Low cost animation or system wide dynamics?

I am considering switching from doing my 3d design work in AutoCAD or Inventor to Solidworks. I am also hoping to make use of a program to
generate simulations of the mechanisms we design. Stuff like simple animatronics, which has multiple actuators and multiple linkages. At this point, financially our only option is to use the basic version of Solidworks, and not the Office or any other add-ons that seem to start at $5,000. So, I am fishing for other add-on's or perhaps just a better understanding of the capabilities in the basic version of Solidworks.
The minimum need, is to be able to script the movements of the various actuators, so that we could see the entire unit operating as an assembly. Of course, standard animation packages, Maya or 3DS Max do this stuff, but I find that the task of exporting from the CAD package to the animation program tends to loose information about the linkages.
Simply grabbing an object and dragging with the mouse is not sufficient. I want to say to the program;
"At 7 seconds into the animation, move linear actuator #1 from its minimum position to 3 inches, and take 1/2" second to do it. At 9 seconds into the animation, rotate servomotor #3 15 degrees in 1 second. etc."
Of course, in addition to this, I would like to get as much dynamic information as I can and even define the response time of each actuator for a given load, but I realize I have to give most of this up. Our local dealer is not familiar with the low end products or even the details of the basic kinematics in Solidworks.
Is there an ad-on for Solidworks, costing under $1,000 which will give me some of the capabilities I am looking for?
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What you _want_ is Cosmos/Motion. It does everything you describe, but it costs a lot ($6k? don't remember).
What will work for free (plus programming time), is Excel and VBA. I've used it to animate 3-DOF mechanisms. You can specify dimensions vs. time in Excel (as functions or a table), record "driven" dimensions vs. time, record CG info, etc. It takes a little visual basic tweaking, but it can be very powerful. It doesn't calculate forces, just kinematic stuff. You could add forces to it, but that would be very involved.
Email me if you want to see an example. No warranty :)
Oh, and it all started with a free "monthly macro" at http://www.extremedp.com/ that was called "assembly motion", but it appears to have been taken down.
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There is also MotionWorks. http://www.solid-dynamics.com/english/index.html
Not sure what the costs are for that either.
There are full use downloads of any of the above that work for 15 days (I think).
Hope that helps,
Adam.
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Thank you all for your recommendations, but the $5,000+ cost seems to put all the commercial ones out of the picture. But, of course, I keep reading Solidworks promo literature, which seems to suggest that the basic program will do everything I want to do.
Of course, I know better than to accept any marketing speak as anything but bologna. So, I will get a hands-on seminar in 2 weeks, I guess that is the only way to find out. The Solidworks web site certainly is not the source for any real information.
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