SOLIDWORKS MBD: Adding Balloons to an Exploded View

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SOLIDWORKS MBD is a wonderful tool for creating electronic representations of your designs that can be shared with fabricators and customers. You can create multiple 3D views with Geometric Dimensioning and Tolerancing (GD&T), datums, as well as customize your 3D PDF to include custom properties and bill of materials(BOMS). In many cases it can replace traditional drawings! Which are limited to two dimensional views of the model or assembly. Today I want to show you how to add balloon annotations […]

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How to Replace and Resequence Balloons in SolidWorks

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A lot of projects will go through revisions. When revisions occur, it can be a task to change out balloons in drawings.  In 2013, SolidWorks added a couple of buttons to make this easier.  When you add more components to your assembly, the drawing usually updates to show the new parts. You can use the Balloon feature to add more ballons. This will create them out of order.  If you right click on the drawing view and go to Auto […]

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SOLIDWORKS 2012 Enhancement – Magnetic Lines and Balloons

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Magnetic Lines allow you to automatically and precisely arrange balloons on a drawing. Balloons will snap to Magnetic Lines and can be moved from one Magnetic Line to another. Benefits: Create and place balloons precisely where they need to go, while spending less time detailing and aligning your drawings.

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Keep Balloon Numbering Consistent

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Recently, I received a call from a customer in Columbus, OH, that designs and manufactures a variety of sheetmetal components for shelving and fixtures.  As you can imagine, a complex shelving design may require several drawing sheets to adequately describe the product to the shop floor.  The Shop wanted the Engineer to maintain balloon part numbering from the first drawing sheet to the last drawing sheet.  Personally, I don’t blame the Shop for wanting their information as clean and concise […]

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Enterprise Users Want Their Stable Item Numbers

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I awoke this morning to an angry mob at my front door. Millions of SOLIDWORKS Enterprise PDM users with pitchforks and torches. Apparently they had read yesterday’s blog where I had given the SOLIDWORKS nation the information they have been yearning for on keeping stable balloon numbers for the components in their assemblies. [I suppose it is logical. This group of users is typically very interested in sharing BOM information with other systems -yet Enterprise’s calculated BOM doesn’t have balloon […]

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Stable Balloon Numbers

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In the beginning (1995) Jon created SOLIDWORKS that had the ability to assign balloon [item] numbers to parts…and these numbers could be added to the bill of material. And Jon saw that it was good. The problem was that if you changed the order of your parts in the assemblies the balloon numbers changed. This wasn’t terrible because the drawings and BOM always stayed up to date, but a little bit bad because if you passed your BOM information to […]

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