One of my favoritest toolbar buttons when designing is convert entities. There's no easier way to re-use geometry than to sketch everything in one place and use it over and over as you build a part.
But sometimes you want to convert that sketch geometry onto another plane that isn't parallel. Then the sketch relations you need may not work. You just can't add a relation between sketches on two non-parallel planes. Yes, you can link dimensions, but I'm talking about stuff you want to drag around. One way to get around this issue is a surface - a swept surface.
Of course, you need a path and maybe a guide curve on occassion, so don't forget the pierce or coincident relation.
We've posted another of John's Tips & Tricks videos over on YouTube. If you've ever had to make changes to a sketch and it was dimensioned or constrained in a way that made it difficult you should check out this video. SolidWorks has some great tools for changing sketches and others for fixing problems in them when they occur.
Check it out and let us know what you think.
Johns latest video tips are centered around reference planes and center-lines. SolidWorks 2010 revamped the interface for creating planes making the creation of certain planes a lot easier. If you work with molded parts with draft, imported parts with planes in the wrong places, or any part with symmetry you'll find John's tips this week useful.
Last week we posted John's Tips & Tricks presentation from the Northeast Rollout. He has started producing a series of short video versions of these videos.
This week he starts with some little known tools that are really powerful and will allow you to sketch more efficiently with SolidWorks.
A question we get a lot on the support lines is “How do I dimension to the theoretical intersection of two lines?" If you use a sketch fillet it's really easy since SolidWorks automatically puts in a virtual sharp for you. But what if you didn’t use a sketch fillet? How come there isn’t a “Virtual Sharp” command within the sketching environment even though there is a whole section under Document Properties dedicated to controlling their appearance. The solution is simpler than the preceding introductory paragraph. Thanks to Stefanie for providing the screen captures and directions.
- Hold Ctrl and select the 2 lines as pictured below.
- Select the Point icon.
- A point/intersection will appear representing the virtual sharp.
Virtual sharps can be inserted into 2D sketches, 3D sketches and Drawing views. To change their appearance go to Tools/Options/Document Properties/ Virtual Sharps.