How do you do Electrical Wiring Diagrams???

Obviously SW isn't great with 2d which is somewhat understandable. But with any machine design you have some sort of wiring that needs to be documented.
So are we supposed to bite the bullet and buy AutoCad also just to do diagrams or is there a better solution.
Corey Scheich
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My first thought is a 3D sketch with some shape of sweep, but I've never tried to do a harness in SW, so it's just a guess. I used to be in charge of wiring harnesses, etc. on combines & tractors, but that was 2D with Cadkey.
WT

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acad lite is much cheaper or try visio
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We use Visio Professional (or whatever is it called now... Visio 2003?) and find it to be rather nice. Wiith the "pro" version you get added sybols for electronics and hydraulics, and most symbols have several configurations to get what you need.
But sadly, we also have years worth of AutoCAD files as well, and were are not going to redo them in Visio. But for all new diagrams and schematics, we are using Visio Professional.

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Corey, With Visio installed, you can "insert" a schematic, wiring diagram, etc right in to a SolidWorks drawing. I'll admit to not having used it for production (we have AutoCAD already), but I played with it a bit. The advantages are single-window integration with SolidWorks, you use your standard drawing templates, and it's saved as a SolidWorks drawing. Worth a look if you have to buy SOMETHING.
Richard
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They used to give away a copy MS Visio a few years back. I think it was for diagrams and such.
MT
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We use Acad for all strictly 2d stuff like wiring diagrams. SWX is a good tool, but you wouldn't drive nails with a screwdriver.

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Thank you all. We currently are using AutoCAD the problem is we only have one seat, which we use to update the archive drawings and such since we only have one seat it is kindof annoying because if one of us needs to make an electrical schematic we have to jump computers or try to decifer someone's chicken scratch. It would be much easier if we could just get an addin. Maybe a network liscense of AutoCad is in order.
Corey

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Why don't you try to find Intellicad? It reads and writes directly to DWG format, and at least one version of it was free. I think the latest versions may be some nominal cost (like $199 or something). If what you're using for AutoCAD isn't the very latest then I think the files would probably open in Intellicad.
'Sporky'
Corey Scheich wrote:

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Absolutely! Your current seat should be upgradable to a network float. We implemented this at my last job and we saved a bundle - used the savings to get solidworks seats.
I also recommend the use of autocad LT for pure 2D, which is a great value, and unless one needs a data translator or a 3rd part app, is very equivilent to "real" autocad for a fraction of the price (this is the best kept secret in cad in my mind).
My take on wiring (not even worth 2 cents)-
-Modeling wires in 3D is INSANE and WASTEFUL! -Visio pro might be a great tool -Schematics are well generated with something like P-cad, if available, having a real EE doing the work helps immensely. -Pictorials with wire run lists (from-to-via) in a 2D like ACAD with digital photos to help can work well. -Digital pix in word plus run tables (no cad at all) are another option. -Make what an electronics technician needs, not a mechanical designer. Who is the audience (end user)? Fit their needs. -Vanilla SolidWorks is not the tool to use for this sort of work (you already have see this). To a man with a hammer every problem a nail . . . (grin)
Schematic show what to wire - pictorials show how to wire.
to your question - What do we use?
P-CAD schematic + Autocad pictorial + wire run list + word + digital photo, blended as needed to suit the given application.
Regards,
SMA
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