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"Lesson One: Parts" - lots of pointless filler and functional inaccuracies, little learning. Help!

Question asked by Gordon Freeman on Apr 1, 2013
Latest reply on Apr 2, 2013 by Gordon Freeman

I'm new in the field of 3D CAD and solid modeling. Most of the parts I created have been done with TinkerCAD.


My current job is UI designer, and my issue with Solidworks has been UI related. So I tried the tutorials, but I always get a feeling they were created by someone who expects me to instinctively know how Solidworks is designed...


Take for example Lesson One, about modeling a part:

- He instructs to draw a rectangle on the front plane, and I follow it, but in the end, his rectangle looks consistent and faces front, mine faces up, as if I drew it on the top plane.

- He claims that, after clicking "Exit Sketch", Solidworks will automatically begin extrusion. That's not true. I had to change tab and look for the Extruded Boss/Base button on my own, with no directions from the tutorial.

- Afterwards he says right-click on sketch element in the tree, and select edit sketch. That's more confusing than it should be. Right click brings up a huge menu with unneeded options. He should have just said "click" to pop the basic toolbar which has "edit sketch"...


In 5 minutes of tutorial, there's already a list of inconsistencies, wasted time explaining obvious things, and 0 time explaining not-so-obvious ones. Is this what I should expect every tutorial to be from this point on? This is extremely frustrating, and the mediocre quality of help content doesn't encourage me to buy the software.


All I want to do for a start, is to learn to model simple parts and be able to make holes (subtractions) in a part.

Is there any tutorial out there to explain that in a decent, accessible, logical way?


I made peace with Solidworks' overly complicated UI and lack of usability R&D, so all I'm asking for is a decent part modeling tutorial that doesn't skip steps and doesn't make wrong assumptions.

IF possible, a tutorial that starts with a basic square, and then gradually adds complexity to the part, as a way to introduce all the features of modeling. Not separate chapters using pre-made tutorial files that only teach me how to edit existing projects, instead of creating new ones. Is that really asking too much?


Message was edited by: Gordon Freeman