Flip and Rotate Flat Pattern Drawing View – Author: Jim Peltier CSWE

Sheet Metal Part

Sheet Metal Part

Often times we create sheet metal works of art (or just really complex designs) and we want the design to be clearly shown on the drawing. I’ve shown a relatively simple part above (just tell that to the laser cutting machine operator) – just a bent plate with some mounting holes and cut-out text that reads “SOLIDWORKS!” I’ve had to use a stencil-like font in order to not have the centre of the O, D, and R fall out, but I was able to do this manually by right-clicking on the sketched text and saying “Dissolve Sketch Text”. Now I want to convey this in a drawing:

Not the most obvious text

Not the most obvious text

This can be a bit hard to read as it is clearly backwards. As fortune would have it, SolidWorks has anticipated this scenario and has given me a button to press for flipping my view around. Behold:

 

Only works with a Flat Pattern view

Only works with a Flat Pattern view

Provided I’ve inserted this as a Flat Pattern View, either from my Drawing View Palette or from the Insert > Views menu, I will have this option in the Property Manager (that pane on the left side of the screen that lets me control the properties for just about everything in SolidWorks). I just need to click on the Flip View button and… tada!

Much better, but there's still room for improvement

Much better, but there’s still room for improvement

It’s now easy to read, but it would be easier if I rotated the view such that the text goes horizontal. If I select my view again, I can go to a dropdown right above the Flip View button that will allow me to rotate my view!

Rotate the view by some preset angles, or type your own

Rotate the view by some preset angles, or type your own

Afterwards, it’s just a simple matter of changing the drawing scale and behold:

Sheet Metal with text Completed SLDDRW

 

Now the text (or whatever I have specified) can be easily and clearly illustrated on a drawing without the ambiguity that was shown before.

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