SolidWorks Tip: Preventing Rotation in Concentric Assembly Mates

It’s been a while since we dropped in on Sol and Sal, our intrepid power user and his sidekick. Let’s see what they’re up to, shall we?

“So, Sal,” asks Sol, “what do you think of the new features in SolidWorks 2014? Have you been checking them out?”

“Ain’t nobody got time for that!” bemoans Sal, as he turned back to his workstation. “This assembly I’m working on with all these fasteners, shafts, gears, pulleys, and rollers is taking forever! All these concentric parts!” he sighed.

“Well, Sal, are you using Smart Mates on those parts? Just dragging and dropping them with the Alt key will add that Concentric Mate by default.”

“Of course I am, Sol! But I still want to lock out the rotational degree of freedom, as we like to fully constrain our parts, but that means selecting another Mate and finding the proper faces to select…and this is no small assembly!”

“Sal, Sal, Sal.” Sol shook his head. “Here…edit that last Concentric Mate you added. See that “Lock Rotation” checkbox on both the Feature Manager and the nearby context toolbar?”

“You mean like the one right below here, in Figure 1?”

Fig. 1

“Yes, Sal. Go ahead and check that.”

“Does that do what I think it does? And you can do that by editing the existing Concentric Mate?”

“Sure enough. But easier yet, you can add it to existing Concentric Mates by just right-clicking on one.”

“Really? What does that look like, Sol?”

“See Figure 2, my friend.”

Fig. 2

“I like this a lot!” cried Sal. “I still have a million constraints to lock out, but this will be a lot less clicking and picking for each of them!”

“Sal,” sighed Sol, “what would you say if I told you that all those could be added in just one click?”

“Wait…wait…are you telling me…” Sal stammered.

“Spit it out, Sal!”

“Are you telling me there’s about to be a Figure 3 in my near future?”

“Yes. Yes I am. Right below here.”

Fig. 3

“So, Sol, are you serious? You’re telling me that with one click, just one click, I could lock all the rotations out by selecting this option on the Mates folder? Get out! Really?” Sal looked incredulous. “Where do you learn all this stuff?”

“Graphics Systems’ ‘SolidNotes’ blog, of course.” Sol replied.

For more Sal and Sol, check out their post, Copying and Deriving Sketches.

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Graphics Systems

Graphics Systems

Headquartered in Milwaukee, WI with offices in Chicago, IL, Freeport, IL, Madison, WI, and Green Bay, WI, Graphics Systems Corporation is "Your Source for 3D Engineering Capabilities."
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  • P2P Cliff

    Thanks for this tip guys. It was the answer I needed to find the SolidWorks tool to get the job done. A great time saver from GXSC again!