Today we will be looking at a great new enhancement that has been rolled out with the new release of SOLIDWORKS 2018; the ability to mirror 3D Sketch entities. While mirroring 2D sketch entities has been possible for well over a decade, it can be invaluable in the way a designer goes about creating a model. 3D sketch entities, on the other hand, have remained impossible to mirror - until now. New in SOLIDWORKS 2018, 3D sketch entities can be mirrored, drastically improving the way parts are created using 3D sketches.
To show this feature, a set of handlebars will be designed for this chopper. Utilizing the mirror entities tool in a 3D sketch will assist in accomplishing this task with far fewer steps than before.
First, begin a 3D sketch and create the sketch geometry to be mirrored.
After the geometry has been created, activate the mirror entities tool, which now includes the ability to mirror with respect to a plane for 3D sketch entities. In previous releases of SOLIDWORKS, the mirror entities command was limited to mirror 2D sketch geometry and required a linear entity to mirror about.
In this example, the right plane has been chosen to mirror about; however, this will vary from model to model depending on the desire mirror direction of the sketch entities. The mirror plane can be chosen by selecting a plane visible in the graphics area, or by using the flyout FeatureManager design tree, which can be accessed by clicking the small arrow near the top-right of the FeatureManager.
Once the 3D sketch entities have been mirrored, they will behave in the same manner as a typical mirrored 2D sketch, by mimicking each side to maintain the symmetric sketch relation.
The new ability to mirror 3D sketch entities in SOLIDWORKS 2018 opens up a variety of new ways to design while maintaining robust, yet simple design intent. For more information, check out our YouTube channel, get a SOLIDWORKS 3D CAD quote or contact us at Hawk Ridge Systems today. Thanks for reading!