CATI Tech Notes

SOLIDWORKS Tips and Tricks and Info on Professional 3D Printing with Stratasys from the Technical staff of CATI

SOLIDWORKS: Raiders of the Lost Arc-Length for 3D Splines

SOLIDWORKS 3D Splines   Occasionally, you may need to find the Arc Length of an equation-driven 3D spline.     Easy enough you say, ‘Just use the measure tool under the Evaluate Tab’.         But what if you need to find the length between two specific points on the spline? Smart Dimensions won’t help you here.         To do this, we can utilize a nifty SOLIDWORKS command called “Split Entities.” This is a convenient tool sometimes used in SOLIDWORKS Surfacing to define extruding edges. It essentially splits a sketch into selectable sections much like a split line creates selectable faces. You can find it

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Posted in CAD Administration, Modeling, SOLIDWORKS Tips and Tricks

SOLIDWORKS: How Do I Open SOLIDWORKS 2017 Files in SOLIDWORKS 2016?

How to Open SOLIDWORKS 2017 Files in SOLIDWORKS 2016   With every new release, we get phone calls asking how to open up SOLIDWORKS files in the previous version. SOLIDWORKS 2017 is no different. Here are a couple of scenarios I have seen recently:   1. We are running SOLIDWORKS 2016 and a vendor has sent me a SOLIDWORKS 2017 file. How do I open the SOLIDWORKS 2017 file in my SOLIDWORKS 2016? 2. I have a file from that is saved as a 2017 version. Is there any way to open that file without having the SOLIDWORKS 2017 version?     The short answer: File-Open. You can open SOLIDWORKS

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Posted in CAD Administration, Daily Dose.....of SolidWorks Support, SOLIDWORKS Tips and Tricks

SOLIDWORKS: Converting a Standalone SOLIDWORKS seat to a Network Installation

Converting a Standalone SOLIDWORKS seat to a Network Installation   With companies growing, there is usually a need to add some additional seats of SOLIDWORKS. A lot of companies are now deciding to install a network version for the new seats or convert their existing standalone seats over.   We usually will get a call on how this process is done. Well, it is a very easy process. A lot of people think that there is a difference between the versions. A network installed client is completely the same as a standalone, the program is installed locally to the client. The only difference is that the network version will look

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Posted in CAD Administration, Daily Dose.....of SolidWorks Support, SOLIDWORKS Tips and Tricks

SOLIDWORKS: Rx 2017 Reliability Tab

Rx 2017 Reliability Tab   Here we are, the spring of 2017 in full swing! I know we briefly looked at this in the what’s new for SOLIDWORKS 2017, but let’s take a little deeper look at one of the best and least talked about features in the 2017 release.   Reliability. Is it all in the eye of the beholder? Although there may be controversy amongst users on this subject, in the past, it mostly all depended on who you asked. Let’s face it, there are many things to consider, hardware, software, service packs, drivers, workflows, and even user errors. One thing we can all agree on is that

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Posted in CAD Administration, Daily Dose.....of SolidWorks Support, General Info, SOLIDWORKS Tips and Tricks

SOLIDWORKS: Review of BOXX APEXX 1 Workstation

BOXX APEXX 1 Workstation Review     Here in Bellevue WA, we needed new training machines. I was excited to learn that we would be getting new BOXX workstations, however I was in for a big surprise; the machines we received were the APEXX 1 1401’s. These tiny workstations pack a big punch measuring 4.7in Wide, 8.6in Tall, and 9.13in Deep! The machines in our Training Lab feature an Intel®™ Core i7-6700K 8M Skylake processor overclocked at 4.4 GHz with Liquid Cooling, an ASRock Intel® Z170 Chipset mainboard, 16gb Dual Channel DDR4 Memory, NVIDIA Quadro K620 2GB GPU, and 2 hard drives – HGST 1.0TB 7200RPM SATA for storage, and

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Posted in CAD Administration, Daily Dose.....of SolidWorks Support, General Info, SOLIDWORKS Tips and Tricks

SOLIDWORKS: How to Transfer a Standalone License Between Work and Home Computers

Transferring a SOLIDWORKS Standalone License Between Work and Home Computers   When you have a standalone license of SOLIDWORKS and you want to run it on both your work and home computer, it is easy as transferring the SOLIDWORKS activation between those computers, below are the steps that show how easy this can be.   Step1: Install SOLIDWORKS on both computers, but only activate one of the two computers at the end of the installation (we assume for this example, it will be your work computer).   Step2: When you are ready to work from home, you will need to Transfer/Deactivate your current machine, in this example it is our work

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Posted in CAD Administration, Daily Dose.....of SolidWorks Support, General Info, SOLIDWORKS Tips and Tricks

SOLIDWORKS: Saving Selection Sets

SAVING SELECTION SETS   Selecting geometry, as you model in SOLIDWORKS, can be time consuming. There are a few ways to speed up this process. You can box select, lasso select, control+click, or even use some of the advanced selection tools. Even with these options, It can still take a big chunk of your design time. If you must make the same selections frequently, it becomes both repetitive and painstaking.   To increase efficiency, you can save selection sets inside SOLIDWORKS. This will save a group of selections to be easily reused. This is very easy to do, and there is no limit on the amount of selections you can

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Posted in CAD Administration, Daily Dose.....of SolidWorks Support, General Info, Modeling, SOLIDWORKS Tips and Tricks

SOLIDWORKS: Running Multiple Monitors with SOLIDWORKS 2017

Running Multiple Monitors with SOLIDWORKS 2017     So, this question comes up a lot: “Should I run with extra monitors?”   “Yes, yes you should”, is my typical answer.   The industry has come to a common consensus that having more than on monitor does increase productivity. The following metric from a University of Utah studies are numbers that are agreed upon by many researchers from Intel to Microsoft.   Multi-Monitor vs Single Monitor Display. 45% Easier task tracking (finding windows, reference information, etc.) 38% Easier to move around sources of information 32% Faster to perform tasks 29% More effective for tasks 28% Easier task focus 24% More comfortable

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Posted in CAD Administration, Daily Dose.....of SolidWorks Support, General Info, Maximizing SolidWorks Performance

SOLIDWORKS: Automatic Break in SOLIDWORKS Dimension Lines

Automatic Break in SOLIDWORKS Dimension Lines   The other day I was on the phone with a customer that was looking for a setting to create automatic break lines in his dimensions. Well we unfortunately found that there is not system or document settings that will control this. There is an enhancement request in process for this functionality. SPR 627519 – Automatic creation of break lines when drawing dimension leaders cross each other (document property setting).     So what is the easiest way to achieve this? Of course you can select each dimension separately and select to break the dimension.     However, this would take some time to

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Posted in CAD Administration, Daily Dose.....of SolidWorks Support, SOLIDWORKS Tips and Tricks

SOLIDWORKS: Essentials of DraftSight – DraftSight for the SOLIDWORKS User

Essentials of DraftSight – DraftSight for the SOLIDWORKS User   At SOLIDWORKS World this year, George Brañes and I teamed up to present the Essentials of DraftSight. Our presentation covered the key items that all DraftSight users need to get started with DraftSight. We also looked at choosing the best DraftSight product and installation. Most importantly, we presented on the ten essential topics that we think are necessary for all DraftSight users. Those ten topics we recorded and have put them on the CATI YouTube channel under DraftSight for the SOLIDWORKS User. Below are links to each of the videos. The entire presentation as well as all the other CATI

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Posted in CAD Administration, Daily Dose.....of SolidWorks Support, Drawings

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