How to learn to efficiently use SolidWorks – 5 Top Ways

So why learn to use SolidWorks efficiently, instead of just learning it?  Well, most mechanical engineering companies use solid modellers for design.  That means that no matter your knowledge and experience, your work will only appear through these software.  If your use of SolidWorks is fast, your output will be fast.  And the opposite is true.  So lets talk about how to get…… fast.

  1. Avoid depending on the tutorial samples
    1. The problem with the included tutorials is that they are too perfect.  They don’t cause any difficulties for you to overcome, and don’t adequately push your learning. Do them several times each, but move beyond them quickly and start working on real-world examples.
  2. Repetition is the key
    1. It can be a mistake to accomplish a new task and then move on to another new one.  I suggest that you redo the problem from the beginning through to the end several times.  Even up to 5 times.  The benefit to be gained is that you will have much better recall of the commands.  Good modeling design involves thinking through your options before starting; you will profit from having easy reference in your mind to the commands and options.
  3. Learn a new feature
    1. Most on-the-job designers I have found learn only enough SolidWorks to get them by in their daily workload.  They are not necessarily working as efficiently as they can, however.  Taking the time to learn a new feature usually pays off several times over.  When you are on the job, likely you will not have this luxury.  Do this now, and you will soon be known as the SolidWorks Guru!
  4. Solve the problems yourself
    1. Struggling to solve a modeling problem can very beneficial to your skills.  It is best to try as much as you can, and only ask for directions once you are truly stuck or it is taking too long.  The good thing is that you end up browsing through many menus that you would not have seen before. Trying different options and seeing the results, even though frustrating, will plant these menus in your mind for future recall.
  5. Keep a portfolio of your work
    1. If you don’t have the luxury of learning SolidWorks on the job (at some companies expense) then I suggest you commit to keeping a tidy portfolio of your self-training exercises.  Don’t undervalue your learning efforts, despite it being self-directed.  The benefits are:
      1. It will encourage you to finish what you are doing completely, and to not cut corners.  As in all engineering, capturing details is a key skill to maintain.
      2. You will see a visual record of your progress – you will benefit from the feeling of pride in your accomplishments.  Plus you will get a feeling of gaining something tangible from your hard work.
      3. This can serve as the beginning of your engineering portfolio,(at least for SolidWorks skills)  if you don’t yet have one.  This will be a critical aid to helping you convince companies to hire you.

Leave A Reply (1 comment So Far)

  1. Eric Song
    4758 days ago

    “these 5 top ways” are really a great help for me to pass the CSWA Exam with a full mark and also very useful for completing my portfolio.

    I like the way of “redo it up to 5 times”.