One of the great things about SolidWorks is how easy it is to navigate through the assembly tree when working with an assembly containing multiple parts or subassemblies. Often times, you’ll find yourself in a situation where a top-level assembly consists of a set of parts and one or more subassemblies. In this case, you’ll notice that the general shape and mates of your subassembly will be in the same configuration as you’ve most saved them.
You’ll also notice that by default, these subassemblies are “rigid” in the context of the top-level subassembly within which they reside, even if they are “flexible” in their own assembly file. Often times, it is convenient to be able to move or place subassembly components in the context of the top-level assembly.
In this brief tutorial, I’ll show you how, and use a few pictures to illustrate this concept.
Let’s take a look at this example top-level assembly in the bottom figure. The top-level assembly consists of two “components” - first, a SolidWorks part document, defining the vertical stand, and second, a SolidWorks assembly document, containing a linkage and link mechanism.