Drafting, Parts, Solid Edge, Tips

When in the draft environment, you may wish to place some overall dimensions on an isometric view. The only tool that will give you true dimensions is the Smart Dimension tool.

Smart dimension is commonly thought of as a “dimension element” tool, but it can also be used to dimension between elements. typically, you would pick an element and a dimension of the length (or radius/diameter) will be displayed automatically, ready to be positioned. If you select a second element before placing the dimension, the display will change to a dimension between the two elements selected:



Before you place the dimension, you also have the option of changing the plane that the dimension is placed on by hitting the “N” (next) key or the “B” (back) key to cycle through the various options available, depending on the elements selected:


The most important thing to remember when using the smart dimension to dimension between elements is to avoid selecting lines or circles at their keypoints as this may cause unexpected results, especially when changing planes that the dimension is placed on:


Using Smart dimension in general (2D) usage is also very powerful. When using smart dimension as a “dimension element” command, there are a number of options available on the command bar (options bar) to change the way in which the dimension measures: . The first two options here are related to linear elements and allow you to switch from dimension the length of the line and the second switches to the angle of the line in relation to the horizontal or vertical axis. Dimensioning an arc activates all four options, dimension the arc length, angle or as a radial or diametric dimension. Dimensioning a circle will only offer the ability of dimensioning as a radius or diameter.

One final fact about using Smart Dimension is the ability to switch between a parallel dimension (default) and a horizontal/vertical dimension and can be achieved by holding down the shift key while placing the dimension.


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