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If you’ve been using SolidWorks 2008 for any length of time, you’ll notice that the RealView setting, along with other view settings, are front and center on that dang on-screen toolbar. Do you like that toolbar? I know there’s lots of opinions both ways about it. I actually don’t mind it too much. For one,…

Ok, I’m gonna try something here. I get a bit of emails asking questions about SolidWorks and alot of them are really good questions that I’d love to turn into posts. So that’s what we’re gonna do. First Person to Ask a Question The first person to add a comment below that asks a question…

It’s amazing how simple this is. You can actually do this in less time than it takes you to learn how to trap small animals and sell them outside Wal-mart. Draw a cube This is like the multi-tool of CAD. If you don’t know where to start, draw a cube. Use the annotation tool This…

For all of you crazed 3D-modeling, equation-using junkies out there, you may be really, really excited to know that your equations will update in real-time when using Instant3D in SolidWorks 2008. Jeff, from ExtensibleCAD, shows this happening when using logical (if-then) equations to drive features. See video below. The equation is set up to change…

Here’s a slightly useful and not-at-all complicated tip on reducing features by using 3D sketches. It’s more fun to have people gather around your desk, get all attentive and then yell the first step very, very loud as they hunker down around your screen… Now move in close people… Two Tips in One This is…

Whoa there buddy, I think you’re getting carried away with all of those colors. That much color is certainly not per procedures and we’re gonna have to beat you black and white. It happens, I know. You want an accurate color for your model and you can’t help but spend hours dragging your cursor through…

Awww, look. That tiny assembly is so… tiny and cute. Makes you want to grab a million of ’em and just give ’em hugs. Now, I know some of you aren’t that attached to your bracket or gasket assemblies, but you gotta admit there’s a special place in that documentation system for those little boogers.…

I know you woke up this morning just rearin’ to be an overachiever that knows absolutely everything possible about solid modeling and then how it relates to the molting season of yaks. All I can tell you is that yaks molt once a year and the wool is woven into blankets and tents. Also, the…

You’ve probably been there – tease and ridiculed for organizing other people’s features, “accidentally” fixing someone else’s sketches or finding the last keyboard combination for a shortcut. It’s a condition that use to be treated with humidifiers and Malox, but that made the affect and smell even worse. So, I’ll just list some of these…

Oh, stop it. That title is just too clever. It’s hard to believe there would be any rude, self-serving miscreants in the realm of SolidWorks, but you watch. One day your helping old ladies take their meds, next day your making everyone change part colors and capitalize the ‘S’ and ‘W’ in SolidWorks for all…

You’ve been working on a 13,000 part mega-assembly in SOLIDWORKS with the most well thought out top-down assembly structure ever devised by man. The next morning, you gingerly sip your coffee as the model ooooopens, and then… something doesn’t look right. Suddenly, that pastry loses its sweetness as you come to grips that all your…

How do you get info out of SolidWorks models? Threats and candy don’t do the trick, but bring out a steamy bowl of button clicking and you’ll be in statistical, property enhanced euphoria to break up the vapid atmosphere of deadlines and cold pastries. If you’re like me, you like your fill of statistics and…

If you mix an interest in web design with an interest in SolidWorks you get a hideous amalgamation of 3D graphics, silly phrases and coffee stains. Couple that with a frustrating inadequacy of font types and its basically pure madness. The Problem Adobe Flash, formerly Macromedia Flash, opened up a lot of possibilities for web…

Last week we talked about naming features to improve your design. Sometimes, on very rare occasions, when your feeling especially detail oriented, you may want to add a special character to a name or note. Fortunately, Windows has a bunch of obscure numbers you can use to add some symbols to you descriptions and it…

You’re driving down a winding road and suddenly your car goes flying off a cliff into a den of wild boar. Not a good situation to be in. While getting some parts to stay on track in SolidWorks is not nearly as morbid, it can be a pain in the neck, especially when it comes…

As discussed in the previous post, SolidWorks is the disco queen of features. Sketches drive these features and sometimes you want to use them in another part or nice Gorgonzola salad. There are library features and copying features, sure, but to get a quick copy of a sketch that you’ve already created, you may want…

If you’ve been using SolidWorks for more than a couple hours you know you parts are created by stacking up a bunch of features on the left side of the screen. It’s a veritable tower of sand, held together by the spit of fully-defined sketches. Based on what you do in that stack, the FeatureManager…

Don’t you just love the magnificent spectacle of an exploded assembly in SolidWorks? It’s like everything in the world has been revealed and facial hair has become a thing of the past. And let me tell ya, when you’re exploding stuff you want as little facial hair as possible cause that’s just gonna distract aerodynamics…

Last Week Albert Whatmough gave us some insight into successful SolidWorks Training. He knows a thing or two about using SolidWorks and making training videos too. You can watch several SolidWorks tutorials and also see some lesson overviews of the well-thought out course he offers here. This is one of the latest.

It always starts with a line. Some of you cross that line and go really crazy adding extruded fillety curviness and such. That’s exactly what we’re doing today and there’s even a sweet video to show ya some technique and one way to work inside SolidWorks 2008. Start with a line What could you create…

This post was guest blogged by Albert Whatmough at Inspirtech.com For one reason or another, engineers, designers and trades people are constantly faced with the demand to continue learning new CAD applications. Depending on their current level of expertise, the ideal training solution can change. The various methods of learning a CAD application can be…

Getting through a project in a multi-user environment is one of the greatest challenges an engineering company can face. There’s this PDM and that PDM, this process and that process, and it quickly turns into a community of gopher-heads popping up to have each other check stuff in ‘real quick’ while schedules dwindle into the…

A little while ago I did a cannonball into the serene waters of assembly design and gave you 3 Unique Solutions to Modeling in SolidWorks. It was almost a taunt, because I just jabbed at the concept. Well, here’s a little bit more of a jab. Something with a little more pepper… and some delicious…

Don’t you just love some seriously beautiful wallpaper to customize your programs with? Sure, you can customize your SolidWorks background, but that’s so SolidWorks 2007. Now, in SolidWorks 2008 you can even add a custom image to your drawing background. In fact…are you ready… it already comes with… a crinkly paper background. Yeah, pretty hard…

Just wanted to let you PDF-on-crack users know I recently did an article for the Adobe Acrobat User Community to show the throngs of people out there using Adobe Acrobat 3D 5 Time Saving Benefits of Adding Acrobat 3D to Your Engineering Workflow. I literally take a standard workflow, tear it apart and neatly locate…

Wouldn’t it be nice to automate all the modeling you do in SolidWorks? There’s ways to do this but when you’re first implementing SolidWorks or need to add some methods to speed up model creation there’s a way to make adding features quicker. It’s through Library Features and this will show you what they do…

I cam across an issue today where a composite fiberglass part had been modeled with no draft (angled faces). Production stopped because they couldn’t make it by the print and get it off the mold. A hostage situation ensued, the problem was corrected and production cheered the results. All was well, except for the unapologetic…

“That guy looks relaxed. what made his life so easy?” – He just implemented SolidWorks and knew how to do it. Becoming familiar with a CAD system can be a source of frustration and stress. That’s what turns people into bitter old people. We don’t want that. While some may find switching to SolidWorks from…

Modeling in SolidWorks is pretty dang easy. Sure there’s little bits of wisdom that come with using it, but an installation and a day later and you’re on your way. The sheet metal features in SolidWorks are a little different. There more like trying to do a back flip. It looks easy, I can picture…

SolidWorks is known for it’s exceptional 3D design functionality, but what if you want to take some of those amazing products you’ve created and get them printed for a display, brochure or screenprinted t-shirt? You can get a print quality image straight from SolidWorks and it’s simple as saving a file. Technical stuff Typically a…

With all the crazy stuff going on in the world it’s kinda nice to get away once in a while from the all the busyness and concentrate on the details that really matter, like catching up with old friends, spending time with family and cleaning up your part geometry. Yes, I know cleaning up your…

Warning: This involves changing registry settings in the .sldreg file created by the Copy Options Wizard, so before doing this be sure 1) that you know what you’re doing 2) that you’re comfortable doing it 3) that you’ve made a backup of your Options. Oh, and SolidWorks probably won’t recommend doing this. When you upgrade…

Notes in SolidWorks didn’t use to be so easy to use. Now, there’s actually a lot you can do with them and SolidWorks 2008 is going to bring some new things, like adding balloons to notes. Here’s some tips for notes that only take a nimble finger 2.9 second each. Move right along To move…

Sometimes working with a SolidWorks BOM may seem like you’re bouncing away on a trampoline just fine, when all of a sudden your leg slides right through the springs on the side as your head slams against the metal support bar… more or less. The SolidWorks BOM (Bill of Material) is actually pretty cool. It’s…

It’s one thing to have a 24″ or 30″ monitor to spread your work across, but when you’re working on a smaller monitor the toolbars and sidebars can take up half the screen. This little tip can change that and make a big difference in how you work. Quick Usability I like quick ways to…