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give parts or assemblies a pseudo name, label or category for constraints auto name purpose

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Drutort, Dec 29, 2019.

  1. Drutort

    Drutort Senior Member

    give parts or assemblies a pseudo name, label or category for constraints auto name purpose
    (possibly use part data either "standard properties" or "custom properties" fields or create new field)

    The field should be overridable based on hierarchy, and is a unique ID field, so you can give the part/asm different additional meaning.

    For example you would define a bolt as bolt, but in the assembly you would want to rename those bolts with extra info, left, right, top, bottom, inside, outside bolt

    Since this field is unique and is not tied to any linking but more for the user as a guide, searchable and viewable

    And changing these on the fly does not break or cause linking issues in other assemblies etc...

    instead of :

    align(1)
    align(2)
    align(3)

    we would get:

    align bolt washer
    align washer nut
    align nut bracket

    What do I mean:

    Have you ever started a project, went and started an assembly? and went strait at assigning constraints to get your creation to look or turn out to be something? Only later to see that you are lost in all the align(13454) mate(23453) etc...?

    How can something like this be solved? Renaming them right? (see my other thread on keyboard shortcut to rename missing) but that is a painstaking process, and would slow you down, sure you can be smart and do it right from the start

    But can you do it perfectly? What if you change parts or delete things etc..??

    Wouldn't it be nice if we had option to give our parts, assemblies a more generic name, screw, bolt, nut, some descriptor. Obviously we do not want to rename our parts or assemblies to those, but if we could assign those as a pseudo name, label or category. The best place for this information would be in the parts data tab, that very few use, but we would need to have quick and easy access to edit said field and not have to go into part edit or asm edit


    Why wold this be powerful?

    well it would be automatic, all you would do is go and give a name, tag, category whatever this feature would be given, then all of a sudden have the constraints make some sense.

    Something more besides align(1 through a million)


    I would not mind if it would just say align bolt cylinder nut, we could throw in some other geometry features names in the mix, which would be useful, if its a face, point, axis, plane, cylinder etc...

    Before you say, silly you why do you not just go hunt on each part, that still does not solve the problem, if anyone ever does any complex assemblies with many other sub assemblies will quickly tell you this ability would be amazing

    And I would not mind if this was a tool tip style hover over feature, and keep the regular naming system in tact, but that would be a amazing, would love to toggle on/off maybe if things get cluttered

    (Also if someone has came up with this idea I apologize but I must have missed it)
     
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2019
    cadtec likes this.
  2. bigseb

    bigseb Alibre Super User

    Not something I would want. Finding your way around the constraints list is easy enough. Simply expanding that part in the design tree to see it's constraints. Auto naming is not something I would be in favour of.
     
    oldfox and JST like this.
  3. JST

    JST Alibre Super User

    This almost seems a request for mind reading.

    I can, however, understand the motivation, but, no naming will help with hundreds of constraints. How to come up with and remember so many unique names?

    The program highlights selected constraints in the model if the constraint is selected in the list. Pretty good for problem solving, etc.
     
  4. idslk

    idslk Alibre Super User

    ...or if the design gets larger:
    align bolt washer
    align washer nut
    align nut bracket
    align bolt washer
    align washer nut
    align nut bracket
    align bolt washer
    align washer nut
    align nut bracket

    ???
    What we have is somekind of this (from a samplepart from the alibre website...):
    upload_2019-12-29_16-11-42.png
    and if you really need speaking names you've given yourself an answer...
    :)

    Regards
    Stefan
     
  5. idslk

    idslk Alibre Super User

    so as not to be too dismissive and pessimistic ...
    If the "constraint name" property was not read-only from a program perspective, it would be possible to generate a name from the constraint partners and overwrite the constraint name via alibrescript, but ist is sorrily wise read-only... (...and the automatic naming convetions have to be polished a lot to make sense)
    upload_2019-12-29_16-35-35.png
    Regards
    Stefan
     
  6. Lew_Merrick

    Lew_Merrick Alibre Super User

    I have been "arguing" for a decade now that Assembly Constraints (like Feature Identities) should allow the user to rename them as they are defined. I have also "argued for" the ability to "indent and group" such (if you will) "Constraint Identities" such that (Say) One of Four such "Grouped Constraints" will, when "active," create (if you will) "Blah Position 1" and (say) Two of Four "activates "Blah Position 2" (etc.) and to carry it to its logical conclusion only one (or two) of these "Grouped Constraints" may be active at any one time! Just think how much simpler "Design Life" would be if Constraints were so identified? -- Lew
     
  7. Drutort

    Drutort Senior Member

    This might be practical in the example as I stated when your parts are named simple things, take for example any company or any specialized part numbering system. Say for example McMaster-Carr part numbers, exampling a bunch of constraints only to have numbers and letters does not help you.

    And if you have a library that you follow or company has one and you want to keep it for BOM purposes, then you can see where you have to look up what that part is.

    As everyone missed the point it does not need to necessarily rename the existing system would, it could be say a hover over boxed name that shows up like any tool tip/hint that many softwares use

    You know a good example when this current system fails? when you use multiples of same part... guess what same face or feature is called out so all you have is a different (number) and no clue where that part is in relation
     
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2019
  8. Drutort

    Drutort Senior Member

    Its not mind reading, its to eliminate repetitive task, if you have a McMaster part number, most of the time you will keep it as the part number (sometimes I add other descriptors to it, because I can not memorize the part numbers and associate to what they are

    Why should I keep renaming things? when if I give that part number simple attribute name, and have the software do it automatically for us.

    I mean why are we using CAD in the first place? could use pencil and paper
     
  9. Drutort

    Drutort Senior Member

    That is not true, when you expand the constraints tree and you have a multiple of same parts, what do you see? same exact feature called out, same face 54

    So the only thing you can tell is that all of your so called duplicated parts or multiples of such as screws, bolts, nuts washers all have same data, and any even simple assembly will quickly rack up a bunch of simple constraints with the same exact feature call outs

    SO how does scrolling help? when I have 20-50+ of those parts/asm? and the highlight feature is pretty weak, and you have to zoom in, and if its hidden by other parts in the assembly you can not see it and waste a bunch of time looking for it

    also the "Inter Design Relations" tree does not have the expand all or collapse all for the constraints, you are forced to click or peck like a chicken at every constraint +

    Then you have to close them :rolleyes:

    I think everyone is so used to it, that its hard to imagine it being different even if it might be better

    I also stated that it could be toggled, and possibly have the current system but have a hover over tool tip/hint style that would show the basic what was discussed

    Also since this labeling is independent of the current system of file naming, you could give to the same/similar part different designation
    To have a more meaningful definition or designation

    often I would rename, top, bottom, back, inside, outside, left, right etc...

    Their is no way to do that when your parts are exact names and you can not change them because they are tied to the file name
     
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2019
  10. dwc

    dwc Alibre Super User

    Aye, there is the crux of the matter.
    Don
     
  11. idslk

    idslk Alibre Super User

    RMB on part and you get the contraints for this particular part, even if there are more than one "screw"...
    upload_2019-12-29_22-41-56.png

    not only the constrain partners, also if you want from the part properties...
    It has only a set method to be added to the API...

    Regards
    Stefan
     
  12. Drutort

    Drutort Senior Member

    ok, here is a real world example while im doing just mock up of a project, 4 parts they are the same, I could have aligned or mated them almost to the same surfaces, but I was not looking and some are different sides, but in theory a lot of them would be to the same face... now scale this from say 4 to 20 or 50 parts... then what?

    Look how confusing it is when some of the faces seem as if they are constrained to themselves

    https://portal.feedback.eu.pendo.io/app/#/case/42874

    constraints example.jpg
     
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2019
  13. Drutort

    Drutort Senior Member

    Mass rename in assembly tree explorer of constraints

    I will add that looking at the pendo feedback board a lot of people have been wanting rename and other features

    Personally they should give us the option to map out every command, I think this would also help with scripting?

    Anyway you can mass select constraints in assembly and delete them, but you can not mass rename them...

    And it seems that Alibre does not care if you have exact same name for constraints, maybe some script option would be nice, and automate a (1) after your rename so that following ones with same name have a different number
     
  14. Lew_Merrick

    Lew_Merrick Alibre Super User

    Let me describe a recent Assembly I designed. There were 3 "Access Panels" covering "openings" that allowed the Component Set to be assembled and maintained. "Access Panel 1" and "Access Panel 3" are attached by 10 (each) "Flange Face Pan Head 0-2500-28UNF X .63 Long Screws" and "Access Panel 2" is attached by 12 such screws. In the case of "Access Panel 1," I have a whole "raft" of Constraints that locate and place the "screws." If I have "Grouped" and "Identified" the Constraints properly it is trivial to create a "View" wherein the "Exploded Access Through Panel 1" is made crystal clear. (Etc.) This "argument" fits hand in glove with my "argument" that we should be able to create and define Datums within the Model. -- Lew
     
  15. idslk

    idslk Alibre Super User

    Hello Drutort,
    can you post an other look of the explorer tree?
    It looks that you have remaned the parts.
    If i insert several same parts they get numbered.
    If i would have choosen the housing i would have also "same faces" in the list, but with different numbered parents...
    To avoid this confusion i choose a screw to look at ant not the housing...
    Regards
    Stefan
    What sould that mean? I hope not what i think...
    Regards
    Stefan
     
  16. Drutort

    Drutort Senior Member

    I did not rename them, the parts themselves have a (1) (2) etc... but the faces are identical my screen shot is of the "constraints" tree

    see this issue that we are talking about:
    https://portal.feedback.eu.pendo.io/app/#/case/42874

    Yes the parts/asm have a (#) in the "Inter Design Relations" but when you open part/asm + and go to constraints their, it is identical to the "constraints" tree

    Mass rename is that, if I go and select a few constraints I would like to rename them all that I selected, would be nice if the type stayed, ie align, mate etc... then you give your name and the (#) remains

    We can start with ability to map and mass rename, others have mentioned abilities to group constraints but renaming them is still useful

    I think a grouped constraint system would be quite useful

    mass rename2.jpg mass rename.jpg
     
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2019
  17. JST

    JST Alibre Super User

    The hard linkage of the part name and the file name is a very major failing of ALIBRE.

    It is likely such a basic factor that one would have to tear up the basic system programming of Alibre to change that.
     
  18. NateLiqGrav

    NateLiqGrav Alibre Super User

    This is possible using the Label field of the Assembly Constraint tool. It is not possible with Quick Constraints tool. I believe it will also be possible with the new constraint tool Alibre is developing.
     
  19. NateLiqGrav

    NateLiqGrav Alibre Super User

    Another option might be to loop thought existing constraints and recreate them using their previous parameters - But I don't see how to delete the old one... We need all user abilities exposed in API.
     
    cadtec likes this.
  20. idslk

    idslk Alibre Super User

    That would be very nice:)
    but i have to give to consider (every automation script in honor), that the most of the time i use, is for thinking about a good solution for the job, not for "drawing" it...;)
    Regards
    Stefan
    Ps.: I had a "Merry Christmas" and so there is not much for me to complain...;)
     

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