Using the SOLIDWORKS Inspection Add-In has many advantages for quickly creating inspection documentation. Inspection leverages the power of SOLIDWORKS drawings to create ballooned inspection drawings and details inspection reports, such as first article reports. When it comes to general properties for the project, such as part name or part number, there is a handy way to make sure your inspection reports have the most accurate information.
Let’s start a new inspection project, by selecting the icon on either the Inspection Command Manager or on the Inspection Tree.
The first step in a new project is choosing the project template. I used the default one for this example. Next up is our project properties. The first six are unique in that they can be linked to custom properties from either the drawing or the model in the drawing. To do this, click on one of the six property names. I will start with the Part Number.
Clicking on the property name will open the custom property linking dialogue. The tabs at the top allow you to choose between the drawing, model, or configuration properties. Under the model is the property “Number”, this is the one I want to use for my Part Number. So I will select it and click OK.
The value of the custom property will now populate the Inspection project property box. You can then repeat this step for the remaining 5 project properties that can be linked.
Now you can proceed with the remaining steps to extract the dimensions and notes to be inspected. Once that is complete, you are ready to export your inspection data into an inspection report using one of the report templates. The included AS9102 template references the general project properties in several spots. On Form 1, you see the values after they are automatically populated.
To fully appreciate the reason for linking the properties, we need to force a change. Let’s say you want to rename the drawing being used for inspecting. If you didn’t link the project properties you would be forced to change the drawing name in both the custom properties and in the inspection project. Instead, by linking them, simply updating the custom properties will force the Inspection project to update.
When you go to redo the export to Excel to get the updated inspection report, you will see a pop-up warning you that the drawing changed and giving you the chance to update your Inspection project properties. Click OK.
Now finalize the export to Excel, and enjoy the beauty of automatically updated properties.
With SOLIDWORKS Inspection and linked project properties, you can ensure your project is always up to date and the reports you are creating are perfect.
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