I was looking through some of our older blog articles and I ran across a feature the I had never seen or used before. As far as I can tell it has not been included in any of our training material either.
Basically, the Dissection feature allows you to reuse features from other parts by first dissecting the part, then dragging the feature (Extrudes and Cuts) onto your model. Here is the link to the old blog that explains it: https://www.cati.com/blog/2012/06/dissection-quickly-reuse-solidworks-design-data/.
When I read this blog I thought, “This is a great way to reuse my design time.”, but then I thought, “What would be a good use case for this feature?”
To use a tool like this you would need to do some planning because it would be impossible to remember which parts have the features you want to reuse.
So, I came up with a way to create some tool block files which will contain a standard set of Hole Wizard features that can be used to quickly re-create these features in new parts.
I created a folder called “Tool files” then started a new part using my mm template and saved it as Toolblock_CBORE_mm. It looked like this after I had added the Hole Wizard holes.
Then I used the same file to create Toolblock_CSK_mm, Toolblock_hole_mm, and Toolblock_TH_hole_mm.
NOTE: Make sure you save and close these files.
The next thing to do is to add the folder with the Toolblock files in the search path. Go to Tools – Settings – File Locations then select Search Paths from the dropdown.
Click on the Add button and add the folder with the Toolblock files.
Next, create a file to test the Toolblock files. Make it simple, like a cube.
In the search area select “Search file and models” from the dropdown.
Then type Toolblock in the search area and hit enter. You should see this:
Next, double-click on the icon. And you will see this message:
Select Yes, then you will see the dissection data for each feature.
To test, just drag and drop any of the features onto your part, like this.
Here I have created 3 different Hole Wizard holes by simply dragging and dropping.
NOTE: Instant3D must be turned on for this to work properly.
Now it’s your job to put this new information to the best use by creating your standard features to reuse over and over.
Applications Engineer, Software Support
Computer Aided Technology, Inc.