Stripping a Coated/Plated Part in SolidWorks

Stripping a Coated Plated Part

In response to a comment from a past Coating/Plating Parts blog article, here is a simple technique for removing a few thousands of an inch from a finished part to simulate the stripping of a finish. The task is very similar to adding a finish to the part, except in reverse. The tools will be the same as the method Jason shared, only used a bit differently. The tricky thing about stripping the part is ensuring that you leave any non-finished faces, such as reamed or threaded holes, at their final size.

Please read through the steps below and watch the video for step-by-step instructions.

This method will utilize the Move/Copy Body command, the Shell command, and a Combine Subtract command. Beginning with your finished part, utilize the Insert > Features > Move/Copy Body command to copy the finished part to occupy the same space as the original (zero translations, zero rotations). Hide the original body for ease of face selection in the next step, you may even wish to change the color applied to the body of the copied body.

Now start the Insert > Features > Shell command, specify the thickness you wish to remove or “strip”, and choose to remove only the faces that coincide with the non-finished faces, such as threaded holes. What remains will constitute the “finish” on the part. Next you will show the original body again. If you changed the body color of the copy, you will be able to see the shelled copy overshadowing the original part.

The final step is to use the Insert > Features > Combine command to Subtract the shell from the original body. Viola! You now have a stripped part!


Alan Zullo is Senior Engineer at CAPINC, a SolidWorks Value Added Reseller with locations across New England. He is a regular contributor to their CAPINC University blog.

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CAPINC was founded on one core principle: Provide the best solutions and services to assist our customers in designing and developing better products. CAPINC provides premier solutions and services in New England to assist our customers in accelerating their design and development process for better mechanical products. Our award winning technical support team is comprised of industry experts with hundreds of years of combined practical experience in mechanical design, design validation and analysis, product data management, and technical communication. We are the award winning 3D solutions partner offering SolidWorks software and training, and the entire Stratasys line of 3D printers and production systems. For more tech tips and blog tutorials check out CAPINC's blog and videos.