SolidWorks has learned a pretty neat new trick from the Composer: balloons can now be attached to Magnetic Lines in SolidWorks 2012, giving designers more control over the alignment and spacing of balloons in drawings.
You may have seen this before, create a detail or section view and it is automatically named View A, great. Except oops that wasn’t the view I wanted so I delete View A and start again … except now the new view is automatically named View B. It’s not the end of the world, I can manually change the view name back to A, but from this point on each new detail or section view I create will automatically generate with the wrong letter. A new option in SolidWorks 2012 can now allow you to change this behavior.
Whenever you go to make a drawing of a part or assembly you have created in SolidWorks, you are presented with a set of predetermined views to chose from, front, top, isometric etc. But what if the view you want to use isn’t in that list? How can you get a drawing view on the sheet in a non standard orientation? One way to do this is to use a custom view.
The Drawing View Palette is a great way to add standard drawing views to your SolidWorks document. As you drag and drop the Top, Right, Front or other views onto the drawing sheet they disappear from the list. A common question that new users ask is how to get drawing views that have been placed on the sheet but later deleted to be available again on the View Palette.
Do worries about non-sequential drawing balloons keep you up at night? No? Well you still might like a new enhancement that was introduced in SolidWorks 2012 that allows you order the item numbers in drawing balloons sequentially.
I have to confess, this is one of the new enhancements in SolidWorks 2013 that, at the first sight, I considered less important than the others. Why would I ever need to convert a drawing view to a sketch???
Well… guess what! The other day a customer of mine called asking if there is any way in SolidWorks to mirror a drawing view. He wanted to avoid having to create the model for the opposite hand part, since the only thing needed on his detail drawing was an extra ISO view, as a visual indication that the main part was to be produced in pairs.
His request got me thinking about a new functionality introduced by SolidWorks 2013…
Watch this video to see the solution I proposed:
Options and Variants is a very powerful and yet easy to use design automation tool. In a short amount of time it helps designers configure systems to provide consistently accurate designs while saving an enormous amount of time and money.
There are so many E3 users raving about this functionality. Check out the video below to see how it works, how easy it is to add these options in your design and to control your design.
You can also check out the Options and Variants Blog series to get more details:
It can be advantageous to have some of the fields in the drawing titleblock auto-populate with information from the referenced model or assembly.
Create a part that has the properties you want linked to the title block. To add properties select Properties from the File pull-down.
Insert a drawing view of part the into a drawing that will be used as your drawing template.
For people who are new to SolidWorks, and want to setup some standard templates, this will be a good article to start with.
The background information stored in a new drawing file is from two locations – drawing template and sheet format.
Sheet format stores the sheet size, scale, title block, etc. Basically what you see in a new drawing file (no views inserted yet) is controlled by sheet format. File name extension is “.SLDDRT”.
Drawing template includes drafting standards – font sizes, dimension, annotation styles, etc, AND a link to the sheet format (optional). If there is no link, you will start with an empty sheet and you can choose a sheet format manually. File name extension is “.DRWDOT”.
While teaching a SolidWorks Essentials course, a customer attending the class asked for the best practice on how to add a sharp point to a part so that they can dimension to the sharp point.
His method was to insert a sketch point using the Point command and then add coincident relationships to it to both sketch lines in order to find the virtual sharp point. While this certainly works, there’s a more efficient way.