SOLIDWORKS: Sheet Metal Flat Pattern Info in a Bill of Material

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In a recent support case, we were asked if sheet metal flat pattern info, specifically the flat pattern area, can be shown in a SOLIDWORKS drawing bill of material. After a little research it turns out that the answer is surprisingly yes and it’s not that difficult to achieve. So, you are probably asking yourself, “Where do you start?” Well, you first start by creating a drawing of your sheet metal assembly. See Figure 1 below. Next, we will add […]

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SOLIDWORKS: Physical Dynamics

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Do you remember when you modeled your fist assembly in SOLIDWORKS? The exciting and rewarding experience watching parts snap together as each mate is applied. Your smile may have quickly fleeted when you noticed the assembly motion has components overlapping. Why are these parts moving through each other? When you are working on your assembly, SOLIDWORKS is not constantly evaluating for collision or interference between the components. You must enable the tools for SOLIDWORKS to look for these scenarios. Interference […]

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Build your Own: Weldment Profiles in SOLIDWORKS

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Building your own weldment profiles is the foundation of any new or even established SOLIDWORKS user that is wanting to build accurate models. SOLIDWORKS comes stock with a handful of standard profiles, and even more can be downloaded easily enough through the design library on the right, under “SOLIDWORKS Content” (Click here to view the entire process detailed below in video format) To download, CTRL+ click on the additional library you want and download to any chosen location. To have […]

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A Real-World Example of Re-engineering and Customization

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I recently purchased a cross-over toolbox for my small truck. I was very careful to check with the vendors to make sure that the toolbox would fit into my year/make/model of truck and that I was getting the best price. Well, my toolbox arrived and guess what? It does not fit properly in the bed of my truck. I made the foolish mistake of not getting the critical measurement from my truck bed and comparing them to the manufacturer’s specifications […]

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How To Extract Custom Material Properties in SOLIDWORKS

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Have you received a Solidworks Part File where someone has applied custom materials that you don’t possess? Would you like to share the custom material that you’ve created? There is a way to extract custom material properties from files sent to you, in just a few steps, without having to recreate it in your own materials library. Step 1. Activate your Simulation Add-in. After you activate your Add-in then you will see the Simulation tab added to the Command Manager. Step […]

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“To Power Trim, or To Power Extend? That Is The Question”

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While sketching inside SOLIDWORKS, SOLIDWORKS CAM and CAMWorks user interface you invoke the Power Trim command and use it as normal. As a refresher, the SOLIDWORKS Power Trim tool allows you to hold down your Left Mouse Button (LMB) and drag the mouse over any sketch entities you want to trim to the nearest entity. The Power Trim command can also extend sketch entities as well.  This is simply done holding down your Shift Key to convert from trimming to […]

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Common SOLIDWORKS sheet metal issues

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Have you ever seen any of these sheet metal issues with SOLIDWORKS? These are some pretty common sheet metal issues. With the first image above usually one or the other of these situations will occur. You’ll either end up with a flat view of your bent part or, more commonly, you’ll wind up with a bent view of your flat pattern. Understanding how SOLIDWORKS works with sheet metal parts can help us determine what is going on. When you create […]

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SOLIDWORKS: Basics of Reference Geometry Axis

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Reference Geometry includes reference planes, axes, coordinate systems, and points. In this blog, we will discuss the many ways of creating and defining a Reference Axis. The Reference Geometry command lives on the Features toolbar, but you can also access it from Insert > Reference Geometry. The Reference Axis PropertyManager includes a Selections box where you will define your Reference Axis. The combinations of these selections that will fully define the Reference Axis are described and depicted below the Selections […]

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Design Intent: Part 1

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Part I I am working with a client who sees the power and value from SOLIDWORKS over AutoCAD Inventor. How to deal with legacy data is always a massive pain point for customers, however. They soon will no longer be able to access data that is still in the native Inventor file format (.iam, .ipt) that their previous CAD software utilized and must find other methods of retaining their intellectual property. Where possible, I suggest converting the files into Parasolid […]

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SOLIDWORKS Flow Simulation: A Tesla Cybertruck Case Study

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When Tesla launched their Cybertruck pickup model in November, I was intrigued by its unique shape. Given the very angular, wedge-like styling, the first thought that came to mind was that I could have designed the exterior shape in SOLIDWORKS in 5 minutes with a few extrudes, cuts and draft features. I have no doubt that I could have saved Tesla millions of dollars spent on their exterior stylists and designers! I also pondered whether this shape performed well aerodynamically […]

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