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Autodesk Inventor Tips & Tricks
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Removing Inferred Constraints in Autodesk Inventor, by David Melvin, PE
Inferred constraints are great because they quickly add constraints to your sketches, and this speeds up your work.

But what if you donít want to add a particular inferred constraint? This tip shows you how.

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Adding Tolerances to Sketch Dimensions in Inventor, by David Melvin, PE
Tolerances are an integral part of your designs, so you might want to use them in your sketches, and you’ll be surprised to learn what you can do with them.

This tip will show you how to add tolerances to your sketch dimensions, and you’ll learn a few tricks for using them.
Relax Mode Tricks in Inventor, by David Melvin, PE
Relax mode will allow changes to a sketch even if it is fully constrained, but did you know you can use it to quickly remove unwanted constraints? This tip will show you how Relax Mode works and how to use it in ways you may not have thought of.
Find Face Centroid in Autodesk Inventor, by David Melvin, PE
There are many reasons you may need the centroid of a face. You can use it to control sketch geometry, connect bodies, drill holes, the list goes on.

This tip shows you a simple way to find the centroid of a flat face. The face can have any shape, and the centroid will automatically update when the shape changes.
Perpendicular Line Snap in Autodesk Inventor, by David Melvin, PE
This tip can either be a solution to a problem or a fast way to draw perpendicular lines.
Bend Minimum Ė Bend Part in Autodesk Inventor, by David Melvin, PE
The Bend Minimum option in the Bend Part command is used to localize the bend so that only the portion controlled by the sketch line is bent. With older versions of Inventor you could uncheck the option and the bend would propagate across the whole part.

You canít do this with newer versions, so Iíll show you a quick workaround.
Replacing Content Center Parts in Autodesk Inventor, by David Melvin, PE
Youíve created an assembly containing Content Center parts, and now you want to replace them with a different part. This tip will show you how to do this along with a few suggestions.
Custom Quick Access Toolbar in Autodesk Inventor, by David Melvin, PE
You use the Quick Access Toolbar all the time, but did you know you can customize it? This tip shows you how.
Sticky Panels in Autodesk Inventor, by David Melvin, PE
In this tip youíll learn how Sticky Panels work and a few reasons why you might want to use them.
Change Sketch Plane in Autodesk Inventor, by David Melvin, PE
This tip shows you how to put an existing sketch on a different plane.
Dragging Fully Constrained Sketches in Autodesk Inventor, by David Melvin, PE
After youíve fully constrained a sketch you might find it necessary to change several dimensions at the same time. This tip shows you how to drag sketch geometry to quickly change multiple dimensions.
Aligned Dimensions in Autodesk Inventor, by David Melvin, PE
You may know how to add aligned dimensions in Autodesk Inventor sketches, but this tip shows you how to speed the process.
Tangent Arc Dimensions in Autodesk Inventor, by David Melvin, PE
Autodesk Inventorís General Dimension command is easy to use, but thereís one trick you really need to know.
Auto-Projected Geometry in Autodesk Inventor, by David Melvin, PE
This tip shows you why projected geometry is so important and how to use it. Youíll also learn which auto-project settings to use.
Single Point Template in Autodesk Inventor, by David Melvin, PE
This tip shows you how to create a template that has the origin of the sketch projected onto the first sketch.
Prevent Resolve Link Errors with Autodesk Inventor, by David Melvin, PE
Youíve used the Content Center to add parts to an assembly, and now a Resolve Link dialog box appears when you try to open it. This tip will explore some of the reasons you may get this error, and it gives you some solutions.
Move Assembly UCS with Autodesk Inventor, by David Melvin, PE
Youíve created an assembly only to find that the UCS (User Coordinate System) is not where you want it. This tip will show you how to move the UCS relative to parts in the assembly.
Tricks with Autodesk Inventor Split Command, by David Melvin, PE
In this training tip I'll show you how to use the Split command in the Sketch tab of the ribbon, and you'll learn a few helpful ways the command can be used.
Inventor Templates Standard and Custom, by David Melvin, PE
If you've used the New Document drop down list to create new files you may know that this method does not use your custom templates. This tutorial shows you how these commands work and a workaround for customizing them.
Show and Hide Line in Inventor Drawing Views, by David Melvin, PE
You may know how to hide lines in a drawing view, but un-hiding them can be a little tricky because it takes more steps. So this tip shows you how to hide and un-hide drawing view entities.
Inventor iLogic for Beginners- Eliminating Spelling Errors, by John Koop
This training tip shows you a simple trick you can use to assure you do not receive spelling errors.
Inventor iLogic for Beginners- If Then Else, by John Koop
This tutorial shows you the basics of the If Then Else statement.
Copy Sketch Geometry with Autodesk Inventor, by David Melvin, PE
In this tip you'll learn how to use the Copy sketch command to copy geometry, and you will need to know how to use the Move Copy sketch command to follow along. Please read my Move Copy Sketch Geometry with Autodesk Inventor tip before you read this tip.
Move Copy Sketch Geometry with Autodesk Inventor, by David Melvin, PE
Let's say you want to duplicate geometry on a sketch, but none of the pattern commands will do what you want to do. You can either draw each entity or you can use one of two ways to copy it. In this tip you'll learn how to use the Move command to copy geometry.
Moving Sketch Geometry with Autodesk Inventor, by David Melvin, PE
You've drawn an intricate sketch only to find that some of the geometry was drawn on the wrong feature. Wouldn't it be nice if you could just move the geometry to the correct location? This tip shows you how to move sketch geometry.
Scaling Sketch Geometry with Autodesk Inventor, by David Melvin, PE
This tutorial shows you how to use the Scale command and how deal with constraints when they interfere.
Tricks with Autodesk Inventor Stretch Command, by David Melvin, PE
Autodesk Inventor's Stretch command in the Sketch environment can be a useful tool for adjusting geometry that already has dimensions. In this tip you'll learn a process that will help you successfully use the command..
Adding Arc Length Dimensions with Autodesk Inventor, by David Melvin, PE
It's rare, but you might find the need to add an arc length dimension to your drawings. This quick tip shows you how it's done.
Planning Ahead with Autodesk Inventor - Parameters, by David Melvin, PE
This is the last part of a short mini-series of training tips focused on strategy. How to plan ahead to simplify your work.
Parameters are extremely helpful for guiding part construction with design specifications...
Planning Ahead with Autodesk Inventor - Extents Strategies, by David Melvin, PE
This is the first part of a short mini-series of tips focused on strategy.  How to plan ahead to simplify your work.
Planning Ahead with Autodesk Inventor - Fillets, by David Melvin, PE
This is the second part of a short mini-series of tips focused on planning ahead to simplify your work. When to add fillets.
Face Fillets with Autodesk Inventor, by David Melvin, PE
A Face Fillet is a robust fillet that can be created where you normally wouldn't be able to and your geometry doesn't need to be as clean as it does with standard fillets.
Full Round Fillets with Autodesk Inventor, by David Melvin, PE
One of the more powerful yet less known commands is the Full Round Fillet command. With just a few clicks of your mouse you can easily create shapes that would otherwise cause you to ponder, or at least stare off into space for a while.
Finding Parts in Autodesk Inventor Assemblies, by David Melvin, PE
As your assemblies get larger, you'll find that it can get difficult to find parts in the graphics area and in the browser.  This tip will show you how to quickly find parts and subassemblies in both places.
Trick with Autodesk Inventor Section Views, by David Melvin, PE
Some parts and assemblies are just not user friendly when it comes to section views. For example, the image below shows a hollow sphere.  It has some indistinguishable features inside the hollow area, and a flat surface on the left side. How can you use the Section View command to look at the features inside?
Custom User Coordinates in Autodesk Inventor, by David Melvin, PE
Custom UCS (User Coordinate Systems) are a fast and powerful way of creating work planes and work axes.  If you've ever had a difficult time creating the work plane or work axis you want, you might try using a custom UCS.

How to Turn Off Autodesk Inventor Save Reminder, by David Melvin, PE
The Save Reminder helps you remember to save your work, but after you've conditioned yourself to periodically save your work you might find the message prompt a little annoying. This short tip shows you how to turn off the Save Reminder, as well as how to turn on or off other prompts.

Bend Part Minimum in Autodesk Inventor, by David Melvin, PE
This training tip explains how the Bend Minimum option works.
Table Interpolation in Autodesk Inventor, by David Melvin, PE
If you've wondered how Autodesk Inventor uses linear interpolation to find values that are not listed in a table, read this short tip.
Fully Constraining Sketches in Autodesk Inventor, by John Koop
Learn how and why you should fully constrain your sketches.
Designing iParts in Autodesk Inventor Part I, by John Koop
This is the first part of a three part series showing how to work with iParts.
Designing iParts in Autodesk Inventor Part II, by John Koop
This is the second part of a three part series showing how to work with iParts.
Designing iParts in Autodesk Inventor Part III, by John Koop
This is the third part of a three part series showing how to work with iParts.
How to Use Autodesk Products for Free and Legally, by John Koop
This short tip will show you how to legally get free Autodesk software.
Controlling Constraint Limits with Autodesk Inventor, by John Koop
This tutorial shows you how to set limits on constraints.
2D Equation Curves with Autodesk Inventor, by David Melvin, PE
This short tip will show you how to draw 2D equation curves.  You will also learn how to fully constrain equation curves.
Autodesk Inventor Section Views, by David Melvin, PE
Autodesk Inventor section views are very helpful when it comes to looking and working inside assemblies.  This short tip will show you how to use the section view commands.
The Green Snap Dot is Missing in Inventor, by David Melvin, PE
You've started a new sketch only to find that you can't snap to geometry with the green snap dot.  It seems to have disappeared.  This short tip will show you how to turn it back on.
Custom Autodesk Inventor 2013 Material Library, by David Melvin, PE
Learn how to create custom libraries using the new Material Library.
The Browser in Inventor is Not Visible!, by David Melvin, PE
It happens. For some reason the Browser is gone. Read this tip to learn how to get it back as well as how to make other features visible.
Fully Constraining Text with Autodesk Inventor, by David Melvin, PE
If you can't figure out how to fully constrain text boxes, read this tip.
Work Planes Still Visible with Autodesk Inventor, by David Melvin, PE
If you can't figure out why work planes are visible in your assemblies, read this tip.
Turn Off Inventor Automatic Constraints, by David Melvin, PE
Learn how to turn off automatic constraints.
Prevent Lost Geometry References with Autodesk Inventor, by David Melvin, PE
This tips shows you rules to follow that will help prevent lost reference geometry.
Rotating Views with Autodesk Inventor, by David Melvin, PE
Learn how to rotate drawing views to get the orientation you want.
Parallel Wall Cylindrical Cam with Autodesk Inventor, by David Melvin, PE
Learn how to create a cylindrical cam with a slot that has parallel walls.
Hole Patterns on Cylindrical Parts, by David Melvin, PE
How to make a pattern of round holes on a cylinder.
Projecting Geometry to Curved Surfaces, by David Melvin, PE
How to create complicated sweep paths and guide rails along surfaces.
Patterns on Cylindrical Parts, by David Melvin, PE
You really can create any shape using Autodesk Inventor. You just need to know how to combine the commands.
Cylindrical Cams with Autodesk Inventor, by David Melvin, PE
Constructing a cylindrical cam using Autodesk Inventor may seem like a daunting task, but it’s really quite simple.
Fixing Surface Gaps in Autodesk Inventor Files, by David Melvin, PE
How to turn a surface body into a solid body so that it can be edited.
Reducing Eye Strain by Customizing the Mini-Toolbar Position, by David Melvin, PE
How to reduce eye strain by customizing the position of the mini-toolbar in Autodesk Inventor 2012.
Component has no surfaces in Autodesk Inventor?, by David Melvin, PE
The easiest way to deal with a component that has no surfaces.
Edit Imported Files with Autodesk Fusion, by David Melvin, PE
The best way to edit an imported Autodesk Inventor 2012 file is with Fusion.
Repairing Imported Surfaces, by David Melvin, PE
How to deal with a component that has no surfaces.
Inventor 2012 Marking Menu Customization, by David Melvin, PE
Find the Marking Menu commands more easily by customizing them.
Inventor 2012 Marking Menu Accelerates Navigation, by David Melvin, PE
The new Marking Menu in Autodesk Inventor 2012 significantly speeds up navigation.
Mirror Sketch Command Tricks, by John Koop, Inventor Specialist
Learn how to quickly create asymmetrical profiles using the Mirror Sketch Command.
Improving Inventor Assembly Performance with Levels of Detail, by John Koop, Inventor Specialist
This tutorial will show you how to keep your assemblies from getting sluggish by using Levels of Detail in Inventor.
Undo Command is Not Always the Best Fix, by John Koop, Inventor Specialist
The Inventor Undo command is not always the best way to fix mistakes in complex parts - this article shows you a better way.
Inventor Files Lost in Windows 7 or Vista Virtual Store, by John Koop, Inventor Specialist
If your computer is losing Inventor files or you are having trouble saving them you may need to turn off your Windows Virtual Store.
Contoured Keyways with Fewer Problems, by David Melvin, PE
The most common mistake in making a contoured keyway is to attempt to make a Sweep along a 3D spline. This usually causes more problems than it solves, and it’s really not necessary.  This short exercise will show you how to do it.
Remove Edge Display for More Presentable Parts, by David Melvin, PE
Tangency edges are the lines that are formed when two adjacent surfaces meet. By default the lines are drawn on you parts, but you can turn them off to make your parts look more realistic.
PowerPoint Presentations with Embedded DWFs, by David Melvin, PE
Embedding Autodesk's DWF Viewer in your PowerPoint can greatly enhance your PowerPoint presentations. You can rotate and markup your DWF files within each slide while you give your presentations, which in turn promotes interactive discussion with your audience.
Inventor Presentations with jt Files Embedded in Word, Excel, and PowerPoint, by David Melvin, PE
Install the JT2Go software and then export a JT file from Inventor. When you do your documents will come alive. Your readers will not only be able to see your Inventor documents, they will be able to dynamically pan, zoom, and rotate them.
Share Inventor Files with Free Autodesk Design Review Download, by David Melvin, PE
You can easily show your files to vendors, colleges, and clients using Autodesk Design Review DWF Viewer, and it's free. This short exercise will show you how to do this.
Create 3D Sweeps with 3D Spline Paths, by David Melvin, PE
You can use 3D splines to draw the path for 3D sweeps, but if you’ve ever tried to do this you may have found that it’s difficult to make the profile perpendicular to the path. This short exercise will show you how to do this.
Control Splines with Spline Commands, by David Melvin, PE
In this short training tutorial you will learn how to use Spline Commands to control the shape of splines.
Draw Splines More Accurately, by David Melvin, PE
In this short exercise you will learn a general process for drawing splines that will increase the accuracy of your splines and assure that your splines are fully constrained.
Constrain Splines Using Construction Lines, by David Melvin, PE
In this short exercise you will learn how to add Spline Points to a spline, and then you’ll use Construction Lines to gain more control over the shape of the spline. First you’ll create a spline loop, and then you’ll modify it to create a fully constrained elliptical shape.
Creating 2D Splines, by David Melvin, PE
For those special circumstances when you need to draw complex geometry, this exercise will show you how to draw and reshape a 2D Spline. Subsequent Tips and Tricks will show you how to take control of your splines by mastering all the commands associated with them, and learning how to constrain them.
Make Inventor Models More Realistic with Custom Surface Textures, by David Melvin, PE
This short exercise will show you how to create two types of custom texture maps. The first type is a standard texture map that can be made from a picture of a real surface or it can be designed manually using image-editing software. The second type of texture map has transparent pixels.
Control Inventor Models with Custom Part Templates, by David Melvin, PE
This training tip shows you how to create a custom template and how to take charge of the location of sketch geometry.
Edit Inventor Model Features with 3D Grips, by David Melvin, PE
You can use 3D Grips to edit features on your models, but how does this affect existing constraints on your sketches?
Add Feature Intelligence to Control Dynamic Geometry, by David Melvin, PE
You’ve mastered the art of creating iParts and iFeatures, but did you know you can apply logical operators to your parts and features to make them even more intelligent?
Controlling Inventor Assemblies, by David Melvin, PE
You can easily find the number of constraints required to fully constrain your sketches by using the Auto Dimension command, but how do you know when components in your assemblies are fully constrained?