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The Sketch Driven Pattern Feature

Wednesday May 7, 2014 at 4:37pm

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 directional vector, or ‘irregular’ spacing. Take this simple example; the aim is to create an array of tapped holes at irregular intervals where the linear pattern would not be applicable- unless it was done with many features.


Rather than drawing out each hole separately then adding relations and dimensioning each instance, a sketch driven pattern would require only the position of each instance to be marked with a sketch point:


To complete, select the ‘point sketch’ when using the sketch driven pattern feature to place a copy of the feature:


Points could also be placed using ordinate dimensions, to pattern features with changing spacing along larger lengths, particularly useful if repeated holes are positioned from a datum edge. SOLIDWORKS 2014 includes better visual feedback for patterns. The "Seed" feature (original) shows in pink, while the "Instances" (Copies) show in blue.




By Ben Garrett

Applications Engineer


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