18-solidworks-tipsYou want’em? We got’em.

Hot, steamy nuggets of SolidWorks tipage you can wad up and stick under your pillow, give to your coworker or completely ignore.

Let me warn ya. These are not your regular old tips. These are the most obvious…and when I say obvious, I’m talking around 38-41% mostly obvious… give or take a few points. So, stand up briefly, run screaming around your chair and enjoy what’s bound to increase efficiency… or something.

  1. Use sheet metal features, for sheet metal parts
    Yes, you can bend a person’s will, but your SolidWorks bending… lookin’ sad. Start with the sheet metal Toolbar.
  2. Stop sketching, start modeling
    What could that possibly mean? If your picking at a sketch like an old scab, stop. Getting some geometry up there will help you figure out what to do next.
  3. Deliberately touch others screens when they ask you obvious questions
    Mean? not at all. it’s called ‘training’. Use every finger.
  4. Slap someone that touches your screen
    This is also called ‘training’. You could also cring loudly then ask them not to do that.
  5. Take your VAR’s Tech Support to lunch
    Cause it’s not enough you have to pay for support, but that you also want them to be nice to you.
  6. Turn models you create into templates
    Because it’s dumb to start over every time. Simplify them, slap’em on the network and send a mass email with 72 size blinking font letting everyone know.
  7. Purposely call SolidWorks bugs you come across ‘festering boils’
    I think there’s a ‘festering boil’ when doing a convert entities on this surface thing.
  8. Delete stuff
    This can actually give you some info on what’s linked to what real quick. Just remember to undo before moving on.
  9. Make your own sound effects for SolidWorks
    Not only will you be a hit in the office… you’ll be… making your own sound effects. WHiiirGZZZ!
  10. Increase your mouse speed to speed your modeling
    It’s cheaper than methamphetamines. You’ll also be able to switch from your web browser to SolidWorks quicker when Mr. Boss is wandering.
  11. Wear comfortable shoes….always
    Especially when running from your boss or if you have really veiny feet. At the very least, it helps to slow the atrophy in your toes.
  12. Avoid creating a library of blunt force weapons
    … unless you’re a game designer, seriously deranged or ‘just working on your modeling skills’
  13. and some don’ts…

  14. Don’t save a part over another part someone is referencing
    If you do, someone is liable to smash you with a blunt force weapon.
  15. Don’t name files with the same name
    Yes, avoid frustration. At the very least name them… evil-plan-001, evil-plan-002, etc.
  16. Don’t eat heavily laden PB&J sandwiches whilst 3D CAD jockeying
    The last thing you need is to pass out, spill your coffee and become electrocuted when your face hits the monitor.
  17. Don’t walk in to a new job with a ‘SolidWorks for Dummies’ under your arm
    Although Greg Jankowski wouldn’t mind it… you will most likely be tossed.
  18. Don’t stand up to fast when you get an error message in Chinese.
    We have enough fainting engineering passing out from Chinese error messages. (Really, a English version user I know just got one of these.)
  19. Don’t forget to save…
    your receipts, and your model. There’s a handy File, Save all. Use it or be DOOMED.
  20. Don’t change mate ‘Coincident748’ to ‘Coincident1’
    Really? 748 coincident mates on a 2 part assembly? what happened there?
  21. Don’t just sit there while your model loads
    Read SolidSmack continuously till you feel happy about sitting in front of your computer for 8-22 hours a day.

Yes, there are actually 20. Surprise. Really, we could add a million short little tips like this, but that makes for a heckuva long post. I bet you have some to add. What are your most obvious (or not so obvious) tips?

Thanks to my brother Eric (@mingsish on Twitter) for the input.


Josh is founder and editor at SolidSmack.com, founder at Aimsift Inc., and co-founder of EvD Media. He is involved in engineering, design, visualization, the technology making it happen, and the content developed around it. He is a SolidWorks Certified Professional and excels at falling awkwardly.