How to Modify Section Hatching in SOLIDWORKS Drawings

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When you create a section view in a SOLIDWORKS drawing, the faces through which you are cutting will be displayed differently than the faces beyond the section plane. This is often achieved through hatching. The hatching is usually a series of inclined lines running across the cut faces, though the style depends on the material being cut. Drafting standards dictate what pattern to use for a particular class of material, so from the hatching you can identify the type of […]

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Rotate About Scene Floor, AKA “Why does my Rotate cursor look different in SOLIDWORKS?”

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I had unknowingly struggled with this SOLIDWORKS command for several months. I use “unknowingly” here not because I wasn’t aware that I was struggling (I very much was) but because I wasn’t aware that this command was the cause. I write this article in hopes that there are others out there in my former position—knowing the what but not the why. Essentially, it seemed like SOLIDWORKS suddenly stopped letting me perform certain rotations. The model would get “stuck” in its […]

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Using Design Tables to Create Tabulated Drawings in SOLIDWORKS

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SOLIDWORKS design tables help you to efficiently create and manage model configurations. Leveraging the capabilities of Microsoft Excel, you can easily control design parameters—such as dimensions, suppression states, and materials—through cells in a spreadsheet. Once you have your model fully constructed though, there comes the question of how to clearly represent these distinct configurations in a drawing. A tabulated drawing is one popular method to detail a family of similar parts. In this kind of document, varying dimension values are […]

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Don’t Close Yourself Off: Close Sketch to Model in SOLIDWORKS

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SOLIDWORKS users, after enough time learning the program, tend to get into habits. They use generally the same commands from one day to the next, browsing through the same toolbars and tabs or creating shortcuts to locate what they need. Aside from occasionally having to find an atypical command for a one-off kind of feature, our emphasis on efficiency and productivity makes it so that most users don’t spend much time exploring the program’s menus. As a result, there are […]

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SOLIDWORKS 2021 What’s New – Updates to eDrawings

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This year was a pretty good release for eDrawings. Accompanied by some useful compatibility and performance improvements, the biggest attention-getter was the full release of the Virtual Reality functionality. With eDrawings 2021, they turned to some long-requested enhancements, providing major improvements to the core functionality of the program. Of this year’s additions, I will focus on three, specifically in the areas of properties, measurement types, and Web HTML exports. File Properties A major development in eDrawings 2021 is the addition […]

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SOLIDWORKS 2021 What’s New – New Spacing Options for Chain Component Patterns

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SOLIDWORKS 2021 introduces a new way to control the “Distance” and “Distance Linkage” Pitch Methods in the Chain Component Pattern command. In the updated PropertyManager, you can define whether you want the spacing between components to be measured along the path or along a straight line connecting the components. These two conditions are referred to as “Distance along path” and “Linear distance,” respectively, as seen in the image below. In past versions of SOLIDWORKS, users lacked the ability to specify […]

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Synchronizing Item Numbers Across Multiple Cut Lists or BOMs

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I was recently presented with an interesting request from someone on a SOLIDWORKS support case. They had designed a weldment model and wanted to break it up into several subgroups to highlight specific regions, so they created additional part files by selecting groups of bodies and using the Insert Into New Part tool. A problem then arose when they created drawings for their models: The cut list item numbers in the groups didn’t match those in the top-level model. Since […]

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SOLIDWORKS: “My files keep printing when I try to open them from Windows File Explorer”

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Since the launch of SOLIDWORKS 2020, our Technical Support team has gotten multiple reports of a very strange-sounding behavior: After installing SOLIDWORKS 2020, double-clicking a part, drawing, or assembly file from File Explorer will not properly open the file, and instead it will send that file to a nearby printer. This is still an issue we are learning about, so we don’t yet know all of the causes, but we have at least found a couple fixes that can get […]

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SOLIDWORKS: Make Sketching a Snap with Snapping Tools

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Everyone who designs parts in SOLIDWORKS likely spends most of their time in the sketching environment. Sketching is the basis for most of the common features in SOLIDWORKS, so being a good sketcher is essential to becoming a good modeler. SOLIDWORKS fortunately provides plenty of resources to both simplify and expedite the sketching process. Appropriately defining dimensions and relations in sketches can be a time-consuming challenge, especially for users still familiarizing themselves with SOLIDWORKS. These tasks can be made easier […]

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SOLIDWORKS: Becoming a Sketch Expert with SketchXpert

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Imagine: You are putting the finishing touches on a complex sketch, proud of your work. All that is left is one relation to give you the profile you need. Then, red and yellow fill the screen. Something has gone horrifically wrong; the sketch is over defined and unsolvable. There are dozens of relations and dimensions in this sketch—where do you start? Rather than trying to sort through the potential points of conflict on your own, let SketchXpert do it for […]

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