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How do I know my sketch is definitive ?


Re: How do I know my sketch is definitive ?

Ok, my rant continues

In essence, I was objecting to the point of view that SW is inferior because it allows you to leave sketch geometry "unconstrained".  Creo does the same thing by creating the "weak" dimensions and constraints.

So, I want to be on the record and state that I like the Creo sketcher.  If you learn it, you can create robust designs.

But if you don't, then the poor soul that needs to change your design in the future is in a world of hurt.

Creo allows new users to create models that will be very hard to maintain.

(I know that you can implement modelcheck to refuse models with sketches that contain "weak" dimensions).

So I like the Solidworks sketcher more than the Creo sketcher.

Solidworks gives you the blue/black coloring method that I think is just plain better.  It is more intuitive to grasp.

User training is easier: you tell your users that if they see anything blue, then they should re-examine their sketch, and impose dimensions and constraints that remove the blue entities.

Suppose a brand new user adds a dimension to their sketch and a line turns from blue to black.

This is feedback that automatically leads the user on the path to the correct conclusion that "black = constrained" and "blue = free".

In the end, it still requires proper training and experience to appreciate that black is better.


Does anyone actually use the "entity lock" feature?  To me, this is an example of resources taken away from fixing what is really broken in the software.


The option sketcher_disp_weak_dimensions no is a major mistake that can lead to a company having their CAD database full of confusing designs.  What on earth is the point of this option - it certainly does nothing to ensure design intent?

Re: How do I know my sketch is definitive ?

One of the best I've seen is for each degree of freedom to be displayed - this was in Mechanical Advantage by Cognition. It showed arrows aligned to available directions, or X-Y in the absence of any constraint. It gave an exact indication of the missing constraint.

It looks like it may have been bought by Enventive - the interface looks very similar. Enventive Software - Four-Bar Linkage Demo - YouTube You can see the 4-way arrows pop up.  see page 23 for Cognition.

It looks like Cognition Corp has moved to supporting medical compliance information.

Re: How do I know my sketch is definitive ?

‌I'm wasn't taking issue with anything you were saying I was just referring to to some options you might find useful, if you didn't already know about them.

I can't write on the SW features as my exposure to it has only been trial versions. You commented that SW doesn't bother the user with the weak dimensions and constraints that are created behind the scenes. This can be done by turning the weak dimensions off so you only see the geometry and strong dimensions and the constraints if that's all you want to see. It's use is about cleaning up the display while defining constraints and dimensions, like turning the display of datums or annotations off, not design intent. I can't say whether or not I'd like, not like, or be indifferent to color coding since I haven't used a CAD program that uses it in the manner you describe. I probably wouldn't pay much attention to it as I've gotten use to ProE and Creo removing weak dimensions as strong ones are created and leaving weak ones on entities that require further constraint using constraints or dimensions.

Since missing constraints or undesirable dimensions can cause a sketch to behave in a manner you don't want you can use an entity lock to temporarily lock an entity and see how the sketch behaves as you drag sketch geometry. It may help in determining how you may want to dimension something.

Re: How do I know my sketch is definitive ?

Understood.  I was aware of the entity-lock function, but I forgot about the option about showing weak dimensions in the sketcher.

I feel like this one should only be a toggle button - like the "highlight overlapping segments" in the Inspect group of the sketcher ribbon.

At least it's a good thing that it is on by default.

Re: How do I know my sketch is definitive ?

Thank you very much everybody

I had the same idea, it had to be a toggle botton, anyway, could someone kindly tell me how I hide the weak dimensions?

Re: How do I know my sketch is definitive ?


Can you explain the difference in "strong" and "lock" as it pertains to dimensions?  I've never fully understood the difference.



Re: How do I know my sketch is definitive ?

You shouldn't

But if you insist, it is:

File->Options->Configuration Editor->Add->Type in "sketcher_disp_weak_dimensions" for option name; change value to "no"->OK

Re: How do I know my sketch is definitive ?

Weak - Dimensions automatically created by intent manager.  They will automatically be deleted if another dimension conflicts with them (without prompting the user.)

Strong - A dimension explicitly created by the user, or a weak dimension made strong by the user.  They will not automatically be deleted if another dimension conflicts.  (The conflict manager will open instead.)  A strong dimension's value can still be changed by dragging the sketch entities.

Lock - A dimension this is both strong and will not change value by dragging.  New values can still be manually entered.

Re: How do I know my sketch is definitive ?

You can also toggle it under the Sketcher options of the options dialog. It might be easier to toggle it on and off there rather than trying to remember the config option. Selecting it there changes the config option. If you hover the cursor over the selection it will show the config option it is controlling. It's actually setup to be a toggle they just never created a toggle icon for it, the other options have them.

Re: How do I know my sketch is definitive ?

Definitely easier.  Good to know.