Drag, Hints and Selection-Boxes

Many mouse actions in MechDesigner will be different to those in your CAD software.


These terms are the same:  'mouse-pointer', 'mouse', 'cursor', 'mouse-cursor' and 'pointer'.
'Click' is 'Left-button-click' for the standard mouse setting.


Before you start a new command, click an empty place in the graphics area to complete some commands - especially when the model becomes large.

Drag + Add Element

We use Drag to add many different elements. For example: In the:

Mechanism-Editor: Add Part, to connect wires between Function-Blocks.
Part-Editor: Add Line ; Add CAD-Line ; Add Circle, Add Arc* ; Add Blend-Curve


Drag to add Elements:

a.Mouse-button down
b....move your mouse-pointer...
c....mouse-button up.

You may [usually not] need to:

d.Click in the graphic-area to complete your command.

Drag + Move Element

We use 'Drag' to move elements in the graphic-area.  For example: In the:

Mechanism-Editor: Drag to move FBs, Free-Parts or Completely Free Parts, ...
Part-Editor: Drag to move sketch-elements, dimensions, ...



Drag to Move Elements:

1.Hover above an element so that the element becomes RED
2.Mouse-button down...
3....move your mouse-pointer ...
4....mouse-button up

Keyboard Key + Drag



1.Click in the graphic-area to deselect all elements
2.CTRL+Drag the active view.


1.Click in the graphic-area to deselect all elements
2.SHIFT+Drag the active view.

See Keyboard shortcuts for different Spin options

Drag to Add Sketch-element AND also Merge-Points


In the Part-Editor, to create a sketch-path/sketch-loop you must 'Merge (the) Points' of adjacent sketch-elements.

You can use the Merge-Points command, or use the following mover efficient procedure:

To start the sketch-loop

1.Add the first sketch-element

Before you Mouse-Button-Down to add a new sketch-element:

2.Move you mouse-pointer above the Point at one end the first sketch-element so that only the Point becomes RED [see image above]...
3....mouse-button-down...    ...move your mouse...    ...mouse-button-up.

The new sketch-element should now be in the graphic-area, and its start-Point is Merged with the end-Point of the first sketch-element.

4.Continue to add sketch-elements in the same way

To add the last sketch-element and to complete the sketch-loop, you will need to

1.Hover above the end-Point of the next to last sketch-element ...
2.... move your mouse...

Before you mouse-button-up...

3.Hover above the start-Point of the first sketch-element ....
4.... mouse-button-up

The sketch-loop is complete.

Right-Click in Graphic-Area



When the Command-Manager is active...

If you have not selected all elements...

...Right-Click = Cross-16 to cancel the active command



If you have selected all the elements....

... Right-Click = OK-tiny-13-17 to complete the active command.



Right-click in the graphic-area

1.Cancels the active command
2.Shows the Mechanism-Editor contextual-menu next to the mouse-pointer

The image shows the Mechanism-Editor shortcut-menu, which will show next to your pointer.


Right-Click an element

1.Hover above an element until the element becomes red

- or -

1.Click an element

The element shows in the Selection-Window

2.Right-click in the graphic-area, but somewhere else!

The image shows the contextual-menu when you 'Hover+Right-Click' a Part.




1.Right-click cancels the active command, and
2.Right-click shows the Part-Editor menu next to the pointer

The image shows the Part-Editor shortcut menu. Add Arc is about to be selected.

The Edit Part command (top) is active. You can click this command to close the Part-Editor.



To show a contextual menu:

1.Hover above an Element so the element becomes red

- or -

1.Click an Element

The element shows in the Selection-Window.

2.Right-click in the graphic-area, but somewhere else!

Double-click an element to edit

See also: How to Edit an Element.

When you double-click an element, you open the dialog-box that is contextual to the element.


To edit a Part:

1.Double-Click a Part-Outline

The Part-Editor opens.


- or -

1.Double-Click a sketch-element that you have added to a Part previously

The Part-Editor opens.


To edit a Dimension in the Part-Editor:

1.If necessary, de-select the Add Dimension tool1s-red
2.Double-Click the arrowhead2s of a Dimension


To close the Part-Editor:

1.Double-Click the Y-axis* or a sketch-element (see image)

* The X-axis and the CAD-Line in an Added-Part are co-linear. The Y-axis is a much easier target to 'double-click' than the X-axis.


To edit Gear-Pairs or 2D-Cams

Best-Practice:  Use the Assembly-Tree or the Selection-Window to locate the Gear-Pair or 2D-Cam elements:

1.Double-click the Gear-Pair or 2D-Cam in the Assembly-Tree

- or -

1.Click the Gear-Pair or 2D-Cam in the graphic-area or Assembly-Tree
2.Right-click the Gear-Pair or 2D-Cam in the Selection-Window
3.Click 'Edit...' in the contextual-menu.


In the Assembly-Tree or Selection-Window

1.Double-click an element in the Assembly-Tree

- or -

1.Double-click an element in the Selection-Window

If it is possible to edit the element, MechDesigner opens the dialog-box to edit the element.

To stop 'Tool-Tips' showing next to your pointer:


Tool-tips [hints] can hide the tool and icon that you want to use.

To stop Tool-Tips showing next to your pointer:

1.Click Help menu >Toggle Hints (you may need to do this two times)

- or -

1.Clear Application Settings > Accessibility tab > 'Show Hints' check box


Tutorial and Reference Help Files for MechDesigner and MotionDesigner 13.2 + © Machine, Mechanism, Motion and Cam Design Software by PSMotion Ltd