SOLIDWORKS & KC STEM With all of the news recently on STEM (Science, Technical, Engineering & Math) projects and educational programs, I had the pleasure of presenting the SOLIDWORKS Product Portfolio to Kansas City, Missouri metropolitan school departments last week. This is an annual forum for regional educators and administrators to see new things in industry and to share student projects in this field. The local chapter is called KC STEM Alliance and has been going strong for many years. I found out about this organization through a co-worker and we had an initial meeting to discuss projects and our involvement. Our first collaboration was to give
SOLIDWORKS Composer 2017 – Moving Actors Precisely Recently I presented a SOLIDWORKS Composer Hands-On session at SOLIDWORKS World 2017 in Los Angeles, California. One of the common questions from this session was, “How do I move actors to an exact distance away from their current position?” Well the task is actually very easy but not the most intuitive to start. So here is an example on how to do this task. We start with an imported assembly: Next we select the 4 hex bolt actors that we want to translate to another position and Right Mouse Click to select the Translate command from the pop up
Using SOLIDWORKS Design Checker to Change Sheet Formats One of the more useful utilities that you get with SOLIDWORKS Professional and Premium licenses is the SOLIDWORKS Design Checker program. This program allows you to capture your drafting and modeling standards into a simple user interface. Then use these rules to check against your completed files to find little mistakes where the drawing didn’t quite follow the company’s rules. Sometimes the user might make a drawing, only to find out that something has been changed on the company’s title block. Company name change, address update or perhaps a simple change with tolerance or layout of the title block itself.
What’s New SOLIDWORKS Composer 2017 SOLIDWORKS Composer 2017 has a few new enhancements for those of you creating technical illustrations. First, you can now generate Technical Illustrations in CGM format. You can now specify whether the CGM output should be compliant with the WebCGM, S1000D, or ATA2200 standards. If you prefer the S1000D format, you can now specify a 2.x or 4.x compliance standard. Plus you can now customize hotspot properties to be compliant with the S1000D 4.x in CGM format as well as the XML companion files. All of these are controlled from the Assembly pane or Collaboration pane while creating or editing a hot spot.
Facility Layout New for SOLIDWORKS 2017 is a set of tools to help with Facility Layout modeling. These tools make assembling large components for plant layout designs much easier. You can define connection points and a ground face in parts or assemblies and then publish these designs as assets. When you insert an asset into an assembly, a new function called Magnetic Mates, snap the asset into place according to other assets in that assembly. A lot of this speed and ease of use is built on the already popular function of SpeedPak’s. You can create a SpeedPak configuration of an asset directly in the Asset Publisher PropertyManager.
Creating Advanced Holes – #SW2017 One of the many new enhancements for SOLIDWORKS 2017 is the new feature called Advanced Hole. This exciting feature allows you to create multiple advanced holes from the near and far side faces of your models. Here’s how it works: First, create some model geometry, in this case we have a manifold block as an example. You can then access this new command from the Insert pulldown menu, followed by Features and then Advanced Hole: Next, after starting the command, you can enter in the hole type for the start hole followed by hole sizes and any near or far side
Recently I was asked about pattern choices in an assembly model and specifically how using a Curve Driven Pattern vs a Circular Pattern might give the user better results. For instance, the request was to have a way to pattern a set of parts along a circular edge without forcing each instance to always be pointing towards the center of this circular edge. So I started with an assembly that had three parts mated together some distance from the Origin. Next I created a new assembly level sketch to act as my layout or specifically a construction circle based with the center at the assembly origin: Now I am
Super Easy 3D Weldment Sketch in SOLIDWORKS 2016 Last month I attended a local SOLIDWORKS User Group meeting and learned a neat trick that I wanted to share. It was given by an associate who was introducing some Tips and Tricks with SOLIDWORKS. These topics are always in high demand and usually a great crowd pleaser. The topic was sketch tricks and the goal was finding a quick way to make a complex angle weldment sketch as a layout for the weldment tools inside of a SOLIDWORKS part file. The approach was to create this weldment as a solid shape with Extruded Features, Draft Features and whatever else you need
SOLIDWORKS 2016 Envelopes in Drawings Recently I was asked a question about showing some parts in an assembly drawing as "phantom" edges to be able to reference the components, but not have to show them as solid edge lines. The process for this is really quite simple in SOLIDWORKS. For example, I have a top level assembly and I want to make 3 or 4 parts show up as an Envelope in the drawing view so that I can see them, but they aren't taking away from the rest of the drawing components. To do this, I must first open the assembly file. Next I select a few items from
SOLIDWORKS 2016 Make Section Line Recently I was talking to some folks who were asking if SOLIDWORKS could add a section line without cutting an additional section cut or making a second section view. I knew we could re-use section view labels, like re-using A-A for example. I played with a sample file and discovered that you can in fact do just what they were asking. It is a pretty simple process. First you make a drawing view, and for my example I am using an assembly view. Next I draw two sketch lines, vertical, in the view. I click on one line and then go to the Insert pull