Anytime I have to repeat the same tasks or steps over and over again, I’m always looking for a way to streamline that process and make it easier moving forward. One great way to save time in SOLIDWORKS is to create custom part, assembly and drawing templates. In this post, we will go through the basic steps of creating templates for parts and assemblies so you can streamline your workflow and save time as well.
- To begin just open up SOLIDWORKS and click new.
- Select a new part or assembly depending on which template type you want to create and click OK to open a blank part or assembly file.
- Open your document properties by selecting the gear icon.
- Select the document properties tab. Here you can change your drafting standard, annotations, dimensions, units and so much more!
Figure 1: Drafting Standard settings
Figure 2: Annotation settings
Figure 3: Dimension settings
Figure 4: Unit settings
- In addition to Document Properties, we can include custom properties that can be populated when the files are created. Now properties like PartNo, Description or a custom property will ALWAYS be added to our new parts or assemblies.
- Finally, if desired we can add features or parts, and set the visibility of items like the reference planes and origins as a starting point for future files.
- Once you have everything customized that you want to have set. The next step is to click save.
- In the save dialog box you will want to select the correct file extension.
- Part Templates end in .prtdot
- Assembly Templates end in .asmdot
- Then save the new template in the templates folder or wherever you want the template to be saved at.
- Once saved, you can close out of SOLIDWORKS and going forward whenever you click on a new file, you will be able to select that template to begin building your part or assembly and have the customizations you selected pull in every time.
Drawing templates can be considerably more complicated when referencing part/assembly properties, customized title blocks and more. This requires not only a drawing template but a sheet format. If you are interested in creating your own drawing templates, we suggest taking the SOLIDWORKS drawings class, which goes into great detail covering templates, formats and even talks about the custom property tab builder to help populate your file properties!
Happy designing and I hope you enjoyed this quick guide on how to create a custom part or assembly!
For more Alignex Tech Tips, check out our SOLIDWORKS CAD Cheat Sheet below!
Written by James Nelson
James Nelson is an Application Engineer at Alignex, Inc. When James isn’t helping customers with tech support questions or doing onsite demos. He spends his limited free time cheering on the Iowa State Cyclones with his wife, coaching sports for his children, and playing Destiny with his coworkers.