You are on page 1of 10

Welcome to TriMech!

The purpose of this package is to help you get familiar with TriMech, and help you get started with your new software. Answers to common questions, procedures to solve common problems, and more are included. To start, proceed to the page referenced below:

How Do I.... Install my software? Set up all my preferences? Know which mouse button to push? Learn about keyboard shortcuts? Figure out how to do something by myself? Get Technical Support? Login to various web sites that I might need? Update my software (why, when,and how)? Figure out what else I can do with this software? 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9

Installing and Getting Started


Read Release Notes for important information

Close ALL programs and disable anti-virus software

Install SolidWorks: Insert SolidWorks CD#1 Choose "ANSI" when asked for a drafting standard for most US installations. Choose "Custom" if you purchased PhotoWorks, Animator, Toolbox, FeatureWorks, or Mold Base When asked, you should probably "Allow Model Changes From Drawings" unless you are a drafter and are not allowed to modify parts.

Complete the Registration Wizard during installation to register SolidWorks. A code will be emailed to you within a few days. SolidWorks will function for 30 days without the code. If you try to avoid this step, your software will stop working after 30 days and the next SolidWorks upgrade will not be shipped to you because they don't have your address!

Visit (Training and Support, Video Card Testing) and look for the version of video driver approved for your video card Newer driver versions are usually OK, but older versions need to be updated. Follow recommendations on the web page for "Suggested Settings"
I'm a Power User!

Complete tutorials: Chapters 1-5 in "Getting Started" guide What type of user would you say you are? Attend TriMech Training: "SolidWorks Basic Training" (5 days)

I've never used any 3D software, and I'm not very comfortable with the whole idea

Attend 1 day class: "Transitioning to 3D"

I've used some 3D software, and/or I am comfortable with the idea of 3D

Attend TriMech Training: "SolidWorks Basic Training" (5 days)

Complete tutorials: Chapters 1-5 in "Getting Started" guide

Attend TriMech Training: "SolidWorks Basic Training" (5 days)

Attend each advanced day: Complex Part Design Advanced Sheetmetal Design

At any time later, sign up for ongoing training: * Complex Part Design * Advanced Sheetmetal Design Attend update training with each new release


Setting SolidWorks up to work the way YOU like it to work

There are TWO types of settings in SolidWorks General Settings

To change any of these general settings, open SolidWorks, go to Tools/ Options, and select System Options. Change any settings and close.

! ! ! ! ! ! Screen Background color Where you keep your files If you want to name features as they are created How many backup copies you want per document If new drawing views should have hidden lines removed And many, many more.

Document-specific settings Examples:

! ! ! ! ! ! ! Density Color Dimension settings (arrows, lines, fonts, etc) Units (inches? mm? feet?) Image quality in shaded and wireframe modes Whether planes/axes/origins are visible by default And many more.

Each document SolidWorks creates can have settings specific to that document.

These settings can be changed by opening the document in question, and going to Tools/Options. Select "Document Properties", and adjust. These settings are stored in Document Templates, which are stored collections of settings. It is highly recommended that you customize the templates, so that you create custom, specific templates for your use. Your templates can even have some starting geometry in them!

Factory setting

To change a document template:

File/New and pick the document you want to change. Change the settings you would like in Tools/Options (and elsewhere) File/Save As - change "Save As Type" to the template type you have



Drawing Templates are merely collections of settings including units, dimension size, styles, etc. There is also an item called a Sheet Format that is a "background" or title block. If your drawing templates do not have a sheet format embedded, SolidWorks will prompt you for a sheet format each time you start a drawing. If you save a drawing template with a sheet format already inserted in it, SolidWorks will not prompt you!

Mouse usage and Keyboard customization


Left Button

Right Button
SHORTCUTS! Shows common commands for the current situation

By itself:

SELECT this item : Add this item to selections



Select a : range of items

Middle Button

(If available)

Click and drag: Rotate current part or assembly (or pan if it is a drawing)

+ Click and drag: + Click and drag:

Pan Zoom


Rolling "wheel" if present: Zoom

Time Saver!

Keyboard Customization
! ! ! ! ! !

To customize your keyboard shortcuts,

Start SolidWorks and open any document Go to Tools/Customize/Keyboard Select the category the command resides in (or Macros to have it look for macros in the /SolidWorks/Macros directory) Scroll down the commands to the command you are interested in. Click in the "Press a new shortcut key" area Press the key you would like to assign to this command and hit "Apply" 3

Keyboard Shortcuts: Defaults.

View Manipulations Nearly any key on the keyboard can be designated to start any command, or a macro. Here is a list of the default keys.

Rotate current part/assembly (Hold down increments)


to move by 90

NOTE: Before using any of these keys, be sure the proper window (the one you want the key to act on) has the "focus". If not, click somewhere in the window and it will become active, allowing the keyboard shortcut to function properly

Pan current part/assembly


Rotate current part/assembly about screen normal


Redraw screen Pull up View listing (double-click to activate a view off the list)

SolidWorks does not have focusKeyboard shortcuts will not do anything


SolidWorks window has the focusKeyboard shortcuts function propertly



Previous view

Files and Editing

Open a file Create a New file Save current file Print current document Undo Cut Copy Paste Rebuild

Zoom out


Zoom in

Zoom All (to Fit)


Selection Filters


Toggle selection of edges Toggle selection of vertices Toggle selection of faces Allow selection of all objects






Toggle between lines and arc while sketching



Forced Rebuild (a "deeper" rebuild) 4

Technical Self-Help:

Where to get more information, and some self-help

Locations for more info

Options for self help:

Want to learn more?

SolidWorks Help

most commands by pressing the ? symbol, with the added benefit that it jumps immediately to the relevant section of the help!

Here's one option that is often underutilized. In SolidWorks, there is an area under Help/SolidWorks Help Topics, that is searchable, hyperlinked, and indexed, with examples. It is also accessible in

Getting Started Guide

Each copy of SolidWorks, and every Full Upgrade that ships, contains a book called the "Getting Started" guide. In this book, there are brief descriptions of many tools, techniques for common commands, and tutorials for SolidWorks, PhotoWorks, Animator, and FeatureWorks! It is also available from within the software by going to Help/ Getting Started Manual. While not as thorough as the tutorials in the Getting Started Guide, there are some basic tutorials inside the program that are accessible from Help/ Online Tutorial.

Online Tutorial


This is a extremely valuable resource that is often overlooked. Start at for general bulletins, video card testing, enhancement requests, etc. From there, Subscription Service customers can log in* for access to Software Downloads, a searchable Knowledge Base, the Model Library of downloadable parts and programs, status updates of SPR bug tracking numbers, Webcasts to show how the program can be used for various applications, anonymous Customer surveys, and more! is a launch point for more local information. Our Support Engineers try to keep you notified of important issues, our suggestions for hardware to use with SolidWorks, internet sites we find helpful, and provide several shortcuts to links at SolidWorks that are extremely important. There is also a link to our Technical Support system**, and a collection of free utilities for our users to use and/or learn to program with.

* See Page 7 for a description of how to log in to SolidWorks Subscription Area ** See Page 7 for a description of how to log in to the TriMech Technical Support Help Desk

Technical Support:

How to get professional assistance

How we provide Technical Support

There are many ways to get help

Because TriMech has offices spread across a large region, you will find your support may come from anywhere. TriMech has a common database of all current and past issues so that any engineer can assist, even with issues you had been discussing with another engineer! This also means that our central call center will need to receive your Please try to remember that our message and distribute it to the engineers' main engineers on duty. Please be sure to focus is assisting with problems with leave a detailed message when you the software. We call so the call center can route your can usually provide call to the appropriate engineer and advice in the form of 888-TRIMECH simple "How To" get you a return call as quickly as (888-874-6324) answers, but we possible! cannot train users Your Options
Subscription Service customers have several options for technical support:
over the phone or email.

Direct Access to our Support Database

By visiting*, users can create their own calls, search our Frequently Asked Questions, and update or modify their issues. Just remember your login name and password! This method is among the quickest available, as the problem is automatically routed to the appropriate Engineer!


If you send an email to, it will be routed to the Engineers on duty. Please include a full description of the problem, and, if possible, example files (remember that sending an assembly requires sending the parts also, and a drawing requires other documents also!) If attachments are > 10MB or so, please use our FTP site**


As mentioned above, calling 888-TRIMECH and asking for Technical Support will allow our Help Desk personnel to contact the appropriate Engineer to get you a response. This is also the only method to guarantee a return call after hours and on holidays, as personnel will be paged if you leave a message in the voice mail system "Tech Support" mailbox.
* See Page 7 for a description of how to log in to the TriMech Technical Support Help Desk ** See Page 7 for a description of how to use the TriMech FTP site to transfer large files

Logging In:

How to gain access to all manners of useful information. Full descriptions of why you might want to visit these sites is on page 5

Start at

SolidWorks Subscription Support

Click on Subscription Support

Fill out your name, company, and serial number and hit "Login to Subscription Support"

TriMech Technical Support Help Desk

Start at
First Time Users ONLY

TriMech FTP Site

Point your Internet Explorer to - Username is "trimechcustomer" - Call us once to get the password Drag files in and out of this directory! Call us if after the file has been uploaded to let us know it is there!

USERNAME: first initial; last name (no spaces) Example: Wayne Newton would be wnewton Click on "Tech Support" PASSWORD: Whatever you entered when you created an account

NOTE: Some internet providers and/or firewall software do not support bidirectional FTP- check with your MIS department if you have problems.


When, why, and how.

SolidWorks releases new software every 3-5 weeks!

Note: Both of these upgrading options apply only to customers on TriMech Subscription Program. No upgrades are provided to customers not on the Subscription program.

Service Packs
Every 3-5 weeks, SolidWorks releases a Service Pack. The purpose of these Service Packs is two-fold: ! Enhanced or new program functionality ! Minor Bug Fixes To determine what service pack you are currently using, open SolidWorks and go to Help/About SolidWorks and note "SP7" or similar. This is your current Service Pack. To determine if this is the latest version available, connect to the internet and either: 1) 2) In SolidWorks, go to Help/Service Packs/ Check, or Using your Internet Browser, visit html/ and login to Subscription Support using your serial number*.

Should I try to keep current on Service Packs?

In general, it is recommended that you upgrade only if you are having problems, you received an email regarding some new functionality that is included in the service pack currently available, or you are more than 4 or 5 Service Packs out-ofdate. If you are having a problem with a certain feature, you should probably upgrade your software to determine if the latest Service Pack has changed this functionality. TriMech Technical Support will also notify you if any issues you have inquired with us about have been resolved in the current Service Pack.

Full Releases
How to prepare for a Full Release Upgrade

Every 8-12 months, SolidWorks releases an entirely new program. Historically, if it comes out the same year as the previous software, it is called "-Plus" as in SolidWorks 2001Plus. This is a completely different program, based on the previous, with significant software enhancements. The files that the new release creates cannot be read by previous versions, so it is something that should be installed corporate-wide if you wish to be able to share files amongst yourselves.

BEFORE THE SOFTWARE SHIPS: Go to the SolidWorks Subscription page*, enter your name, company name and serial number now, check out your address information. This will make sure that the shipment gets to the right address. WARNING! If you do not have the correct address listed, you will NOT receive your upgrade! This is a great time to do some system maintenance: ! Check for proper space (at least 10% free) on your hard drive ! Run defrag if its available on your OS ! Clean up your temp directory (usually c:\temp) ! Clean out your backup files (usually c:\TempSWBackup) ! Verify your video driver is approved by SolidWorks check here ! Make sure to have a copy of ALL of your serial numbers handy SolidWorks and any add-ons you may have purchased. ! Make a backup copy of your SolidWorks\data directory so that you dont lose any templates or sheet formats you may still need. ONCE YOU RECEIVE YOUR UPGRADE: ! Turn off ALL programs during the install process, disable Anti-Virus software. ! Install this release to a NEW directory, dont choose the upgrade option this will allow you to remove the old version at your leisure. -OR! Uninstall the previous version(s) of SolidWorks, reboot and install 2001 Plus. THEN... ! Attend the TriMech Whats New in 2001 Plus seminar to learn how to use the new functionality bring your questions with you! ! Remember! Once you have saved a file in 2001 Plus format, it cannot be used in any software prior to 2001 Plus!

* See Page 7 for a description of how to log in to SolidWorks Subscription Area

Downstream Applications

Once your products are designed, there are many other applications that can utilize the solid model to save you time and effort downstream. Here are some examples of the products that TriMech offers that can help users leverage the information embedded in their SolidWorks models.



Dynamic Designer

Hardware Libraries



MoldFlow Camtrax Geartrax SolidWorks Toolbox

Data Management

Body Works

Tools that were once limited to highly specialized experts are now easily accessible to even the smallest company, with minimal training required!




Advanced Modeling
Many of these products work completely INSIDE the SolidWorks screen!

For more information about any of these products, visit us at or contact your account representative!

GeometryWorks 3D


Interactive Professional Animator

SolidWorks Animator

SolidWorks Piping

SolidWorks Utilities

Electrical Engineering

CAM/ Machining

Inspection/Reverse Engineering