Sunteți pe pagina 1din 4

Design Assistant

Page 1 of 4

Widom Associates
Ct. Mass. Pa. N.J. New York Authorized Autodesk System Integrator

Inventor Design Assistant


Managing Inventor Files with the Design Assistant First and foremost The key to renaming, moving or copying files using Inventor's Design Assistant is working in the top-most file of all the references. Typically, this will be an .idw file, such as the drawing for the main assembly. This is because an .idw cannot be referenced by another Inventor file. (See Figure 1.) Figure 1: Work in the top-most file only

The example we will look at involved creating a copy of an Assembly (XYY.iam), one of its Parts (ABC.ipt) and all the associated files for the Part and Assembly. This is likely the worst-case scenario that you could run into. The methodology we will examine can be applied to simpler cases, such as copying a part and its associated drawing file. Although this is a relatively simple assembly, the methodology for larger assemblies is the same. (See Figure 2.) Figure 2: File structure of an existing project

The methodology Step 1 Create a project (XYZ) for the new assembly and set it active (if needed). Make sure that all paths from the existing project (XYY) are listed in either the Workgroup or Library areas of the new project for file resolution. (See Figure 3.) Figure 3: Create a new project

http://www.widom-assoc.com/html/design_assistant.html

27/01/2011

Design Assistant

Page 2 of 4

Note: In this example, we will create a completely new project for our new assembly. Most of the time you will be working with files in an existing project, and can skip this step altogether. Step 2 Copy the top-most file (XYY.idw) into the new project's Workspace using Windows Explorer. Right-click on the copied file and select Properties from the bottom of the cursor menu. Change the name of the file in the General tab, then select the iProperties tab and change the Part Number in the Project tab (XYZ.idw). Next, open the file in Inventor to verify file resolution, save the changes and close the file. Step 3 Open the file (XYZ.idw) in the Design Assistant. Select the Manage button in the left-hand pane. Highlight the first referenced file you want to copy (XYY.iam). 1. In the border between the top and bottom panes, check all files of type and the Search Subfolder (if needed) check boxes and select Find Files to find all files that reference the highlighted file. 2. On the highlighted file in the top pane, set the cells in the relevant columns as below: Action=Copy; File Location=Workspace; Name={New Name} (XYZ.iam) (See Figure 4.) Figure 4: Preparing to Copy the assembly file

Note: You may have noticed that in our example the .idw references not only the .iam, but also an .ipn referencing the same .iam. Because of this, the .iam shows in the top pane in two places and identifies the change in both places. The .ipn has recorded the change to the .iam file it references. If the .ipn was not referenced by the .idw, it would have shown up in the bottom pane when we did the Find Files. Any files in the bottom pane that we want to Copy or Update, must be adjusted manually. Similarly, if we want to Copy a file in the top pane, we must adjust it manually. 3. To update a file with changes to a file that it references, select its Action column cell and pick Update. To copy a file and maintain its reference to the newly copied file, adjust the columns like those identified in Step 2. If you do not Update or Copy all the referenced files at this time, they will lose their reference to the newly copied file and you will most likely have to do a Replace using the Design Assistant after the fact. However, in some cases it will not be possible to use Replace to correct such an oversight, so consider those ramifications before moving on to Step 4. Notice we are intentionally not doing an Update on XYY.idw. This is because we want to break the link with the original files at this point. (See Figure 5.) Figure 5: Copying files referencing the assembly

http://www.widom-assoc.com/html/design_assistant.html

27/01/2011

Design Assistant

Page 3 of 4

4. Save changes to the Open File (XYZ.idw) 5. As a check, re-select the newly copied file (XYZ.iam) and perform another Find Files to verify the correct files have been updated or copied. You may have to Clear the bottom pane before performing the Find Files search to get the proper results. (See Figure 6.) Figure 6: Verify changes with Find Files

Step 4 With the top-most file (XYZ.idw) still open in the Design Assistant, highlight the next referenced file that you want to copy. At this point, you also could close down the topmost file in Design Assistant and open up the changed files in Inventor to check their file resolution, but it is not necessary. If you do open them in Inventor, make sure you open them from the lowest level first and save the changes before closing them. 1. Repeat #1-#3 from Step 3 (See Figure 7.) Figure 7: Preparing to Copy another file

Note: In this case, we are copying an .ipt file (ABC.ipt) and its associated .idw file (ABC.idw), which was identified when we performed the Find Files. We are updating files in both the top and bottom panes this time. If there were also some higher-level files that had already been copied to the Workspace in the bottom pane, we would want to Update them with the changes to a file they are referencing. 2. Repeat #4 & #5 from Step 3. (See Figure 8.) Figure 8: Verify changes with Find Files

http://www.widom-assoc.com/html/design_assistant.html

27/01/2011

Design Assistant

Page 4 of 4

Step 5 Repeat Step 4 for as many referenced files as you need to copy. Step 6 If you have more than one file that qualifies as the top-most file, you can copy it into the new Workspace through Windows Explorer, rename it and use Replace to associate the new files to it.
Northport , New York 631-757-7035 www.widom-assoc.com
Visit us on Youtube www.youtube.com/user/widomtech

http://www.widom-assoc.com/html/design_assistant.html

27/01/2011