I hope you have all seen this newsgroup post where we provide a PDF file explaining the mechanisms at play when migrating materials and colors to the 2013 release.
I have placed a copy of this PDF file here on our blog for your reference. The PDF file is a collection of Help wiki articles that are spread out throug the wiki.
Here is the list of wiki articles relevant to the style migration.
- FAQ Part 1
- FAQ Part II
- Data Migration > What's Changed in R2013
- Data Migration > Inventor 2013
- Data Migration > Migrate Color Styles to Appearances and Migrate Material Styles to Materials
- Data Migration > Migrating Content Center custom materials and appearances
- Manage Materials and Appearances
- 2013 Library Management Methods
- Migration Mapping – Materials
- Migration Mapping - Appearances
I wanted to make a couple of side-notes to all this.
First, before you start working with 2013, I would advise you to create a backup of the adsklib files and supporting files that came with the Inventor 2013 installation.
By default these files can be found in folder C:\Users\Public\Documents\Autodesk\Inventor 2013\Design Data\Materials
The reason the backup is not a luxury is because there is no easy way to restore a default material/appearance library in 2013, other than repairing your Inventor installation.
Your material library can also easily be altered by running an Update command on the library.
Coming to the main topic of this blog post, the other reason why you might end up with more materials in the material library than you expect is because materials are treated slightly differently than colors (appearances). Let me explain what I mean with that.
During migration, we change the color names and map the "old" colors to new appearance styles (here is a link to the appearance mapping table ).
For materials we don't change the material names during migration to 2013.
We decided to use a more conservative stance here because (contrary to colors) material names are exposed in BOM and parts lists and we did not want to change any existing parts lists during migration.
However when you create a new part from scratch in 2013, you will be using the new material names that differ quite a bit from the old names.
Here is a link to the new material names and how they relate to the old names.
Let me illustrate all this with an example. You can download the original 2012 data set here if you want to follow along.
Note that in this article I did not want to touch the subject of customizing materials. The sample file used for this article is using standard materials and standard colors as offered by Inventor 2012.
I created a part with
- Material = Galvanized Steel
- Color = Popcorn (the color is a rather outrageous color override for steel but it allows me to drive my point home later in the article)
Fig 1: Galvanized popcorn part in 2012
I create a drawing of this part and associate a special hatch style to the part material:
Fig 2: Custom hatch associated with Galvanized steel material
After migration to 2013 (simply reply Yes to any migration dialogs you might get), here is what you will see in the Quick Access Toolbar:
- Material= Galvanized Steel
- Appearance = *Nylon 6
Fig3: Same part migrated to 2013
This proves the point that the migration process changes the appearance name from popcorn to Nylon 6 but not the material name (although there is a suitable and similar material with name Steel, Galvanized available in the material library)
The * mark before the appearance indicates that Nylon 6 is not the default appearance that is normally associated with Galvanized steel.
What happens to our drawing after migration?
Here again the hatch style continues to be linked to the "old" Galvanized Steel material.
Fig 4: Galvanized steel material associated to ISO12W 100 hatch
There is no sign of the new Steel, Galvanized material until you hit the import material "From Style Library" button.
Only then are the "new" 2013 materials added at the bottom of the list (because of this the good news is that you can still distinguish between new and old :-) ).
Fig 5: Material list grows after pressing "From Style Library" button
Two things you can do at this point:
Do nothing and leave as is.
This could create confusion between Galvanized steel and Steel, Galvanized both being present in the part and in the drawing.
The other risk is that if you Update your cached styles to the library, you end up with both Galvanized steel and Steel, Galvanized in the library, hence my plea earlier to create a backup :-).
In the part, change the material to Steel, Galvanized and purge the Galvanized steel material from your document.
Fig 6: Purging the "old" material.
In the drawing, associate the custom hatch style to Steel, Galvanized.
You can now get rid of the old Select Galvanized Steel material in the list and delete it with the Delete context menu.
Repeat this for all old materials you no longer have a need for in the drawing. You can shift select to delete multiple materials in one operation.
Fig 7: Associating the hatch with the proper new material
Method b) obviously results in a cleaner situation but it comes at the expense of more work, especially when dealing with many files.