9 Replies Latest reply on Mar 8, 2016 2:28 AM by Habib Ghalamkari

    Hole Wizard / Hole Table: Thin Material Countersink

    Steven Barry

      I have an issue I have been trying to figure out related to countersunk holes created with the Hole Wizard tool.


      For sheet metal parts that are thin enough that a countersink doesn't fully terminate with the drill diameter, the diameter on the far side of the material is some value between the top surface countersink diameter and the intended drill diameter.  I want to be able to call out this value on my hole table in my drawings, but SolidWorks insists on calling out the "Through Hole Diameter", as specified in the hole wizard dialog.


      Now, I am aware of a workaround, in which I manually edit the through hole diameter to match the exact value it comes out to on the far side of the material, but that is an extra step I would prefer not to take.  Also, if there is a part with multiple hole wizard features, it would have to be done for each one, and they would not automatically update if you decided to change the hardware sizes or material thickness later.


      I would prefer for SolidWorks to give me the physical diameter on the far side of the countersink rather than the nominal drill diameter.  I know it can be done somehow, because the hole can be dimensioned at that diameter in the drawing.  I just want to be able to get that information into my hole table without an excess amount of work.


      Please let me know if you have any ideas or solutions!  Thanks.


      EDIT:  See message below on "Define by Geometry".  How can I make this my default?

        • Re: Hole Wizard / Hole Table: Thin Material Countersink
          Brian Bump

          How about making the original through hole the size of the actual hole after countersinking.  Another advantage of this, is that during manufacturing the thin sheet metal won't deform as badly on the back side when countersinking.

            • Re: Hole Wizard / Hole Table: Thin Material Countersink
              Steven Barry



              Yes I have done this before, and it is what I will likely resort to if I cannot find a better way. 


              I am just trying to think big picture, because the actual hole size will vary by the material thickness and hardware choice, and I would have to manually override it in each instance of a hole wizard feature.  If there was a way to automatically set the hole table to use the actual value, I wouldn't have to make all those adjustments in the event of a rev change.

            • Re: Hole Wizard / Hole Table: Thin Material Countersink
              Steven Barry

              OK, well this was driving me absolutely nuts, so I had to figure something out.  If anyone else has this same issue, here you go:


              This isn't completely documented in the SolidWorks help files, but I stumbled across it by clicking around until I could find something.  The closest documentation is this:  2015 SOLIDWORKS Help - Define by Geometry or Hole Wizard

              So there is this option called "Define By Geometry" which apparently does exactly what I was looking for.  To do this from the hole table, right click the Hole Table cell with the hole callout, go to Cell then click Define by Geometry.  When I did this, it added the diameter to the end of the callout, so I had to delete the extra information under "Dimension Text" in the Property Manager for that cell.


              The next question would be:  How do you set "Define by Geometry" as default?


              The hole wizard callouts seem to be governed by calloutformat.txt in the  \SOLIDWORKS\lang\english directory of my SolidWorks installation folder.  You can see this in SolidWorks under System Options > File Locations > Hole Callout Format File


              How could I change this file, or what other file or System Option might I need to change to make "Define by Geometry" my default if I wanted to?

              • Re: Hole Wizard / Hole Table: Thin Material Countersink
                Habib Ghalamkari

                I've been looking for a solution for this, but unfortunately didn't find any. (actually anyone who is in touch with sheet metal needs this).

                I ended up to this solution.

                I changed the Through Hole Diameter value in Show custom sizing and saved it in favorites as M** t=*.*

                I'm working with a limited sheet metal thicknesses and mostly use M4, M5 & M6. So my favorites doesn't grow that large.

                Since then, when I want to add a countersink to a sheet metal, I simply pick from my favorites.

                Of course it won't be updated when I change the thickness of the sheet,

                but at least Hole Callout and hole table in my drawings show the values I'm specified and

                I don't need to dimension them separately each time or go to each cell and select Define By Geometry.