Adding quantities to balloons is something that many of us do when making assembly drawings in SolidWorks.Â This is a very manual and sloppy process which involves adding carefully placed text next to each balloon that points to a part with multiple instances.Â Some people use split balloons, but still manually edit each one for the desired affected.
Tobin Sparks and BalloonNote
Along came Tobin Sparks.Â Tobin was just starting out in the world of macro and API within SolidWorks.Â Tobin was a quick study, learning from the likes of handleman (expert API guy) on Eng-Tips and myself (macro hack).Â Tobin saw a need and filled it by creating the BalloonNote macro.Â This macro simplified the process of adding quantities to balloons.Â The macro does have its quirks, but overall it is very well conceived and executed.
For the past eight months, BalloonNote has really been the state of the art when it comes to adding quantities to balloons.Â OK, that’s a slight overstatement, but the macro is very cool.
What’s New Announcment at SWW09
Either way, SolidWorks has stepped up.Â At SolidWorks World 2009, the What’s New presentation showed off many new abilities planned for SolidWorks 2010.Â One of those new functions isÂ the adding of quantities to balloons.Â Strangely, there are some eerie similarities between the SW2010 function and Tobin’s macro.Â I cannot get into too much detail beyond the announcement itself.Â I will say that it will be nice to have the functionality built into SolidWorks.