Assembly/Parts Manuals

How are people creating Assembly/Parts Manuals from SolidWorks. Any suggestions or comments would be appreciated.

Reply to
Steven Rowan
Loading thread data ...

Why not just explode your assembly view and bubble the individual parts. Then put a BOM with whatever info needed on the page?? Jake Barron

Reply to

Have you tried using something like CorelDraw to import graphics AND Excel tables (BOMs)? Works very well for me. I output Acrobat files from that directly . . . can include Web links, bookmarks, index, table of contents, everything one needs. And of course you can use OLE to keep everything upd-to-date . . . that is, if you don't mind some additional instability. Personally I greatly prefer CorelDraw over PageMaker even though PagerMaker is more powerful in some ways, but Adobe has other and more recent applications than PageMaker you might want to investigate. Rather pricey, though. QuarkExpress is the other (pricey) alternative, and it's what most graphics illustrators prefer. Adobe Illustrator, the less pricey alternative, basically works in single page only mode, so you would have to do one page at a time and compile the result by hand into a multi-page Acrobat file. That's a clunky way to do things at best. I would vote CorelDraw hands-down among the choices available . . . but I'm no expert.

Mark 'Sporky' Stapleton Watermark Design, LLC

formatting link

Reply to

Most of our manuals have been produced using Pagemaker. We create an assembly with all the configs and explosions required then create one drawing (without a border). THe dawing is then imported to PM and copied and croped to create the sequenced views. It does work quite well and you get the OLE bit too but I find it a bit to labourious. Recently we have been experimenting with IPAPublish3D from Immersive Design, this software creates HTML files with parts lists, Boms, Animated assemblies/Disassemblies etc, looking very promising. There are two version available, Standard and Pro both have demo versions are available to try before you buy.



Reply to
Brian Lawson


Here are three.

  1. From SolidWorks, File, Save As select Jpeg format. Jpeg is good for documentation because the file size is small. What you see in the SolidWorks graphics window is what will be in the Jpeg file. No cost, but not that much in control.

  1. If you have alot of pictures, download or purchase a screen capture tool, that lets you select a region in the screen. I use snag-it ( There are alot of nice options if you are selecting picture after picture.

After the jpeg files are taken, they can be modified in the drawing tools of snag-it or you can go another application to add text and additional graphics. Snag-it can be downloaded free for 30 days.

  1. Try They produce a gold partner software application to document the assembly process.

From a technique perspective, I use different configurations to help document the assembly process. Also, when you make an exploded view, think about how the components will be assembled and disassembled, this will assist in the animation as you create multiple screen shots.

Know the type of output you are looking for, paper or electronic. Paper is usually reproduced in black&white - so pictures will be in shades of gray or hidden lines removed. Electronic files will see color - but screen shots do not require high quality as they would for a product brochure.

Regards, Marie

Reply to

Thank you very much for your posts on this topic. I have been investigating this subject now for the last couple of months and believe that there is another solution partner product out there that has some merit. The website is

formatting link
The product has the ability to import 2D or 3D models/drawings directly from SolidWorks into the publishing program. The program also is able to produce a printed document as well as 3D interactive documents readable from their free viewer. It is a new and interesting program that is hopefully going to change the way products are documented.

Have you heard of this product before?? Any comments would be appreciated.


Reply to

I looked at them a year ago, showed their stuff to our Tech Pub group, but it never went any farther. I think maybe their price was higher than was desired to pay here. I also think that maybe our group had other ideas of their own. I thought it looked pretty neat.


Reply to
Wayne Tiffany

PolyTech Forum website is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.