SolidWorks 2014 seminar

Mecad Systems, the South African resellers of SolidWorks, held a series of seminars around the country in February to introduce users to the new features of SolidWorks 2014.

The SolidWorks 2014 events rolled out with great feedback from users saying this version sees the most common requests being added. Almost all of the new features (below) incorporated are from user requests and feedback.

Conic Fillets
SolidWorks users got the Conic sketch entities in 2013 and used them in lofts, sweeps and boundaries for creating complex blends. SolidWorks 2014 introduced Conic Fillets, which simplifies to the extreme the process of creating and modifying Conic Surfaces. You can use either the Rho value or the minimum radius of curvature. This new tool will make millions of industrial designers very happy. Even the rest of the mechanical designers could use Conic Fillets for creating previously hard to model blends in seconds.

Style Splines
One more reason for the industrial designers to celebrate, they now have Bezier Splines! They are much easier to dimension than the old B-splines and provide super smooth curvature throughout.

Assembly curve and sketch driven pattern
This is self-explanatory. More powerful part features that have been promoted to assembly level. This will allow complex patterns to be completed in a breeze.

New types of Mates: Slot Mates and Spherical and Curvilinear Mates
This got one of the bigger reactions at the launch. With two clicks you can full mate bolts etc. into slots, and even mate two slots with each other.

Quick mate
This new feature really got the crowd smiling, When selecting the two faces to mate a pop up appears with the recommended mate (i.e. concentric when two circular faces are selected). This means three clicks and the parts are mated and you can continue working.

New ability for defining the section view scope in assemblies and multi body parts
Now you can define what bodies or components to be cut in the model environment by the Section View. There is even a “graphics only” option that could save minutes in large assemblies.

Sheet metal enhancements
This area of SolidWorks saw some great enhancements. The loft tool now has a new bent control to add to the formed option where the loft shape is bent in 3D and has individual controls on each bend controlling how many bends or what angle to bend at.

Corner relief control was also added. This tool re-defines what it means to create reliefs. Directly in 3D on the model you are able to define the precise relief type you require.

The overall speed of SolidWorks 2014 is enhanced with support for multiple processors in certain areas of the software like opening files, drawing creation and simulation.

The pictures below show some of the attendees at the Gauteng seminar.

For more information contact the local agents Mecad on TEL: 086 111 2236 or visit


Emma Whitehead of Dassault Systèmes, David Falkingham of DS SolidWorks and Freek van der Berg of Mecad


Jonathan Morland of Mecad with Chris Fouche, Jeremy Kavallieratos and Ricardo dos Santos, all of Geneva AD Display Systems


Robert Pereira (2nd left) from Mecad, with Riaan Botha, Werner Fritz, Kobus Badenhorst and Koos Booysens, all from GLPS


Jaco van der Berg of Mecad, Bennie Buys of Axis Mechanical Design, Duane le Roux of Mecad and Wilhelm van Rooyen of Axis Mechanical Design


Dewald Cornelessen, Dean Venter, Fritz Rhode and Jason Smith, all of AquaPlan