Miter Joints with Different Sized Weldment Profiles in SOLIDWORKS 2021

Creating structural members for welded, bolted of framed designs has always been a breeze in SOLIDWORKS, thanks to the SOLIDWORKS WELDMENTS functionality found in the SOLIDWORKS Standard, SOLIDWORKS Professional and SOLIDWORKS Premium software bundles. For years, SOLIDWORKS users have enjoyed the benefits of working from a library of simple 2D profiles and applying these profiles to a “framework” of 2D or 3D sketches. This allowed user to create a structure similar to what is shown in the following image:

But the above image shows a challenge that SOLIDWORKS Weldment users have long struggled with: How do you miter a joint that occurs at the intersection of 2 different sized profiles?

In previous versions of SOLIDWORKS, the user would have to manually “match” these 2 structural members at the mitered corner. This typically meant creating a sketch and calculating the correct “matching angle”, then doing a cut-extrude at each of these corners. This became a time-consuming process as it required several features – typically a sketch, a cut extrude, and an extend feature.
SOLIDWORKS 2021 introduces a great new tool to address this challenge: the option for FULL FLUSH corners when using the Miter Trim/Extend feature.

In the current challenge (shown in the image below) we can see that we have a series of 60mm x 40mm rectangular tube members coming together with some 40mm x 40mm square tube members.

When working with SOLIDWORKS Weldments in previous versions of SOLIDWORKS, users had struggled with the challenge of matching 2 different sized profiles at a mitered corner. When users attempted to work with the trim/extend tool and use the miter joint option, they would be presented with the solution shown in the following image:

This option worked great when the 2 structural profiles were the same size, as SOLIDWORKS would calculate the bisecting angle between the two members, and create a miter at this bisecting angle leaving an equal angle miter cut on each structural member. But when the structural member profiles were of 2 different sizes, this would not be the desired result, as you will need to cut 2 different angles. A true bisecting angle would leave one member too long, and one member too short, as shown in the above image.

In the new Tim/Extend interface found in SOLIDWORKS 2021, we can see a new option – the FULL FLUSH option. This option automatically solves the correct angle for structural member 1 and structural member 2. It then performs both a trim and an extend, with a different angle on each structural member, to leave you with a perfectly flush miter between the 2 structural members. This reduces the number of features needed and the amount of time it takes to calculate the perfect angle between these 2 differently shaped structural members.

SOLIDWORKS 2021 introduced a great new miter option in the Trim/Extend command – the FULL FLUSH option for a structural member miter joint. With this tool users can quickly match 2 differently shaped structural members with a perfectly flush miter. This will be a great time saver for any SOLIDWORKS users who work with the SOLIDWORKS Weldments commands!

Toby Schnaars

Toby Schnaars

Toby Schnaars is a Solution Consultant at Dassault Systemems SOLIDWORKS, based in the Northeastern region of the United States. He has been helping customers with SOLIDWORKS tips, tricks and instructor-led training since 2001.