NOTE: This is an older blog post. The latest versions of SOLIDWORKS now have the Chain Component Pattern feature which is a better method. See the following blog posts:
If you need a chain in an assembly, here is a quick and easy method of modeling a Chain in SolidWorks.
Step 1: Create a Sketch for the chain layout. You may want to create an in-context sketch within the assembly.
Step 2: Under Tools > Spline Tools, use Fit Spline and select all sketch lines to create a continuous curve.
Step 3: Model the chain link profiles. Uncheck Merge Results for the second link to keep them as separate bodies.
Step 4: Mirror the bodies to complete the links. Uncheck Merge Results when mirroring the second link.
Step 5: Use two Curve Driven Patterns to pattern each of the chain link bodies along the sketch curve. The sketch curve length should provide a whole number when divided by the center distance of the links. This gives the number of links to pattern.
The Chain is now complete
Have you created a Chain in SolidWorks? If you have then leave us a reply below and tell us how you went about it.