Edit existing drawings, add missing body sheets

Only a fool tries to achieve perfection in one go.

Any good idea needs a first thought, a rough draft, a detailed version.

Then many tiny tweaks. Carefully crafted over days, weeks, months.

Iteration is the key to anything great.

Drew helps you edit existing drawings

For a long time, we focused on speeding up creating brand new SOLIDWORKS drawings.

We developed software to create a new drawing with one click. A drawing with the correct template, sheet format, views, tables and annotations.

But we noticed engineers spend more time updating existing files. Maybe even five times more.

So we decided to shift our focus towards editing. Drew version 2.1 is a major step in this direction.

What was new in version 2.0?

We released this update last July. Drew 2.0 gave you more freedom in adding views: the 3D view and main 2D view were made optional.

drawing automation add views macro

We also improved the balloon checker so it shows the name and quantity of the item that still needs a balloon:

Drew missing balloons hover

There are few things more frustrating than losing work because of a crash. Not being able to continue your work is just adding insult to injury.

So we added a way to reuse your network license after the inevitable SOLIDWORKS crash.


Back to version 2.1.

A new name for Company Styles: Blueprints

We were looking for a better name for Company Styles for a while now.

Most of our users have multiple Company Styles for one company, so the name wasn’t perfect.

We finally found a better name: blueprints. Short, simple and descriptive. Great.

Edit superpowers for existing drawings

The blueprint formerly known as Company Style is the basis for Drew. Blueprints capture your preferences and parts of your company’s drawing handbook.

With this update, you can select a Blueprint for existing drawings. Drew will ask you to select a blueprint (and highlight the most likely ones) when it needs one, for example when you add an empty sheet.

Or you can click the checkmark to confirm the proposed blueprint. Click the edit pencil to select a different one.

Drew select edit confirm blueprint existing drawings

Add annotations, tables and sheets

You can now use the following sections for existing drawings as well. Previously you could only use these for new drawings:

  • Annotations
  • Sheets
  • Tables

The views sections (3D view, Main view, Projected views) are still only available for new drawings because that is the only moment that we have full control over the drawing.

A sheet per body, a sheet per sub-weldment

The sheets section is one of the most powerful ones within Drew. We have made it even better now.

The first thing we did was to split the Body Sheets button into Body sheets and Subweldments.

Until now Drew would add a sheet per body, plus a sheet per sub-weldment. To make this behavior more explicit and to simplify discovery for new users, we decided two separate buttons would be better.

Drew toolbar for body sheets and flat patterns

Add missing body sheets

I’m pretty sure you recognize this situation.

You create a weldment plus a matching drawing. But then you changed the model, only to return to a drawing with broken views for single bodies.

Now you have to check all sheets and views, to try to figure out which bodies still need a sheet.

Drew can do that for you from now on. It’s awesome.

Click the Body sheets button (in an existing drawing) to add a sheet for each body that does not have its own view yet.

Click the Flat patterns button to add a sheet (without a sheet format) and a 1:1 flat pattern for each sheet metal body. Drew even detects broken flat patterns and adds a new sheet for those.

Further improvements

  • Added a flat pattern sheet scale checker so you will never (unwillingly) send a 1:2 DXF to production ever again.

  • Added language support for Czech, Italian, Polish, Russian and Turkish. Drew is not entirely translated yet, but fully functional with 10 of 14 SOLIDWORKS languages.
  • Added support in Balloon Checker for cut lists that use a custom property column for the item quantity.

Drew missing balloons hover

  • Lowered startup time
  • Updated the internal help and added a link to our online Knowledge Base. The Knowledge Base is the best place to look for answers. We add and update articles weekly.

Bug fixes

  • Fixed case sensitivity when comparing sheet format paths
  • Fixed adding BOM or cut list when the 3D view was missing
  • Fixed showing Done when Welcome Wizard was not yet at 100%
  • Fixed events when creating drawing for assembly component

After we released version 2.1.0, we received bug reports from multiple users. Thank you for this. Keep sending us feedback so we can improve Drew.

We made some changes and released 2.1.1 shortly after, with these improvements:

  • Added handling when a new drawing was made from a drawing template. SOLIDWORKS would sometimes only return a file name, not a file path, for the sheet format and cause Drew to trip.
  • Fixed showing bend lines for flat patterns
  • Fixed using PC language when we should use SOLIDWORKS language
  • Fixed changing 3D view orientation

If you have found a bug (or think you have found one), don’t hesitate to email us at [email protected].

Future plans

This update lets you edit existing drawings. For the next update, we are focusing on weldments.

We would like to be able to add balloons and dimensions.

And to prevent errors from deleting, then re-adding BOMs or cut lists, we want to make sure every view is linked to the current table.

If you have a request, let us know at [email protected].

We’ll keep you posted on the progress.

create, edit and review SOLIDWORKS drawings twice as fast

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Create, edit and review drawings 100% faster with Drew.

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