We have several custom properties that are being mapped to the drawing
title block. I can link the property in the model to our PDM system,
but I cant link the mapped property in the title block to the PDM
system. EX. Description in Mode01 is "Shaft". I can link this to the
Description field in our PDM system for the model card. When I go to
checkin the drawing, the Description field on the drawing card is blank
(since their isnt a Description property in the drawing, only a link to
the description in the model).
Is this the correct way to link properties to the Title Block?
-MODEL CUSTOM PROPERTIES-
-TITLE BLOCK MAPPING-
You are correct in your assumption. In linking the property of the
models to your titleblock you don't populate the Drawing properties.
The PDM is looking for these custom properties in the drawing and can't
A quick test would be to insert a custom property in the drawing called
"Description" and then fill out the field "Shaft_dwg". Save or register
the drawing into the PDM system and it should pick up the "Shaft_dwg"
value from the drawing.
Most PDM systems have the ability to link model properties with drawing
properties (Such as descriptions, revision changes, etc....) to ensure
that both are in sync. Thus, when the drawing is saved the custom
properties can populate the meta data of the PDM form. PDM should do
this automatically so you don't.
Which PDM system are you using?
With respect to your title block mapping my comments are as follows:
Descriptions and Title Block Names may differ.
Descriptions are usually longer (read detailed) and will probably
appear on a BOM or purchasing list. Title blocks are usually shorter
due to space constraints.
Thus a description in a model/BOM may be
Shaft, Modifed Stock Component, Reduced to 3/4 Inch, Stock 6061-T6 Al
The drawing Title block might be
Shaft, Mod. Stock Comp.,
3/4 IN, 6061-T6
in order to fit on two lines.
BTW: I try to avoid using material callout in the titleblock. SW2006
text can be formatted so longer lines are automatically wrapped to the
The designer of the model and the creator of the drawing may be two
different people. If there is a problem with the model I want to know
who go after..... if it is a drawing error then I want to know who to
The creation date of the model and drawing will differ. There may be
multiple drawings referencing the same part file (i.e two different
configurations as purchased and as-modified). Both will reference the
same model file but will have two different drawings).
Part Type may (or may not) be determined by the drawing.
Also, I use configuration properties now that SW allows you to assign
different materials to different configurations. Thus, geometrically
identical, models can be assigned different materials per
configuration. Using configuration properties allows a BOM to show both
configurations with different part numbers, material, and descriptions.
My .02 cents worth.
Len K. Mar, P.Eng.
"If sense is so common....... why is it in such short supply?"
SW Monkey wrote:
Thanks for the comments Len.
Yes, if I have a Description property in my drawing, it does get
propagated to the PDM system. We dont want to have to put the
description in both the model and drawing, thats why we have the
titleblock grab the Description from the model. Do you have any other
ideas what we could do? We are currently using Smarteam, which I just
started playing around with mappings, but we will soon be switching to
The only thing I can think of is to try and use a "close" drawing
trigger to copy the model properties
to the drawing document database.
This would depend on your PDM's API set to be able to determine the
condition of the drawing, its linked model, model configuration used in
the drawing, and properties of that configuration.
There is nothing wrong with having the data in two files as long as
there is a system to synchronize them.
All my configuration/drawing properties are PDM generated. Depending on
client they may have 30-40 properties.
I haven't had to add a file property in years.
Most PDM systems treat drawings and models as separate entities (as
I suspect the system you choose will dictate "best practices" with
respect to said properties.
What system will you switching to?
Wouldn't time be better spent making sure your current files are set up
ported over to the new system.
Wouldn't that new system dictate the schema you need to use?
Well, we are looking at a few packages. I want to get a better idea of
what the "right" way of handling custom properties is. It seems like
if SolidWorks has a standard way of handling custom properties, than
the software than is written for SolidWorks should support the standard.
Last time I was responsible to make a format, I mapped the model
properties to the drawing properties, then put the drawing properties
into the format.
i.e. custom properties of drawing as [property name] --> [property
Description --> $PRPSHEET:"Description"
Eng --> $PRPSHEET:"Eng"
Dwn_by --> $PRPSHEET:"Dwn_by"
Part_Type --> $PRPSHEET:"Part_Type"
Material --> $PRPSHEET:"Material"
That was last job. PDM system was "Meridian". More of a generic PDM,
not CAD-specific, maybe somewhat affiliated w/ Inventor. Handles SW
just fine, including assembly and drawing dependencies. I would
DEFINITELY trade Meridian for SmarTeam.
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