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SOLIDWORKS Composer allows you to easily repurpose your 3D CAD data to develop stunning assembly, operations, and maintenance publications, in parallel with your design process.

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From SOLIDWORKS CAD Data to Professional Technical Documentation

At its core, SOLIDWORKS Composer is a tool designed to take your 3D models and 2D images and create step-by-step PDF assembly instructions. However, it can be used for so much more than that.

With SOLIDWORKS Composer, you define your customer’s experience. If you need to provide assembly instructions for a boxed product, a printed PDF manual might be a good fit. If your products need assembly and detailed installation instructions, maybe an animated video is best. What if you are collaborating with a vendor or customer and need to provide a detailed 3D model with fully interactive instructions? In that case you can take all the above and combine it with an interactive 3D player that clearly lays out all the details with a combination of 3D and 2D content. SOLIDWORKS Composer can help you achieve all of this, while remaining associated to the SOLIDWORKS CAD model to ensure your documentation stays up-to-date with any CAD changes.


CAD Format Support
SOLIDWORKS Composer supports a wide range of 3D CAD formats, including SOLIDWORKS, Pro/ENGINEER/Creo®, and Autodesk® Inventor, as well as neutral file formats such as STEP, IGES, and others.
Update Visual Content
Update content with the latest design changes (geometry, Bill of Materials (BOM) tree, metadata, and others.)
Faster Content Development
Work directly from 3D CAD data and create 2D and 3D graphical content in multiple formats, such as raster images (JPG, BMP, TIF, PNG), vector images (SVG, EPS, SVGZ, CGM), videos (AVI), 3D interactive animations (3D PDF, HTML, SMG), and executable package (ActiveX control). Easily add annotations (auto balloons, BOM table, arrows, and detail views) or change appearances (hide/show, transparency, and colors).
Document Processes
Create step-by-step procedures showing incremental components.
Create Animations
Create a manufacturing BOM independent of an engineering BOM. Customize parts lists and properties for each view.


At Hawk Ridge, we want you to succeed. We have helped many companies like yours to learn and continue to be successful and efficient with SOLIDWORKS Composer.

  • A customer called us under a tight timeframe – they had shipped a product and had to send digital assembly instructions before the delivery was made. We immediately went to work, developed the instructions, and delivered to the end customer before the product arrived on their doorstep.
  • One of our customers needed to show a complicated flow analysis combined with an assembly animation. Using Composer, we used small, colored spheres and animated them through pipes and chambers. Our customer was able to highlight the animation at a local event, drawing the attention they wanted.
  • We have had multiple occasions where the lead designer – and only Composer user – had unexpectedly left their company. This left a hole the required someone else to get up to speed quickly. We rallied the troops and provided one-on-one training to get them back up and running in record time.

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We are here for you with live, one-on-one consulting. With our Composer Flight Plan you receive dedicated time with one of our SOLIDWORKS Composer experts, tailored to help with the specific topics you need while getting started with the software.

solidworks training


At Hawk Ridge, we offer a complete Composer training program with three half-day sessions that will get you up and running and creating detailed assembly documentation quickly. We offer live online, live in-person and on-demand training content options to fit your schedule.



Specializing in Composer since 2009 we have some of the top SOLIDWORKS Composer experts in the industry. If you ever have a software problem or troubleshooting question, you are in good hands.

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Whether you are looking for on-demand training, access to the latest software releases, exclusive resources and offers, or just needing expert support – there's a subscription option for you.

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Will my content from Composer link back to SOLIDWORKS in case there is a design change?
Yes, Composer is tied to the SOLIDWORKS file name and when the design is adjusted it can be easily updated in Composer, and then pushed to your publications.
Do I need SOLIDWORKS to use Composer?
No, Composer is standalone software that does not require a connection to any CAD modeling software. However, 3D models are required in order to use Composer.
Can Composer licenses be networked like SOLIDWORKS?
Yes, SOLIDWORKS Composer is available in both standalone and network licensing so you can either lock it to a specific computer or share it with multiple users, one at a time.
Can I use SOLIDWORKS Composer to modify the CAD models?
No, Composer does not have the ability to edit the CAD design, and this is by intent. The purpose of Composer is to give technical content creators the ability to use the 3D models without the risk of accidentally modifying the design.
Does Composer work with SOLIDWORKS PDM?
Yes, there is a full PDM connection built into the software.
What kinds of 3D models can I bring into SOLIDWORKS Composer?
Composer is directly compatible with all neutral and most proprietary 3D CAD files. There are some limitations with proprietary file types, but there is almost always a compatible file type between the two programs.
What information is imported from SOLIDWORKS designs to Composer?
This is quite a list but to break it down:

  • All metadata such as custom properties
  • All views such as exploded or configurations
  • Assembly level BOM IDs
  • 3D PMI data, also known as MBD or DimXpert dimensions
  • Textures and part coloring

All of this imports directly from SOLIDWORKS to Composer. They also maintain a link back to SOLDWORKS so if they are modified, that change will be reflected in Composer.
If I don’t have 3D modeling experience, will Composer be difficult to learn?
Absolutely not. SOLIDWORKS Composer is not a CAD program; it is an authoring tool that imports 3D and 2D content so that a story can be told. No CAD experience is needed, however if you are familiar with 3D models it will help since Composer is a 3D program.


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