Chamfering Surfaces in SOLIDWORKS

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If you do a lot of surface modeling in SOLIDWORKS, you may have gone bonkers looking for the chamfer command. Don’t worry, a conniving coworker did not modify your toolbar layout. Unfortunately, this is a limitation of the software. You cannot use the chamfer feature on surface bodies. The chamfer command is not even visible if your part consists of only surface bodies. Let’s explore two different methods of working around this limitation. These methods do require a few additional […]

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Design Binder – What is it? Why use it?

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During CATI’s recent Design Summits, I did a presentation about File Management. During those presentations, I found that not many SolidWorks users knew about the Design Binder feature that SOLIDWORKS provides with each file. This is mostly because visibility of the Design Binder in the Feature Tree is off as a default. This blog will show you where it’s located and how it works. If you haven’t seen the Design Binder in your Feature Tree, it probably is set on […]

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Do 3 things at once ! INTERSECT command (pt. 3)

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This post will show one last example of the INTERSECT command that is new in SOLIDWORKS 2013. As mentioned in my last two posts (http://www.3dvision.com/wordpress/2013/07/03/do-3-things-at-once-intersect-command-pt-1/  &  http://www.3dvision.com/wordpress/2013/07/18/do-3-things-at-once-intersect-command-pt-2/) this new command can be used to perform in one easy step what used to take multiple, time consuming commands to complete in the past. In this example we have a “cavity” type area that we need to “fill” with a solid… In the past you could have Offset all the inner faces to […]

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Do 3 things at once ! INTERSECT command (pt. 2)

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My last blog (http://www.3dvision.com/wordpress/2013/07/03/do-3-things-at-once-intersect-command-pt-1/) showed an example of performing what used to take multiple, time consuming steps to complete in the past, done with one step in SOLIDWORKS 2013 with the new INTERSECT command. This post will show another very powerful example…   Here we have an open surface body (open on the bottom), and we want to add that to a solid body. In the past this could have been done a few different ways, such as offsetting a surface […]

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SOLIDWORKS 2013: Image Quality and Assembly Visualization

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Many of us may not be aware of how SolidWorks displays the models that you see in the graphics area. We are all aware of the “Image Quality” slider that exists in the Document Properties tab, but here is some insight. When you sketch a circle and extrude a cylinder, SolidWorks calculates a perfect cylinder. It then hands that information to the graphics card, which breaks up the faces into a series of triangles and then it “paints” over the […]

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Do 3 things at once ! INTERSECT command (pt. 1)

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Ever wished you could do 3 fairly involved SOLIDWORKS commands all with the push of a button ?? Well you CAN with the new INTERSECT command in SOLIDWORKS 2013 ! This one tool basically can replace the need to Offset Surfaces, Trim Surfaces, Knit Surfaces, and Thicken Surfaces to make a Solid ! (Hey, that’s 4 things at once !) To keep these blogs short and to the point I am going to do a small series of blogs showing […]

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FeatureManager Design Tree “Favorites” Folder – New for SOLIDWORKS 2013

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SolidWorks 2013 has 2 new FeatureManager Design Tree features. One of those features is the Feature Manager Design Tree Favorites. The FeatureManager Design Tree Favorites feature allows the user to add features to a new folder called "Favorites" to a part document. This is helpful for users to organize specific features in the design. This is especially useful when team members are collaborating on a design. Features can be added to the "Favorites" Folder located at the top of the FeatureManager Tree. […]

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Sheet-Metal Multibody Parts: A new look in SOLIDWORKS 2013

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For SOLIDWORKS 2013, the display of multibody parts in the FeatureManager Tree has been enhanced. The FeatureManager design tree structure now contains separate parent folders for Sheet-Metal bodies and their associated Flat-Patterns. These are the icons displayed. The FeatureManager Tree creates a new parent folder which contains each sheet metal body within the sheet metal part. The FeatureManager tree looks like this:           SOLIDWORKS 2013                         […]

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SolidWorks 2013: Materials in Design Studies

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In the past, many people have asked me if you could optimize a part by using material as a variable.  Well, in SolidWorks 2013, you can. With SolidWorks Simulation 2013, you can use the material of a part or body component in a Design Study using the new Design Study Materials parameter. This functionality allows you to evaluate a wide range of design choices or optimize a current design by defining a parameter that sets bodies to use different materials […]

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Why are there green checks or minus signs in the configuration manager?

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SolidWorks has done some updating for 2013 in how part and assembly data is saved.  In previous versions everytime a part/assembly is saved, SOLIDWORKS asks if you want to rebuild the document.  The best practice for that was to hit yes and then WAIT.  Saving the 3d image and updating all equations (if there are any) takes time and increases file size.  You now have the option of just saving all of the data of just one configuration and saving basic information about the […]

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