When working on large assemblies in can help to create custom configuration to improve your system performance.
- [Instructor] Configurations are another great method to improve your performance when working in large assemblies or complex part files in Solid Works. Let's walk through an example I have here. I've downloaded a Mobile Folding Worktable offline from 3D ContentCentral, SolidWorks' website. I'm going to open it Resolved, and take a look at some of the custom configurations that I've placed in there. I can see it's taken a few moments to open up completely.
I've got a lot of components in this file, all different part numbers. These happen to be from 8020. So you can see here at 3D ContentCentral, this is where I downloaded it, and it came zipped. So I haven't done anything to the part files, or the assembly. All I've done is added a bunch of different configurations. So now going back to Windows Explorer, I can see here that currently my file size is 3,184 kilobytes.
I'm going to see if I can reduce that using configurations. So what I've done is try to separate it out into useful configurations that will help me down the road. So I've got one for the mainframe here. Let's see what that looks like. Okay, I'm going to save that, and take a look at Windows Explorer. Wow, already got a drop down to 2,744 kb. Let's see if we can take that to the extreme.
Now what I've done here is suppressed a number of parts. I'm going to actually go to my empty configuration. Now in this configuration, I have everything suppressed. I'm going to go ahead and save that. Take a look at Windows Explorer. All the way down to 609 kilobytes, from over 3,000 kilobytes. Now if you have a large assembly that's giving you a lot of grief, but you need to keep all the detail in it, this might be a good way to do that. Make an empty configuration, or configurations that only have the specific information that you need in them.
So for this one, I've made one with the panels, I've shown the bar stock, all the various hardware, and then I've also left the default configuration in there, as well. As I mentioned, this can help us speed up our processes in drawings and other downstream events, as well. So I'm going to quickly just make a drawing from this assembly. Add in a nice symmetric view, and then insert a BOM. Now you can see here, in the property manager, the Bill of Materials, it lists all the different configurations.
So now if I just hit the green check box, I get the complete BOM. Now this is quite a list here, and the way that they've designated everything, it's not completely clear what parts are what, if I want to go ahead and place an order. So what I can do is click on the Bill of Materials, and change the configurations. So if I just want to know about the bar stock that I've got to order, I can change it to bar stock and get a list of those. If I want just the hardware, I can click on hardware and get that. If I want just the panels, I can change it to just the panels.
If I want the panels and the hardware, I can click both, and it gives me a conglomeration of both lists. So you can see, this can really speed up what you're doing down the line. And you can have some pretty awesome results. I'm going to go ahead and close this drawing. And now, just for reference, I'm going to save my top level assembly back in the default configuration, and go back, and yeah, back up to over 3,000 kilobytes. So again, if you've got an assembly that's really bogging you down and you need some better performance, try using an empty configuration.
And one important part about the empty configuration, is make sure that in the properties you have Hide new component displays. So you want anything new that comes into it to be hidden. So you're going to hide any child component displays, and you're also going to suppress new features and mates. And you're going to suppress new components, as well. So this way, anything new that comes in, your empty always stays empty. All right, just remember to click Save when you're done.
- How your workstation's hardware functions
- Adjusting System Options settings
- Modeling best practices
- Creating custom configurations
- Fixing your assemblies
- Using SpeedPak
- Increasing modeling performance with Instant2D and Instant3D