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3D Virtual Assembly

3D Virtual Assembly

Increase the speed and quality of launching accurate work instructions and line balance scenarios to the shop floor while eliminating the cost of independent CAD viewers within Manufacturing Engineering and the Shop Floor. Blog Here

This release leverages our customer’s 3D models and tightly integrates the Product with the Process to simplify the tasks of consuming components by the process, reconciling the manufactured Bill of Materials (mBOM) with the Bill of Process (BOP) routing, authoring work instruction images and greatly reducing the time to update previously authored work instructions as a result of a line rebalance or engineering change.

BOM Control 3D Visualization Assembly

View CAD Drawings

Assembly Expanded Model Tree 3D Visualization

Proplanner accesses any popular CAD Model and displays the associated geometry and metadata using our embedded viewer from Techsoft3D. Users can view the drawings while working on the mBOM, comparing the eBOM to the mBOM, mapping parts to tasks, defining task sequences, creating line balances, and generating work instruction documents. 

Filter and Manipulate Assemblies

Virtual Build Mode of Product

Multiple CAD Models can be imported concurrently into the same workspace and those models could even come from different CAD Systems or versions of the same Model. This powerful Import and Merge capability makes it easy to generate complete large model assemblies for documentation as well as visually compare and document multiple versions or variants of the same Product. 

The drawings can be automatically filtered based on:

  • Part effective dates from the mBOM, to view the assembly with only parts effective as of a selected date.
  • Model/option configuration rules, to compare the assembly of one product configuration to another.
  • Parts that have already been consumed or mapped to a task.

Consumption descriptive view of 3D Module in Assembly Planner. 3D Viewer, Module Ribbon, Process Tree, and Consumption Grid

Engineers can view, validate, edit, and author the mapping of consumed parts to their associated Process tasks. Consumption can be mapped to either Assembly Planner Activities or Worksteps for a specific set of Models and Options. 

The consumption view will even show all consumed components as gray so it is easy to see the remaining components not yet consumed by the current process (i.e. leftover parts). 

Visualize Assembly Sequence

As the task sequence is defined, the assembly can be visualized to ensure that the process and sequence being defined is feasible. Errors in task or tooling assignments can be prevented by seeing the parts come together one-by-one in the authoring environment rather than on the shop floor. 

JT Demo Preview of Assembly Line Parts and being assembled at each step with 3D view
3D Visualization in the Task Precedence Graph

3D Visualization in the Yamazumi Chart
3D Visualization in the Yamazumi Chart

Embed in Work Instructions

3D View Embedded in Work InstructionsSOP Editor Image and Snapshot Gallery closer look.

With each task and new part, the assembly changes, and the 3D Viewer reflects that. Users can rotate and annotate the 3D assembly before capturing a snapshot to include visual work instructions. Snapshots are automatically saved and associated with the Activities or Worksteps which were active when they were created.

Users can additionally create Named Views saved in the Process which stores the references to the CAD Model components along with their visibility, color, and translation (explosions) such that the same view can be quickly regenerated for future updates even if the CAD Model was replaced with a new version.

Reference Designators

Reference Designators color-coordinated

Most drawings contain many copies of the same entity, such as nuts, bolts, and other associated hardware. Engineers can select specific instances of this multi-instance geometry and associate them to specific work tasks, such as when a specific bolt or bracket must be identified and referenced in a work instruction.

Explode and Section

Explode component models

Component sectioning close up

Engineers can translate (explode) components in the model, change colors of components, filter out components (turn off visibility) and even section the to enhance visibility.

Multiple Rendering Styles

Shaded Cad Rendering styleShaded With Lines ViewWire Frame View Hidden Line View

CAD Models can be shown in one of four possible rendered styles (Shaded, Shaded-with-lines, Hidden or Wireframe)

Item ID Mapping

It is common that the Part Numbers referenced to geometry in the CAD Model do not match part numbers within the associated mBOM.  This creates a problem in that Assembly Planner cannot visually account for each component in the CAD Model to the Process Activity or Workstep responsible for consuming it within Virtual Assembly.

As such, Proplanner has created a powerful Item ID Mapping model which can automatically correct these discrepancies with limited user intervention. Most importantly, Assembly Planner remembers these user-assisted rules and associations such that future CAD Model importations will require limited effort.

Why is 3D visualization important to integrate into process planning?
Many manufacturing engineers have already discovered the benefit of having access to view 3D drawings of the product you're responsible for creating assembly processes. But you go through a lot of hassle to find, get access to, load, and use those drawings when they're stored in other systems.

By making them available directly in the same system in which you design and maintain all of the details of the assembly process, you not only save time viewing but also gain an array of new capabilities. You can filter automatically in a number of ways and step through the assembly task-by-task, which cannot be done in a streamlined way when the process and product data is disconnected in different systems.

Proplanner streamlines the exchange between the Product and Manufacturing Engineering teams:

  • CAD Models of any (and multiple) formats can be combined and viewed within Assembly Planner

  • Drawings are synced based on Engineering Changes

  • Users are free to filter by part, BOM, or process configuration data or by individual selection

  • Drawings can easily be used for dynamic planning as well as documentation purposes

Proplanner provides a single system for engineers to create a plan for manufacturing. We suggest you review these solutions next:


Line balance scenarios can be merged with order details to perform advanced scheduling and operator allocation


New work instructions are generated automatically when new line balances are developed


Parts can be mapped directly from the BOM to tasks in the routing


Parts mapped to tasks can update logistics planning (PFEP)

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