Here are some suggested practices that will speed up and simplify assembly modeling.
Customize assembly viewing
As you add components, turn off the visibility of components that no longer impact the portion of the design on which you are currently focused.
Pause the cursor over a component in the browser to highlight it on the graphics window.
Right-click, and then select Find in Browser or Find in Window to locate components.
Click the binoculars symbol on the browser menu bar to activate the Find dialog box. Specify search criteria to locate constraints, features, and files by criteria specific to the search object.
Turn off enabled status for parts you do not need to select but need to see for frame of reference.
Use color to segregate subsystems in an assembly. For example, display all components in the pneumatics system in one color, all components supplied by a certain vendor in another color, and so on. Save the colored subsystems as a Design View and copy to a Level of Detail to manage the subsystems visibility.
Use representations to customize component statuses
Save a Design View or Level of Detail representation of a complex subassembly and turn on visibility for only the components needed to place the subassembly. Use a Level of Detail representation when you place the subassembly.
Turn off visibility of nonessential components and save the Design View representation with a unique name. Reload the Design View representation whenever you work on the assembly.
Copy a Design View representation to a Level of Detail to manage the visibility and suppression status.
Create and save Positional representations to capture "snapshots" for motion studies and evaluation of an assembly in various positions.
Create overlays in drawings of Positional representations to show the assembly in various extensions.
Create Level of Detail representations to avoid loading unneeded components into memory. Improve computer performance with lower memory requirements.
Create a Substitute Level of Detail using a surface composite Shrinkwrap or Derived part to significantly reduce file size and memory consumption.
When opening an assembly, specify a mix of representations to achieve the appropriate working view and modeling efficiency.
Plan for efficiency
Plan the top-level assembly and subassembly structure before you create parts. Hierarchy improves performance.
Create logical subassemblies and combine them into larger assemblies. Use Promote and Demote as required to assist in creating subassemblies.
Keep all components used in a subassembly in the same directory.
Create a shared network directory for components that will be shared by many designers on many projects.
Assign the Summary and Project properties for individual components.
Create a unique template and use it to create components for a specific project or subassembly. Predefine common properties in the template so all components created from that template inherit the properties.
Search for attributes both inside and outside Autodesk Inventor to find needed component files.
Save and name attribute searches that you are likely to use again.
Manage assembly constraints
Use only as many constraints as are needed to control component position and movement. Constraints consume memory.
Consider using Grip Snap to position and then ground components that do not need to move.
Consider using the Assemble command and the Assemble Constraint Management dialog box to reposition components that already have constraints.
Avoid redundancy. In the Application Options dialog box on the Assembly tab use Enable constraint redundancy analysis to check for redundant constraints. Delete redundant constraints. Turn off the option after completing the analysis.
Ground at least one component in each assembly to optimize solve performance.
Use a common constraint reference if possible. Constraining all components to a common component or geometry improves performance and reduces complexity. For example, use the Origin work features to constrain components in an assembly whenever possible.
Constrain symmetrical assemblies to mid-planes and center axes.
Use iMates to reduce overhead and enforce consistency.
To locate a constraint, select the Model browser filter to collect all constraints in a browser folder.
Pause the cursor over a constraint in the browser to highlight it in the graphics window.
Avoid constraints between features that might be removed later in the design process.
Pause the cursor over a constraint icon in the browser to show all property information for the highlighted constraint.
Start constraining components by mating planar faces, and then add tangent, angular, and flush constraints.
Pause the cursor over an exclamation point icon in the browser to show information about an unsolvable constraint.
Repair model errors before you delete or change constraints.
Locate and fix or suppress any constraint errors. Use the Design Doctor to isolate components.
Find constraint errors
Constraints with errors are marked with yellow symbols.
Use the Modeling option of the browser view menu to gather all constraints into a folder at the top of the browser hierarchy. Expand the folder to see all constraints in the assembly.
Highlight a constraint error to see the constrained parts highlight, and then zoom to the constraint in the graphics window.
Use the Position option of the browser view menu to locate and highlight a single constraint error. Right-click to use the context menu to automatically expand the browser and reset browser focus to the selected constraint's other half.
Use the Constraint Conflict Analysis dialog box to suppress or delete constraints and resolve constraint errors.
Use the Design Doctor to diagnose and suggest treatments for constraint errors. Use an Isolate treatment option to show only the affected components.
Organize design files in a folder structure
Avoid storing all assembly files in one folder. When Autodesk Inventor must search through hundreds or thousands of files in a single folder to find the correct file, it can take longer to open files. As part of the file name, Autodesk Inventor stores the path to the folder where a file is located. When there are fewer files in a folder, the file is located and opened more quickly. If possible, place all subassembly components in the same directory.