How to change the order of parts on your SOLIDWORKS BOM

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A bill of material is a useful list of items that are currently in an assembly. The order the parts are listed in can be modified if need be. By default in SolidWorks the order is based on the same order the parts are brought into your assembly. This order can be sorted by right clicking on the BOM and choosing sort. Items can be manually dragged up and down in the BOM by grabbing the number that appears when […]

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SOLIDWORKS Master Model: Save bodies vs Insert part

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SolidWorks master model techniques are used to create assemblies that rely on overall size and shape of the individual parts to fit together properly. The assembly parts are constructed as individual bodies and then saved out into their own part files. If you make a change to the master model such as the location of a parting line all parts related to the parting line will change accordingly. There are two techniques that will either push features from the parent […]

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How to break a derived part in SolidWorks

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A derived part in SolidWorks is a part that is based on an existing part. The first feature in the feature tree reflects this. There are two ways to create a derived part. One is using the "insert part" function from the insert drop down menu. You can also create a derived part by dragging a part into a blank part from the file explorer tab on the task pane. When the part is inserted it prompts you to choose […]

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SolidWorks: Changing the Title Block for New Sheets

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For some companies it is not necessary to have a complete title block on every page of a drawing. Page one has all the required information and additional pages contain minimal information. It appears at first glance when you create a new page SolidWorks is copying the first page. What is really happening is it is creating a new page based on the sheet format that is being referenced. By using a new sheet format in the reference area we […]

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SOLIDWORKS Training Files

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At Computer Aided Technology we have a long list of classes that we teach. When you take these courses there are case study files and exercises that are pre-installed on the training machines. After you have finished the class you might want to work through some of the files again. Luckily SolidWorks has a link on page 3 of every training manual we offer where the file set can be downloaded from. After you head to solidworks.com/trainingfilessolidworks find the course […]

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Using the SOLIDWORKS Autotransition Tool

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Can anyone tell me what the two most used sketch entities in SolidWorks are? If you said lines and arcs you are correct! Now did you know there is an easy way to switch between these entities without changing commands? Look no further I will show you how! The SOLIDWORKS autotransition tool will let you begin drawing with the line command, then switch to a tangent arc in one easy motion. First begin drawing your line using the click – […]

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Revision comparison

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When working in an environment with multiple engineers it isn't always easy to communicate design changes. You might want to know how a part has changed from one revision to another and there are some tools built in to SolidWorks that can help. DrawCompare is a tool that will open up two drawings and give you a detailed look at how they are different. You browse for the drawings and choose to see additions or removals between drawings. This is […]

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Slots in SolidWorks

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Creating a slotted hole or slotted counterbore in SolidWorks isn't too difficult a task. You can use the slot sketch tool to quickly create the radius and the length of the slot. To add a counterbore I can create an offset of the through hole and specify the counterbore depth. When working with slots in an assembly I have to use special mates so that my hardware will be able to move feely within the slot. I first need to […]

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Elite AE!

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The Elite AE award is the highest recognition an applications engineer can receive from SolidWorks. It is a series of 7 exams that must be completed in one calendar year. Some tests require to be taken every year to stay current. It also looks at your participation in the SOLIDWORKS community, participating in user groups and other similar events. This month I reached this goal. Computer Aided Technology now has four Elite AEs. Bob McGaughey, Brian Reel, Bryan Pawlak, and […]

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Decimal precision for custom properties in SolidWorks

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Controlling the decimal precision for a custom property can be done independantly of document properties. To do this we need to create an equation. Take this example of mass. The first step is to create a custom property for mass. The document units have been set to 8 decimal places so the custom property also has 8. I then have to create an equation that will round my custom property. I have created a global variable to show I want […]

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