How to Combine SOLIDWORKS Hole Callouts – Part 1

Article by Jim Peltier, CSWE updated October 10, 2016


I had an interesting question from a customer the other week: They wanted to know how to combine multiple SOLIDWORKS hole callouts. I created a simple example on my system using two different Hole Wizard features: An M6 counterbore with an M8 tapped thread inside it. Unfortunately, if I simply copied and pasted the text from one hole callout to the other, the result wouldn’t be dynamically linked to the first hole. I figured I had two solutions. In this post I’ll discuss the first solution.

Inserting and aligning the Callouts

I created a drawing with two separate callouts:

SOLIDWORKS Hole Callouts

Justify Hole Callouts and set stacking order

As the above image shows, I then switched the text positioning on both callouts. I set both to be left-justified (or left-aligned). Then I chose one callout to be my top callout (in this case, the counter-sink), and I set that to be bottom aligned. I set the other callout (the tapped hole) to be top aligned. I was getting closer. If I aligned both callouts, there would be a link of text overlapping.

As a workaround, I added an extra line to the top of the second callout:

Combining Hole Callout Tags, solution 2

Manual alteration warning

When I added the extra line, it warned me that if I manually altered the callout, I would risk breaking the link. Due to the nature of the change I was making, this does not have an impact on the callout. I could now overlap the callouts and it would look perfectly natural – except for one minor detail: I have double arrowheads.

To remedy this, I selected the callout for the larger of the two holes, and clicked on the Leaders tab:

Adding Leaders

Adding Leaders

Under the Leaders tab, I use the arrowhead style dropdown to select a straight leader with no arrowhead. The end result was two callouts with two leaders and only one arrowhead. Now I can officially line them up. I should be able to just drag one and drop it onto the other and they should snap into position together. If that doesn’t work, I can also select both dimensions, right-click, then choose Align > Align Left, as shown below:

Aligning Leaders

Aligning Leaders

Obviously, this would be Align Right if we were putting the hole callout on the other side, and the text position would have to be Right Aligned, rather than Left.

Of course, there is another method involving creating a note, then linking the text to dimensions, but that will have to wait for another article.

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Jim Peltier, CSWE

Jim has been using SolidWorks since 2001, and has spent most of that time working in the design of industrial automated manufacturing equipment. He has been working as an Applications Expert at Javelin Technologies in Oakville, Ontario since July 2012 and is a Certified SolidWorks Expert (CSWE).