Multi-Model PDF Export is a new feature in BikeCAD Pro version 10.
This feature allows a designer to generate a single PDF document with a number of bicycles lined up, one on top of the other so that fitting characteristics can be objectively compared.
The bicycles can be arranged with their bottom brackets aligned which is optimal for comparing the relative positions of the saddles and handlebars between bikes.
The bicycles can also be aligned with the tires on the ground which would be optimal for comparing standover height.
To generate a multi-model PDF, open the bike you would like to feature in the foreground of your drawing. As with any time a PDF document is generated in BikeCAD, it is recommended that the title block be turned on. The key benefit being that we gain a border around the bicycle which will give us room for on screen notes or dimensions. In this case, we've configured our border to fit an 8.5”x11” aspect ratio with a 100mm space on the left of the bike, a 100mm space on the right of the bike and a 280mm space below the bike.
We should also ensure that we've selected the desired display mode. If we intend to print our drawing on a black and white printer, we may choose one of the non-colour modes, otherwise the paint display mode can offer good contrast between our different models especially if each bike is painted a unique colour.
Next select File >> Export multi-model PDF. A dialog box will appear allowing us to select the additional models to show in our drawing. First, select the model you would like to appear directly behind the current model. Click the rightward arrow to add this model. You can proceed to add any number of additional models. Each subsequent model with appear behind the rest of the selected models.
For convenience, each model is by default assigned the same display mode as the currently displayed model. However, you can change the display mode of any selected model using the menu next to the model name. Also, regardless of whether or not each of these models has been saved with dimensions turned on, the dimensions on these additional models are turned off. You can choose to show any dimensions that were saved with these models by clicking the dimension icon next to the model name.
Once we're satisfied with the selected models, we can click Done. We're then taken to another dialog box in which we enter a name for the PDF file we wish to create. Before we hit enter, be sure to confirm that you want the models to be aligned by bottom bracket or with the tires on the ground.
Pulling up the resulting PDF reveals a similar drawing to what we saw earlier.
To illustrate another approach, we can pull up each of the models we wish to include in our multi-model PDF and resave them with a different outline colour.
If we go through the same procedure again, and use the wireframe display mode. We can achieve a result like this which is nice because the background and foreground models are all equally visible. Yet they can be distinguished from one another by the unique colour assigned to each model.