Assembly Layout Sketch

You can design an assembly from the top-down using layout sketches. You can construct one or more sketches showing where each assembly component belongs. Then, you can create and modify the design before you create any parts. In addition, you can use the layout sketch to make changes in the assembly at any time.

The major advantage of designing an assembly using a layout sketch is that if you change the layout sketch, the assembly and its parts are automatically updated. You can make changes quickly, and in one place.

To use an assembly layout sketch, do the following:

  • Create a layout sketch in the assembly in which various sketch entities represent parts in the assembly. Indicate a tentative location for each component, capturing the overall design intent.
  • Reference the geometry in the layout sketch when you create each component. Use the layout sketch to define the component size, shape, and location within the assembly; check that each part references the layout sketch.

Creating a Layout-based Assembly Design

In layout-based assembly design, you can switch back and forth between top-down and bottom-up design methods. You can create, edit, and delete parts and blocks at any point in the design cycle without any history-based restrictions. This is particularly useful during the conceptual design process, when you frequently experiment with and make changes to the assembly structure and components.

To create a layout:

  1. Open a new assembly.
  2. In the Begin Assembly PropertyManager, click Create Layout.
    A 3D sketch opens, and Layout appears in the FeatureManager design tree.
  3. Create sketch entities and group related entities into blocks.
  4. Close the blocks and the sketch.
    You can create a layout in an existing assembly by clicking Create Layout (Layout Tools toolbar).

Make Part from Block PropertyManager

In assemblies, you can create parts from blocks in layout sketches.

To create a part from a block:

  1. Click Make Part from Block (Layout Tools toolbar) or Insert > Component > Insert Part from Block.
  2. Select one or more blocks from a layout sketch.
  3. Make selections in the PropertyManager as described below.
  4. Click .

    For each block, a part containing the selected block appears in the FeatureManager design tree. The part name is the same as the block name. Square brackets around the part name indicate that it is a virtual component. Virtual components are saved within the assembly file, not in external files.

    You can open the part to add features by right-clicking the part and selecting Open Part (context toolbar).

Selected Blocks

Selected Blocks Lists the blocks that you select.

Block to Part Constraint

Project Creates a part that is projected from the plane of the block in the layout sketch, but not constrained to be coplanar with it. In the assembly, you can drag the part in a direction normal to the plane of the block.
On Block Constrains the part to be coplanar with the plane of the block in the layout sketch.