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Increase your assembly or drawing performance with a SpeedPak Configuration

Article by Rod Mackay created/updated August 26, 2010

Introduced in SolidWorks 2009 the SpeedPak Configuration command allows you to create a simplified configuration of an assembly without losing references. If you work with very large and complex assemblies, using a SpeedPak configuration can significantly improve performance while working in the assembly and its drawing. Watch the demo video below to learn more about the SpeedPak Configuration command.

Here is what the SolidWorks Help file says about SpeedPak and when to use it…

What is a SpeedPak Configuration?

A SpeedPak configuration is essentially a subset of the parts and faces of an assembly. Unlike regular configurations, where you can simplify an assembly only by suppressing components, SpeedPak simplifies without suppressing. Therefore, you can substitute a SpeedPak configuration for the full assembly in higher level assemblies without losing references. Because only a subset of the parts and faces is used, memory usage is reduced, which can increase performance of many operations.

When to Use SpeedPak

Use SpeedPak when you want to insert a complex large assembly into a higher level assembly, especially if you want to see the entire SpeedPak assembly, but need to mate and dimension only to relatively few locations. You can also use SpeedPak to facilitate file sharing. The SpeedPak information is saved entirely within the assembly file. Therefore, when sharing an assembly, you can send just the assembly file. You do not need to include component files.

For example, suppose you design an engine assembly, and need to send it to your customer’s design team so they can insert it in their vehicle design.

  1. You create a SpeedPak configuration of the engine assembly, including all the faces and bodies your customer plans to reference in their vehicle model.
  2. You send them just the engine assembly file. You do not need to send files for any of the engine component parts.
  3. They insert your engine assembly file into their vehicle assembly file. They can add mates and dimensions to all faces and bodies you included in the SpeedPak definition.

SpeedPak a SpeedPak!

Did you know that with  SolidWorks 2010 you can create a SpeedPak Configuration of an assembly that contains subassemblies that have SpeedPak configurations active!

Do you SpeedPak?

Do you use SpeedPak Configurations to increase the performance of your assemblies and drawings? Or do you use SpeedPak for sharing data with other users or your suppliers? Use the comments box below to let us know what you think of the command and how you use it:

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Rod Mackay

Rod has been using 3D CAD software for over 25 years and has trained thousands of designers to use their CAD systems more effectively. Rod is the Javelin Webmaster and is based in Ottawa, ON., Canada.

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