SOLIDWORKS 2017 has integrated some great new functions and features, especially when it comes to working with weldments and/or sheet metal and their associated cut lists. In previous versions, if there was any sort of change or edit made to a solid-body component within the part file, the cut list would create an entirely new item folder, instead of staying in the original item folder. With the new Cut List Sorting Option, cut lists are more flexible and can be worked with to avoid instances like this from happening, which can lead to a much more organized cut list.
Let’s jump right into it. Below you can see I have created a weldment with four solid bodies, all of which are the same size. The cut list for this part shows that there are four weldments and they are all categorized in the Cut-List-Item1 folder because they are all exactly the same size.
Adding a small, circular hole (Cut-Extrude1 Feature) to the nearest solid body weldment will then cause the cut list to create a separate Cut-List-Item folder altogether. This can be seen in the image below, in which three of the weldments are grouped in Cut-List-Item1, and the weldment with the Cut-Extrude1 feature is in the Cut-List-Item2 folder by itself.
But what if you wanted to keep those weldments in the same Cut-List-Item folder in your cut list, instead of separating them into two different item folders? They are practically the same exact part, but one just has a cut-extrude applied to it. This can be done by simply right-clicking the cut list and selecting Cut List Sorting Options.
With the Cut List Sorting Options feature open, you can now choose which features you’d like to exclude in sorting the different welded parts in your cut list. Be sure to enable the Collect Identical Bodies feature there as well. This will collect all bodies that are geometrically identical, but are technically categorized differently in the cut list because of features used on them. In my case, I have chosen to exclude the Cut-Extrude1 feature.
With the Cut-Extrude1 feature now excluded from our cut list, you can see that the cut list has changed to have all four of the welded parts back in the Cut-List-Item1 folder.