This is going to be a debatable list, as many different people have many different workflows and habits they are accustomed to. I will however try and walk the centerline, and tell you about some of the time saving SOLIDWORKS keyboard shortcuts that everyone should be able to appreciate.
The S Key
Let’s start off with my favorite: the “S”-key, learn more about the SOLIDWORKS Shortcut bar for shortcut bars, :
This shortcut toolbar has 4 modes: part editing, assembly, drawing, and sketch. All of which can be customized with pretty much any command you can think of.
The D Key
Next is the “D”-key: It brings the Confirmation Corner AND Breadcrumbs right to your mouse.
The rest of the shortcuts I’ve grouped into categories for easy reference.
Standard Windows shortcuts:
- Ctrl + O for File, Open
- Ctrl + S for File, Save
- Ctrl + Z for Edit, Undo
- Ctrl + C for Copy
- Ctrl + V for Paste
- Alt + specified values Inserts standard Windows symbols:
- Alt + 0176. Inserts a degree º symbol
- Alt + 0216. Inserts a diameter Ø symbol
- Alt + 0181. Inserts a µ symbol
User interface shortcuts:
- Ctrl + Q Complete Rebuild
- Ctrl + Tab Moves among open documents
- Enter Repeats the last command
- Alt + arrow keys Rotates the model parallel to the viewing plane
- Alt + drag the middle mouse button Rotates the model parallel to the viewing plane
- Shift + arrow keys Rotates the model 90º
- Shift + Z Zooms the model in.
- Z Zooms the model out.
- F Zooms to fit.
- Alt + click Shows a hidden body or component when you hover over the body or component
- G Magnifying Glass
- Alt + middle mouse wheel Shows a section view when using the magnifying glass
- Spacebar Opens the View Selector and Orientation dialog box
- Ctrl + click Lets you select multiple entities
- Shift Lets you select a transparent face on a part
- Shift + click Selects everything within the two selected items in the FeatureManager design tree
- Ctrl + drag the middle mouse button Pans a model
- Shift + drag
- Sketches. Moves a set of sketch entities.
- Parts. Moves a feature.
- Drawings. Moves the selected drawing view and any related views together as if they are one entity. You can also move a dimension to a different view.
- Alt + click Turns off automatic alignment when you place dimensions and annotations
- Alt + drag Moves an annotation independently from the group in which it is contained
- Ctrl + drag Creates additional leaders on a note when you Ctrl + drag a leader’s arrowhead
- Shift + click Snaps a dimension to the max or min location when dimensioning arcs and circles with the Smart Dimension tool
- Ctrl + drag Suppresses inference lines when dragging an endpoint
- Pressing Ctrl while sketching turns off automatic sketch relations
- Shift + click Turns on snapping
- Shift + drag When sketching a line, the line snaps to specific lengths
- Tab Changes the XYZ plane when sketching in a 3D sketch
- Alt + drag
- Mates. Creates a SmartMate when you Alt + drag a component
- Reordering components. When moving a component in the FeatureManager design tree, ensures that the component remains at the same level in the tree and prevents it from being moved into a subassembly
- Alt + Ctrl drag Copies the component and creates a SmartMate
- Ctrl + drag
- Copies a component when you Ctrl + drag it
- Selection. In an assembly with preselected components, inverts the selection when you Ctrl + drag a selection box
- Toolbox. Creates a part instead of a configuration when you drag a Toolbox component into an assembly
- Hide/Show. Hides all components below the pointer
- While Inserting a Component. Rotates the component 90º
- Shift + Tab
- Hide/Show. Shows all components below the pointer
- While Inserting a Component. Rotates the component -90º
- Ctrl + Shift + Tab Temporarily displays all hidden components as transparent and lets you select which ones to show