SolidWorks Tips & Tricks - Part Modeling
My own versions of tips and tricks that I use when working with SolidWorks. These tips are not intended to be a repeat of tips you can find elsewhere on the internet. See "Advanced Tricks" for more Tips & Tricks
GENERAL RULES OF THUMB:
Where possible, use existing models as a starting point for creating new models. Don't waste time recreating something that already exists. Create libraries of parts used most often. Use these models when creating new models.
Name features, and group related features together. This helps the next user find all related geometry and permits easy editing by other people who may have to modify the model.
Test the relationships, linked dimensions and equations in your sketches to ensure you get the results you expect with the design intent you built into the model.
Add 'cosmetic' features last. Non features such as fillets and chamfers that are added to the model, that do not have any purpose other than appearance or molding, are considered 'cosmetic' features and should be placed at the end of the feature so they can be easily suppressed without affecting functional geometry.
SPEED UP WORKING ON SOLIDWORKS MODELS:
Use fully defines sketches. This reduces the time SolidWorks needs to interpret your geometry.
Use automatic relations where practical. You can temporarily over-ride this feature by holding down the [CTRL] key while sketching.
Use geometry patterns. Geometry patterns tend to reduce build times.
Suppress features that are not needed while you work, work with simplified configurations, or use the roll back bar in the feature manager.
EFFECTIVE USE OF SKETCHED BASED PATTERNS:
Start a new sketch and add points for all instances of the feature. Close the sketch when completed.
Create the base feature(s) for this pattern and locate the feature at one of the points in the sketch pattern.
Select 'Sketch Driven Pattern' from the toolbar or 'Insert | Pattern/Mirror | Sketch Driven Pattern' from the pull down menu.
Select the sketch pattern. In the property manager, check 'Selected point'. Select the point used for creating the feature. Select the feature(s) or face(s) to pattern. Check 'OK' when done.
All of the patterned features should be created.
To add or remove instances of patterned features, edit the sketch pattern.
The sketch pattern can be hidden without affecting the feature pattern.