Usually there are a number of ways sketch elements can be constrained, and I'm curious if there are any rules or guidelines for this (i.e are certain constraints considered better to use, if given a choice, because maybe they're easier to solve?). I assume fewer are better, but maybe that depends on which are being used as well.
Thanks for any thoughts on this. Just curious.
If the sketch is a first feature, you can use geometric as well as dimensional constraints, no doubt. If I want to align a line to datum axis, I can use collinear constraint or create dimension with a zero value if position of the line going to change at some later stage. If the sketch is created after some features, existing datums/faces/edges can be used with geometric constraints which can avoid the clutter of dimensions to some extent. I would say it will depend upon the design intent required and individual user approach.
Reading your question made me think of the following topics:
I know it is work, but I wish you have some fun while using NX!
My only issue with autodimensions, is that a user can still drag the curves, and change the auto dimension. We have seen it happen unintentionally. I'd suggest converting them to driving, if this is a concern.
I'm old school, and don't like being told what to do, so I turn auto dimenions off
Dave, I know that many long time users do not like the auto dimension. The one nice thing in NX 11 is that there is a toggle to hide them from the display. They are still there and you can show and hide them. It does help the use of auto dimension.
I am not sure if I can change your mind about them, but I just wanted to make you aware of this.
**bleep** Thank you for that list. Very nice and useful!
A lot of what you mentioned I already do. The one exception is autodimensioning. I don't use it because I would rather decide myself where to place dimensions. To me, it's part of establishing design intent. I know I can replace them, but that creates extra work. Also, I don't like the way they clutter the sketch. But if there's a toggle that will allow me to easily switch them on an off, I may revisit that.
With regard to "limit the amount of external references", one suggestion I saw (which I now do) is when starting a new sketch, change the selection scope to "Within Active Sketch Only". Why that isn't the default, I don't know.
With regard to "Use the correct tool to contrain", could use explain "Drag and drop"? That's one I've never used.
This small video shows what I meant by constraint creation through drag and drop:
We are constantly trying to find the right balance between respect for both new and existing users, functionality and usability.