A shattered assembly is comprised of links to the individual part files that make up an assembly. Instead of having to open an entire .ACT3D file in order to work with just one part, you can select to open specific subassemblies.
A shattered assembly file has the following advantages:
The file size of the assembly is small.
Parts can be reused in multiple assemblies.
You can load just the assembly parts you need, instead of having to load the entire assembly.
The assembly can be updated incrementally. Because parts are loaded from the assembly file by a link, you can update just the parts that have changed.
To open a CAD assembly so as to save as a Shattered .ACT3D, you must select Load Only Assembly Tree... located on the File menu, and then import the desired subassemblies.
Or, use Library function to open the file.
Once a shattered assembly is opened, a new menu item appears on the File menu, Save Monolithic Assembly... .
If you want to save to a normal SpinFire .ACT3D file, or Monolithic, select that option.
Only those components that have been Imported will be saved in the .ACT3D file.
If you want to Save Shattered Assembly, preserving the assembly links, just select the Save option as this is the default
Save Shattered Assembly... acts to save one SHATTERED.ACT3D file for the overall assembly and separate PART.ACT3D files for each part file (subassembly) that was imported (See Image to the right).
You can then re-open both the .ACT3D file or SHATTERED.ACT3D file and Import additional files if necessary.
If you use Save Monolithic Assembly... when working with a shattered assembly, the file links will not be saved as part of the resulting .ACT3D file, even if you have previously saved it as a shattered assembly. However, it will be save as a new .ACT3D file, so you will have both version you can work with.