Window Selection for Instances to Skip
One of the biggest complaints about Patterns in SOLIDWORKS is not having the ability to skip multiple instances. So, say that you are creating a large linear pattern and you need to skip maybe 100 or 1000 instances. Up to now, you had to manually pick every instance one by one. Although this accomplishes what you are trying to do, it wastes a lot of time and is a very tedious process. SOLIDWORKS 2017 introduces Window Selection to Pattern features. You now have the ability to use box and lasso selection to add or remove instances to skip in patterns. Note that this new feature does not work for sketch patterns.
Using the new window selection for Instances to Skip in SOLIDWORKS 2017 is very easy. While you are creating or editing a Pattern feature, expand Instances to Skip in the PropertyManager. “Selection orbs”, the magenta colored dots, show up in the middle of each instances like they did in previous versions of SOLIDWORKS.
You can still single click, one by one, on the instances to skip. But now you can click and drag the mouse to box select multiple instances. It’s hard to see in this image, but the box selection is around “COMPUTER AIDED TECHNOLOGY” in the middle of the part.
It is easier to see once you let go of the mouse. The dots, or orbs, of the skipped instances change to white and the instance preview goes away. In this example, I missed a couple that I want to skip. In the graphics area, right-click and you will notice you have the choice to also use Lasso Selection.
By default, if the selection window goes over both skipped and non-skipped instances, SOLIDWORKS simply toggles the instances from their current state. For example, skipped instances become non-skipped and vice versa. If you don’t want this to happen, you can hold down the Shift key on the keyboard to only add instances or hold down the Alt key to removes instances from Instances to Skip. In this example above, I was holding down the Shift key when I did the lasso selection. So, only the two instances were skipped and the third instance by the “T” in TECHNOLOGY was not toggled. Another thing to be watchful for is that the Selection orbs for instances must be completely within your selection window to be added to or removed from Instances to Skip.
I hope this part of the What’s New series gives you a better understanding of the new features and functions of SOLIDWORKS 2017. Please check back to the CATI Blog as the CATI and MCAD Support Teams will continue to break down many of the new items in SOLIDWORKS 2017. All of these articles will be stored in the category of “SOLIDWORKS What’s New.” You can also learn more about SOLIDWORKS 2017 by clicking on the image below to register for one of CATI’s or CATI’s Design Summits.
Neil Bucalo, CSWP, CSWS-MD
Computer Aided Technology