SOLIDWORKS Industrial Design: Bringing Ideas to Life

Let me introduce myself, my name is Chris. I am currently studying mechanical engineering at Wentworth Institute of Technology. I am very passionate about mechanical design, but take every chance I get to be creative. A few weeks ago I began my internship at SOLIDWORKS. One of my first tasks was to build a creative design using SOLIDWORKS Industrial Designer (SWID). After some brainstorming, I came up with a challenging yet simple idea to build a toy helicopter. Up until now, I had only used SOLIDWORKS CAD so upon first sight SOLIDWORKS Industrial Designer was different and non-traditional but I instantly fell in love with the software. I have been a consistent user of SOLIDWORKS for close to five years, and in my opinion, SWID is carving a new path for the creative modeling world.

I still remember the first time I used SOLIDWORKS; it blew me away. I was amazed that I could take an idea and create a 3D model from it. The idea of building a model then manufacturing it is amazing. SOLIDWORKS gave me the passion and inspiration to become an engineer.

I can say I felt that same feeling and inspiration from the first moment I first started using SWID. The amazing conceptual sketching and free-form modeling makes me want to spend months modeling something extraordinary. Being used to traditional SOLIDWORKS, I was blown away by the functionality and ease of modeling. Within minutes I created a free-form shape and began transforming and scaling it into anything I want. After only about a day I had learned how to use SWID’s streamlined user interface, and built a model with which I was very pleased. As a matter of fact, so pleased I wanted to blog about it!


Starting a free-form model in SWID always begins with a pre-made, free-form shape. With just two cylinders and a box to connect them, I was able to build the body of my helicopter. The best part is that I didn’t even have to build the simple shapes. All I had to do was transform the shapes into the helicopter I imagined. I was amazed by how fast I could create the base design for the helicopter.


SOLIDWORKS Industrial Designer enables users to combine traditional modeling techniques with free-form techniques, making the design possibilities endless. A great example of this is that the entire seat was made from one free body. Without SWID’s free-form functionality, I would not have been able to obtain the shape I wanted so quickly. I found myself sitting in front of the completed toy helicopter in record-breaking time.

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Within one day I had myself a product. The remarkable functionality of SOLIDWORKS Industrial Designer allowed me to take a simple idea and turn it into a model. With ease I transferred the model over to SOLIDWORKS and sent my design to the 3D printer. After a night of waiting, my model was complete the next morning.


The helicopter I made is simple, yet proves a point. If I can learn and create a model that contains some abstract and complex shapes in a day, imagine what I could achieve in a month or a year? I don’t think I could have created that model in a day using SOLIDWORKS, but SWID made it possible. SWID makes ideas truly come to life. My passion for modeling and 3D design was found once again inside SOLIDWORKS Industrial Designer. Already seeing what I can create makes me excited to take a leap forward and model something that pushes my skills to the limit. Stay tuned to see what comes next!




Learn more about SOLIDWORKS Industrial Design by watching this webinar on demand by clicking on the banner below.





Chris Pagliarini

Chris Pagliarini

Chris Pagliarini is a Product Portfolio Manager for SOLIDWORKS. Chris has been a dedicated SOLIDWORKS user for 8+ years with exposure in several areas from research, sheet metal design, Equipment packaging & enclosures, Model-based design, and aerospace & defense design. During his free time he enjoys exploring new technology, golfing, skiing, and fishing.