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How to Render Cosmetic Threads

Tuesday July 29, 2014 at 9:44am

Cosmetic Threads in SOLIDWORKS 

Last week I was asked by a customer if there was any way to make a cosmetic thread that actually looked like a screw thread.

There is a screw thread appearance but it doesn't look very good in the Final Render.   

The solution is actually rather simple. Just save the image below to your desktop.



  • Apply a metal appearance to the cylindrical face of the part.
  • Edit that appearance, switch to the ‘advanced’ mode (at the top of the properties) and then select the ‘surface finish’ tab.
  • Set the drop down at the top to ‘from file’ and select the image on the desktop.
  • On the ‘mapping’ tab you should select a ‘cylindrical’ type of mapping set to ‘selected reference’ and again pick the cylindrical face.
  • Clear the option for ‘fixed aspect ratio’ and change the shape and size of the image until the threads look a reasonable size. If the threads don’t line up as they go around the cylinder tweak the angle property or, be lazy and put the join around the back so you can’t see it in the final render.

That’s about it, any problems call our support team or come on the PhotoView360 training course where surface finished are covered in detail.

By Pete Harkness

Applications Engineer


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