SOLIDWORKS Structure System: Corner Management

Article by TriMech Solutions, LLC updated January 12, 2023


After the creation of any initial SOLIDWORKS Structure System, exiting the structure system mode will automatically prompt the Corner Management tool. This powerful utility allows for all corners or connection points between joining members, to easily be adjusted through various trim options. While SOLIDWORKS does a great job attempting to anticipate most treatment conditions, corner management allows for full user control over all corners.

screenshot of open program with 3d image of blue and yellow pipes

Corner Types

Operated through the PropertyManager, corners are arranged into groups and color-coded for easy recognition in the graphics area. Groupings are determined based on the number of members meeting at each point and categorized into three different corner types:

Simple – Where the end of one member intersects with any part of a second member.

yellow metal on corner of structure in 3d solidworks system structure

Two Member – Where the ends of two members intersect.

corners of 3d image steel structure

Complex – Where three or more members intersect.

3d image of yellow steel posts in solidworks structure system

Trim Options

All three corner types offer similar trimming options, allowing for corners to be configured in various ways. For each corner type (Simple/Two Member/Complex), individual corners can be uniquely configured by selecting a group from the corner groups list, or by selecting one of the color-coded points located in the graphics area. Alternatively, if the intent is for trimming selections to remain the same, all groups within a corner type can be adjusted simultaneously.

Simple corners offer two trim types, Planar Trim and Body Trim:

  • Planar Trim produces a flat cut at the end of the trimmed member. It contains sub options for selection between first contact planar trim and body trim. The former resulting in a perpendicular cut for easy manufacturing, with the latter producing an angled cut to match the mating member.
  • Body Trim delivers a profile cut match to match all mating faces of the mating member.

open program in solidworks with highlighted text in solidworks system structure

Similarly, Two Member Corners also allow for Planar Trim and Body Trim with the added option of Miter Trim.

  • Miter Trim – Creates a full contact miter cut of the two connecting members. The cut angle is automatically defined to suit the member profiles. Additional control can be achieved by specifying the miter trim plane point for each corner group.

trim options in solidworks

  • Planar Trim – Same functionality as described for Simple Corner but with the added ability to control the order of members. (Trimming member vs trimmed member)

open file in solidworks with text and pop outs

  • Body Trim – Same functionality as described for Simple Corner but with the added ability to control the order of members. (Trimming member vs trimmed member)open folder in solidworks with text and highlighted boxes

Complex Corners, again includes the Planar Trim and Body Trim options. Exclusive to this corner type, the two different trim options can be implemented in combination. Being that a complex corner involves three or more members, configuring the trim options is handled in a unique manner. Through a hierarchy or order of operations, we can opt to assign a single member as the trim tool member. All other members can then be arranged in order, either under the Body Trim grouping or the Planar Trim grouping. If a Trim Tool Member is defined, all other members will trim to this member first, along with any contacting members based on the associated trim tool member grouping.

SOLIDWORKS Corner Management - two 3d corners meeting with text on left

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TriMech Solutions, LLC

TriMech provides thousands of engineering teams with 3D design and rapid prototyping solutions that work hand-in-hand, from sketch to manufacturing. Javelin became a subsidiary of TriMech Solutions LLC in 2021.