SOLIDWORKS Assembly

Alin’s SW2013 Pick of the Day: Envelopes Simplify In-Context Design

Building new parts directly in the context of an assembly is a very powerful technique that has been available in SolidWorks for a long time. Watching such components update in sync as the user intended, just by modifying a few dimensions in the assembly, is magical. A properly built top-down assembly is a thing of beauty. That being said, most users are apprehensive when doing in-context design, just because such a top-down assembly can be a minefield, waiting for the wrong step of an inexperienced user. One of these very dangerous mines is the InPlace mate, which is used for locating parts created in the context of an assembly. The InPlace mate is a very useful tool but a very dangerous one. Some people believe that in…

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Automatically Insert and Position Multiple Components in an Assembly [VIDEO]

Interesting question on the SolidWorks Forum from James Bailey : The answer is yes. If the components are sharing the same origin (most likely derived from a master model), you can insert them in bulk in the origin of the assembly following the procedure shown in this video:

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SolidWorks Challenge: Can you Mate a Sphere Tangent to Multiple Faces?

I have a new SolidWorks challenge for you. Create a spherical part. Save and exit the model Create a new part containing an extrusion of a sketch made of tangent entities (arcs and lines). Save and exit the model. Introduce both parts into an assembly Mate the sphere in such a way that will be tangent to the faces of the extruded component. Note: Feel free to “cheat” by approximating the geometry (let’s say +/-0.010″ tolerance). Do you think it is an easy task? Try it first or watch this video, for a possible solution: Many thanks to Jory S on SolidWorks forum for the inspiration for this article. Do you have a better solution? Please share it with us.   Update (2013.Oct.01): This workaround is no…

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SOLIDWORKS Advanced Mates Management – 3 Time Saving Tips

Do you feel you waste too much time finding component specific mates in large assemblies? Do you spend more time clicking in the feature manager, fishing for those mates than actually working to finalize your project? If the answer to any of these two questions is “Yes”, than you need to watch this video. It will help you find those mates fast, very fast!

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Using the Sketch Pattern to Simulate the Hole Series Behaviour at Part Level

The HOLE SERIES is a powerful time saver that enables the creation of different type of holes, parametrically linked together, on the components of an assembly. Imagine that you want to create counterbore holes in the top plate, clearance holes in the middle plates and tapped holes in the bottom plate. Of course, you need all these holes to be driven by one sketch; so, should you move, delete or add points in that sketch, all the holes would be influenced by that. If you work in assembly mode, good for you; the HOLE SERIES tool will do all of the above. But what can you do if you want to parametrically link various types of holes in a part model?   Watch this video…

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Time Saving Tip: Find the Exploded Steps of Each Component

The Exploded View in SolidWorks works pretty nice. Not only it is very easy to define each explode step, but once defined, they can be modified on the fly. Just select one of the explode steps from the configuration manager/ feature tree and the components affected by…

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Be careful when adding downloaded SOLIDWORKS Fasteners to your assembly

SOLIDWORKS Fastener

I recently had a discussion during one of my SOLIDWORKS training classes regarding common websites that everyone was using to download SOLIDWORKS fasteners for use in assemblies. Some of the most popular sites that came up during our discussion were: McMaster Carr Reid Supply Fastenall GrabCAD 3DContentCentral All…

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Why DO Assemblies take longer to open over the network??

If you have ever had to wait a painfully long period of time for a large assembly to open while loading the files from a network location, you’ve likely asked this question.  We had the opportunity at SolidWorks World 2011 to find out exactly why this is.  The following details are courtesy of Mark Johnson, one of the Senior Technical Support Engineers at SolidWorks. Most simply put, the “path” that files have to follow to open from a local hard drive is as follows: − Harddrive -> (Mainboard) Southbridge – > CPU – > (Mainboard) Northbridge – > Ram – and OPEN! If you then compare this against the file path when opening a file from the network: − Ethernet Card – > Router\switch\hub ->…

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