7 Replies Latest reply on Jul 13, 2012 9:28 AM by Daniel Savage

    Dimension Templates

    Daniel Savage

      Hi guys,

       

      We have been making a transition from AutoCAD to SolidWorks, and I have been trying to figure out a way to have dimensions as part of a drawing template I'm creating. In AutoCAD I was able to have dimensions not connected to any lines or geometry. This allowed me to import geometry then drag the prenamed dimensions to the points the dimensions needed to be connected to. This way I was able to save a significant amount of time. A design table then had all of the dimensions manually added to it. The geometry comes from MasterCAM  X6 in the form of a .DWG file and is inserted using the Insert/DWG feature in solidworks.

       

      Normally for this kind of thing I would just use a solid model, but I have not found a way of importing models from MasterCAM that allows for effective dimensioning. Any thoughts here?

       

      I've included a picture that outlines what the AutoCad template looks like. The table usually has several parts.

        • Re: Dimension Templates
          Don Eva

          So this is a family of parts where the shape is the same but the dimensions vary, correct?

           

          If so, then this is a typical use for SW configurations and design table.

           

          If you want your drawing correctly scaled for each part, then you would create a model using a typical set of dimensions.  Create a second configuration with different dimensions, then have SW automatically create a design table.    After that, you can just add new configurations directly to the design table.

          Create your drawing and pull in the design table, formatted to show as many or as few of the configurations you'd like.  You'll have to spend some time working with configurations and design tables ( & associated help & tutorials) to fully get the hang of how to properly display the desired configuration  so that the displayed shape matches the desired configuration.

           

          Alternatively, you can set it up as a standard tab drawing, where the drawing shows a typical shape and then displays the design table below.  You can even use a general table which doesn't link to a model configuration if you'd prefer.

            • Re: Dimension Templates
              Daniel Savage

              This is for a family of parts.

               

              What you have mentioned isn't something that I'm interested in doing. If I did all of my modeling in SolidWorks then creating a design table would be convinient. However, all the modeling is done in Mastercam. To remodel these parts given their geometry would be a waste of time. Essentially the customer sends us a surface model. We then tweak the model and create a mill program. The drawing I'm creating a template for would exist for a finish turn process that is done before the part is milled.

               

              In AutoCAD it took 15-20 minutes to create the drawing. I would like to do it in SolidWorks in about the same amount of time, and I'm exploring options to make this happen.     

            • Re: Dimension Templates
              Alin Vargatu

              There you go. Watch this video:

               

                • Re: Dimension Templates
                  Alin Vargatu

                  Try for yourself re-attaching the dimensions to various entities. It is possible that edges might be better than end points.

                    • Re: Dimension Templates
                      Daniel Savage

                      Thanks Alin,

                       

                      What you were doing is what I want, but I am trying to reference a DWG file or a Solidworks drawing that has 2D geometry, not a 3D model. In AutoCAD there was a reference DWG file option that linked an external drawing to the drawing you were currently in. I believe if I can do this I would be able to break that link and then insert another dwg file in its place. Then I would reattach the dimensions.

                       

                      I’ve experimented with the insert dwg/dxf feature and it works great for importing the drawing, but it doesn’t have a link to the original file option.

                       

                      I’ve also tried the dwg/dxf import wizard with no luck.