Creo Elements/Direct Cabling

Automated Routed Systems Design for Wiring and Cable Harnesses

Creo Elements/Direct Cabling is a routed system design tool which unites the electrical and mechanical disciplines to automate the design and manufacture of routed wiring and cable harnesses. You can create cables, harnesses, and bill-of-materials documentation, including completely annotated manufacturing-ready drawings for electrical cables, harness routes, and nail boards.

Creo Elements/Direct Cabling combines electrical and mechanical design data allowing you to fully simulate electromechanical products, design and validate physical harness routing, generate accurate bill-of-materials, and specify connector types and lengths. The result?  You can shorten lead times and support late requirement changes without threatening schedules or forcing a complete rework.


  • Speed the design of rigid and flexible cabling by reusing MCAD and ECAD system design information
  • Easily create manufacturing-ready drawings of cable harness designs, completely annotated with all necessary manufacturing information
  • Design, measure and estimate your wire harnesses with Creo Elements/Direct Cabling in 3D using the same tool you use for mechanical design
  • Easily accommodate late changes in the harness design process
  • Design and route wires and cables dynamically through enclosures, or automatically route through predefined paths
  • Define virtual and physical cable channels
  • Access an entire electrical library of company-specific components and materials including: wires, cables, fixtures, connectors, electrical properties, location points, assembly directions etc.
  • Access a full set of flat cables, complete with twist, fold and split options
  • Generate reports to capture manufacturing documentation such as maximum wire length, wire “from-to” lists, calculated bundle diameters and maximum bend radii
  • Eliminate errors in connector positioning, cable lengths, and housing considerations by using 3D CAD to fully design and validate complex wire harness assemblies before you produce any physical prototype
  • Share electrical and mechanical data and accurate 3D prototypes for design reviews


  • Use extensive features for dynamic ribbon cable routing
  • Run reports and calculations for electrical, physical, and manufacturing information including minimal cable bend radii, multiple wires on same pin, open wire ends, etc.
  • Define and customize company-specific reports and additional design rules
  • Automatically generate accurate, associative 2D formboard (nail board) drawings for harness manufacturing
  • Automatically create required dimensions
  • Move, rotate, and scale cable segments or connectors to improve position or annotation
  • Add annotations directly on the harness drawing such as dimensions, tables, wire run-lists, and bills-of-materials
  • Add annotations like pin, wire, and connector properties
  • Add standard or embedded dimensions of the actual harness length
  • Easily connect multi-conductor cables and automatically snap in components with predefined mating points
  • Automatically create all required wires based on the imported wire list
  • See missing components, unplaced components, connection differences, etc. when importing with intelligent update checks
  • Automatically create connections with cable air nets
  • Auto-route air nets via pre-defined channels and virtual paths for optimized harness results
  • Export cable information back into ECAD systems

Learn more about how companies are using PTC's suite of CAD software products to their best advantage.

KTM (motorsports)
College Park (prosthetics)
University of Tokyo (artificial heart)
Aston Martin
Aristides Guitars

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