i never turn on hidden lines because it makes a mess. is there a way to just show minimal/basic hidden lines. I would take forever to turn off the ones you don't want.
Suppress the features that created the edges you don't want to show in a configuration? Other than that, did you know you can activate the "Hide Edges" command and use a "Click and Drag" box to select edges to hide? It can be a lot faster than clicking on edges to select them.
There is only one option, on or off - through the whole of the drawing view.
I get what you mean though, a simplified hidden line display. How would SW discern the important hidden lines over the not important?
updated: Or, Glenn's option to achieve what you want.
The only other way is "Manually" selecting the hidden lines you want to show and convert those lines to a sketch line with the Convert Entities feature and then change the line format from a solid line to a construction line...
Did you know that you can turn on hidden lines for individual features of your part inside your drawing (edit:) on a view by view basis?
Attached is a video showing how to do this:
Retrieving data ...