Javelin / TriMech Author

John Lee, CSWE

John Lee is inherently lazy in that he prefers to work smarter - not harder. A CSWE with fifteen years of experience using SOLIDWORKS and a background in mechanical design, John has used SOLIDWORKS in various industries requiring design for injection molding, sheet metal, weldments and structural steel.

A new method for applying Callouts to External Cosmetic Threads in SOLIDWORKS 2020

Cosmetic thread callouts

In prior years of SOLIDWORKS, cosmetic thread callouts were added into drawings either automatically on view creation, or manually this way.  Now in SOLIDWORKS 2020, the cosmetic thread callouts can be shown like dimensions, but the prior method is still available.  The new functionality in…

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Simplify Cosmetic Thread Callouts with SOLIDWORKS 2020

New in SOLIDWORKS 2020 are simplified callouts to cosmetic threads.  In prior years, the callout would automatically include the type of thread. Thread type display is now optional in the callout, thanks to a control checkbox that is available from the Cosmetic Thread Property Manager:…

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SOLIDWORKS 2020 Offset Surface now much easier to use!

Remember that time you tried to offset faces as new surfaces, only to receive an error message that it failed?  This can be frustrating, especially when many faces are involved and it is unclear which ones are the culprit.  Troubleshooting can become time-consuming as you…

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New ways of specifying the Up Axis for View Orientation in SOLIDWORKS 2020

For years now, SOLIDWORKS has included many useful tools in the View Orientation window.  Now in SOLIDWORKS 2020, we can use that same window to specify whether to use Y or use Z for the Up Axis.  This will redefine all of the standard views…

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SOLIDWORKS File Utilities replaces SOLIDWORKS Explorer

SOLIDWORKS 2020 has retained critical functionality from SOLIDWORKS Explorer, and has discontinued the SOLIDWORKS Explorer application. SOLIDWORKS File Utilities Functions The retained functionality is now called SOLIDWORKS File Utilities and is a must when renaming SOLIDWORKS reusable data (such as parts and assemblies) from outside…

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SOLIDWORKS Composer 2020 additional formats available for saving video

In prior years, the only Save As option for a SOLIDWORKS Composer video format was AVI. Now in SOLIDWORKS Composer 2020, we also have the ability to save video as FLV, MKV and MP4 as well as AVI.  This can be a time-saver if there…

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SOLIDWORKS 2020 Save As Copy and Open: Close the Original Document Option

SOLIDWORKS Save As Copy has always been a great option for managing references when creating copies of documents under new filenames. In 2020, when doing a File > Save As… > Save As Copy and Open, we can now choose to close the original document…

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Define Hole Wizard Depth to Tip or Shoulder with SOLIDWORKS 2020

Hole Depth to Tip

Prior to SOLIDWORKS 2020, the SOLIDWORKS Hole Wizard holes would specify end condition of drilled or tapped holes as depth to shoulder.  Now in 2020, we can specify drill depth to tip.  For example, maybe it is critical that the drill hole not pierce through…

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Set SOLIDWORKS File Locations the easy way!

When upgrading to a new year version of SOLIDWORKS, or when installing multiple year versions of SOLIDWORKS, we recommend our best practices guide for the installation.  This article assumes that the aforementioned guide was used, and employs a technique designed to work with the settings…

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Are you using the SOLIDWORKS Mate Pop-up Toolbar?

Mating components together in a SOLIDWORKS assembly? Frequent use of the SOLIDWORKS mate pop-up toolbar can often save you much time and mousing! The mate pop-up toolbar is not quite as intelligent as the mate manager. For example, the mate manager will usually predict when…

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Retain PMI and Design Intent when you translate CAD Models into SOLIDWORKS with ELYSIUM

ELYSIUM CAD Translator

Got a lot of CAD models and drawings to translate into SOLIDWORKS format?  Don’t want to lose your design intent in the process?  If so, keep reading! At SOLIDWORKS World 2018, a Dassault Systèmes team [who brought us SOLIDWORKS as we know it] out of…

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SOLIDWORKS angle dimension between 3 points

What if we need an angle dimension in a sketch, but one of the entities is not a line (perhaps it is a spline or arc instead)?  The answer, we can take the angle between 3 endpoints! In this sketch on the right plane (which…

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SOLIDWORKS Design Intent: what is it, and why should I care?

Ever hear of the term “design intent” and wonder what it means, or how it pertains to design? In SOLIDWORKS, we refer to design intent as your plan as to how the model should behave when it is changed. This really begs for a demonstration,…

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Save assembly construction time with SOLIDWORKS SmartMates!

SOLIDWORKS Smart Mates

Assembling components in SOLIDWORKS?  There are multiple ways to mate components together.  Some methods are faster, while other methods are slower but more intelligent (such as the Mate manager). SOLIDWORKS SmartMates are one of the faster methods, where you can avoid the repetitive mouse travel…

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How to speed up your 2D mirror in SOLIDWORKS sketches!

SOLIDWORKS Mirror sketch

If you’ve mirrored sketch entities in SOLIDWORKS, you are probably familiar with the Mirror command.  In that operation, you specify a centerline of symmetry, and which entities get mirrored.  That’s a fair bit of mousing back and forth between the graphics area and the Mirror…

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