11 Replies Latest reply on Nov 10, 2016 7:43 AM by Hiroto Natishumi

    What's your favorite markup tool for SolidWorks?

    Chris Cook

      We are trying to determine what tools our users find most useful to communicate changes, or create redline markups.  Does eDrawings give you everything you need? Are there markup types or annotations that are missing that would make it more userful?  Are there other markup applications you find easier to use or more feature rich that you prefer?  Are the any function, features or platforms that would be valuable?


      I appreciate any and all feedback.  I'm not fishing for anything specific.  I'm really just curous what is most useful to you that lets you get your job done in the easiest way possible.

        • Re: What's your favorite markup tool for SolidWorks?
          Glenn Schroeder

          I should probably encourage more of our clients to use eDrawings, but I usually just send them a pdf.  They generally print it out, mark it up with a pen or pencil, scan it, and e-mail it back.


          For internal projects I print it out, give it to the engineer in charge, he marks his changes, gives it back to me, and I proceed from there.


          Maybe we should try to move to more paperless, but this is working pretty well, and almost everyone here is late 40's or older so we're not quite as quick to embrace new things as some folks are (I don't even have a smart phone).

            • Re: What's your favorite markup tool for SolidWorks?
              Joe Kuzich

              We also print and hand mark up and scan.


              I have an issue with the term 'smart phone'.  If they are so smart why are they not more helpful when I am clearly having problems getting a desired result from them?!?  Or why is it when I use their GPS it works fine for the part of the route I know but gets stuck in some recalculating void when I actually need it?!?  Or why can I tap the screen over and over and it doesn't recognize my finger, but every once and while it can randomly dial someone from inside my pocket & make the call?!?


              Smart phone?  Maybe it should be called "aggravating & overly expensive phone that your wife and daughter will text you on while you're all in the same room!".


              Sorry, but I do feel a little better now. 

                • Re: What's your favorite markup tool for SolidWorks?
                  Chris Cook

                  Thanks for the feedback, both of you.  I agree that the "smartphone" is not the right platform for detailed markups of Engineering data.  It has a number of strikes against it, especially for those of us classified as "technology immigrants" who have embraced technology (sometimes relunctantly), but it didn't always exist in our world.  We approach it and react to it differently than those who were born with a touch screen in their face. 


                  We grew up with pencil and paper, which is comfortable and familiar.  The stylus has made numerous entrances and exits from the market over the years, but it never had the tactile feedback (resistance) that pens or pencils on paper have, so the level of control feels foreign to casual users.  Pure touch feels too much like pre-school finger painting, and isn't always practical in an Engineering and Manufacturing environment where Engineers and Designers often get their hands dirty.  The interfaces and applications in the professional space don't seem offer the kind of sophistication that we want from a professional engineering tool, at least not that I have seen.  Hopefully someone reading this forum will prove me wrong. 


                  The screen size also plays a negative role with smartphone use for serious drawing markups.  No matter how easy it is to zoom and pan, the fact that you have to zoom and pan can be a frustration.  Pixel density doesn't resolve this issue, it just makes the image you are panning and zooming look nicer.  I would bet that's why the first mobile version of eDrawings was for the iPad, not the iPhone.  The tablet form factor makes more sense for that application.

              • Re: What's your favorite markup tool for SolidWorks?
                William Elliott

                We use PDFs for mark-ups, the reader is free and it is user friendly.  Also you can create 2D or 3D.



                • Re: What's your favorite markup tool for SolidWorks?
                  Nick Tzallas

                  We hwould have no problem emracing the digital workflow for markup if the markups would work correctly and make the process easier.




                  1. edrawings has to be installed to make mark ups and save mark up files (.markup format)

                       Why? why in the world would you not make this also part of solidworks? why should i have to open a seprate application rather than do it right in solidworks.


                  2. you have to save a separate markup file and open it up in edrawings/solidworks to see the markups.

                       Im sure this could easily be made part of the feature tre like for example design tables. built into the file itself and not save separately. that way tha markups are carried through along with the files.


                  3. Ok, lets say the above will never happen and i am forced to continue to use the markups method as is via edrawings and separate file. Solidworks team , if you tout this as an amazing feature then you should probably double check to see if it works. What i mean is. if you save a markup file from e drawings and then open tha markup fil in solidworks , all the symbol/arrows/bubles/texts is there but it is all over the place hence rendering it unusable and forcing the user to open the SLDDRW + MARKUP files in edrawings. which also means you cannot work on the drawing to correct it at the same time.



                  I know, I am ranting and raving.

                  I have already raised ER's for all of these.


                  Short ansewer is I prefer the built in solidworks markup function but if the above were fixed I would "Love" rather than just "prefer"

                  • Re: What's your favorite markup tool for SolidWorks?
                    Deepak Gupta

                    I prefer edrawings because of various options like (one can rotate the model, take measurements, section views, can play animations, etc.) and best part is free viewer. I do sometimes have to use quick snapshot or PDFs.

                    • Re: What's your favorite markup tool for SolidWorks?
                      Bob Deschenes

                      It would be nice if it was in solidworks itself so that it stays with the original drawing.

                      • Re: What's your favorite markup tool for SolidWorks?
                        Nathan Rollins

                        Pro/E (used to?) have this functionality emebedded in it.  I ask "used to?" because I only used it a handful of times in 2001...?  It was pretty bad.  I don't even know if they still have it.  I guess I bring that up because it really does sound like a great feature to have in the native CAD (if it works, as Nick already mentioned) - but then if the trool is not significantly faster to enter the changes than just making the changes using the regular drawing tools, why not just make the changes and have a "track changes" functionality like Word?


                        I typically use either the print/pen/scan method for more indepth "official" drawing checks, or many times Snagit serves as a quick way to communicate changes needed.


                        My wife is a copy editor and uses InCopy for some clients and for others the markup tools available in Acrobat.  Maybe 10% of the time she receives hard copies and uses a pen and ships the markups back to the client.  Neither of these tools are free, but for on-screen, paperless editing, they seem to be the industry standard.  I wonder how they would work for SWX documents.



                        • Re: What's your favorite markup tool for SolidWorks?
                          Stephen Reed

                          We use Foxit Reader instead of Adobe Reader for pdf files.  It has pretty good markup capabilities and its free.



                          • Re: What's your favorite markup tool for SolidWorks?
                            Jim Steadman

                            Pliot Red pen.

                            Joe when your smart phone doesn't work find a kid that has your phone and have him show you how. Tha's what I do.

                            • Re: What's your favorite markup tool for SolidWorks?
                              Hiroto Natishumi

                              Good day Chris,


                              There is a new app for SolidWorks 2016 / 2017 that let's you do red-line markups using digital ink like you're using a real pen, but it all stays inside SolidWorks. It's called InfinityDRAW, there's a video here: InfinityDRAW + SOLIDWORKS 2017 PDM - YouTube