Direct Editing in SolidWorks with the Move Face command

Sometimes we need to make a simple adjustment on an imported part. Perhaps, for example, we need to change the diameter of a hole. The current diameter of 3.52mm needs to become 3.72mm; also, the hole has draft that needs to be maintained.


SolidWorks has a function called Move Face that will let us directly edit a model by selecting one or more face and then move them. Using this command, we can easily change the size of a hole or standoff in our imported part.

Move Face can be found on the Direct Editing tab of the Command Manager or from the Menu: Insert, Face, Move.


Next, we fill out the PropertyManager for the Move Face command. Choose to Offset the face a distance of .5mm “in” as follows:


Once we accept the feature, SolidWorks will not only effectively change the size of the hole, it will also extend other faces around the hole to maintain a solid volume. Note that we have not destroyed any of the original geometry, as the Move Face is a feature that you can edit, suppress, or roll back before; the original imported body is still there as the first feature in the tree.


This is an especially useful technique when we are working with an imported part as the main body for tooling or molds as it allows us to change geometry on the part without trying to swap imported bodies, which can get very messy if we have already derived geometry for parting surfaces and such.


John Setzer is a Training Coordinator at Graphics Systems, a SolidWorks Value Added Reseller with locations across Wisconsin and Illinois. He is a regular contributor to the Graphics Systems’ blog:, your source for SolidWorks, Simulation, Data Management, & Product Communication Tips & Tricks.