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Managing Large Assemblies and Large Assembly Drawings

carguy333
1-Newbie

Managing Large Assemblies and Large Assembly Drawings

Hello PTC Community,

First let me start off by saying thanks to anyone who has contributed to this site! This resource has been extremely helpful. I work for a small tech startup and our mechanical engineering staff is 3 people strong and resources are a premium. Not to mention we don't have the ability to purchase advanced packages like piping/cabling, mechanica, or windchill and we certainly don't have the funds to send our design staff to get training from PTC or one of it's affiliated training resource centers. Thus, most of us are self taught and this site is an immensely helpful tool.

I have two questions pertaining to large assemblies and large assembly drawings. I have made use of a lot of the tools on the modeling side in order to lighten up my top level assembly. I've used simplified reps, merged solids, and shrinkwraps in order to make my 3D models more manageable and this seems to have worked. However, these techniques do not translate when I move over to the drawing. Opening the drawing takes fair bit of time, ten minutes or more. Creating views is a pain staking task. By the time I create a view, orient it, select the rep, and align it, placing a sinlge view takes five or minutes. So here are my questions:

1. Are these load times and regenration times normal? Does anyone have some tips and tricks for managing large assemblies? What about tips for setting up my config.pro file. It feels like when I open the drawing it becomes extremely taxing on the system like it immediately grabs the master rep and it doesn't matter what's in session...

2. I have made use of the part flexibility function in several sub assemblies, mainly to handle wire assemblies since we do not have the cabling package. When I create a view in the drawing which highlights an area with the flexible assemblies they show up in their un-flexible state. I am not sure but I believe this happens as a result of my use of simplified reps. Can anyone shed some light on component flexibility and drawing view creation as well as drawing view creation with simplified reps?

I should point out I am running a 64-bit version of Pro Eningeer Wildfire 4.0 on a 64-bit Windows 7 machine with a 2.3GHz Intel Core i7, 16GB of ram and an NVIDIA GT650M graphics card w/1GB of dedicated ram. The files are all stored locally. And the license is on a server.

Any help would be much appreciated.

Thanks in advance,

Mike


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5 REPLIES 5
BillRyan
14-Alexandrite
(To:carguy333)

I think you answered your own question! It is possible your drawing is loading the master rep. Go to the file menu and find drawing models. In the menu, it should show all the reps being used by the drawing from your top level assembly. If the master rep is included in the list, then delete it. Try to only include reps in the drawing. Our startup for drawings includes a selection of a rep to prevent master rep from being included for large assemblies.

Bill,

Thanks for the reply. First, I want to make sure I am following your instructions properly. Here is the path I took:

File>Properties>Drawing Models>

I then have the following options:

-Add Model

-Del Model

-Set Model

-Remove Rep

-Set/Add Rep

-Replace

-Model Disp

If I select "-Remove Rep" then it gives me the option to remove the Master Rep. However, my understanding of the downstream affects of doing this in the drawing is a little foggy. If my repeat region is populated based on the master rep I assume I will break the connection and my repeat region will have to be reworked. I am okay with doing this but I just want to make sure I understand the repercussions. While I am on the topic is there a way to identify which rep the repeat region is pulling the data from?

Any suggestions for making large assembly drawings more manageable?

Thanks,

Mike

BillRyan
14-Alexandrite
(To:carguy333)

Those are the correct steps. If the drawing is using the Master Rep for a view I know it will not let you remove it.

It's hard to answer your question without knowing how large your assemblies are, what you are trying to show on the drawing and how the assembly structure is set up. Basically, is it an installation assembly which includes showing how to assemble one system onto reference back ground information, or are you creating an assembly drawing of how to put together the system?

Bill,

The drawing is actually a configuration drawing of the top level assembly. I have a top level assembly drawing which shows 5 different iterations of our new product line. This is controlled with a parent assembly which has five unique children. In the drawing I am trying to show the variations in the bill of materials and highlight the key differences in the systems by showing the same view of each system.

The top level assembly is comprised of PCBA's, manually routed wire harnesses, hardware which is repeated many times over, some flexible assemblies, a few mechanism constraints (which I am told are resource intensive), and a sub-assembly consisting of over 400 parts, which is repeated 42 to 84 times depending on the configuration.

I have taken advantage of the tools in the 3D model by creating simplified reps, merged solids, and shrinkwraps. In particular the sub-assembly which has 400 parts is reduced to 7 parts via a simplified rep and then turned into a merged solid.

Thanks,

Mike

BillRyan
14-Alexandrite
(To:carguy333)

MIke, I hope somebody else chimes in on this. We have our top level assembly sneak into an installation drawing every once in a while as the reference information, but our spec and best practice is to rename the structure so it matches the prefix of the drawing and then delete out unused objects.

You could also self diagnose by suppressing some items in the assembly and evaluate the result in the drawing. Time consuming, but would get an answer as to which object/s is causing issue.

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