Inventor 2014 Essential Training
Illustration by Richard Downs

Navigating using the navigation tools


Inventor 2014 Essential Training

with John Helfen

Video: Navigating using the navigation tools

The Navigation Bar is the set of tools running down The reason for this is there are shortcuts Panning allows you to left-click and drag to Hitting Escape on your keyboard will get out of the pan The next item is the zoom functionality.
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  1. 1m 24s
    1. Welcome
    2. Using the exercise files
  2. 6m 20s
    1. Exploring major workflow steps
      2m 19s
    2. Reviewing different file types
      4m 1s
  3. 22m 3s
    1. Navigating using the ViewCube
      4m 56s
    2. Navigating using the navigation tools
      5m 31s
    3. Using the browser
      3m 34s
    4. Using the ribbon bar
      2m 47s
    5. Using the Quick Access Toolbar
    6. Using the Marking menu
      4m 33s
  4. 22m 6s
    1. Basic menu customization
      6m 40s
    2. Custom ribbon bar panels
      6m 22s
    3. Keyboard
      5m 9s
    4. Marking menu customization
      3m 55s
  5. 20m 24s
    1. Project file introduction
      3m 54s
    2. The project file: .ipj
      4m 4s
    3. Setting up the project file for this course
      7m 11s
    4. Frequently used subfolders
      5m 15s
  6. 22m 31s
    1. Introducing sketching
      4m 55s
    2. Working with origin geometry
      4m 46s
    3. Understanding constraints
      7m 39s
    4. Application options
      5m 11s
  7. 50m 43s
    1. Drawing lines
      6m 29s
    2. Creating rectangles and arcs
      9m 26s
    3. Creating splines
      6m 35s
    4. Creating slots
      5m 43s
    5. Construction geometry
      6m 18s
    6. Dimensioning
      9m 34s
    7. Parameters
      6m 38s
  8. 30m 33s
    1. Move, copy, and rotate sketch geometry
      7m 43s
    2. Trim, extend, and split sketch geometry
      6m 20s
    3. Scale, stretch, and offset geometry
      7m 47s
    4. Creating rectangular, circular, and mirrored sketch patterns
      8m 43s
  9. 19m 27s
    1. Understanding work features
      3m 58s
    2. Creating offset work planes
      4m 17s
    3. Creating work planes
      6m 59s
    4. Creating work axes and points
      4m 13s
  10. 16m 50s
    1. Projecting geometry
      7m 7s
    2. Importing AutoCAD data
      9m 43s
  11. 54m 31s
    1. Part feature introduction
      5m 14s
    2. Creating a base extrusion feature
      8m 46s
    3. Keeping extrusions connected with the To next face/body option
      4m 29s
    4. Creating revolves
      7m 42s
    5. Creating complex shapes with the Loft tool
      8m 50s
    6. Adding control to a loft by creating rails
      8m 40s
    7. Creating a sweep feature
      6m 16s
    8. Creating a sweep feature with model edges
      4m 34s
  12. 24m 44s
    1. Adding holes to a part model
      10m 10s
    2. Modifying edges with fillets and chamfers
      4m 18s
    3. Hollowing parts with the shell feature
      10m 16s
  13. 25m 37s
    1. Creating rectangular feature patterns
      9m 23s
    2. Adding intelligence to a rectangular pattern
      5m 45s
    3. Creating rectangular feature patterns along a path
      2m 22s
    4. Creating circular feature patterns
      3m 11s
    5. Mirroring part features
      4m 56s
  14. 31m 30s
    1. Understanding iParts and iFeatures
      3m 19s
    2. Creating an iPart from an existing part
      11m 0s
    3. Changing between versions inside an iPart
      5m 50s
    4. Extracting iFeatures for use in other parts
      5m 11s
    5. Inserting iFeatures into a part
      6m 10s
  15. 26m 23s
    1. Introduction to assemblies
      1m 59s
    2. Placing components
      7m 40s
    3. Creating components in the context of an assembly
      8m 9s
    4. Placing fasteners from the Content Center
      8m 35s
  16. 46m 14s
    1. The Mate/Flush constraint
      9m 42s
    2. The Angle constraint
      5m 34s
    3. The Insert constraint
      3m 55s
    4. Driving constraints
      10m 0s
    5. The Transitional tab
      3m 50s
    6. The Motion tab
      9m 18s
    7. Contact sets
      3m 55s
  17. 18m 38s
    1. Adding materials to parts in an assembly
      4m 3s
    2. Visual styles
      4m 52s
    3. Enhancing the design experience with shadows
      2m 9s
    4. Adding a ground plane, reflections, and perspective to a design
      3m 34s
    5. Changing the lighting style to match a design
      4m 0s
  18. 39m 11s
    1. Exploring initial drawing creation
      5m 6s
    2. Placing base and projected views
      9m 31s
    3. Creating section views
      8m 0s
    4. Creating detail views
      3m 56s
    5. Creating a breakout view
      5m 41s
    6. Creating auxiliary and cropped views
      6m 57s
  19. 25m 57s
    1. Creating general dimensions
      9m 20s
    2. Changing dimension precision
      4m 21s
    3. Creating baseline, ordinate, and chain dimensions
      5m 51s
    4. Creating baseline, ordinate, and chain dimension sets
      6m 25s
  20. 10m 43s
    1. Creating individual balloons
      4m 34s
    2. Creating a group of balloons with automatic ballooning
      3m 40s
    3. Adding a parts list to the drawing
      2m 29s
  21. 30s
    1. Next steps

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Watch the Online Video Course Inventor 2014 Essential Training
8h 36m Beginner Apr 17, 2014 Updated May 19, 2014

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

Already up and running? This course is the next step in building your Autodesk Inventor skillset. Author John Helfen takes you through the interface and key processes of this parametric design system, including sketching, part modeling, assemblies, and drawings. Each process works in conjunction with the rest, allowing you to create parts and assemblies and document them in a way that they can be manufactured. Learn how to set up your project file; create and modify geometry; create extrusions, sweeps, and lofts; build parts with placed features and patterns of features; and create iParts and iFeatures. John also covers assembly visualization techniques, drawing views, and balloons and parts lists.

The course was created and produced by John Helfen. We're honored to host this training in our library.

Topics include:
  • Customizing Inventor's menus
  • Drawing rectangles, arcs, splines, and slots
  • Moving, copying, and rotating geometry
  • Trimming, splitting, scaling, and stretching geometry
  • Creating work planes
  • Projecting and importing geometry
  • Creating extrusions, revolves, sweeps, and lofts
  • Adding holes to a part model
  • Creating rectangular feature patterns
  • Creating iParts and iFeatures
  • Using constraints to position parts
  • Creating drawing views
  • Setting dimensions
John Helfen

Navigating using the navigation tools

The Navigation Bar is the set of tools running down the right-hand side of the screen just below the View Cube. It gathers up the functions needed to rotate, zoom and pan your model into different orientations during the design process. Before we get started I'll let you know I very rarely use this functionality. Well, I use the functionality, but I don't use the menu. The reason for this is there are shortcuts that you can use that make it more efficient. So what I'll do is I'll use the Navigation Bar to show how the functions work and then I'll circle back to show you some of the shortcuts that I use to make you more efficient.

We'll skip over the full Navigation Wheel to start, and we'll come back to that in a bit, and we'll go right to the pan functionality. Panning allows you to left-click and drag to reposition your model anywhere within the graphics window. Hitting Escape on your keyboard will get out of the pan command or any other command you might be using in Inventor. The next item is the zoom functionality. And the zoom functionality is combined into a split button. The top half of the button shows the default command or the most recently used version of that command. And the bottom half flies out the list that shows you the different variations of the command that are available.

We'll start by clicking the top half to launch the standard zoom function. Left-clicking and pushing your mouse forward will cause the model to move away from you, or zoom out. Pulling the mouse towards you will cause the model to zoom in. Now, this seems very normal to me, pushing something away makes it zoom out, pulling it towards you makes it zoom in. If you're coming from AutoCAD or another design system, however, that might seem very foreign to you. In AutoCAD, rather than grabbing the part and moving it away from you to zoom out or grabbing the part and moving it toward you to zoom in, it's actually as if you're controlling the camera that's looking at the part.

In AutoCAD when you push the mouse forward, it's as if the camera is being moved closer to the part and therefore zooms in. In AutoCAD, if you pull the mouse towards you, it's as if you're pulling the camera away from the part, and therefore zooming out. The reason I bring this up, is it can be very frustrating if you're coming from another system. And I don't want anybody to get hung up on something so easy to change. To change this, you can go to the Application menu, in the upper left corner. Click the Options button at the bottom, and make sure you select the Display tab.

In the Display tab, in the 3D Navigation section, there's Zoom Behavior. In there, you can check Reverse Direction to reverse the zoom functionality in Inventor to be more like AutoCAD. If you click apply or okay, you'll accept those changes and that will be how Inventor zooms from that point forward. I'm not going to do that. I like the way Inventor zooms, so I'm going to leave it as is. So, I'm going to hit cancel, but I wanted to call it out, because I didn't want anybody to get hung up in the learning process. If we return to the zoom function and click the drop down, we now see the next one is Zoom All.

Zoom All simply makes all the model components zoom to fit the Graphics window. The Zoom Window function allows me to zoom in on a very specific area within the model. If I left-click and drag, I begin to create a rectangle that, while still holding the mouse button down, I can reposition by simply moving my mouse around the start point where I clocked, to begin the functionality. It's essentially like combining a little bit of pan and zoom into one function, so that I can ensure that I zoom in on the place that I'm most interested in.

We'll go ahead and use the Zoom All function to zoom back out. And, next, we'll look at Zoom Selected. Zoom Selected allows you to pick a specific face and zoom in just on that. You can also do the same in reverse. I could select the specific part and then click the command again to zoom in just on that component alone. The last item is the Look At function. The Look At function allows you to select a specific face on the model and look at that in a planar view. This comes in really handy when you're trying to look in on a angular face in the model.

Like the top of this carburetor. If I select the Look At command, and then the top of the carburetor, I rotate so I'm looking directly down on that in a planar view. Most of the other faces I could get to just by using the View Cube, for example, clicking the right view gives me the look at on this face. But, again, it's the angled components that will be most useful. Now that we've been through all the commands, I want to circle back and show you some of the short cuts that I use, in the hopes that it will make you more efficient navigating your model.

Rather than using the pan button, you can press and hold your middle mouse button on your mouse. And then it will drag to reposition your model anywhere on the screen. To zoom you can use the scroll wheel on your mouse. Scrolling the wheel away from you zooms out. Scrolling the wheel towards you zooms in. The reverse is true if you actually are coming from AutoCAD and have made the change in the options. The final item is Orbit, which you can get to by holding the Shift key on your keyboard and pressing and holding the middle mouse button to generate an orbit.

So with just the middle mouse button, the scroll wheel and the Shift key on your keyboard, you can accomplish all the panning, zooming and rotating that you need in most cases.

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