I would like to start a discussion on performance with large
assemblies and potential workflows and/or work-arounds you may utilize to
better handle specific scenarios; different industries/processes may promote
different solutions. Some people think the sheer number of components
constitutes a large assembly, but this isn’t always the case (i.e. components
that are very complex and have hundreds of features can quickly add complexity
to a relatively small component count assembly too).

 

What tools/functionality do you currently use and why? What
are your specific pros and/or cons as it relates to your industry or process?
For example, do you utilize any of the following techniques:

 

Opening Components in Lightweight mode

SpeedPak

Large Assembly mode

Large Design Review

Create Simplified Configurations of components
(Suppression/Removal of unnecessary features for top-level assembly)

Save Assemblies as Parts

Defeature

Suspend Automatic Rebuilds

Display States

Feature Freeze

Flexible Subassemblies

Assembly Visualization tool

Detached Drawings

 

Other methods?

 

Quick Tips:

Utilize Subassemblies

Simplify geometry (Simplified Configuration where unnecessary features such as Fillets, Chamfers, Large Patterns, Threads, Extruded Text etc... are suppressed)

Minimize Flexible subassemblies, especially many nested as these mates all have to be solved at the top-level (Use only as needed and then make Rigid if able)

 

There are many different tools available and methods used
and reasons why to be sure, but I would like to hear what methods you use and
why or why not (pro/cons). Is there any preferred method you would like to be
able use but cannot because of a shortcoming or a process/workflow driven
reason? Any other method(s) you wish we supported but do not? Your most
frustrating workflows?  I really want to
try to keep this wide open as possible (it could even encompass drawing
creation of large assemblies) and look forward to having a proactive discussion;
I realize this is a source of frustration for many that wish was there was a
magic button.

 

Any and all feedback is welcome.

 

Thanks,

Don


Categories: Modeling and Assemblies, Assemblies

Comments
Last comment By: Colin Ross   Wed, 15 Nov 2017 07:57:13 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

I'll chime in:

 

  • Large assembly mode--certainly
  • Lightweight components--gotta have it
  • Large design review--been meaning to try it
  • Simplified configurations--I lean away from this, because I don't like to add to my models in order to try to simplify them. It also can cause trouble as you add and remove features as the design progresses to maintain multiple configurations.
  • Assemblies as parts--I have not had good luck with this, in that the parts have had really poor performance. Also, the loss of being parametric is a bit of a deal breaker for me.
  • Defeature--I'm not sure how this differes from simplified configurations, but for purchased parts etc., absolutely, this is a must.
  • Display states--I've had good luck with display states, in that they are fast and stable compared to configurations

 

I'll add

  • I stay the heck away from in-context design. This is large assembly death
  • Multi-body parts can be wicked fast for complex assemblies, if it suits your taste.
  • Body operations (direct modeling), seem to be wicked fast and very stable compared to regular history based parametric modeling. Combine Multibody parts and body operations, and you can get astonishing performance on top down assemblies. Like, astonishing. But this comes with the limitations it comes with. If multi-body parts had BOM features to mirror assemblies, you'd really be on to something for non-mechanisms.
  • I think you need to communicate better the effect that display settings have on file size and save times. I've been using SW for 15 years, and I found out in the last 2 weeks that time to save tessellated data is related to display settings. I'd always assumed that if I wasn't seeing video lag that the display quality was low enough.
By: Mike Pogue  Wed, 03 Jun 2015 22:01:06 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Hi Adrian,

 

Great presentation! I'm sure this was a popular one as well as the download. Thanks for providing the link here for others who may not know about some of the tools/tips.

 

Looking forward to hearing from others.

By: Don Van Zile  Wed, 03 Jun 2015 22:08:13 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Hi Mike,

 

Yes, the "Image Quality" in Document Options can affect performance dramatically if set to the very high setting near the red and applied to all components checked; File size, save time, open time, and time it takes to regenerate the graphics data to display (Graphics tessellation). We're looking into ways to better communicate this.

 

Simplified Configurations: You mention the difficulty in maintaining features and the extra simplified configurations. If this process were more automated for you or made easier would you use them or be more encouraged to use them?

 

Assemblies Saved as parts: You mention not being parametric being a deal breaker.  What type of parametric workflow are looking for here that would make less of deal breaker? Also, have you tried to hide internal components and small components such as fasteners that may not be required to reduce the component body count to improve performance? If you haven't, this definitely helps significantly to minimize overhead.

By: Don Van Zile  Wed, 03 Jun 2015 22:22:15 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Don,

 

  • The image quality does not have to be high to impact save time. Anything above the third line on the slider has a serious impact for complex assemblies saved as parts.
  • As far as simplified configuration. Yes. if there were a brain dead way to maintain a simplified and a full configuration together, without me constantly having to suppress and unsuppress and repair, that would be great. I'm not seeing what it would look like, but I'm sure you have people for that.
  • The workflow I envision would be to use an assembly exported as a part, and it would rebuild it from the original assembly on demand without losing geometry references. It should not rebuild automatically, but it ought to probably flag as out of date. Not an obnoxious flag, and not a bonk sound that drives me crazy if I don't want to update it. Just a friendly reminder.
  • I forgot to mention one thing that may or may not be important. I tried to implement speed packs awhile back, and it was a catastrophe. They were an express ticket to hard crash no matter what I did. I never looked at them again.
By: Mike Pogue  Wed, 03 Jun 2015 23:01:51 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Don,

 

One thing that can be a big help that you didn't mention is using sub-assemblies.  My more complex upper level assemblies will sometimes consist entirely of sub-assemblies, sometimes two or three layers deep.  I believe this is a big help on opening, saving, and working with assemblies.

 

And I'll agree with Mike about staying away from in-context modeling and using display states.

By: Glenn Schroeder  Thu, 04 Jun 2015 12:25:48 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Hi Glenn,

 

Creating many subassemblies and even nested layers of
subassemblies is definitely good practice to be sure; I certainly didn’t
mention everything above that can have an effect on performance, but that’s
where I would like to hear more from you guys and gals as well along any
pros/cons/limitations within your workflows and processes etc…

 

Subassemblies also minimizes the number of top-level mates
and makes working with the assembly easier since it’s more structured. A good
rule of thumb is if the top-level assembly starts to have more than 50-100
mates, it’s time to start thinking how to better structure the assembly with
subassemblies using “Form new subassembly” with selected components; fasteners
at the top-level only can multiply mates very quickly. There seems to be
somewhat of a misconception trying to avoid mates all together. Unless there’s
thousands of them, it can be definitely become an issue and moreover it becomes
more of maintenance issue in my opinion. However, the mate solver is very efficient
and typically solves even very large mate sets very quickly; you can check this
using the AssemblyXpert tool.

 

Also, our system tries to be intelligent
on what needs to be rebuilt when changes are made in that we don’t rebuild subassemblies
or its components unless they need to be (exceptions to this rule are of course
in-context relationships, equations, circular references and other model
dependencies). Users have asked to be able to Freeze subassemblies similar to
Parts functionality (another Parts tool I didn’t mention above), but our system
tries to treat them like this already with the exceptions mentioned.

By: Don Van Zile  Thu, 04 Jun 2015 13:18:51 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

What tools/functionality do you currently use and why?

 

Through the years I have had the best performance and assembly stability using what I call the Skeleton Part, which is the top part of all my sub-assemblies and also the top assembly, almost every detail is in that part and every part is built off that part and if I need to make changes I can change the Skeleton Part everything that is tied to a particular sketch that I change, gets changed parametrically. 

 

All my drawings are one file only, with up to over a 100 tabs, this way I can page through my drawing tabs without having to open multiple drawing files, this also makes it easier to use the Task Scheduler to update my custom properties, etc.  The main reason is here they want a detailed drawing for every part that needs to be manufactured and some purchased items.

 

I use the Custom Property Tab Builder and I set up a custom one for every project that goes through our custom build departments.  According to my take on the forum this is one of the most over looked feature that SolidWorks offers with the design package. I have over 60 custom properties that I attach to every part and the project assemblies, within those 60 there could be 10 or 15 that don’t pertain to that project, so I set up the Tab Builder file and save it to an ECN number.  The time saver is when I’m done with the design (Modeling) and have all my approvals to get the assembly to the drawing level, I open up the top assembly and click on every part in the feature manager tree, click on the custom property tab and pick out the machine station, type in the description and if the part or assembly needs to go to our CNC, that’s it, 3 inputs.

 

Then I drop each assembly, sub-assembly and parts in the drawings, one file, more than one file if over 120 tabs, all the information is tabulated in the title block.  What works really well doing it this way, is when there is a revision to a particular part, the revision follows that part not just the entire assembly, (I created my own Revision table).

 

What are your specific pros and/or cons as it relates to your industry or process?

For me here SolidWorks is a great tool to use, however I do run into some freak issues here and I am almost sure it has to do with the work flow through the Server and not using EPDM, a few days from now I might open an assembly I was working on and some of the changes aren’t saved and previous versions are gone.

 

Here I may have a base assembly and if there is a custom project, I’ll do a pack and go and open up the pack and go, change my Skeleton Sketch part and run the Task Scheduler to update that folder and within 15 minutes I can have a complete new set of prints ready for the shop floor. Sometimes the Pack & Go doesn’t work well and the relationships are lost, I’ve usually thought it’s more my techniques or the lack thereof, however more and more it points to not having the EPDM setup.


For example, do you utilize any of the following techniques:

 

Opening Components in Lightweight mode

Never

SpeedPak

Never

Large Assembly mode

Never

Large Design Review

Never

Create Simplified Configurations of components
Never

(Suppression/Removal of unnecessary features for top-level assembly)

Never

Save Assemblies as Parts

Never

Defeature

Never

Suspend Automatic Rebuilds

Never

Display States

Never

Other methods?

 

 

The other methods that differ from my trail of design to drawings – I learned enough over the years not to go there.  In other words what works for me might not for the next guy, because of the Design Intent that was used when the project is started. I remember the old adage using SolidWorks, it’s all about Design Intent, where you want to end up and where you need to start, you get those screwed up, have fun

 

I’ve used Sw since 1997 and used only a handful of different versions over the years, 1997 1998plus 2003 2004 2011 2012 2013 2014 and now 2015, so my progress with SW was sporadic to say the least.  So I had some fair sized projects and the largest assembly I remember was over 3,500 components, which included all the hardware, the reason I mention this is, in the past I made a lot of mistakes when it came to large assemblies and especially in the early part of my design career.  I agree 100% on your comment on the size of the assembly has more to do with the accumulation of features then it does shear number of components. 

 

I look forward watching this topic, Thanks for starting this Don…….

 

edited:

 

I forgot to mention the Design Journal, awesome tracking tool

By: John Stoltzfus  Thu, 04 Jun 2015 13:31:39 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

I've found that if I'm working on a certain area of an assembly and don't need a few different subs that are in a different spot, I do a hide on those and then unload hidden components.  That seems to be the fastest way for me since I don't do simplified configs for the same reasons Mike pointed out, and I typically only have a full display state.  I suppose I could make display states and switch back and forth from them and still run the unload hidden command.

 

Just my quick thought.

By: Paul Marsman  Thu, 04 Jun 2015 14:35:37 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Hi John,

 

Thanks for the detailed feedback on your workflow, processes and reasons why. Regarding your large multi-sheet drawings, do ever have issues with performance working with over 100 sheets/tabs?

 

To your point about the Property Tab Builder for Custom Properties being underutilized, I think the same can be said about the Assembly Visualization tool.

By: Don Van Zile  Thu, 04 Jun 2015 15:33:59 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Tabs over about 75 or so tend to slow things down a little, but not near the same as it would opening 100 files and going through everyone to make sure that the changes followed through..

 

I will check on the Assembly Visualization tool, just looking at my product flow, where would you see it fit in my process.

By: John Stoltzfus  Thu, 04 Jun 2015 15:58:44 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Wow, haven't been here in a while and the entire forum interface has changed.  Yuck! (for me anyway)...

 

I'm fixing to jump from SW2010 to SW2015 and I'm sad to read some of the same problems/questions we were having prior to SW2010.  Haven't these things been fixed?

 

The one main thing that I've always tried to do is to minimize the top level assy mates because these are some of the first things that have to be solved.  We have a lot of sub-assemblies that show the floor how to put together the "options" for our product but rarely show the entire dispenser.  These sub-assemblies may have several configurations.  I'd like these sub-assemblies to open faster, too, with their drawings.

 

Good topic Don...

By: Steve Calvert  Thu, 04 Jun 2015 17:40:13 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Don I'm still frustrated with the fact that there is no way to provide a direct link to each presentation! I believe this archives are the BEST SW learning resource out there and few people access them because of how they are published.

 

Why are they not uploaded to YouTube or My.Solidworks at least?

By: Adrian Velazquez  Thu, 04 Jun 2015 17:56:36 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

First of all, we manufacture complete asphalt mixing plants and wood pellet processing plants... Astec Inc. - Manufacturers of continuous and batch-process hot-mix asphalt plants, wood pellet plants and soil remediati…

 

I don't have much time currently, but I rarely have large assembly issues (if I modelled it... not to sound cocky) so I will definitely add more input to this. The only time I have performance issues is when working on other people's models which usually contain external references / envelopes / planes & sketches visible / etc...... I am a firm believer in proper modelling practices.

 

One model in particular I was working on earlier had the center of gravity feature turned on. Out of curiosity, I deleted it and it cut rebuild time in half. That is pretty substantial on a 10,000 component assembly.

 

Until I can provide more input, I will give you this:

Opening Components in Lightweight mode - RARE

SpeedPak - NO

Large Assembly mode – NO!

Large Design Review – YES! TO ONLY LOAD SPECIFIC COMPONENTS

Create Simplified Configurations of components - NO
(Suppression/Removal of unnecessary features for top-level assembly) -
NO

Save Assemblies as Parts – NO! FILE SIZES GO THROUGH THE ROOF

Defeature - NO

Suspend Automatic Rebuilds - NO

Display States – YES!

Feature Freeze- NO

By: Robert Lankford  Thu, 04 Jun 2015 19:02:59 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

John,

 

The Assembly Visualization tool can be used for many different things depending on what information you would like to see at a glance in the graphics area and/or in the dialog pane. It's especially helpful when trying to look for components which may be degrading system performance such as the system properties that can be added as new columns: Rebuild Time, Graphics Triangles, Face Count, Body Count and even the Quantity of each component are listed can assist in which components to interrogate and potentially simplify. Think of it like building a customized BOM of information that can also be viewed graphically with the components if needed.

 

It sounds like you might benefit from being able to see which Custom Properties are properly filled out with the correct property at a glance on all components. You could then use the Custom Property Tab pane to change/edit as needed.

By: Don Van Zile  Thu, 04 Jun 2015 19:30:39 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Good point Adrian. I will forward this feedback to the appropriate people.

By: Don Van Zile  Thu, 04 Jun 2015 19:41:09 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Thanks for the heads up Don, I will be trying it out..   It would be nice if I could have it off to the side like a dialog box.

By: John Stoltzfus  Thu, 04 Jun 2015 19:44:30 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

I can't seem to locate this presentation in the archive. Maybe it's just me...

By: Scott Moore  Thu, 04 Jun 2015 20:39:01 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Scott, make sure you are searching the 2014 Archives and look for my name under presenter

By: Adrian Velazquez  Thu, 04 Jun 2015 20:55:23 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Hi Robert

 

When you Save Assemblies as Parts, I recommend hiding all internal components via the Select commands, hide all small bolts and fasteners, and even remove unnecessary detail from components that may contain many holes, pattern features, extruded text, threads etc... This can significantly reduce the file size by quite a large ratio. Adrian's presentation above shows a good example of this as well.

By: Don Van Zile  Thu, 04 Jun 2015 21:11:31 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Got it. Apparently I had to search by first OR last name, not first AND last name. Thanks.

 

And I agree - I also would like to see these presentations on YouTube or something.

By: Scott Moore  Thu, 04 Jun 2015 21:18:38 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Robert Lankford wrote:

 

 

Save Assemblies as Parts – NO! FILE SIZES GO THROUGH THE ROOF

 

Not necessarily

By: Adrian Velazquez  Thu, 04 Jun 2015 21:50:50 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

I agree... I should have specified that I was most likely not using the correct method; also, those were just off the top of my head.

 

The only reason I used this method was because we messed up our file naming and had lots of duplicate names causing LOTs of errors.

 

When saving a 30,000 part assy to a part file, the file size was in the half gig range. Therefore, the overall assembly took FOREVER to load them (about 7 of them). About an hour total open time. No simplification was done whatsoever; it is detailed down to the washer. It was just to get this picture (for fun)...

LAYOUT.PNG

 

I imagine saving subassemblies as parts and reassembling them could have been more beneficial, but I didn't want to spend much time on it.

 

How would you utilize this method? I am curious because from my experience, saving a large top level assembly to a part file is not the most effective method.

 

  • EDIT: Just saw Don's post. I will check out the presentation over lunch and report back what I did wrong, but I am pretty sure I "saved all components". My intention was to try to create a walk through.
  • EDIT pt.II: Video blocked... Thanks IT
By: Robert Lankford  Fri, 05 Jun 2015 13:04:11 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

@Steve

Should the lack of fixes really surprise you?...and I know I'm going to get in trouble here...but your maintenance money isn't going into this product...let's all be honest here!

By: Ryan McVay  Fri, 05 Jun 2015 20:18:11 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Don-

Sorry, I find some of these comments almost comical. Assembly sizes are driven by product definition and most product utilize the CAD structures to generate BOMs. With that we can't be honestly be telling people to create bogus sub-assy's to improve performance. Wouldn't you agree that the CAD structure is more important?

 

Secondly, having 50-100 mates in the top assembly has to be another joke to a "rule of thumb". You could get more than 100 different mates just attaching your machine to floor, let alone connecting the main "product components" together.

 

Rebuild is a function that I would love to see disappear in the product altogether! Yes, that means that system is re-architected. Coming from other systems, this need to rebuild is something that is "foreign" to me. If the part is loaded in memory it should not be required to be rebuilt if it is "out of date" in a different assembly that I open.

 

Just some gripes on what is considered best practices vs reality.

By: Ryan McVay  Fri, 05 Jun 2015 20:15:06 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Have you tried the "Promote" option?

By: Adrian Velazquez  Fri, 05 Jun 2015 20:30:03 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

The presentation archives are a valuable resources, you should request to have it unblocked.

By: Adrian Velazquez  Fri, 05 Jun 2015 22:28:11 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

The 50 to 100 mates is directly related to not having enough of Sub-Assemblies, just my 2 cents, there are ways to reduce the amount of mates, normally you needed 3 per part, unless you had two sets of holes perpendicular from each other, however with the new upgrades most need only one if you can add a sketch feature like a circle, which can be mated coincident and click the no rotate box......

 

And the rebuild being eliminated, now that would be awesome   

By: John Stoltzfus  Mon, 08 Jun 2015 10:35:15 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Everyone,

 

Again, I realize performance is a great source of frustration, it's why I
started this discussion to improve on this and tools in the future. There is no
doubt that creating subassemblies and minimizing mates at the top-level
significantly improves performance as well as maintenance to design intent. If
you have 100's or even over a thousand mates at the top-level subassemblies are
the key; it also promotes easier maintenance later to better understand the
design intent for interrogation, especially if another colleague has to make
changes.

 

I must admit, when I was in industry designing automotive automation cells I
Saved Assemblies as Parts quite often. However, I would simplify and remove as
much detail as possible from components prior to saving. This workflow works
great if standard equipment is being utilized where the assembly isn't consistently
being changed. Adrian's presentation video shows a great example of this workflow
and the different results of simplification. However, since the saved parts are
not parametric and cannot be easily updated with potentially losing references
it may not work in these workflows.

 

Also, prior to 2011, I often avoided loading assemblies in Lightweight mode
due to potentially having to resolve them in assembly and/or drawing. However,
that being said, Lightweight mode has been improved and should be much more
robust minimizing reasons for the system to resolve components.

Does anyone use Lightweight mode currently and use it with successful
results not needing to consistently resolve? Has anyone stopped using it
altogether for other reasons? I would definitely like to hear more on this as
it seems many users simply resolve components or stop using it without potentially

working with their VAR.

 

I want to still encourage any and all feedback on anything performance
related items mentioned in the OP to be sure. Let's keep this proactive discussion going.

By: Don Van Zile  Tue, 09 Jun 2015 22:40:16 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

In addition, to promote further discussion, how many users would like to create simplified configurations of components such as suppressing unneeded features (i.e. Fillets, Chamfers, large Patterns, threads etc...), but do not due to conflicts with EPDM/Process restrictions, file maintenance concerns, lack of time or frustration with nested subassembly configurations due to layered components, other reasons?

 

SImplified configurations also significantly reduce geometry overhead, even when rebuilding, regenerating graphics, and even producing assembly drawings. However, I often hear different reasoning as to not creating and utilizing them.

By: Don Van Zile  Tue, 09 Jun 2015 23:36:44 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

There are two main concerns that prevent me from even wanting to try simplified configurations of components:

1. As you mentioned you would need simplified configurations of every single subassembly leading up to the main assembly. This is just a lot of manual labor to create.

2. Some of the features that I may want to suppress would not necessarily be last in the tree, and if I suppress them it might suppress future features that I want to keep. For example if I filleted an edge early on, and then later I locate a feature of the side of the part, the location reference will be to the fillet edge. So if I want to suppress the fillet it will suppress the later feature too, which might not be desirable. And fixing the order of parent/child relationships is not easy. Ideally I could just drag the new feature before the fillet in the tree, it would have a broken reference, I'd edit the sketch and fix the reference. But it's not even possible to drag it above the fillet in the tree. I'd have to edit the sketch, delete the reference (if I even know which one is causing the dependency) and leave the sketch underdefined, then exit and move the feature before the tree, then edit the sketch again and add a new reference.

By: Jamil Snead  Wed, 10 Jun 2015 04:47:46 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

I try to use Promote but we use also EPDM and Promote is not working in EPDM computed BOM.

We a lot of subassemblies that contains one or two parts and lot of Toolbox parts only to avoid creating too many mates on upper level assembly. These subassemblies does not exist in reality.

So please vote on SPR 583595

By: Faur Arama  Wed, 10 Jun 2015 06:13:18 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

John, I would like to know how you use so many drawing tabs! I now only ever use one page per drawing, the couple of times I have tried to use multiple page drawings have been a disaster. Takes forever to open the drawing file, save, rebuild etc. I now stick to one page per drawing file.

By: Greg Hynd  Wed, 10 Jun 2015 07:15:39 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

We'd use SpeedPak if it didn't have all sorts of graphics issues when you section the model;

 

SpeedPak Section.png

By: Dave Laban  Wed, 10 Jun 2015 07:35:29 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Greg - You're special that's why... lol

 

I have just finished a drawing set with 117 pages in one file which includes ten main assemblies with two tabs per assembly and 39 sheets of sub-assemblies and the rest are parts. 

 

I feel the biggest contributor to this is the parts are simple parts with only a few features and I only show top level BOM's in the assembly drawings, plus I try to eliminate any circular rebuilds and I do that by using a Skeleton Sketch part in every Sub-Assembly and also the main assembly.

 

This particular job is just a simple storage bed that we make here, however there are 10 different configurations per size.  What I did was use one file to accumulate all the configurations and then do a save as 9 times and open each file and delete the other configurations.  My feeling is what kills an assembly drawing rebuild time is; 1. Design Tables  2. Configurations 3. BOM's  4. Circular Rebuilds 5. Patterns - Not necessarily in that order.

 

I have another drawing file where I insert an assembly that includes all of the 10 Beds so I can create a custom indented BOM where I can show all my custom properties, that drawing is one sheet and it takes at least 3 to 5 min to open the drawing and when I export the BOM to excel it takes at least 15 min to save it, so right off the top an indented BOM is a time killer -

 

Here is my indented BOM with the drawing in the upper left hand corner, this gives you an idea how big the BOM really is ;

 

So, just my two cents "keep it simple" - which is really hard when SW has so many great features.

By: John Stoltzfus  Wed, 10 Jun 2015 10:52:04 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Hello

Thank you that you finally a discussion started.

At Multivac, we fight with the problems for 14 years.

We have assemblies with up to 30000 parts.

We have also the problem that we have parts and assemblies with many configurations.

So as I've read from the discussion so far, there is no strategy.

A way found for everyone, so his case can be solved.

The points are so far OK.

Unfortunately that is the design not taken into account.

What is also true, because first and foremost the technical specifications fulfilled must be.

What is not yet properly discussed so far, is the subject of drawings.

Here in Germany, this is a very important document.

This means that our designers first open the drawing.

Then, the model is opened. For large assemblies, the part is not possible.

We distinguish from SolidWorks following recommendations get.

We try to implement.

 

Best Practices to improve open times

-----------------------------------

Use Large Assembly Mode or Lightweight mode:

Multivac
subassemblies are in an permanent change, eg. konfigurations are added.

Multivac workshop wants zu measure drawings which are absolutely
up to date.

So a high persentage of components/subassemblies is not
possible to load lightweight.

And additionaly there was a risk of wrong display when
loaded lightweight in some cases is the past.

Large Design Review:

is a good
function with growing use at Multivac workfloor for measurement actions.

Very often in use at Multivac.

Mulivac trains his workers to use this more often.

Use simplified versions of models and Speedpak subassemblies:

It is very difficult to implement.

We needed to keep double up the assemblies, or to insert
configurations.

We have already parts with many configurations.

Additional configurations make the files bigger.

Using Speedpak derived configurations :

Uses at Multivac. In the model the benefits are already
there.

But often, our designers work with drawings.

Here, there are limitations such as measure.

Use display states instead of configurations where possible

We have still not closely examined the option.

We need but real configurations for the PDM.

Each configuration has its own material number.

Convert data forward to the latest version:

We have converted our data in the latest version.

Best Practices to improve update times

----------------------------------------------

Limit in-context features

We have almost no context components.

Limit mates by using rigid sub-assemblies

At the end of project flexible subassemblies are switched
back to rigid, before final save.

Limit the use of flexible sub-assemblies:

Turns off at multivac at the end of the design process.

Avoid mating to patterned instances and to assembly geometry:

This constellation is possible in use at Multivac. Can not
be  abselutely avoided because of
function reasons and because of design workflow reasons.

“Suspend Automatic Rebuild” and skip rebuild after editing
components

Is disabled in system options with us.

Reduce the graphical demands of your assembly

These are very well-intentioned advice.

But which designer forgoes the graphic representations at
work?

Use AssemblyXpert to help find bottlenecks

Is used, but like the other tips, it requires a long
learning process, to sensitize the designers.

Best Practices to improve drawing update times in drawing

---------------------------------------------------------------------

Use HLR drawing views

Is for us to set.

Use simplified versions of models (again)

It is very difficult to implement.

We needed to keep double up the assemblies, or to insert
configurations.

We have already parts with many configurations.

Additional configurations make the files bigger.

Limit Section Views

You can not German designers, who want to see every detail
in the cut.

Very difficult to implement.

Turn off “Automatic View Update.”

Is for us to set.

 

Yet the topic links at the highest level.

This is a wishful thinking of SolidWorks.

The design must be structured so that the Assembly and supply of spare parts is possible.

He pretend must conform to the structure in the SolidWorks model.

We could define any pseudo Assembly.

 

Greetings from Bavaria.

Siegfried.

 

PS: Excuse my English. Is not particularly good, but I hope you understand me.

By: Siegfried Grzeschik  Wed, 10 Jun 2015 11:13:09 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Good English or not - the points are well made and understandable - thank you very much

By: John Stoltzfus  Wed, 10 Jun 2015 11:23:07 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Hi Faur,


Thanks for listing that SPR. I'm pushing this to our PDM team to research what if anything is preventing this from being addressed in the future.

By: Don Van Zile  Wed, 10 Jun 2015 14:12:33 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Hi Dave,

 

In SW 2014 we've added the "Graphics-Only section" option. This was actually added to significantly increase the performance when sectioning assemblies even with thousands of components in mere seconds. This is the result of not actually mimicking creating an actual assembly cut feature behind the scenes to produce the section. This should produce better results when Speedpaks are being utilized as well; please give this a try. However, the limitation with this new option while being very quick for visual interrogation, you cannot use the measure tool on the component geometry which has been sectioned.

By: Don Van Zile  Wed, 10 Jun 2015 14:21:26 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Assembly Visualization is a great tool for less than 5 or 6 Custom Properties, it would be trump if I could see all of mine at once (over 30), however I would be happy to see 10 or more, then I could block out the ones I use a lot.  To use it now I would need to keep changing my filters and go down the list, change my filters and go down the list again.  Even though all my parts go through the Custom Property Tab Builder selected I still like to see a quick list for comparison, etc...

By: John Stoltzfus  Wed, 10 Jun 2015 14:27:21 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Thanks for the tip Don.  Using the graphics-only section view does indeed stop the SpeedPak'd assembly from displaying badly.  However as you point out, we do still lose the measurement capabilities of the "full" section view, which is something of a deal breaker.

By: Dave Laban  Wed, 10 Jun 2015 14:35:15 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Wow, 117 sheet drawing! That takes me back to my automotive seat adjuster design days. Here the supplies wanted all details of components on a single drawing which actually ended up being a 24' long drawing. Now that was all done using 3D wireframe and pen plotters! A single design changed on any part was an ECO to the entire drawing "set"...and of course you had to create 10-15 different drawing packs for review and approval for every change on only of the components!

 

John, I have to ask how big is that drawing file?

 

Today, I deal with similar issues with 3D solid models and a manufacturing packet that includes up to 30 different drawing sheets, which may contain multiple "parts". We only have raw material parts which are punched & formed, purchased parts and final assembly part numbers. As I mentioned the formed parts are raw material part numbers. Works for us. My issue with SW in not necessarily the assy file, but as someone else brought up the drawings and the egregious file sizes. I have drawing files that are larger than the sum of the all the components in the assembly. Not to mention some of these are only 2 sheet drawings. ( I have user that have to wait 10-15 minutes for SW drawings to load, update and then finally display for a 2-3 minute drawing change (Using EPDM and pulling data through a huge data pipe between buildings.)

 

The tool (SW) is very flexible in what it can do with the configurations and the drawing view's ability to include parts that are not part of the assembly you are detailing. This practice is allowed because the system allows you to control what is being displayed in each and every view on the drawing. This is a double edge sword that can end up either cutting your hands or splitting your head open! You can have a drawing that, in my previous world, should only reference what is in the assembly (using Master Model Concept) but can now reference parts "all over the place" (in actuality it is EPDM) but in most user cases you might be pulling from different servers or different folders- It just becomes a file reference nightmare that is very hard to troubleshoot load times.

 

Add EPDM and you have another headache to deal with. I just wish.. dreamy look on my skyward tilted face..that the enhancement that have been included in the past releases (either 3rd party purchase/integration or SW development project) would have been more thought out and done strategically and not put in place as a "enhancement request" that just provides a quick solution to problem. You can see this from some of the recent comments..many ways to do things to speed up performance but no true best practice can be applied because everyone is using the tools the best way they know how and that will be different from customer to customer. (i.e. Using configurations that show different product configurations in a single file! Now I have multiple "part numbers" controlled by a single file. Great if you don't have a formal change process. Sucks if you do!)

 

I'll jump off my soapbox now and let the next person chime in.

By: Ryan McVay  Wed, 10 Jun 2015 15:14:00 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

@Dave-

I'm curious if those components have solid body interferences and that is why you are seeing this issue? I've seen this type of results in other CAD packages when you do have interferences. The display functions don't know what to show so they default to entire solid body.

By: Ryan McVay  Wed, 10 Jun 2015 15:17:24 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

I never even thought to check the file sizes here are the two drawings I was talking about "5952Q-000" = 117 pages which opens in like 1/2 minute and the "All Beds" = 1 page takes like 5 or more minutes to open - I would never have guessed there is that much difference see below;

Again the "All Beds" one includes my huge BOM, both of these drawing have exactly the same parts and components in them.

By: John Stoltzfus  Wed, 10 Jun 2015 15:37:12 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Now that is a great example. 1/4 file size with BOM takes 10 times longer to open! Makes you wonder what the heck is going on with BOM, configurations and file references.

 

Now take that ~64MB file stick it in EPDM and use versions and revisions and watch your load times (find latest files, store in cache and then start to load) and your disk usage sky rocket! :-)

By: Ryan McVay  Wed, 10 Jun 2015 16:06:51 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Hi Siegfried,

 

Thanks for the detailed feedback, very much
appreciated.  I realize that a lot of
these tools/functionality have their drawbacks in which often you don’t get
something for nothing without tradeoffs; it would be great to minimize this and
offer enhanced solutions, drawings included to be sure.

 

There seems to be a common theme starting in that part
simplification would be used more often if it didn’t have the burden of more
configurations (nested included), configuration maintenance, learning curves
etc… regardless of wanting to see every detail at times. As mentioned, geometry
simplification is really where you get the most bang for the buck, not only at the
assembly level but drawings as well due to not having to calculate that much
more line geometry to create drawing views.
You bring up another good point about essentially “who would be
responsible for simplified components” as well which often is process driven
for different reasons.

 

Having said that, here’s just a typical example that I often
find of a component that is used many times that can somewhat be easily
simplified greatly reducing assembly and drawing view creation overhead. This
detail might be needed to manufacture the component drawing, but not required
at the top-level assembly.

 

6-10-2015 11-50-20 AM.png

By: Don Van Zile  Wed, 10 Jun 2015 17:34:59 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Hi Don,

Thanks, I hope that SW team will resolve this issue.

By: Faur Arama  Wed, 10 Jun 2015 19:31:51 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Hi Don,.

We also have the idea of simplification.

It is also applied to us.

Unfortunately, most of the parts with many configurations are with us.

Now, we must add yet additional configuration for each configuration.

I believe you are aware how big is the file.

Most of the parts we have for example 20-80 configurations.

I have there is a comment to the discussion.

The issue of large assemblies is very extensive. I mean, it was better in certain aspects to bases, to illuminate specific each point.

I've allowed me your list slightly to the expand.

  1. Opening Components in Lightweight mode
  2. SpeedPak
  3. Large Assembly mode
  4. Large Design Review
  5. Create Simplified Configurations of components

          Suppression/Removal of unnecessary Features for top-level assembly)

  1. Save Assemblies as Parts
  2. Defeature
  3. Suspend Automatic Rebuilds
  4. Display States
  5. Feature Freeze
  6. Assembly Visualization” tool.
  7. In-context features
  8. Mates by using rigid sub-assemblies
  9. Flexible sub-assemblies
  10. Mating to patterned instances and to assembly
    geometry
  11. Graphical demands of assembly
  12. AssemblyXpert to help find bottlenecks
  13. Best Practices to improve drawing update times
    in drawing

 

These are all points regarding the subject matter.

If this is addressed in a discussion, the discussion is confusing.

Another one at the end.

It's really harm the subject from the outset not properly was taken seriously by SolidWorks. We have now some complex problem. On the one side the many possibilities to models to generate, but proposals for simplifications in the Assembly.

I see here a "fight against windmills".

 

Greetings from Bavaria.

Siegfried.

By: Siegfried Grzeschik  Thu, 11 Jun 2015 07:33:55 GMT
Large Assembly Performance Discussion

I would like to start a discussion on performance with large
assemblies and potential workflows and/or work-arounds you may utilize to
better handle specific scenarios; different industries/processes may promote
different solutions. Some people think the sheer number of components
constitutes a large assembly, but this isn’t always the case (i.e. components
that are very complex and have hundreds of features can quickly add complexity
to a relatively small component count assembly too).

 

What tools/functionality do you currently use and why? What
are your specific pros and/or cons as it relates to your industry or process?
For example, do you utilize any of the following techniques:

 

Opening Components in Lightweight mode

SpeedPak

Large Assembly mode

Large Design Review

Create Simplified Configurations of components
(Suppression/Removal of unnecessary features for top-level assembly)

Save Assemblies as Parts

Defeature

Suspend Automatic Rebuilds

Display States

Feature Freeze

Flexible Subassemblies

Assembly Visualization tool

Detached Drawings

 

Other methods?

 

Quick Tips:

Utilize Subassemblies

Simplify geometry (Simplified Configuration where unnecessary features such as Fillets, Chamfers, Large Patterns, Threads, Extruded Text etc... are suppressed)

Minimize Flexible subassemblies, especially many nested as these mates all have to be solved at the top-level (Use only as needed and then make Rigid if able)

 

There are many different tools available and methods used
and reasons why to be sure, but I would like to hear what methods you use and
why or why not (pro/cons). Is there any preferred method you would like to be
able use but cannot because of a shortcoming or a process/workflow driven
reason? Any other method(s) you wish we supported but do not? Your most
frustrating workflows?  I really want to
try to keep this wide open as possible (it could even encompass drawing
creation of large assemblies) and look forward to having a proactive discussion;
I realize this is a source of frustration for many that wish was there was a
magic button.

 

Any and all feedback is welcome.

 

Thanks,

Don

By: Don Van Zile  Wed, 03 Jun 2015 21:14:07 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Hi Siegfried,

 

I can assure you, performance is taken very seriously, but it does not go without it's challenges as many have already mentioned; the idea that you don't get something for nothing and it can't necessarily come for free or without tradeoffs. We are always looking to optimize code and algorithms for large assemblies (the free aspect), but we also are always looking for other solutions with minimal drawbacks to users workflows. That's why all of this feedback and workflow discussion is very useful, regardless if it's been repeated even with newer releases.

 

To your points, I've edited my post to include other tools you mentioned as well as Detached Drawings for drawings. I would definitely be interested in what users do as best practices for drawings; I certainly think it's a vital aspect of Large Assembly performance to be sure.

 

Don

By: Don Van Zile  Thu, 11 Jun 2015 15:24:57 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Does anybody know if marking a particularly troublesome part as an envelope in an assembly will do anything for performance?  I realize it's not what envelopes are meant for, but I was hoping it might be a quick way to help a large assembly we have easier to work in.  Do envelopes get rebuilt/rendered the same way as other parts?  The rebuild time/graphics triangles states don't change.

By: Elisabeth Daley  Thu, 29 Oct 2015 19:47:49 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Elisabeth, that would help but you'd probably be better off if you add SpeedPak configuration to that file.  Envelops also trigger certain BOM and Mass Properties options which my be an issue for other tasks.

By: Adrian Velazquez  Thu, 29 Oct 2015 19:52:42 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Yes, Envelope parts/subs have no mass, and they do not show in drawings.  Could still be used in a non-primary configuration - if you find it helps performance, but Envelopes still have all the same mates, so I don't think it will help much. Making more components at the top level into sub assemblies will help.

 

Somewhat related:  Re: Who is and is not using 1 level of sub assembly only?

By: Brian McEwen  Thu, 29 Oct 2015 20:03:32 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Thanks, I had considered SpeedPak, but the part in question is still being redesigned frequently, and we're worried that the Speedpak file wouldn't get updated.  I'm not really worried about the mass properties and BOM just yet, and the part is already a couple layers down in sub-assemblies... but it's still driving performance at the top level.  And unfortunately, it does need to be there for clearance issues.  Right now I've got a simplified envelope to substitute for it, but it has the same issue with getting updated as Speedpak.

By: Elisabeth Daley  Thu, 29 Oct 2015 20:31:00 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Hi.

 

Do you mind to link to where I can search for this presentation?

 

 

David

By: David Bo Hansen Cartagena  Thu, 12 Nov 2015 14:12:48 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

It's good practice to make sure, every time you create a new part, to always create a simplified part configuration (where fx all features that isnt particulary important to the assembly is suppressed).

 

Its even possible to open this assembly directly with these simplified configurations (call all these configurations on parts by the same name e.g. Simplified) by hitting the advenced button in the open dialog.

 

Anything you can use?

 

Best regards,

Allan

By: Allan Aagaard  Thu, 12 Nov 2015 14:27:25 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Hi Allan,

 

Is there anything we could do to help create Simplified Configurations easier or using them?

By: Don Van Zile  Thu, 12 Nov 2015 16:07:57 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

+Large Design Review (LDR) is almost useless to me.  You are stuck with whatever config and display state the assembly was saved in.  I imagine there are technical software hurdles, but this is really a big weakness.  Even if it you can't dynamically change the file while in LDR, it would be way more useful if you could select Config and Display State before opening, as you can with other "Modes". 

 

Also with it open in LDR you currently have no visibility on what config or display state the model is in. We have assemblies around 5000 components, they open decently fast with our new computers, but there are times I want to use LDR to quickly open and find something.

 

+I've had crash issues with Defeature.  Has potential tho. (I can see that type of tool being cross functional - to create the no-brainer simplified part configurations mentioned).

 

+Flexible Subassemblies - we use them, but it comes at the cost of cherry bomb mates (mates that should work), and erratic movement behavior.

By: Brian McEwen  Thu, 12 Nov 2015 17:11:40 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

I'm not really sure if I can think of a faster way then the usual routine, configuration manager, RMB Add new configuration.

Or RMB the earliest feature you would like to suppress in the feature tree and click configure feature?

 

Rgrds,

Allan

By: Allan Aagaard  Fri, 13 Nov 2015 07:43:26 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Brian, have you tried opening in a selected display state and choose not to load the hidden components? It is a thing of beauty.

By: Alin Vargatu  Fri, 13 Nov 2015 11:37:51 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Alin, No, I had not tried it.

 

Test Assy: 2218 components, 61 mates, 72 Hidden per display state beta (which hides some significant sub assy and machine covers).

 

I just ran some tests:

Resolved: ~225 sec

Regular (Large Assy Mode): 60 sec

Regular with Do Not Load Hidden: 41 sec

Edrawings: 18 to 22 seconds (nothing hidden)

Large Design Review: 12 to 18 sec! (and nothing hidden due to way it was saved in default display state)

 

So the Do Not Load option helps, and I can see it paying off if you have a big assembly and lots hidden, but it is significantly slower than the LDR open.  The problem with LDR comes when the assy was saved with things hidden that you want to see, you have no way to access them or even know for sure they exist.  eDrawings is a decent option for finding a component when an assembly was saved with components hidden (but it is eDrawings, so other limitations).

 

AssemblyXpert image for Resolved-->

Ran test with a Xeon E5-1620 v2 @3.70GHz, and a Samsung SSD.

 

Thanks for the idea.

By: Brian McEwen  Fri, 13 Nov 2015 14:12:35 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Then, SpeedPak is the way to go for you. Would combine the best of LDR with fully resolved.

By: Alin Vargatu  Fri, 13 Nov 2015 16:18:52 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Hi Brian,

 

According to that AssemblyXpert output, it doesn't seem that would really constitute a large assembly (Component count doesn't always justify this to be sure); that 12-18 seconds to open in Large Design Review as well is an issue. Do you happen to have a few very complex models or imported parts with thousands of bodies or surfaces? Would you be able to share that assembly model via FTP for me to interrogate with developers for further future research? Please message me your email if you're able to, it will stay internal and confidential.

 

Anyone else is encouraged as well for problematic assemblies for us to better understand and improve performance in the future.

 

Thanks,

Don Van Zile - Product Definition

By: Don Van Zile  Fri, 13 Nov 2015 17:58:39 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Brian, please post a screenshot of the Assembly Visualization sorted by the Graphic-Triangles column.

By: Alin Vargatu  Fri, 13 Nov 2015 18:06:11 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Using Pro/E currently, and looking at SW, I am also puzzled by the "rebuild" issue.  WHY????

By: Frank Schiavone  Fri, 13 Nov 2015 18:21:51 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Here are the top 10 from Assembly Visualization (small percentage after this).  First 4 are sub assy. The 5th was a bit of a surprise, it is an imported part that is apparently overly complex.  6th is another sub. But I've never looked at graphics triangles before so I can only compare numbers.  In general I think our parts are not complex, and you can see the total number of bodies listed: 2442 is not much more than the total components (2218).

I didn't think of it as a problem assembly, it is just one example to illustrate the unrealized potential of LDR for a quick open. Who would not want to save 45 seconds to open a high level assembly and check something?

 

Also 12 seconds seems good, you are telling me that is slow for LDR Don?  (at this point I can't share that particular assembly)

 

I don't think we would go the SpeedPak route.  Doesn't seem worth extra overhead just for this. But it has been a while since I tried Speedpak, I'll consider it.

 

Thanks.

By: Brian McEwen  Fri, 13 Nov 2015 18:54:50 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Hi Brian,

 

Opening in LDR should "typically" only take a few seconds and very rarely over 10; I say that because there may be very complex geometry. Could you also perhaps add the "Face Count" property as well to that AssemblyViz as another column?

By: Don Van Zile  Fri, 13 Nov 2015 19:28:55 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

3.1 million triangles? Is that an assembly? What is the maximum number of triangles in one part?

By: Alin Vargatu  Fri, 13 Nov 2015 20:41:06 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

3.1mil was the main biggest sub assy.

I found the flat view button. So showing only the 29 most triangley parts...

 

 

The biggest is (was) 135806.  And, lol, it is a pipe-T from McMaster... Okay, weird, after I rebuilt and set all to resolved it dropped to 96304. The worst is an imported electronic device (also worst on Face Count). We have some bad springs, a DVI cable...

 

Most of the worst offenders are imported parts.  80% of the parts are under 7000 triangles.

Why doesn't Rebuild Time go along with Triangle count? The worst on rebuild time is actually a fine set screw with threads modeled (which we generally avoid).

By: Brian McEwen  Fri, 13 Nov 2015 21:20:47 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Imported vendor components, and especially electrical components are very common to be the worst offenders when it comes to generating complex graphics models, which is disappointing really. Often a lot of unnecessary extruded logos, fillets etc...

 

Rebuild Time corresponds to the Rebuilding of actual SW features verses the Triangle Count to display the component body/surface. Thread features are definitely not recommended as you mention you typically avoid, which is good practice for large assemblies.

By: Don Van Zile  Fri, 13 Nov 2015 21:30:41 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

I was working on a rack assy, and by the time I got done with the rack components, shelves and fasteners, I had two to three hundred mates in the assy. I was able to make several sub assy's in the rack assy, but the way it was configured, we still had boucoup mates in it. Unfortunately, when we got to the installation, were we added the avionics that went into the rack, it REALLY bogged down. This needs to be fixed.

 

Al

By: Al Griego  Fri, 13 Nov 2015 21:44:10 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Reduce the image quality on the offending parts. It will reduce the number of triangles.

By: Alin Vargatu  Fri, 13 Nov 2015 23:38:29 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Okay, interesting.  I guess I did not fully understand the behavior of the Document Properties>>Image Quality settings earlier... Not sure I do now either.  Regarding GT (Graphics-Triangles).

 

Changing the setting in an assembly vs the sldprt...

If you close everything and open the sldasm, it will use the sldasm quality settings I think... as long as the parts are lightweight (when lightweight Assembly Visualization has a message that calculations are inaccurate).  If you set to Resolved sometimes it changes the GT number to the part setting, but sometimes it does not.  If you Open the lightweight part instead of Set to Resolved, it will always change to the GT number dictated by the part setting. It seems like Open and Resolve would do the same thing.

 

If "apply to all referenced part documents" is checked changing the sldasm will actually move the slider at the part level, but it won't indicate the part was changed, so you have to deliberately save the part to capture the change at the part level.  If you change the setting at the sldasm while the parts are lightweight it will not take affect - when you open the part the number of GT will go back to whatever it was.

 

Anyway, I found I could reduce the number of triangles for a problem electrical part from 127k to about 24k with this setting.

By: Brian McEwen  Mon, 16 Nov 2015 17:14:58 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Brian McEwen wrote:

 

 

 

Anyway, I found I could reduce the number of triangles for a problem electrical part from 127k to about 24k with this setting.

That is huge. Save the files and check the new file set's size.

By: Alin Vargatu  Tue, 17 Nov 2015 00:18:15 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

For the pipe-T the file size was cut in half with the Image Quality reduced (starting at 120k GT, 3mb).  Then I took out the triple helical sweep and it dropped further to 3700 GT, and file size 0.5mb .  Rebuild time massively improved.

By: Brian McEwen  Tue, 17 Nov 2015 13:52:10 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Brian McEwen wrote:

 

For the pipe-T the file size was cut in half with the Image Quality reduced (starting at 120k GT, 3mb).  Then I took out the triple helical sweep and it dropped further to 3700 GT, and file size 0.5mb .  Rebuild time massively improved.

 

Glad to hear that!

By: Alin Vargatu  Tue, 17 Nov 2015 17:37:25 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Please refresh the link to the video and presentation. Interesting topic. Thank you in advance.

By: Andrew Kolonitskiy  Thu, 19 Nov 2015 09:17:32 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Please refresh the link to the video and presentation. Interesting topic. Thank you in advance.

By: Andrew Kolonitskiy  Thu, 19 Nov 2015 09:18:08 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Here's the updated link:
SOLIDWORKS World :: SOLIDWORKS World Presentations

 

Search the 2014 Proceedings

By: Adrian Velazquez  Thu, 19 Nov 2015 15:24:23 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Here you are Don:

 

Opening Components in Lightweight mode

We have found that lightweight mode causes more problems then help in large assemblies. We have completely turned off lightweight and large assembly mode. While using Lightweight mode AND EPDM, it is constant to receive the message telling us that a part is being modified that is not checked out and not being modified at all. This error is in direct relation to Lightweight and Large assembly mode. The downside is that to maintain the integrity of our files I have turned off Lightweight and Large assembly mode.

SpeedPak

Never use it

Large Assembly mode

Turned off for above mentioned reasons

Large Design Review

Never used it

Create Simplified Configurations of components

(Suppression/Removal of unnecessary features for top-level assembly)

I've seen organization do this, but feel that design should be as close to the real process of manufacturing. Add Design Tables,

Save Assemblies as Parts

Unfortunately, because of SW not working well with Part in Part design, see my idea: Part in Part Model Creation to be as Seamless as inserting in an Assembly, and not requiring external part be open for u…)  , I find myself having to do this. Example, a Dowel I buy from a vendor is 5', I want to make a part  5", In order to do this, I have to make an assembly, then save it as a part in order to keep parametric links.

Defeature

Never used it

Suspend Automatic Rebuilds

We don't use this, we prompt

Display States

A necessity for proper portrayal of the assembling of an assembly without making hundred of configurations

Feature Freeze

Never used it

Flexible Subassemblies

Love it, but do not love the variance of user knowledge on how to use it

Assembly Visualization tool

Never used it

Detached Drawings

Never, doesn't make sense to have this

By: Scott Casale  Thu, 19 Nov 2015 18:17:21 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

In additions to lightweight issues I just sent out an email to all of our engineers that it is in their best interest to uncheck "Large Assembly Mode" in the system options.  We have identified multiple instances where it is causing crashes or hangs opening assemblies, opening parts from within and assembly, replacing parts, etc.  Funny thing is some of the assemblies component thresholds are less then what it is set to in the options but for whatever reason it still causes crashes.  Once the assembly is open they can turn on "Large Assembly Mode" via the Tools pull down if needed for performance reasons and we do not see the issues.

By: Bill Stadler  Thu, 19 Nov 2015 18:57:10 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Agree with you Bill, in my experience LAM works better when enabling after the assembly is opened Fully Resolved

By: Adrian Velazquez  Thu, 19 Nov 2015 19:00:13 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Hi Bill and Adrian,

 

Did either of you happen to report these LAM issues to you Var? If not, do you have a repeatable data set that you can upload via an FTP link I can setup for you to better diagnose?

By: Don Van Zile  Fri, 20 Nov 2015 13:16:29 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Hi Don,

 

Yes I have a call open with them.  I have many over the years about crashing when opening an assembly in lightweight and LAM mode.  Typically what comes back is open th e assembly fully loaded, Check out All the parts in the assembly save them and Check them back in.  Easy to do when it is a hand full off components, not so easy when it is thousands that are "Released" as well as part of our purchased library.  in EPDM. The next one we run into I will upload to our FTP and send you a link.

 

The problem is it is sporadic. But I can say when ever we run into issues with assembly crashes the majority of the time unchecking the Large Assembly Mode in options resolves it.  In the past I though it was lightweights but now I am heavily leaning towards LAM.  Lightweights have their own issues such as Assembly features (cuts, patterns, etc) that do not update, inconsistent mate errors, sporadic crashes when opening assemblies due to a file not being upgraded to the current release...

 

Thanks for your reply!

By: Bill Stadler  Fri, 20 Nov 2015 13:37:15 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Hi Bill,

 

I know you are still very proactive with your VAR on issues which is great to hear, especially for how many users you have to maintain and busy you all are. Did you happen to get any SPR’s assigned regardless if they came back with opening Resolved obviously; I hope they did? You should be getting the FTP email shortly.

 

As always, thanks for your cooperation,

Don

By: Don Van Zile  Fri, 20 Nov 2015 14:15:10 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

For speeding up large assembly we create a lot of small sub assemblies that contains a part or two and a lot of fasteners. Unfortunately promote function from SolidWorks does not function in Enterprise PDM. Now these sub assemblies are listed in BOM even in reality these sub assemblies does not exist. I made a lot of request to may VAR and Solidworks support team for make promote function available also in EPDM but no positive response till now.

By: Faur Arama  Sat, 21 Nov 2015 08:39:51 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Guys some great content in here, we are still wrestling with an age old issue .... speed in large assemblies.  One specific question ... in an assembly with 10 parts. Instant deletion of single/multiple components.  In a large assembly (88MB) 978 part/sub-a deletion of single or multiple items in a group takes 8-10 seconds? Why?.

 

Same type of assembly in Inventor deletion of a part in such a large assembly taking 1-2 seconds.  We are a trying to understand why deletion of single parts is taking so long in large assembly?.  Following all standard approaches/parameters/settings and ability to generate drawings and view/rotate around this complex model etc.  Any advice/suggestions. We have tested models in PDM/Saved locally. All same version SW 2017 SP 3.0 etc. 

By: Colin Ross  Tue, 14 Nov 2017 08:26:53 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Colin Ross wrote:

 

Guys some great content in here, we are still wrestling with an age old issue .... speed in large assemblies. One specific question ... in an assembly with 10 parts. Instant deletion of single/multiple components. In a large assembly (88MB) 978 part/sub-a deletion of single or multiple items in a group takes 8-10 seconds? Why?.

 

Same type of assembly in Inventor deletion of a part in such a large assembly taking 1-2 seconds. We are a trying to understand why deletion of single parts is taking so long in large assembly?. Following all standard approaches/parameters/settings and ability to generate drawings and view/rotate around this complex model etc. Any advice/suggestions. We have tested models in PDM/Saved locally. All same version SW 2017 SP 3.0 etc.

Would need to see the assembly running on your system in order to assess what's going on.

By: Alin Vargatu  Tue, 14 Nov 2017 19:56:55 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

2817 PERFORMANCE EVAL.JPG

 

We use speed pack but found it corrupts virtual parts or assemblies - have SPR with VAR

We use Large assembly mode all the time no problems.

We never use Large Design Review.  If you reviewing a large design you need to measure accurately.

Light weight mode usually will crash SW.

Drawings we would like to use Detached drawing mode but 2nd time opening drawing parts and assemblies missing.  You have to rebuild the drawing witch will load the entire model.  What's the point of a detached drawing if you have to load the model anyways.  SPR with VAR

Detached drawing can not be save out as DWG or DXF unless fully loading.  Enhancement Request.

Drawing with speed pack models works ok but 2nd time opening drawing will load all parts then turn drawing into speed pack.  No time savings.  SPR with VAR

Speed Pack drawing can not be save out as DWG or DXF.  Enhancement Requested.

We will be using Defeatured parts linked to assemblies in the future to reduce part qty.  Extra steps, not sure it will save time but may save model corruption, model load times and drawing load times.

Defeaturing piping assemblies doesn't work out well.  It takes a long time to defeature, sometimes up to an hour for a small piping assembly.

Drawings - Section views of large assemblies take a long time because model must be loaded fully.  Found we loose many dimension next time we open drawing.

Drawings of entire plant layout with all models in speed pack very slow to work with annotating and dimensioning.

Pack & go route assemblies will pack and go entire plant layout.  Enhancement Requested.

2817 PLANT LAYOUT.JPG

By: Aaron Seifert  Tue, 14 Nov 2017 22:33:53 GMT
Re: Large Assembly Performance Discussion

Alin, it was more a general question to users who have assemblies with 500+ parts, how quickly do they see performance in interface terms like deletion of single/multiple parts ..... I think waiting 10s to delete a part in large assemblies is frustrating, esp. in direct competition to a rival system like Inventor where 1s, this is across all of our design team (50+) using SW. We have converted to SW from Inventor for global EPDM gains and system collaboration (and 95% of ex Inventor users prefer the SW interface and functionality so I am not banging the drum of Inventor - it does some things better and vice versa). On the whole we are happy with SW.

 

But clearly large assembly performance in SW is something the company needs to look at.  What I have seen in some respects Inventor is clearly ahead in performance terms.

By: Colin Ross  Wed, 15 Nov 2017 07:57:13 GMT
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