Why use Add CAD-Line?

All Added-Parts (see Add menu > Mechanism sub-menu > Add Part) have a CAD-Line. The start-Point is where you mouse-butt-down, and the end-Point. is where you mouse-button up, when you add the Part.

You can edit a CAD-Line to import a SolidWorks or STL (Solid), and so add real 3D-CAD as 'flesh to the bones' of the kinematic elements.

However, you may want to import more Solids on to the same Part.

With more Solids on one Part, you can:

Show greater model fidelity with different Solid details, for the same moving Part.
Use Pattern > Phase Visibility tool to show and hide the different SolidWorks models at different phases in the machine-cycle.

Use CAD-Lines to:

Import and show a DXF Drawings
Import and show a SOLIDWORKS® Part
Import and show an STL File
Specify Mass & Inertia Properties

Add CAD-Line

Geometry toolbar

Toolbar :

Part-Editor : Geometry toolbar

Menu :

Part-Editor : Add menu > Geometry sub-menu> > Add CAD-Line

What to do :

2.Click Geometry toolbar > Add CAD-Line.
3.Drag in the graphic-area to specify the start-Point and then its end-Point.

Drag: mouse-button-down (start-Point), move your mouse-pointer, mouse-button-up (end-Point).

The CAD-Line is now in the graphic-area.

Free-Points and Merged-Points

Add the start-Point and end-Point of the CAD-Line as:


Add constraints and dimensions to the start-Point and end-Point later.

You can delete constraints and dimensions, if necessary.

Do this for a layout sketch.

See also: How to Delete a Constraint


Do 'merged-points' to construct a sketch-path or sketch-loop

See: Hover+Drag , merge-points.

CAD-Line in Added Part and with the Add CAD-Line command

[Note: in the image, I have added the arrowheads along the CAD-Line to indicate the X-direction]

In the graphic-area:

CAD-Lines are dark greenRed-14-1bRed-14-2 (default colour)

CAD-Lines have a Coordinate System:

The Origin is at the start-PointRed-14-3
+X–axis: from the OriginRed-14-4 to the end-PointRed-14-5 ,on the Mechanism Plane.
+Y–axis: at +90º from the +X–axis, on the Mechanism Plane.
+Z-axis: perpendicular to the Mechanism Plane (towards you in the default view (Front-View))

The Coordinate System is important:

to orientate CAD elements that you import


In the Assembly-Tree:

CAD-Lines are the only sketch-elements that show in the Assembly-Tree.


What to do next:

When you add a CAD-Line, you can edit it to open the CAD-Line dialog-box.

See CAD-Line dialog-box

Note: you can open the CAD-Line dialog-box from the:



Model-Editor (if there is a Solid linked to the CAD-Line)






Drag from the start-Point to the end-Point of CAD-Line


Pointn at each end of the CAD-Line

The CAD-Line shows in the Assembly-Tree.

Tutorials and Reference Help Files for MechDesigner and MotionDesigner 14.2 + © Machine, Cam, Mechanism, and Motion Design Software by PSMotion Ltd