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Creo Layouts (Part 3)

In Creo Parametric, you have two different methods for sketching:

First, there is Sketch Mode, which PTC called the "Intent Manager" for a long time. The tools are relatively easy. As you sketch, it suggests constraints to you. (It's guessing your intent.) When you create entities, Creo suggests a dimensioning scheme to you.

The other way of sketching is in Drawing Mode. These tools are not so easy or intuitive. They are intended to be used to create supplemental geometry in a drawing view or border geometry in a format.

Sketching in Creo Layout is different. In my humble opinion, once you get used to it, it's easier than the tools in Sketch Mode or Drawing Mode. I find it easier than Sketch Mode because the geometry is not fully constrained. While Layout recognizes the same constraints, it's not always suggesting them to you.

Here are some of the other major differences in Sketching:

  • The Precision Panel. As you are sketching lines, circles, arcs, etc., at the end of your mouse cursor will be a box with one or two dimensional values you can type in to control your geometry. Note that you do NOT have to use this box, which is called the Precision Panel. It's there if you want to use it. The dimensional values depend on the type of entity you are sketching. For example, with a line, you get the X and Y values of the endpoint by default, and with a circle, you get the diameter. The spacebar allows you to toggle between dimension choices. For example, instead of X and Y, you could type in delta X and delta Y, or length and angle. Instead of diameter, you could use radius.

  • Guides. These are sort of like Sketch References. As you are sketching, you can "touch" an existing entity (move your mouse over it), and it will become a "guide." You can now snap onto it and as you're sketching, you'll see dotted lines or constraint symbols indicating the same constraints as in Creo Parametric. You can make something a "permanent guide," which is like making it a Sketch Reference.

  • Patterns. You can pattern your entities in your Sketch, unlike Creo Parametric where sketching takes place at the feature level in Part Mode.

  • You can dimension and constrain the entities that you want. You are not forced to have a fully dimensioned and constrained sketch like Sketch Model in Creo Parametric. But you have pretty much all the same geometry creation and editing tools as in Sketch Mode.

As the name implies, Layout Mode is intended to lay out your product shape quickly.

In the next Layout post, we'll talk about Structures and Tags. These really do not have analogies in Creo Parametric.

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