For those of you using 3DVIA you may be asking “how I can create trails for my exploded views?”
We have two ways to make trails. Create a “Polyline 3D” this is a hard way to get what you want especially if you have a jog in the trail. So what do I recommend: use automatic trails created from an animation.
Here are the steps we need to take to get the trails were looking for.
We will need to make a simple animation to replicate the view we want to create. This will work best if you do not have an animation to this point in your SMG file. If you do have an animation, we will need to save it first so we can recall it later. From the Animate pull down menu select "Save scenario..." and save the smgSce file to a location of your choice. Remember this location; when you’re done creating the views you can then restore the original animation form the "Load scenario..." option. To clear the animation timeline you will need to select “Clear tracks and remove all child scenarios” from the Animate pull down menu.
Ok so now we have a clean slate to make our animation for the exploded view. Start by switching to animate mode and make sure the parts are collapsed. Now move the timebar to 1 second and using “Translation mode” move the actor to the first position, let’s say in the Y direction. Now move the timebar again to 2 seconds and move the actor to the second position, in the X direction for instance. Now the same steps one last time. Move the timebar to 3 seconds and the actor to its final position. With the actor selected you will notice a red trail marking the path the actor took to get to this position. Keep the actor selected and from the “Collaborate” select “Path” and then "Create non-associative paths from a selection of paths". This will turn the red path into a trail. Repeat this procedure for the other actors until you have your desired exploded view and new trails. The last step is to save the view. Look at the newly created view and you will see all the trails. One last thing to mention, the option "Create an associative path" will create the path in the animation only and will not show in the view.