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How do I place hundreds of non-mated parts in an assembly in specified locations?

Question asked by Kirk Sorensen on Dec 23, 2011
Latest reply on Dec 27, 2011 by James Hutchins

I have a problem that seems simple but I have spent many unfruitful hours trying to find the answer and appeal for some help.


I need to place a large number of parts within an assembly yet they are not mated to one another.  Essentially the parts are each long extrusions of basic shapes (squares, hexagons, etc) in an array within a much larger cylinder.  Imagine stacked pipes--not exactly what I'm doing but a similar idea.  Rectangular arrays don't work because the outer cylinder bounds the feasible locations, and sometimes the parts are on a triangular pitch or a crisscross pitch, which isn't an option in SolidWorks.


I have a text file that has the x and y coordinates of every single part location.  I simply want to tell SolidWorks:


1.  Import a particular part into the assembly.


2.  Place it at the x and y and z=0 coordinate that you read from the text file.


3.  Repeat n times.


I've tried DriveWorksXPress and it's been fun and interesting but it doesn't seem to be able to do this either.


Any suggestions?