4 Replies Latest reply on Mar 1, 2019 5:22 PM by Tom Gagnon

    Auto Balloon and magnetic lines, improvement ideas

    Tom Gagnon

      I have an idea for improvement, but it deserves a question first.


      I just reviewed options in Auto Balloon tool. I almost always use the Layout Balloons to Square option, with [√] Insert magnetic line(s). If the layout of square magnetic lines around an isometric view need rearranged, it ends up criss-crossing the Auto Balloon leaders, either leaving it very confusing to read, or very tedious to rearrange the balloons clearly. Magnetic lines and Align > Space Evenly ___ tools do help, but I'd prefer a planned beginning to achieve desired results very quickly.


      So, before I post an idea to allow Auto Balloon to add an option to attach to existing magnetic lines..

      Is there a way to make Auto Balloon anchor to existing magnetic lines?


      Alternatively, how do you clean up Auto Balloons to avoid overlaps and such, given current SWx capabilities? Maybe I'm missing something that would be very helpful.

        • Re: Auto Balloon onto existing magnetic lines?
          Tom Gagnon

          Bump, while I'm sharing another idea about magnetic lines. As cool as they are, they sure could be better. Any suggestion here would not have to be default behavior if enabled by an Option.


          I'd REALLY like to be able to Scale Entities on magnetic lines. In that command, selecting the lines produces no selections for the tool to use.


          I'd love to be able to select one end of a magnetic line, hold the ALT key, and drag both ends symmetrically with the center point in place. This would work easily if I could only attach a Point sketch entity to the line's midpoint with a relation, then Fix that point in place.


          Taking this a step further, I'd like to be able to similarly resize all four magnetic lines around my view in the same manner. I had to remove about 60% of the balloons from autoballoon tool. It should be able to reposition nicely without individual attention to each end of each magnetic line, and while at it, it should be able to bunch up the remaining balloons on it without overlap, so that two adjacent ones 'bump' their 'cellpadding', to borrow a table/spreadsheet term, into the next one and pick it up to carry reasonable spacing between them.

          Yeah, add cellpadding option to balloons to prevent overlapping, like they all have an invisible bubble around the balloon that bumps into other bubbles and even 'sticks' to the next one if adjacent.


          Re-bump a related old topic I began: Magnetic Line: Notes or only balloons? They would be much more useful if options would allow various entities to be controlled and managed by these invisible tools.


          I'd like to be able to add relations to magnetic lines. They could always be removed if no longer applicable.


          Ramble, ramble. I have a lot of feedback to suggest here and won't stay strictly on topic.

          I'd like an option in autoballoon to omit balloons for hidden rows in the BOM table. If I delete those rows instead, I think it may omit those items from autoballoon.


          I'd like to be able to select an array of existing balloons and magnetic lines, created by autoballoon, and re-run the autoballoon tool (or another new one) to reposition what I've already got there into a newly composed arrangement. It did it once, now do it again with just these items and don't add any new ones.


          Pick one. Some of these implemented successfully would obviate the need for others. I can only imagine the difficulty of anyone using touch controls with this. Ugh.


          As it is, I feel that there is a lot of room for improvement in magnetic lines, particularly in large assemblies. Every provided example I see has bout a dozen components at most. Try 200 instead and make that work well.

          • Re: Auto Balloon and magnetic lines, improvement ideas
            Tom Gagnon


            At least some of my ideas are already present. If autoballoons are already present, hitting it again gets this dialog. I'll have to try that out.

              • Re: Auto Balloon and magnetic lines, improvement ideas
                Tom Gagnon

                I had high hopes for this one. Not so much after trying it.

                After deleting 80% of the balloons:

                (*) Resequence appears to do nothing. I believe it may be to renumber what is present. Certainly nothing moves.

                (*) Replace, as far as I can tell, destroys the ones that are there and effectively starts over. Deleted ones returned.


                Note this version of AutoBalloon tool is only available where autoballoons already exist, AND you have selected the view, in the same manner as selecting the view before applying autoballoon the first time.


                This accomplished nothing that I wanted.