By Kim Hyde
Inventor’s Factory Design Utilities are a proven set of easy-to-use tools dynamically linking 2D AutoCAD layouts with 3D Inventor models. It has been said may times that the word `Factory’ doesn’t best describe the versatility of tools provided, many examples exist of designs ranging from layouts of office / kitchen furniture to decking layouts for shipping! See the following Cadline Community links to see some short video examples first-hand:
Many users will utilise the extensive range of `Assets’ freely available on the Cloud, however users may not know that Assets may also be stored and managed in Vault … read on to find out more.
Like all Autodesk products Factory Design Utilities is available on a subscription basis and once purchased will be available via your Autodesk Account for download. For more product information and testimonials refer to the following link and contact us here at Cadline:
Screen-shot of the FDU installation media showing the installation completion, note the add-in elements for various products including Vault.
Configuration and Asset Building to Vault
Once the Factory Design Utilities are installed, the first step will be to define mapping available from the Vault Workgroup / Vault Professional applications via Tools > Factory Configuration feature; this provides the selection of folder location to be used for the Asset data repository (see below)
Additional entities are also created on the installation allowing users to select either Factory Asset or Factory Layout independently (image below showing the entity list including a custom entity I have added for BIM Projects).
Asset Builder can be used in the traditional way with the landing surface and connectors defined using existing 3D models, the Publish Asset tool provides an additional option to store the data in Vault.
Here is a video of an example using Asset Builder and Publish Asset to Vault.
Factory Asset files are saved as `faf’ files within the configured (mapped) library folder, with the access to Vault’s embedded usual visualisation tools for viewing and measuring the 3D data:
The Where Used tab provides information on which designs the Asset has been used.
Using Vaulted Assets
Adding Factory Assets directly from Vault is then a simple task using the `Vault Asset’ folder via the Asset Browser. Here is a video on placing Vaulted Assets.