DriveWorks makes enhancements to the software every year, and this past year was no different. In this blog post, we will cover the top five design automation improvements. These improvements cover an array of things such as time-saving changes, new features to promote ease of use, completely new ways to automate SOLIDWORKS and some new feedback tools.
Reset Model Insight
Let’s begin with the debugging tools as we focus on model insight. When generating models interactively as we are debugging, sometimes you might want to rerun model insight as you make rule changes. Or maybe you simply skipped across what you were initially looking for by accident. Previously, you would have to close model insight and re-open it all over again. Now there is a Reset button, saving you from having to close and re-open it again.
Dialogue Options for Model Insight Overwrite Files
As you go through the process restarting model insight, you will end up needing to recreate the same files again and again. Usually what will happen is you will get a dialogue asking if you would like to overwrite a file (which was previously generated through debugging). This means if you are generating a dozen files through this process, you would need to click yes or so a dozen times. Luckily, we now have a “Yes to All” and “No to All” option.
You have been able to type custom filters into the model rules for some time now, however, it became common to keep using the same filters again and again. When I use filters I’m usually looking to filter by dimension or file name types. If you right-click on your filter field you will now see “Project Filters” and “Personal Filters.” Project filters will have the most common filters, whereas the personal ones are where you will want to add your own custom filters.
This is definitely a personal favorite of mine. One of the problems I’ve run into with capturing models and then having to navigate around their rules is losing my frame of reference. I simply no longer remember what I am looking at when all I’m faced with is a series of part numbers. If only there was a way to show us what we are looking at. Well, this is where component previews come in! In the lower-left of the model rules window, you will now see a preview of the model that also includes some of the metadata and SOLIDWORKS custom property data about it as well.
New Generation Tasks
Generation tasks are some of the most powerful functions you can use in DriveWorks so it’s especially exciting to see new ones making it into the software. Since there are so many new ones, I’m just going to mention them all here in no particular order of importance, complete with links to the DriveWorks help file on each one of them. As you will notice, most of these additions are accessible from the SOLIDWORKS PowerPack so please be sure to install that.
● Create Coordinate System Mate – makes a coincident or axis-aligned mate in an assembly between two coordinate systems.
● Create General Table – creates a new table on a drawing.
● Export BOM (SOLIDWORKS PowerPack) – exports a SOLIDWORKS assembly as a BOM to a text file. This has existed for some time now, but we now gain the ability to specify the BOM type on export.
● Export Drawing Table (SOLIDWORKS PowerPack) – allows you to export a drawing table as a text document. Currently, support table types include: General, Hole, Bill of Materials, Revision and Weldment Cut List.
● Delete Annotation from Drawing (SOLIDWORKS PowerPack) – permits deletion of an annotation from a given view or sheet in a drawing. To figure out the name of the annotation you wish to delete, simply try to capture it in SOLIDWORKS and look at the dimension address in the DriveWorks task pane.
The following two will prove helpful to prepare your models for 3D printing. These tasks can essentially be used to join all the parts in an assembly together, and then hollow it out so that we are not 3D printing the whole thing as one big solid:
There you have it. The top five design automation improvements for DriveWorks. For more information on SOLIDWORKS or if you have any questions, contact us at Hawk Ridge Systems today. Thanks for reading!