SOLIDWORKS 2018 – The Preview – SOLIDWORKS NEXT top modeler #SOLIDWORKS #SWW17

The most highly anticipated segment of the General Session at SOLIDWORKS World would have to be the teasers of the next years SOLIDWORKS release!  Always entertaining and fast moving!  The parody format allows for a glimpse of the new features without having to go into any details.  A little smoke & mirror magic there on stage in plain sight.

This year poked a little fun at the fashion industry and reality TV with …..  SOLIDWORKS NEXT top modeler.

I don’t know if it was due to the auditorium being “in the round”, the interview style presentation or the use of a professional actor/ entertainer in Tracey B Wilson.  But there appeared to be a new level of professionalism in this years production!

But we are here for the some previews of the SOLIDWORK 2018 product (as well as the entertainment)

A very promising sketch enhancement shown was  Mirror 3D Sketch Entities – the ability to Mirror a 3D Sketch Sketch Entities using a Sketch Planes as the Symmetry Reference.   This also includes the ability to mirror both 2D and 3D sketch entities using a plane as the symmetry reference.

The ability to Draw contours by freehand sketching using a pen or stylus on Windows 10 touch screen devices and have them convert to usable sketch entities.   Pen Sketching looks to be a great addition especially in a design review or brain storming session.  I could see it as a handy tool used in conjunction with something like the new Microsoft Surface Studio.  I could see people standing around a desk, discussing a design.  Then laying the Studio down and sketching out a change.

I understand that there are similar existing programs currently available InfinityDRAW Designer  but it is hard to go past a built in feature

SOLIDWORKS 2018 looks to see some ongoing tinkering with the User Interface.   The introduction of a New Home Screen.  A central dialogue box to take you back to your most recent documents or directly to the start of something new!  This has been in the pipeline for a while.  I participated in a couple of surveys on the subject at least 12 maybe up to 18month ago.

Also shown was a new Assembly Progress Bar.  Moved from the lower left hand corner to where you can see it.  Along with some more detail on what is opening

To go with the Assembly progress bar is an Enhanced Assembly Performance dialogue box

More visual feedback with Assembly Visualization of SOLIDWORKS performance information

I’m a big mouse gesture user.  Combined with multiple keyboard shortcuts (including “S & D” key shortcuts) They are a great reducer of mouse travel.  I current have mine set for 8 mouse gestures.   Will the new Support for 12 mouse gestures be too many!  I don’t know, but I’m willing to give it a try!

More keyboard shortcuts!   Using the ALT key to hide surfaces during mates.  Certainly can’t be a bad thing!

Just a year on after the introduction of 3D Interconnect, see the expansion to supports more file formats STEP, IGES, ACIS, JT.

32-curvesMore functionality looks to have been added to 3D Interconnect.  With the introduction to now preserves curves and sketches

Part of 3D Interconnect usability was it allowed the native formats to be updated.   This functionality looks to also supports the updating of neutral files

The biggest cheer came when it was announced that 3D Interconnect would now Read Custom Properties

A new Tab and Slot feature that is designed to work in both parts, multi-body parts and interesting, assemblies.

The crowd seemed pleased when shown SOLIDWORKS PDM bi-directional communication with drawing revision table.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERASome interesting polling results!  Some muttering about election rigging! That’s not the first time that’s been raised before in US voting 🙂

SOLIDWORKS 2018 looks to address issues of performance in Assemblies .  Multiple objects can now be set resolved in Large Design Review

52See things more clearly when working in “busy” assemblies.   With the Ability to turn off graphics (scenery) data

54Then Revert all data back to graphics to increase performance

Performance in Large Assemblies with the Ability to insert and mate graphics components

Using the data for better design!   Generative Design for SOLIDWORKS as Part of the SIMULATION Product Family

Introduction of Manufacturing Concentric restraints

Complete SOLIDWORKS Integration with SIMULATION View

As with all reality TV contests,  there has to be a winner!  Along with some celebratory explosions!


It wasn’t until I was home and starting to put this article together did a couple of things come to mind about this years preview.   With each years new release there are usually around 200 – 230 listed enhancements/ features across the range of the SOLIDWORKS products.   Over the past three years,  previewed enhancements shown at SOLIDWORKS World have numbered 32 (SWW16 for SOLIDWORKS 2017 release), 30 (SWW15 for SOLIDWORKS 2016 release) and 23 (SWW14 for SOLIDWORKS 2015 release).   Which is an average for the three years of 28 shown preview enhancements!

So how many this year?  (are you back from counting?)   Just 18.

I’m putting 2 + 2 together and possibly coming up with 5.   I would like to think it is in some part related to commitments raised at the  SOLIDWORKS Top Ten breakout session.  Which I covered here

A couple of points I noted from that Session were:

Projects for SOLIDWORKS 2018 have shifted towards quality projects!

Of most interest are the areas that these projects are focused! Addressing Large Assembly Performance, Graphic Performance

Between what was shown in this years preview for the SOLIDWORKS 2018 product, along with the discussion in the SOLIDWORKS Top Ten Session, then add the introduction of SOLIDWORKS CAM, makes SOLIDWORKS 2018 a much anticipated release.

3 responses to “SOLIDWORKS 2018 – The Preview – SOLIDWORKS NEXT top modeler #SOLIDWORKS #SWW17”

  1. […] with many full size laptops.  With the added benefits in weight saving and touch screen.    With SOLIDWORKS 2018 looking to have the ability to use freehand sketching, using a pen or stylus, on Windows 10 touch […]

  2. […] saw with the preview of SOLIDWORKS 2018 at SOLIDWORKS World 2017 and then throughout SOLIDWORKS 2018 Beta that DS SOLIDWORKS has been working to enhance the […]

  3. […] year preview, was a little like that of SOLIDWORKS World 2018, which showed a much reduced number of possible enhancements.  Last year the number of enhancement […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: