As I stated on another recent thread, I've been performing FEA with COSMOS/M for almost 20 years, and ABAQUS for a half decade prior to that. I'm comfortable with COSMOS. SolidWorks & Simulation? Not so much.
So now that I've gotten just a little bit proficient at designing a weldment and analyzing it with beam elements, I need to take the next step. I need to include shells. Imagine a 3D weldment with thin gussets and skins -- what's the most appropriate way to model this in SolidWorks, and then how do I generate a mixed mesh of beam and shell elements to analyze it? I want to use shells, not actual 3D (tet) elements for the thin plates. It "feels" like the shells should be meshed from surfaces, in a planar analog to the lines one creates in a sketch that get meshed as beams. Am I on the right track?
Any hints would be greatly appreciated, and a link to one or more tutorials would be fine. I haven't found any that address this specific task.