16 Replies Latest reply on Jan 7, 2016 7:29 AM by Ronald van Til

    What is Really New in SOLIDWORKS 2016 (Video Series)

    Alin Vargatu

      By now you have probably already read the What's New in SOLIDWORKS 2016 document, have watched the official launch videos and maybe even attended a VAR sponsored launch event. You are probably intrigued about the new functionality and cannot wait to try it on your own.

       

      Starting today I will share with you a new series of videos, quite a bit different from the ones I mentioned above. I will take each new enhancement I like and will push it to the limits. Let's see how deep the functionality really is.

       

      In the process I hope to start a conversation with you, the best SOLIDWORKS users in the world. I am sure that together we will successfully:

      • discover new ways for using this amazing new functionality
      • find workarounds where needed
      • brainstorm ideas for further enhancing the functionality (will submit ERs if needed)
      • engage our friends from the SOLIDWORKS product definition team in a constructive dialog
      • have fun

       

      Without further ado, let's explore SOLIDWORKS 2016!

        • Re: SOLIDWORKS 2016 New Functionality Stress Test (Video Series)
          Alin Vargatu

          SOLIDWORKS 2016 enables the user to select the inner edges of a face in bulk. This is a great time saver compared to the previous releases.

          How robust is this new functionality? In this video we push it to the limits.

           

          Note: Watch the video completely, because all workarounds are demonstrated at the end. I also suggest using the maximum resolution.

           

           

          I will give SOLIDWORKS a 7 out of 10 mark for this new tool. It can become a perfect 10 once it becomes more reliable on design intent changes.

          • Re: What is Really New in SOLIDWORKS 2016 (Video Series)
            Alin Vargatu

            For the first time in 10 years, SOLIDWORKS added a new relation to the sketch environment and it is really good. It is so useful that for many people this could be the main reason for upgrading to 2016!!!

             

            The new relation (Equal Curve Length) was sorely needed and complements the old Equal relation. The old relation is not very consistent: when applied to 2 lines, the lengths are equal, but when applied to 2 arcs, the diameters are equal.

             

            The new relation establishes the equal length between curves like lines, arcs and splines. At this time it does not work for conics, including ellipses, parabolas and hyperbolas. Also, does not work for applying equal length relations between arcs and edges.

             

            Unfortunately, for legacy reasons we have now to live with 2 similar in appearance, but different in functionality relations.

             

            That being said, this is a step in the right direction, with a lot of potential for further improvement.

             

            I will give SOLIDWORKS a 8 out of 10 mark at this time.

             

            Watch this video to see how well it performs.

             

              • Re: What is Really New in SOLIDWORKS 2016 (Video Series)
                Dwight Livingston

                Alin

                 

                Thanks for the review. The equal length relation sounds useful.

                 

                Alin Vargatu wrote:

                 

                Unfortunately, for legacy reasons we have now to live with 2 similar in appearance, but different in functionality relations.

                 

                 

                Not sure what you mean here. I would not want to give up the equal radii relation for anything, so it seems two different relations are required. Do you have a scheme for combining all the functions into one relation? Or you'd prefer they looked more different?

                 

                Dwight

              • Re: What is Really New in SOLIDWORKS 2016 (Video Series)
                Alin Vargatu

                 

                Not sure what you mean here. I would not want to give up the equal radii relation for anything, so it seems two different relations are required. Do you have a scheme for combining all the functions into one relation? Or you'd prefer they looked more different?

                 

                 

                Thanks for requesting a clarification, Dwight. I used the wrong term in saying that the two relations are similar in appearance. I should have said that while they have a similar name the results created by their application is dependent on the type of entity they are applied to.

                 

                If this would have been the first release of SW, I imagine that the Equal Length relation would apply to both arcs and lines and would mean exactly that - equal length.

                 

                Then, there would be a second relation that would apply to arcs and could be called Equal Radius. This way there would be no confusion about the functionality of the 2 relations.

                 

                Currently we have the old Equal relation that means something for arcs and something totally different for lines. Moreover, the new Equal Length Curve relation applies to arcs, splines in all situations and only partial to lines.

                 

                For example, I can apply the new relation to a line and an arc or a line and a spline but not to 2 lines. Actually, the moment you have more than one line in your selection (let's say 2 lines and one arc), the new relation is no longer available.

                 

                I believe that could be confusing for users that are just moving to 2016.

                 

                That being said, I want to repeat my statement that I welcome the new relation. It was sorely needed!

                 

                One more time, SOlLIDWORKS proved that it listens to its users (this was generated from an ER and an idea submitted to the Top10 last year or a year before).

                  • Re: What is Really New in SOLIDWORKS 2016 (Video Series)
                    Dwight Livingston

                    Alin

                     

                    Sorry I made you do all that work replying, but I do now see what you mean. And I agree. As you say, SolidWorks should have replaced the old Equal relation with two new ones, Equal Length and Equal Radius. Equal Length would use the = symbol in its icon, and Equal Radius would use a (( symbol. That would ruffle some feathers for a short while, but I think most everyone would soon see the wisdom.

                     

                    Dwight

                      • Re: What is Really New in SOLIDWORKS 2016 (Video Series)
                        Alin Vargatu

                        Dwight Livingston wrote:

                         

                        Alin

                         

                        Sorry I made you do all that work replying, but I do now see what you mean. And I agree. As you say, SolidWorks should have replaced the old Equal relation with two new ones, Equal Length and Equal Radius. Equal Length would use the = symbol in its icon, and Equal Radius would use a (( symbol. That would ruffle some feathers for a short while, but I think most everyone would soon see the wisdom.

                         

                        Dwight

                        That would be ideal, Dwight, but it would probably be a programming nightmare, in order to deal with the legacy data. Probably a SOLIDWORKS Product Definition manager could confirm or infirm this assumption. I am very much interested in some insight about expanding this functionality for edges and multiple line selections in the future.

                    • Re: What is Really New in SOLIDWORKS 2016 (Video Series)
                      Alin Vargatu

                      Another new enhancement introduced by SOLIDWORKS 2016: Dimensioning Pre-Selected Sketch Entities

                       

                      This might seem like just a tiny change in the SOLIDWORKS User Interface functionality, but it makes so much sense and increases the consistency of the user's workflow in such a degree that it will be welcomed by all power-users. It will change for sure the way I use dimensions in SOLIDWORKS!!!

                       

                      As you will see in this video, the new technique integrates very well in the pre-select + use of in-context toolbars workflow. I love it!

                       

                      The functionality is almost flawless. I found only one situations where the order of selection is important, but otherwise is close to perfection.

                       

                      I will give SOLIDWORKS a 9.5 out of 10 mark for this great enhancement!

                       

                        • Re: What is Really New in SOLIDWORKS 2016 (Video Series)
                          Ronald van Til

                          Hi Alin,

                           

                          Just noticed your What's new series. Nice job! One 'enhancement' I have trouble in getting used to is this sketch dimension pre selection thingy. Apparently my way of working with sketches and dimensions is different than yours, I keep inadvertently attaching dimensions in my sketching (I seem to throw in some sketch items and afterwards use dimensions to constrain them, upon starting the dimension command I have most of the time still selected a sketch item). I do not like this 'enhancement' yet. Maybe with some more time (now actively using SW2016 for two months, before just some playing) I will get used to it, which makes me question how much I have got a 'need' for an enhancement like this.

                            • Re: What is Really New in SOLIDWORKS 2016 (Video Series)
                              Alin Vargatu

                              Ronald van Til wrote:

                               

                              Hi Alin,

                               

                              Just noticed your What's new series. Nice job! One 'enhancement' I have trouble in getting used to is this sketch dimension pre selection thingy. Apparently my way of working with sketches and dimensions is different than yours, I keep inadvertently attaching dimensions in my sketching (I seem to throw in some sketch items and afterwards use dimensions to constrain them, upon starting the dimension command I have most of the time still selected a sketch item). I do not like this 'enhancement' yet. Maybe with some more time (now actively using SW2016 for two months, before just some playing) I will get used to it, which makes me question how much I have got a 'need' for an enhancement like this.

                               

                              I am aware of this problem and I submitted this ER which has been accepted by SW:

                               

                              SPR#927745, "Provide ability to control dimensioning of pre-selected sketch entities (On and Off) by a System Option".

                               

                              Please vote on it.

                          • Re: What is Really New in SOLIDWORKS 2016 (Video Series)
                            Alin Vargatu

                            Another great one, covered by my colleague Scott Durksen,

                             

                            New in SOLIDWORKS 2016 is the ability to easily add foreshortened dimensions to any drawing view.  In a previous blog post, he provided methods to create foreshortened dimensions in detail views.  Now SOLIDWORKS 2016 makes it much faster and intuitive to generate these details.

                             

                             

                            I would give SOLIDWORKS a 10 out of 10 for this enhancement.

                            • Re: What is Really New in SOLIDWORKS 2016 (Video Series)
                              Alin Vargatu

                              DANGER! DANGER! DANGER! Be extremely careful when using the new PURGE command in SOLIDWORKS 2016!!!

                               

                               

                              The new Purge enhancement has been voted among the Top Ten Ideas at SOLIDWORKS World by the SOLIDWORKS User Community.

                               

                              I believe people thought that because a command with this name exists in AutoCAD, we need to have it in SOLIDWORKS too, without really considering the differences between a drafting software and an intelligent parametric 3D design tool. At that time I was not a big supporter of this function, because it was not made clear what things should be the subject of purging.

                               

                              Fast forward to the 2016 release and, as expected, the new Purge command is now part of SOLIDWORKS. I said as expected, because SOLIDWORKS is really, really good at listening to its users and implementing their enhancement requests.

                               

                              Unfortunately, the way it is implemented now in the 2016 release (SP01) the Purge command can be extremely dangerous, considering that the purged features could be used outside of a part and their absence could create huge errors in huge number of assemblies where the part is used as a component.

                              Moreover, the destruction is silent and its effect might not be even noticed until the affected assemblies are opened. So a whole team could be affected without even knowing!

                               

                              For the time being, I suggest being very careful in using the Purge function. It is dangerous for an untrained user.

                               

                               

                               

                              I would give SOLIDWORKS a 1 out of 10 for this enhancement. I hope that they will add a pop-up warning on the use of this function in the next service pack. That will be enough to make me raise this mark closer to 10.

                              • Re: What is Really New in SOLIDWORKS 2016 (Video Series)
                                Alin Vargatu

                                My colleague, Scott Ellery will join me in delivering the Advanced Custom Property Management hands-on class at SWW2016.

                                We are excited about the new enhancements for the Property Tab and that is why I am posting here Scott's article and video.

                                 

                                The SOLIDWORKS 2016 Property Tab Builder is a great tool to easily add Custom Properties to your SOLIDWORKS part directly from the task pane. With SOLIDWORKS 2016 there has been some very cool enhancements that I think you are going to like! The latest Property Tab Builder now supports:

                                • Additional Radio Buttons for features, you can now have up to 10 radio buttons rather than just 3 in the previous version.
                                • Conditional lists is a new feature that lets you define and administer lists once, and eliminate errors by automating the population of dependent properties. For example, you can create a parent list of different materials and a second set of lists of finishes, where the availability of a finish is dependent on the selection of a material. Users select a material, then select a finish from the options that are available for their material.
                                • Updated List Attributes you can populate a list by typing values or importing them from a text file or a Microsoft™ Excel spreadsheet.

                                Check out the video below for a demonstration of the new features and how to use the Property Tab Builder to add custom properties to a part document: