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06 Tech Tips Posts

Making 3D Textures from Images
Turn images into 3D geometry with brand new SOLIDWORKS 3D Textures Feature
Consumer Product Design Part 2
Consumer Product Design Part 2Once design changes come through, testing and presenting themodel can help validation of the concept. Using simple simulation tools withinSOLIDWORKS itself, we can imitate loads, fixtures and materials to achieveplenty o....
Consumer Product Design Part 1
Consumer Product Design Part 1The main aim of this webcast is to show how SOLIDWORKS toolscan aid the Product Design Process from initial design through to finalimplementation. Creation of quality concepts has never been easier with themasses of CAD ....
IMPORTING SHEET METAL PART 3/3
For the final part on this blog series Will explains the process of importing a DWG of a sheet metal flat pattern and bending it into it's finished state inside SOLIDWORKS.
IMPORTING SHEET METAL PART 2/3
Following on from part 1, Jordan will explain the functionality of the Insert Bend tool.
IMPORTING SHEET METAL PART 1/3
SolidSolutions has recently welcomed another 11 Technical Interns to the team, they are currently being put through a 12 week induction and as part of this they’ll be sharing some of what they’ve learned via this blog. This blog will cover the Conver...
Customising SOLIDWORKS Interface
CUSTOMIZE THE LOOK OF SOLIDWORKS - Whilst the default SOLIDWORKS interface is completely functional it is possible to adjust it to suit your needs. The interface is highly customisable this webcast will cover how to adjust command positions, interfac...
How to model the Russia 2018 World Cup Football in
The World Cup is here again! The geometry of the football itself is always a little interesting. What panels make up the surface? Looking at the ball closely, I could see that it was one shape tessellated 6 times - a weird cube as it were. So, how ca...
SOLIDWORKS Online Licensing and Admin Portal - FAQ
So this is part 4 and the final part of our blog series on the new SOLIDWORKS Admin Portal and Online Licensing. In this final segment I wanted to summarise with some of the headline messages and FAQs.
Using SOLIDWORKS Online Licensing
Our previous two blog posts have focused on the SOLIDWORKS Admin Portal. Set up of this portal and assigment of SOLIDWORKS products to the respective users (members) is an important prerequisite before SOLIDWORKS Online Licensing can be used- so both...
Using the SOLIDWORKS Admin Portal
If you read the first blog in this series you should now understand what is possible in the Admin Portal and how to access. Hopefully by now you have set things up so you have designated your Admin and have access to the site.
Introducing the SOLIDWORKS Admin Portal and SOLIDW
We are pleased to announce two new features to allow you to better manage and work with your SOLIDWORKS licenses- the SOLIDWORKS Admin Portal and SOLIDWORKS Online Licensing. There is a lot of information to share on these new features so we have bro...
3DXpert for SOLIDWORKS Install Guide
This step-by-step guide will demonstrate how to install 3DXpert for SOLIDWORKS.
SOLIDWORKS Upgrade Advice - Post Installation Chec
After SOLIDWORKS has been installed, these tips are useful to ensure it all runs smoothly.
SOLIDWORKS 2018 Install/Upgrade - Our Top tips
SOLIDWORKS 2018 has now been released, check out this blog for some of our top tips for the best possible start with the upgrade & installation.
Grid Systems - hidden away, but very useful!
Rory Niles provides an insight into the uses for Grid Systems within SOLIDWORKS 2018
My Top Enhancements 2012-2014
Applications Engineer Alex Hall presents 'My Top Enhancements 2012 - 2014'.
My Top Enhancements 2015 - 2017
Applications Engineer Alex Hall presents ' My Top Enhancements from SOLIDWORKS 2015 - 2017'.
10 things you need to know about the user interfac
Applications Engineer Kevin Moore presents '10 things you need to know about the user interface'.
10 things you need to know about 3D sketches
Applications Engineer Kevin Moore presents ' 10 things you need to know about 3D sketches'.
PDM Standard Database Backups And Maintenance
Elite Applications Engineer Wayne Marshall explains PDM Standard Database Backups And Maintenance
Cutaway with Composer
How to make an assembly cutaway in SOLIDWORKS then present and interact with it using SOLIDWORKS Composer.
Tims 10 Top Tips
Applications Engineer Tim Johnson presents 'Tim's 10 Top Tips'.
Confusing Configurations?
Applications Engineer, Rory Niles takes us through his latest blog 'Confusing Configurations' in an effort to help save you time whilst configuring your parts.
Shaded Sketch Contours – what’s that about?
Applications Engineer, Rory Niles, talks us through one of the new features in SOLIDWORKS 2017, 'Shaded Sketch Contours'
Location, Location, Location
Where are your templates stored? Have you got all your custom files secure for SOLIDWORKS. This webcast will look at where templates and borders are stored along with other files that you may need when using SOLIDWORKS.
SOLIDWORKS 2017 Installation Advice
Best Practice advice from Elite Engineer Adam Hartles on how to Update to SOLIDWORKS 2017 or Install your new software from scratch.
Redesigning Santa's Sleigh
Every year Father Christmas has to fly in his sleigh to deliver presents to boys and girls all over the world in just one night. To put this into perspective, it takes a little under 24 hours to fly from London (UK) to Sydney (Australia) in a streaml...
SOLIDWORKS 2017 – Wrap Feature
One of the many new features within the new release of SOLIDWORKS 2017 is the enhancements made to the wrap feature. Find out More about this enhancement in this blog post.
SOLIDWORKS Auto-recovery and Back up
SOLIDWORKS has two different methods to help you recover from an unexpected crash or loss of data, find out about these in this blog.
Robot Wars – Design your own robot with SOLIDWORKS
Robot wars returned this year to the BBC with great excitement and destruction. See how you could use SOLIDWORKS to design your own Robot in this Blog.
Series 1 Land Rover pedal car made easy with Solid
The Series1 began production in 1948 designed to help get Britain farming after the war effort. It grew extremely popular and today enthusiasts are prepared to throw their life savings at restoring originals from that period.
How to model the Beau Jeu Ball in SOLIDWORKS
How to model the UEFA Euro 2016 Football in SOLIDWORKS using tools such as split lines, surfaces and patterns!
Fatigue Simulation
A colleague asked me to help her with some Fatigue hand calculations on a simple test piece. No problem I thought – quite straightforward, except it did not turn out that way and I discovered a hole in my understanding that is critically important to...
Tech Support Blog: Controlling Layers for Specific
Many SOLIDWORKS users still maintain layers in 2D drawings and there are a number of settings to allow you to control which type of annotations can take on layer properties such as line colour and font styles. Much of this can be setup at a template ....
Cardboard Aided Design?
SOLIDWORKS Weldments is a powerful function of SOLIDWORKS and can allow you to quickly and easily model weldment structures, Frames and beams that form the backbone of products developed by many industries.
Automatic Animations With SOLIDWORKS Composer 2016
It’s What’s New time again! With SOLIDWORKS Composer we get two releases per year, find out about the time saving new automatic “Animation Tools” Workshop in SOLIDWORKS Composer 2016 SP3
SOLIDWORKS License Transfer Change
In SP3.0 to transfer a SOLIDWORKS license from one computer to another you must now ‘Deactivate’ the license and then ‘Reactivate’ on another machine. Previously, ‘Deactivate’ was called ‘Transfer’, it still functions in exactly the same way.
Sign Writing and Logos - DXF's and Blocks
Importing DXF's - particularly ones of stylized images can be a pain - how can this be handled?
SOLIDWORKS on a Mac
We are often asked if it is possible to run SOLIDWORKS on a Mac computer – the answer is YES you can! We know quite a few users running SOLIDWORKS successfully on a Mac however it isn’t supported by SOLIDWORKS.
The SOLIDWORKS Rx Tool
We are often asked by our customers about the SOLIDWORKS rx Tool so we have created a handy document to explain it all.
Solid Solutions Internal CAD Modelling Challenge
How would you design a low cost, easily manufacturable stand for your iPhone that allows it to be inclined on your desk? There are plenty of phone stands currently on the market but we were looking for a fresh idea, suitable for manufacture on our 3D...
This was a new problem that I had not come across before on SOLIDWORKS. I was unable to select the “Flatten" icon due it being greyed out.
Pinball Machine using Event Based Motion
Event based motion is part of SOLIDWORKS Motion Add-In. It is a powerful tool that allows to link sensors with actuators and simulate synchronous motion patterns present in various mechatronics devices.
Creating “BOM” tables in multi-body part documents
In some cases it’s easier to model assemblies using multi-bodies in a single part file. But when it gets to the point where you need to create a BOM drawing, you need to save out the bodies as separate part files and put them into an assembly. This c...
SOLIDWORKS 2016 Tips and Tricks Part 1
The final breakout session from the SOLIDWORKS 2016 launch events was based on some of the best Tips and Tricks from SOLIDWORKS over the last few releases. Join us for this webcast and learn some of the best tips and tricks from our team of Elite App...
3D printing Jigs and Fixtures
I spent some time recently walking around town trying to get a battery replaced in my watch. After the fourth jewellers shop failed to remove the back was resided to sending it back to the manufacturer for repair. That was until I walked past the 3d ...
A quicker way to send parts via email
Every now and then there is a need to email a SOLIDWORKS part to a colleague/customer, but the files might take quite a bit of space on disk. And sending a document over 10MB over email is slow and unreliable. If only there was a way to compress the ...
Automatically create drawing views with Task Sched
SOLIDWORKS Task Scheduler is a great tool to automatically do the work for us, available in all seats of Professional and Premium, we can set up the Scheduler to carry out mundane and monotonous tasks ahead of time.
SOLIDWORKS Simulation Quadcopter Design Study
In this Blog post SOLIDWORKS Simulation has been coupled with the ‘Design Study’ tool to run a batch of static studies and optimise a quadcopter frame.
A Game Changer… For Rendering
PhotoView360 is an amazing add-on for SOLIDWORKS and can allow you to quickly and easily create sophisticated photorealistic renderings and animations. PhotoView360 allows you to make powerful images and presentations, save time, increase productivit...
SOLIDWORKS Defeature Tool
The SOLIDWORKS Defeature tool is a technique that can be used to simplify assembly components, as it enables you to remove details from a part of an assembly.
Why will SOLIDWORKS not launch after I have applie
A problem has been identified with Windows Update KB3097877. After installing this update SOLIDWORKS can fail to launch.
Drag Reduction Systems in Motorsport
This blog explains how we can use SOLIDWORKS Flow Simulation to examine the effects of Downforce and Drag in Motorsport
Creating and Editing Macros
This blog will cover the basics of macros. If you are familiar with Visual basic, and would just like to know how to implement macros using SOLIDWORKS, this blog is for you. We will go through the following:•Creating macros•Editing macros
Working with Layers
SOLIDWORKS allows the use of layers in a similar fashion to 2D CAD programs. However they may be an occasion where your drawing annotations or dimensions do not conform to the layers you think they are located on.
Wrap Feature
How to engrave text on a tapered diametric face using SOLIDWORKS.
Geometry Pattern
Building patterns of features is an easy task in SOLIDWORKS. However, having numerous instances of complex geometry may put too much strain on your machine and significantly reduce rebuild times. Geometry Pattern option is a nice trick to reduce the ...
Configurations - Creating a manufacturing process
Configurations are normally used to create similar components with different sizes but can also be used to create a manufacturing lifecycle process. This blog is going to run through the process on how this could be achieved.
Convert Entities
SOLIDWORKS has many tools and functions that make designing and building parts easy. Including; converting entities, Mirroring, and the boss and extrude tools etc. In this blog I’m going to be talking about the convert entities tool.
Circular Patterning
In this blog I will be explaining how to use the circular patterning tool. Patterning can significantly save you time by enabling you to copy and replicate features that you have already done.
SWUGN North West Meeting at Canon, Birchwood
Adam Green, leader of the SOLIDWORKS User Group Network, North West, take his next meeting to Canon's offices in Birchwood. Adam has been gaining a lot of momentum with his User Group Network and has attracted some great guest presenters as well as p....
Wrap Feature in SOLIDWORKS
Sometimes it may be necessary to engrave text on a diametric face which is a simple enough procedure: Create a plane tangential to the diametric face, create some text constrained to a construction line and use the wrap feature. However what happens ...
Using an Input Formula in EnterprisePDM
SOLIDWORKS EnterprisePDM DataCards for Files, Folders and Searching all support Input Formula that allow for text substitution, manipulation and mathematical calculations. This blog will discuss an example of String Manipulation that resulted from a ...
Linking SVGs in Composer
SVGs are an exceptionally useful and versatile export option from SOLIDWORKS Composer. This blog explains the process required to export, link and prepare the files for uploading.
Clean out your SOLIDWORKS Data folders
The SOLIDWORKS Data folder is key to your use of the Hole Wizard and Toolbox Features within the software. When you install SOLIDWORKS you are asked where you would like the SOLIDWORKS Data folder to be stored with the default being the root of your ....
Announcing the New 3D ContentCentral
3DContentCentral is a great online resource allowing you to take advantage of a vast library of SOLIDWORKS CAD models and Macros (applications). You can choose to download supplier parts, or more recreational items, as well as opening account to uplo....
Notes Library
In SOLIDWORKS we have a toolbox library, materials library and appearances library, one library we don't have is a annotations library. This can easily be rectified allowing you to create an extensive catalogue of frequently used annotations, notes, ...
Colour Drawing HLR HLV View
In an assembly, it can be quite useful to have different parts shown in different colours. Whether that be to differentiate between parts, to display final colour or to indicate whether a part has been purchased or not.This is easy in an assembly, bu...
Advanced Angle Dimensions
When sketching, on occasion you may want to add an angle dimension and use a horizontal or vertical sketch line to reference from, but what do you do if none are nearby? In SOLIDWORKS 2015 you now have the ability to dimension between a line and an i...
Foreshortened Dimensions On Section Views
Adding foreshortened dimensions are nice and easy, but what about adding foreshortened diameter dimensions to a Detail View of a section? Not so easy, or is it?
Instability and Crashes Explained
Are you experiencing random computer crashes or system lock-ups? Are you having instability with SOLIDWORKS? Are you looking to get these issues resolved as quickly and effectively as possible whilst understanding why these issues occur?This technica....
SOLIDShots - Super fast tips and tricks for your c
SOLIDShots are free SOLIDWORKS Quick Tip Videos from our Elite Application Engineers here at Solid Solutions
A Definitive Guide to Assembly Mates
During this webcast Kevin will touch on some of the basic mating operations. However more focus and emphasis will be placed on best practices for mates, FAQ’s and some of the options available within the property manager for different types of mates.
A Definitive Guide to Assembly Features
What are assembly features? When would you use them over part features? How can I control the behavior of these features? What is the Feature Scope? All of these questions and more will be covered with the help of examples during this webcast.
Move Sketch
Moving sketches while in edit sketch mode is not always the easiest of things to do, particularly if your sketch is under defined.You can use the move entities command, but this doesn't always snap to your desired location.However there is another me...
Copy Surface
Copying a surface can be very useful when you want to build in context relationships between parts. Particularly when you are dealing with difficult imported geometry, such as STEP or IGES files with thousands of surfaces.But how do we do it if there...
Grouping Annotations
You can select multiple annotations in a drawing and group them so they move together when you drag them. Ungroup annotations so they move independently.
Assembly, Hide/Show Components
In the graphics area, you can press Tab and Shift + Tab to hide and show components of an assembly. This becomes very helpful when you have many small components getting in your way like the model shown below.
Status Bar
The status bar at the bottom of the SOLIDWORKS window provides information related to the function you are currently performing.
Recent Commands
If you use the same command over and over again, then this quick tip is one for you. The last ten unique commands are available in a command history. The most recent command is at the top of the list.
PhotoView 360 Luxology Appearances
A great feature added back in SOLIDWORKS 2013 was the ability to use Luxology native appearances for PhotoView 360. This enables SOLIDWORKS users to make use of the huge range of additional appearances in Luxology’s online library.
PhotoView 360 Render Region
In PhotoView 360, you can define a region of the SOLIDWORKS graphics area for rendering. Using this render region, you can limit the rendering in the integrated preview, the preview window, or the final rendering to the area of the render region. Thi...
Photoview 360 Basic Settings
When getting started with PhotoView 360, setting your render options can seem like a bewildering task. Here are a few tips and explanations to get you started.
Simulate the Solar Eclipse with SOLIDWORKS!
Last week there was a cosmic conjunction in my thinking! The partial solar eclipse in the UK coincided with my son needing help with his "Gravitational Field Theory". Could SOLIDWORKS help me understand both?
Favourite Materials
If applying a range of specific materials to your models is something you have to do regularly then the materials favourites bar is something you need to be using.
Toolbox Application
Creating new or modifying existing toolbox parts is a very common activity in SOLIDWORKS, however until recently I have never used the toolbox application to do this. Previously I have created my new custom toolbox parts from within SOLIDWORKS by sim...
End Point References
In SOLIDWORKS 2014 to make a line and an arc tangential, you had to select both sketch entities. Now in 2015 you can simply select the common vertex and the same sketch relations are presented. This is true of any sketch geometry that shares a common...
Up To Reference
“Up to Reference” is a new option in the linear pattern feature that allows you to create intelligent patterns. The “Up to Reference” option allows you to select an edge, vertex or face as a reference to control how many instances will be created at ...
SOLIDWORKS User Group Network - North West
Following a week over in Phoenix, AZ, for SOLIDWORKS World 2015, it is clear that the SOLIDWORKS User Community is very strong and one of the many reasons SOLIDWORKS is the number one CAD choice around the world. Whilst User Groups are hugely popular....
Black Boxes
Simple tips for creating and using Black Boxes in SOLIDWORKS Electrical.
Dragging Dimensions
When creating smart dimensions in drawing views, we occasionally want to reposition certain dimensions. Rather than deleting a dimension and creating a new one on another view we can simply hold "Shift" and drag the desired dimension to the desired v...
Dimension Names
One query we get a lot on the support line is what are these bracketed names appearing after my dimensions in a drawing file?Dimension names are automatically created for every dimension you have produced, but whether you have them displayed is up to...
Relationship Popup
When you select more than one sketch entity using the "Ctrl" key a relationship menu appears. However after you select one relationship the popup disappears. Hit "Ctrl" to get it to reappear.
Automatic Sketch Relations
Hold "Ctrl" to turn off automatic sketch relations.
Flow Simulation 2015
This wasn’t included in the release notes for Flow and is just another example of the really cool gems that SOLIDWORKS give away when you start digging around!
Normal To
Most SOLIDWORKS users have their N button setup as a keyboard shortcut to their normal to feature, however most haven't stumbled across this tip. Press N once to go normal to your selected entity, press it again to go normal to the reverse side of th...
Make Block
Blocks are a very useful tool, however most SOLIDWORKS operators don't use them as efficiently as they could. This tip will save you valuable time in your production process.
Speed up your CFD Solutions using Flow Freezing
SOLIDWORKS Flow Simulation has a very useful, but little known, tool for speeding up thermal fluid dynamics problems. It can cut your run times significantly without sacrificing accuracy. This blog uses an example to illustrate the process and time s...
Improving SOLIDWORKS Performance
SOLIDWORKS settings for optimised performance speed
SOLIDWORKS Sensor Tool
The SOLIDWORKS sensor tool allows a user to set parameters within a model or assembly that can then be monitored by SOLIDWORKS as your design is developed. If a design change you make results in a deviation outside the limits you specify, then the so...
Periodic Domain in SOLIDWORKS Flow Simulation
The 'Periodic' computational domain option in Flow is little known - but it can be a great tool to use and a real time saver. This blog gives an example of a rack of PCBs in an electronic enclosure to illustrate how it works.
What’s new in EnterprisePDM 2015: Top 5
EPDM 2015 is another feature rich release which focuses on delivering benefits in the areas of "Better Data Manipulation and Visualisation", "Improved User Experience" and "System Performance". From within the long list of enhancements I have chosen ...
SOLIDWORKS Sheet Metal Design - Best Practices
Take a look at this technical document to understand the fundamental approaches of Sheet Metal design in SOLIDWORKS. This document covers;- A brief introduction to sheet metal- Characteristics and assumptions- Modelling approaches and streamlining de....
Shortcuts and other Time Saving Hints
Here at Solid Solutions we love little quirks that save us time so I will run down some of the few that time after time leave our customers asking ‘how did you do that?’
Switchable Graphics for Mobile Workstations
The recent models of mobile workstations (laptops) for CAD applications are shipped with a battery optimizer called "Switchable Graphics" which aims to run your machine on the less power hungry on-board Intel graphics card rather than the dedica....
Using the Gas Dynamic Calculator in Flow
Do you need to know how long a tank will take to evacuate or what the Reynolds Number is for a particular flow condition? If so, and you have SOLIDWORKS Flow Simulation, then why not use the 'Gas Dynamic Calculator' to do the work for you?
Tip for Getting Exact Position of Cut Planes when
Flow users will know that you can preview a Cut Plot and see the flow behaviour whilst the solver is running. Finding the best location for the plot can be tricky unless you know this little tip
Bendy Phone
Have you recently broken your new phone by sitting on it accidently? SOLIDWORKS Simulation can help prevent design flaws by stress testing components in a virtual environment to prevent the costly process of trying to correct faults after manufacture...
Hole Table Tip
Hole Tables - This blog posts explains what to do if SOLIDWORKS is picking up the hole from the Geometry not the thread detail.
SOLIDWORKS Electrical 2015 - Search Field Enhancme
A quick look at the search enhancement in SOLIDWORKS Electrical Schematics 2015
Sweeps with Guide Curves - when they don't work...
How you set up the Profile sketch is often the cause of problems with Swept Boss features or Swept Cut features.
Goal Convergence Symbols in Flow Simulation
When solving a cfd project, Flow Simulation provides very useful convergence information. The user's understanding of convergence can be enhanced if the convergence symbols and interval are switched on and their meaning understood. This blog explains...
Modelling a Bike – The Frame
Modelling a bike Frame in SOLIDWORKS using Sweeps and Lofts
Using Design Studies Can Save You Hours!
This blog describes how to add a transient time step into a Simulation Design Study. This enables users to graph stress results across time steps to see worst case.
Reusing 'History' in an EPDM 'Text' control
We often get asked by Customers if there is any way to reuse the text values entered on one DataCard within another file's DataCard. This post will look at how you can use the the special 'History' list to recall and reselect values previous typed in...
Stress Values in Specific Places - Sensors
An easy way to monitor stress values in critical areas of your model.
How to Render Cosmetic Threads
This blog post explains how you can Render Cosmetic Threads in SOLIDWORKS to make them look a lot more realistic than the 'screw thread' appearance.
Getting the correct Orientation in SOLIDWORKS
Getting the correct orientation of a model can sometimes be difficult, whether you need a specific view in a drawing or just within the part there are a number of tools to help.
Leak Tracking in SOLIDWORKS Flow Simulation
Internal Flow projects need an enclosed cavity to run. If there is a gap, no matter how small, SOLIDWORKS cannot calculate the fluid volume. So how do you find the gap if it is very small and the geometry is complex? Here's how ...
Hole in the Ball!!
Well the World Cup is over, so as we are probably all trying to fill the 6 week gap until the start of the new domestic season- here's a blog with football at heart. In this post we look at finding where we have openings in surface models- and the re....
Creating Inspection Reports
Do you ever need to create Inspection Reports from customer drawings or directly from SOLIDWORKS?
Convert Entities - more than just the outside edge
Ever wanted to convert entities on all edges - not just the boundary?
Wave the Flag?!?
Flags?Really?Well, many of our customers build boats, some design toys...Plus Freeform is a command that can be used to modify solids or surfaces
Copy Settings Wizard
Video Blog - A brief guide in how to use the Copy Settings Wizard to save out and restore your custom SOLIDWORKS options such as menus, toolbars & saved views.
The Magic of Spline on Surface
Want to create a free form cut out in a 3D surface? The little known 'Spline on Surface' is a great tool for this. Here is how to create an egg with the top chopped off - ready for the soldiers!
Looking inside - a SOLIDWORKS Composer tip
Discover a little known tip to help you clearly show internal components of an assembly through the outer level components using SOLIDWORKS Composer...
It's All Gone Dark?!?
One common question on photo-rendering is when you haveclear objects why may you get dark spots? The answer is down to the fact thatin real life light bends as many times as it needs to pass through atransparent object. However in rendering we have t....
“Foreshortening” drawing dimensions other than rad
Ever wondered how to “foreshorten” a dimension in a drawing?
Flow Simulation Max and Min Table
The Max and Min Table in SOLIDWORKS Flow Simulation reports the max and min parameter results - as you would expect. However, what is less well known is that the table interactively identifies the location of the max and min values graphically.
Combining Helixes, Surfaces and Sweeps.
In this week’s blog I’m going to show how to use acombination of simple commands to create this seemingly complex component. The part will start with a simple sphere, a groove will be thencut using a path that was created using a helix an....
Replacing Components in Assemblies
Covered on the Assembly Modelling course, the ReplaceComponent tool allows components with different file names to be swapped in andout without causing mate errors or the need to re-make areas of an assembly.Mates are re attached automatically, or if....
Communicating Designs Quickly and Effectively
eDrawingsThere are a number of tools within SOLIDWORKS to speed up theprocess of communicating designs quickly and effectively to your customers. Oneof the most popular ways is through a free program called eDrawings. One of the major benefits w....
Replacing Inserted Parts for Master Modelling
Master modelling is the technique employed by many designers that work with external customer data. It allows the user to import a part into another part document. With an inserted part, new geometry can then be referenced to the inserted part ensuri....
Opening references from within Contains / Where Us
Follow this tip for a simple way to open files of different types directly from the 'Contain' and 'Where Used' tabs of SOLIDWORKS EnterprisePDM.
Updating Custom Properties within SOLIDWORKS
Custom properties are used throughout SOLIDWORKS- they are simply text based information that helps further describe and add information about a document - they are sometimes known as metadata.When created, properties can be used extensively througho....
Creating multiple angular planes as reference geom
How can you easily create 36 planes at 10 degrees around a central axis?
Ordering Holes in a Hole Table
Can you control the order of the holes in a hole table and the 'tags' that label them? This blog describes a neat method of achieving the hole order you want and gives you control over the tag names too.
A Linear Pattern Design Library Feature – Unistrut
SOLIDWORKS offers integratedWeldment Structure design tools at all levels of the product. Through the‘SOLIDWORKS Content’ section of the design library, profiles for most types of structuralmember can be downloaded. The ‘Unistrut&rs....
The Sketch Driven Pattern Feature
Read on to see how the Sketch Driven pattern can be used for irregular pattern arrays. An often forgotten feature within SOLIDWORKS, sketch driven pattern is extremely useful if a repeated feature is patterned on a planar face without a singular dire...
Calculate Internal Fluid Volume using the SolidWor
Last week during training I had a question asking how to work out the internal volume of a model, and taking this a bit further, how to calculate the volume of a fluid. To answer the query I showed a recent addition to the SOLIDWORKS feature set, the...
Animations - A few recommendations when saving as
Animations:        Save As .avi recommended settingsI've had a number of calls on the support desk asking for help when saving their animations out as .avi files.  The comments range from the animation appe....
Exporting Multi-body Parts to an Assembly
The multibody part environment is a huge strength of SOLIDWORKS- the diverse range of features we provide in the part mode, means that you can gain fully detailed designs without having to even explore the assembly mode- there may be examples where y....
Weldments - Structural Member Corners
Anyone that has used the Weldment command "Structural Member" will know that you can set it to give you mitred corners - here we will look at a situation where we have three lines meeting up at the one corner of a 3D sketch. If anyone hasn't seen it ...
Derivative Design using Save As
Training at SolidSolutions also offers the attendees a chance to ask the instructor other questions about the software not related to actual course, we call this the SolidSolutions Surgery…Pre or Post course time is allocated to all kinds of q...
Creating Rigid Body Groups in Motion
Rigid Groups in SOLIDWORKS MotionSOLIDWORKS Motion is a great tool for simulating the movement of complex mechanisms. It allows engineers to quantify kinematic and dynamic performance parameters such as velocity, acceleration, energy, torque, power e....
A New Way to Communicate Concept Designs
SOLIDWORKS PhotoView 360 2014 adds some new non photorealistic options for your output. The first thing that springs to mind for me is to communicate concept designs. Rather than dusting off the marker pens you  can create a quick concept image ....
How to Obtain Pin Slip Force in SOLIDWORKS Simulat
Many engineering applications require the use of pins which hold components together by an interference or friction fit.  Knowing how much force it takes to make the pin slip is a key area of the design.  This can be obtained in using ....
SOLIDWORKS Certifications- All You Need to Know
The SOLIDWORKS certification program is a great way to test competency and efficiency in the software- it is the only industry recognised SOLIDWORKS accreditation and a great addition to your CV.Below is an overview of the main examinations, and we a....
Flat Pattern Not Working in Drawing
Whilst on support the other day I came across a question which I come across at least once a week, Why is the flat pattern not coming through to the drawing even though the view is set to flat pattern ? Usually the reason for the flat pattern no....
SOLIDWORKS World 2014 Available to All!
If you didn't manage to make it to SOLIDWORKS World this year or perhaps you were lucky enough to be there but you just didn't get chance to see everything going on be sure to take a look at the SOLIDWORKS World 2014 Proceedings page. With so mu....
Where is that Command again....?
If you're new to SOLIDWORKS, or even if you are not, you are always learning about new features and functions that hopefully make your life easier and products even better. The more commands you use, the tougher it is to keep track of them, and the b....
Surface Model a Rubber Duck!!
During one of my recent training courses, one of the delegates asked about surface modelling. I thought it could be easily digestable by relating it to an everyday common item, so I thought- why not a Rubber Duck! Initially this type of shape ca....
Training Tip - Zoom to Selection
Zoom to Selection Time for little tip I showed in an Advanced Assembly training course last week that attendee’s seem to like; the little know ‘Zoom to Selection’ toolIt’s a great way to target your view in the graphical ....
The Curve Driven Pattern is a powerful feature in parts, and now in SOLIDWORKS 2014, assemblies. It allows you to repeat and array features, bodies or parts along a 2D or 3D curve direction, maintaining equal spacing as you go. It is in fact a great ....
Model Mania @ SOLIDWORKS World 2014 – San DiegoAfter a great week at SOLIDWORKS World in San Diego, I’m now reflecting on how the technical content shown can impact positively our customers business, I hope to add a series of short blogs ....
The weldments feature set in SOLIDWORKS is a powerful way of generating geometry off the back of standard profiles- whether this be tube, box section or channels. We have always had to rely on creating each profile variant as a separate profile sketc....
Last week I wanted to go through my settings and customise them. I hadn’t done this in a while and didn’t feel like my current set up was working for me. You can get to the customise menu  by right clicking the command manager, going....
PhotoView 360 2014 added many new enhancements, one that wasn’t mentioned in the What’s New guide was Ambient Occlusion output. Ambient occlusion allows you to visualise areas of a design where light struggles to reach and can be use....
After reviewing the 2014 Training manual content and getting hands on with the new enhancements I thought I'd share a couple of my favorite features.Toggling Between Flexible and Rigid StatesConfigurations While in 2013 and previous releases....
A simple yet powerful feature introduced on the SOLIDWORKS Essentials Course is the shell feature. This allows you to remove faces of a part and apply a uniform wall thickness within it, particularly useful for injection moulded product. By....
Even after the hype of launch events has died down, we’re still spotting little nuggets of improvement that SOLIDWORKS have put into their latest release. When using simulation to create a 2D shell mesh, it is now possible to “previe....
There has been an issue with the SOLIDWORKS database which may have affected your personal student copies of SOLIDWORKS.Attempting to run the software after 1st January 2014 may have given you the following error:   The solution to thi....
If you are using SOLIDWORKS EnterprisePDM to manage your SOLIDWORKS Data it is likely you have implemented the 'Convert' Task to automate the generation of PDF, IGES, DXF etc. as part of your Workflow. I was reviewing a post on the SOLIDWORKS....
In this weeks Webcast we went Beyond Training - Essentials and covered various customization methods to help you get the best set up for maximum efficiency from the user interface. One of my favorite shortcuts is through the 'S' Key. Simply pressing ....
One of the tools in the Sheet Metal Command Manager that is unfortunately overlooked in the official Training Manuals is the 'Vent' command. It is relatively straight forward to use and therefore I have decided to write a short post about it.....
You may have seen warnings during the last couple of SOLIDWORKS versions about the support for Windows XP and Windows Vista ceasing, so it may come as a shock when attempting to install on a Windows 7 computer that you are hit with the following erro....
In recent years most browsers have added native support for Scaleable Vector Graphics (SVG) files. As the name implies these scale images up and down without losing quality, however did you know they can also be made interactive using SOLIDWORKS Comp....
As the new year approaches, I wanted to make you aware of some of the great resources Solid Solutions offer for new users and experienced users a like. Webcast WednesdayThis initiative has been going for around 4 years and we have had huge succe....
Using Delete Face as a cutting tool
Using Delete Face as a cutting toolToday’s little tip is the use of the “Delete Face” as a cutting tool, to save you the time and effort sketching and creating features to remove the model geometryLet me explain below:As you can see....
Which is better for SOLIDWORKS: a Windows 7 Basic theme or an Aero Theme? For my blog post this week I wanted to highlight the importance of not only checking that you are running a supported graphics card driver as you upgrade to the last ....
Chances are that if you have attended one of the SOLIDWORKS Training Courses you will have been encouraged to rename your Sketches and Features either through a slow double click or hitting the F2 key. However what if you need to undo this ....
In my opinion, it is always best practice to model about the model origin and to make use of symmetry whenever possible.   Dynamic Mirror Entities: The easiest and fastest way to create symmetric elements in a sketch is to use the Dynamic Mir....
A conversation I often have with EnterprisePDM (EDPM) Customers is one around the topic of "How do I incorporate scanned data into my Vault's metadata rules, naming conventions and Workflows?". The document in question could c....
Rapid Sketch- you may have seen it, but perhaps haven't clicked it. It is one of the last icons on the Sketch toolbar when part modelling, and has been there for a couple of years. Without having any exposure on our training courses, it is one of....
Hi I have just fixed a long-standing problem for a customer using the Knowledge Base. The customer was not aware that he could have fixed the problem himself - if he just searched it via his Customer Portal. The Knowledge Base is a fabulous....
Essentials TipsDuring training this week’s SOLIDWORKS essentials, I was reminded of a little tip that has been removed from the course itself over the years but one that I always like to show….SOLIDWORKS gives the user the ability to use....
Opening Files from your 2D Drawing
During training this week I came across something that a number of my students were unaware of…it’s often these little things that can speed up your day to day work within SOLIDWORKS SOLIDWORKS gives the user the ability to open par....
Trim/Extend Feature and Weldment Cut Lists A reminder of one of the main features of the Weldments area of SOLIDWORKS; the Trim/Extent tool.   Having started off with a part containing two weldment tubes and a horizontal Boss-Extr....
When importing large STL files in to SOLIDWORKS you may come across this error.  This is due to a polygon limit on the SOLIDWORKS STL import utility. Files with more than 20000 polygons cannot be imported as a surface or solid, and only a g....
The Property Tab Builder, introduced in SOLIDWORKS 2009 makes the input of custom properties easier than ever. Properties are used to add data to SOLIDWORKS files to populate drawing borders and Bills of Materials tables, but can also be used as a se....
Have you ever seen this thing appear next to your cursor?     If so, you will have found that you can only select certain things - often not the thing you wanted to select! So what is it? How did it happen? And how on Earth do you get ri....
This is a really useful gem that is hardly noticed or used - but can come in very handy, especially for anyone doing an animation or Motion study.   Suppose you want to illustrate a movement of an assy - some sort of mechanism. Obviously you wil....
  Generally speaking, when you want to model a part with rounded edges, it is best to use the Fillet command on the Features menu - you can then edit/suppress/delete the fillet feature on the design tree. Many people do use the Sketch Fillet co....
Found a nifty tool within SOLIDWORKS, buried in the background... The Live Section plane tool is accessed within a part document under Insert> Feature> Reference Geometry> Live Section Planes, this tools lets you dynamically sectio....
Switch to Exploded View A short and basic tip to save time setting up exploded views multiple times: Exploded views are stored within the configurations tab, double-click the highlighted tab as shown below to activate the exploded view and ....
If using SOLIDWORKS Electrical Schematics; in order to safeguard against losing any data we recommend to regularly produce a backup of all of your projects within the program. This has the additional benefit of saving any configured title b....
Hi, Another SOLIDWORKS Essentials course completed this week, great to meet our new customers and some new faces from existing customers. Everyone progressed extremely well and found the training and extra SSM Surgery support extremely usef....
Dynamic Mirror - A really quick tip for instantly creating symmetry within a sketch in SOLIDWORKS. 1. Draw a centreline, ideally going through the origin  2. Within the active sketch, select Tools > Sketch Tools > Dynamic Mirror&....
Just a quick note that following requests from customers to support Android devices, the eDrawings application for android was released yesterday and its a bit of a bargain in my opinion!  A mere £1.28 will allow you to better collaborate ....
As well as all of the great stuff we are doing at Solid Solutions with our online blog posts and the interactive Solid Solutions TV website, SOLIDWORKS themselves have created a brand new online portal giving customers access to all the SOLIDWORKS Re....
We all know that Rendering can be very time consuming but the results can also be very impressive. Did you know that within PhotoView 360 utilising Cameras Options such as Camera Lenses in 'Field of View' and 'Depth of Field' can add ....
SOLIDWORKS - Creating a Helix/Spiral The Helix and Spiral tool can be cleverly used to generate 3D curves which can be then used as a sweep path. Ideal for creating springs!The tool will create your desired helix or spiral based on an initial ci....
  Converting Parts to Sheet Metal   During the sheet metal course that is part of my training, I was introduced to the “Convert to sheet metal” feature. The tool can quickly be used to convert a block part into a component th....
Smart Fasteners“Smart fasteners” is a really useful time saving tool, allowing you to automatically insert toolbox fasteners such as bolts and screws into an assembly providing there is a standard hole. The tool uses both ANSI inch and me....
I must acknowledge the help of my colleague Graham Stephenson with this tip.   I was in a Sheetmetal training class with a customer who uses lofted bends a lot in his sheetmetal products - chutes and hoppers for the food industry. We created a s....
I was working on a model for a customer today and found it very annoying having to swap back and forth between two model windows. One solution might be to get a second monitor and span SOLIDWORKS across it. Great, but i'm not working at my o....
For those of you who weren't aware SOLIDWORKS 2013 made it much easier to select the view you require either via the shortcut of hitting the space bar on the keyboard or from the menu icons. I picked up a tip today that i think makes it more user....
This blog post is to coincide with the ‘Direct Editing’ Webcast and Tips & Tricks on our Solidsolutions.tv. I hope for those that attended the webcast and for those that have/will watch it, that you did see one or two new tools (or us....
If you have ever had the need to create additional sketch planes:-     Then I'm pretty sure that you will have run into situations where "Horizontal" and "Vertical" relations in your new sketch are not how you would....
Setting up parallel approval transitions in Enterp
Many of the processes we map in EPDM for the approval and changing of documents run in a serial fashion with the files moving from one person / state to the next. This is great but can result in bottlenecks when multiple approvers are required for ce....
I’m always on the lookout for interesting tips and tricks to pass on to our customers and this is a lovely one that will save valuable time and therefore cost. I picked this one up recently….. There is a function available to users of ....
Is the SOLIDWORKS Rx tool not opening?   I came across an interesting issue that seems to crop up now and again whilst working on the Support line, which is the problem with the SOLIDWORKS Rx tool not opening, not doing anything, ....
Dell Precision Performance Optimiser Utility
It's common knowledge that here at Solid Solutions we promote the use of DELL as our recomended hardware provider. We use Dell Precision Laptops for our Application Engineers and Satalite Training Venues while Desktops in our main offices Training su....
A new feature has been added to SOLIDWORKS Simulation Professional and Premium 2013. Submodelling allows you to improve the results at local regions of large models without having to rerun the analysis for the whole model. Refining the mesh for selec....
Combine Multiple Custom Properties into one PropertyThe below image demonstrates how I have combined the "Evaluated Value" from the "Material" and "Weight" property into the "Combination" property field and sep....
  Recently several customers have commented that Simulation Reports are fantastic - except for one annoyance: that you can't show a bespoke orientation or zoom state for the results images. I understand their point as often you need to show ....
Expanding and Collapsing all Components in the SOLIDWORKS Model Tree...read more   With the new 2013 functionality of producing a new flat view for parts, wouldn’t it be useful to have a similar setting for Assemblies?     Flat ....
HiDesign Studies and Optimisation are great tools for exploring how you can improve the design of a part. Design Studies allow you to make changes to Simulation parameters (e.g. loads, materials etc.) as well as dimensions and then monitor the b....
Use a Solid State Drive! No I’m not kidding, Solid State Drives (SSD) improve many aspects of a PC’s performance from windows start up and responsiveness to intensive applications like SOLIDWORKS when compared with traditional spinning ha....
Revision cloud is a new annotation type that lets you create cloud-like shapes in a drawing.Use revision clouds to call attention to geometry changes. You can insert revision clouds in drawing views or on the drawing sheet.Paul ChurmTechnical Manger ....
A Certified Enterprise PDM Administrator (CEPA) is an individual who has successfully passed an advanced examination in SOLIDWORKS Enterprise PDM administration skills and is ready to manage a SOLIDWORKS Enterprise PDM implementation on behalf of his....
Previous to SOLIDWORKS 2011 modelling carbon fibre in SOLIDWORKS Simulation was pretty limited.  Practically, if the component was anthing other than flat, fibres weren't able to follow the contours of the surface!Since then, model laminated mat....
SOLIDWORKS 2013 has a new option to allow intelligent dimensioning of sketches automatically. It basically allows you to sketch as normal, but if you know the size of the sketch entity you are adding, you can type in what size it should be. If you do....
When creating an equation in a drawing general table, is it possible to define the number of decimal places of the cell? For example, making 1/3 (0.33333333) appear as 0.33.Yes, it is possible to set the decimal places in a cell. Use the "{}&quo....
SOLIDWORKS eDrawings for iPad was a long time coming but was well worth the wait. Now, eDrawings Professional for iPad adds to the functionality you have available, including measure and mark up, viewing exploded views in SOLIDWORKS files and al....
I have found this useful on several occasions when I have wanted to make the file size of a SOLIDWORKS part smaller - especially if I want to email it and I am tight to a limit.The method is dead simple - simply create a feature that encloses al....
EnterprisePDM records the history of all file transactions in the Vault. That means that if your best companies working practices ask you fill in the 'Check In' and 'Transition' comments with useful information then you have the ability to create a H....
Single DataCard – Multiple functionsTemplates in Enterprise allow you to create and pre-popuate a complete Project Folder Structure. the only downside is that it isn’t possible to include a custom DataCard within a folder created by that ....
In this example we will look at how we can use Workflow Conditions to control the route a file takes through a Workflow, without the user being presented with multiple options.Lets say we have an Engineering Change Document that enters a Workflow whe....
How symmetrical is your part? If you knew, then you could work on the smallest segment and mirror the body after you've made your changes for easy part modifications. Or for Simulation, you could work with that segment alone to speed up an ....
I discovered this by accident recently and can't think why I haven't used this before. If you want to show off an animated simulation result and at the same time be 'inside' the plot, just use a camera view. The workflow is this:1. Create a simulatio....
If you missed our launch events across the country, this Wednesday there will be a live Webcast going through the highlights of the 20th release of SOLIDWORKS. To register for this webcast, go to http://www.solidsolutions.co.uk/solidworks-Training/We....
Have you reserved your seat to see SOLIDWORKS 2012?The two midlands events at the Heritage Motor Museum, were attended by over 250 of Solid Solutions' customers# As well as seeing all of the new features in SOLIDWORKS 2012, many e....
I took a call on the helpdesk last week from a Customer reporting that SOLIDWORKS was often slow to start first thing in the morning. A little investigation found this neat little trick to stop SOLIDWORKS from checking (via the internet) for updates ....
I’ve just supported my first WPDM 2012 server install and found that it now asks for the SW serial number and it then asks you to generate a unique code before it will installChris WadleyApplications EngineerSolid Solutions Management
SOLIDWORKS 2012 is now available to download from the SOLIDWORKS Customer portal (http://customerportal.SOLIDWORKS.com)Want to see what's new? Register for a Solid Solutions Launch Event by clicking the banner above or if you can't wait unt....
For customers moving to EnterprisePDM from an unmanaged environment the question of how best to add legacy projects which share common files to the vault can be a tricky one. You don’t want to create duplicate copies of shared parts, yet you ma....
Unlike our usual customer only Webcasts, this one is open to anyone. So feel free to register through this link and join us next Wednesday.Look forward to presenting it to you,Oliver Duncan - Presales ManagerSolid Solutions Management
Registration for the SOLIDWORKS 2012 Launch events are now open!Here at Solid Solutions, we are proud to announce registration for the SOLIDWORKS 2012 Launch events is now open. This year we are pulling out all the stops to make the events for the 20....
As more and more SOLIDWORKS products are developed to meet the design world's needs, have you ever thought, can't someone just give me an overview of what it's all about, in, say, 10 minutes?We thought so, so I did just that:Enjoy,Oliver Duncan - Eli....
Whilst prepping for a Webcast (Best Practice...Weldments) I remembered a couple of neat tricks for changing the orientation of the coordinate system whilst in a 3D Sketch...Method 1Use the TAB key whilst editing a 3DSketch Method 2Rotate the model th....
Did you Know?...You can... “Pack and Go”, “Rename”, “Replace” and “Move” from within Windows Explorer! "Move" was added in SOLIDWORKS 2011 SP4.0Simply Right Mouse Button on a file, select &quo....
I had a call on the helpdesk the other day from a Customer wanting to know if he could check the status on a current project with respect to the creation and release of Drawings so I pointed him towards this tip. If you select a managed Assembly in W....
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