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JUNE 1998

Drawings of Large Parts with less Hassle

Ever get bogged down by too many dimensions in a drawing of a large part?  Here are some tricks that may help.

- Preview:  Drawings of large parts can quickly become a rats nest of dimensions, making it difficult to see new dimensions (or other items) just shown.  Use the PREVIEW option in the Detail : Show/Erase  Dialog box.  Preview allows you to see the dimensions (or other items) just shown in Cyan, then you can choose to keep All, Some, or None.

- Simultaneous Creation:  At the beginning of part creation, if you know the part will require a drawing, start the drawing early.  Begin the part, construct the first few features, then create the drawing and show the first views.  Show dimensions for the first features, then go back to the part to construct more.  Go back and forth from the part to the drawing showing the appropriate dimensions and creating the appropriate views as you go.  This will make it easier to know the features for Showing dimensions.

- Selection:  Use Select by Menu to select the features you wish to show dimensions.  It is sometimes easier to select this way than by Query Select when the part gets large.

- Dimensioning Schemes:  The above simultaneous creation of the drawing with the part will also help in getting the dimensioning schemes right as you go.  It is easier to redefine a dimensioning scheme soon after the construction a feature, than later when you may have to wait for a long regeneration.

- Layers:  Another help for avoiding the clutter of too many dimensions is to use layers.  Using the above technique of simultaneous construction, put the dimensions from the first set of features on a layer using  Layer : Drawing : (Create a layer) then  Set Items : 2D Items.  The layer can be named anything like DIMS_1 for instance, because the layer will be deleted when the drawing is complete.  By blanking this (and other layers to follow) when you Show Dims for future dimensions, the dimensions on these layers will not get in the way of seeing and determining which dimensions you wish to keep.  Unblank the layer to move the dimensions appropriately, then put the next set of dims on the same or another layer.  This will take a lot of frustration out of creating drawings of large or complicated parts.

Good luck with all your Pro/E creations!

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