Are you sure about that?  I rarely use blocks, but I didn't see anything in your explanation that you couldn't easily do with a Note or Balloon.  (The screenshot below is a Balloon.  I tried a Note also, but the text wasn't centered in the hexagon.)  You could create one with the properties you need, copy and paste, then change the text and leader position, angle, etc..  Repeat as many times as needed.  You could even save it as a Style in your document template so you wouldn't need to re-create it for each new drawing.

                     

                      • Re: I'm looking to make a "dynamic" block for insertion into a drawing environment.
                        Travis Heinicke

                        I didn't want to get into creating balloon styles, or changing too many properties, considering I have 3 new draftsman in my department, all of which are very "green" in Solidworks. We are also creating a bill of material, which will call out our parts in our assemblies. That means we will have several different balloon style callouts, and I wanted to differentiate them and not have the issue with one of my guys changing their balloon styles (universally). There will be a completely different table showing the nozzle schedule these block notes will be a part of. We typically use these to dimension to (in AutoCAD). Is it safe to assume that Solidworks doesn't have the capacity to do dynamic blocks? We use ordinate dimensions, so these notes need to "lock" onto elements and not just float in space. Not sure if it's doable, just wondering what the best route would be.

                          • Re: I'm looking to make a "dynamic" block for insertion into a drawing environment.
                            Richard Wehmeyer

                            You could explode each block after inserting. This would allow it to be changed for each one.

                             

                            I think you are trying to do something very complicated for which there is a much easier route (baloons).  Even a green SW student would have learned how to use baloons on their first drawing.  Simply changing it from round to hex is trivial.  What you are doing would require as much setup (if not more) as a style addition and even more steps after placement.  Secondly if you use the BOM for nozzle schedule the baloons will autopopulate with the correct number.  Just my $.02

                              • Re: I'm looking to make a "dynamic" block for insertion into a drawing environment.
                                Travis Heinicke

                                I don't feel that creating a dynamic block, with 2 action constraints...is all that complicated. I literally created one in AutoCAD in 5 minutes. If it's outside the wheelhouse of Solidwork's ability, then so be it, I'll go the route of balloon manipulation. But, so we are clear, these "balloons" aren't associated with the bill of material. They are for a nozzle schedule (per ASME pressure vessel code) and will not populate on their own based on BOM insertion. Thanks for the answer.

                                  • Re: I'm looking to make a "dynamic" block for insertion into a drawing environment.
                                    Glenn Schroeder

                                    Travis Heinicke wrote:

                                     

                                    I don't feel that creating a dynamic block, with 2 action constraints...is all that complicated. I literally created one in AutoCAD in 5 minutes. If it's outside the wheelhouse of Solidwork's ability, then so be it, I'll go the route of balloon manipulation. But, so we are clear, these "balloons" aren't associated with the bill of material. They are for a nozzle schedule (per ASME pressure vessel code) and will not populate on their own based on BOM insertion. Thanks for the answer.

                                    Balloons don't need to be associated with a BOM.  You can set them to display "Text" and enter whatever value you want.  That's what I had done for the screenshot above.

                                    • Re: I'm looking to make a "dynamic" block for insertion into a drawing environment.
                                      Richard Wehmeyer

                                      We do ASMP BPVC VIII-1 and VIII-2 here as well.  In our early drawing development we tried creating parts and used the BOM (in one assmenbly) for nozzle schedule with mixed results.  Now we just do hex text baloons.

                                       

                                      Since you are determined to have a dynamic block I would say that the closest you will be able to get to that is to explode your blocks after placement and change the text.  As far as I know Solidworks does not support dynamic blocks.  And change to one will change all of them.

                                       

                                      A second approach would be to add balloon block 1-n to your drawing template so that all a user would have to do is drop the appropriate block into the drawing and edit the leader angle.

                                       

                                      Edit: meant to say block

                                        • Re: I'm looking to make a "dynamic" block for insertion into a drawing environment.
                                          Travis Heinicke

                                          It seems like what I want is a dead end approach. I'm just going to create a note that can be copied inside of the template. Thanks for your help!

                                            • Re: I'm looking to make a "dynamic" block for insertion into a drawing environment.
                                              Jim Sculley

                                              Travis:

                                              You can get close to what you want but not exactly what you want.

                                               

                                              In a drawing, sketch your hexagon and leader line and place your note inside it.  Set the note's horizontal text alignment to 'Center'.  Select all the geometry and then select Tools...Block...Make.  Be sure to move the insertion point to the end of your leader.  After you've made the block, you need to edit it.  In editing mode, select the note and in the property manager you will see the 'Block Attribute' section.  Give the note and attribute name (such as Nozzle ID) and then exit the block.  Now when you select the block, the Attributes button will be enabled in the Property Manager and you can enter the nozzle ID.  Unfortunately, when you rotate the block, the text will rotate as well.  Also, you cannot dynamically change the leader length.  There is an enhancement SPR (558024) requesting the ability to drive dimensions via attribute values. 

                                               

                                              But at least you will have a block with a changeable attribute.