SOLIDWORKS 2014 Essential Training
Illustration by Richard Downs

Mating parts together in an assembly


SOLIDWORKS 2014 Essential Training

with Gabriel Corbett

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Video: Mating parts together in an assembly

Mating parts together is a fundamental skill of working with assemblies. Mates are very similar to sketch relationships, we choose 2 or more faces planes lines or points and then choose how we want to have them connected. The most basic is a coincident mate, this is basically just saying you want the two items touching. Let's take a look. Over here we have an example of a block and we have a couple of components we want to attach to that block. We want to make those components together. This component here is the first component in our assembly and it's fixed. It's not moving around. Now what I want to do is I want to add these other components to it.
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  1. 1m 51s
    1. Welcome
      1m 7s
    2. Using the exercise files
  2. 31m 13s
    1. Launching SOLIDWORKS for the first time
      3m 55s
    2. Accessing and customizing the Ribbon
      4m 14s
    3. Touring the shortcut bar and identifying essential keys
      7m 27s
    4. Saving, renaming, and managing files
      10m 28s
    5. Working with the new view cube, or View Selector
      2m 36s
    6. New features in SOLIDWORKS 2013 and 2014
      2m 33s
  3. 14m 11s
    1. Understanding the 3D world
      2m 31s
    2. Creating your first part
      3m 15s
    3. The virtual, parametric prototyping environment
      1m 56s
    4. The FeatureManager and feature-based modeling
      3m 43s
    5. History-based modeling and the rollback bar
      2m 46s
  4. 28m 32s
    1. Starting a new sketch
      6m 50s
    2. The six steps used in almost all modeling features
    3. The Line and Centerline tools
      3m 25s
    4. Using the Circle tool
      1m 51s
    5. Adding and removing relationships and dimensions
      6m 56s
    6. Understanding relationship types
      3m 58s
    7. System options, units, and templates
      4m 40s
  5. 18m 28s
    1. Drawing rectangles
      5m 31s
    2. Creating arcs in a sketch
      4m 8s
    3. Drawing splines in a sketch
      4m 57s
    4. Sketching polygons
      3m 52s
  6. 36m 5s
    1. Trimming and extending portions of a sketch
      3m 54s
    2. Creating offset geometry
      3m 13s
    3. Moving, copying, rotating, and scaling elements
      3m 13s
    4. Erasing, undoing, and redoing actions
      2m 24s
    5. Using the mirror tools
      2m 24s
    6. Creating repeating patterns in a sketch
      4m 55s
    7. Using construction lines to build robust sketches
      3m 25s
    8. Applying fillets and chamfers to a sketch
      2m 32s
    9. Working with slots
      3m 46s
    10. Adding text to parts
      4m 1s
    11. Using the Convert Entities command
      2m 18s
  7. 9m 33s
    1. Working with planes
      5m 28s
    2. Placing and using axes
      2m 22s
    3. Placing a coordinate system
      1m 43s
  8. 17m 50s
    1. Extruding a sketch into a 3D object
      4m 36s
    2. Using Revolve to create 3D parts
      2m 42s
    3. Using Loft to create complex shapes
      4m 40s
    4. Refining a loft shape with guide curves
      2m 22s
    5. Using the sweep to create wire and pipe shapes
      3m 30s
  9. 20m 23s
    1. Modifying parts using the Extruded Cut tool
      5m 42s
    2. Working with the Revolved Cut tool
      6m 19s
    3. Using the Lofted Cut tool
      3m 32s
    4. Cutting holes and grooves with the Swept Cut tool
      4m 50s
  10. 21m 5s
    1. Using fillets and chamfers to smooth corners
      5m 58s
    2. Creating repeating rectangular patterns
      3m 16s
    3. Creating a circular pattern
      2m 27s
    4. Mirroring objects
      4m 0s
    5. Using the Shell and Draft tools
      3m 52s
    6. Scaling parts
      1m 32s
  11. 9m 39s
    1. Working with reusable sketches and blocks
      2m 47s
    2. Creating blocks
      3m 51s
    3. Designing with blocks
      3m 1s
  12. 29m 45s
    1. Understanding the tools for beginning a new assembly
      4m 46s
    2. The basic steps in creating an assembly
      3m 18s
    3. Mating parts together in an assembly
      6m 43s
    4. Working with subassemblies
      2m 9s
    5. Linear and circular assembly patterns
      4m 56s
    6. Downloading premade parts from the Internet
      3m 32s
    7. Using Toolbox
      4m 21s
  13. 15m 8s
    1. Mating parts with coincident, parallel, and distance mates
      4m 35s
    2. Mating parts with width mates
      5m 53s
    3. Mating parts with path mates
      2m 5s
    4. Mating parts by aligning planes
      2m 35s
  14. 10m 20s
    1. Getting started with the Hole Wizard
      4m 38s
    2. Positioning holes in layout sketches
      5m 42s
  15. 15m 27s
    1. Linking sketches to other parts
      4m 28s
    2. Linking to layout sketches
      6m 48s
    3. Using the Hole Wizard in context
      4m 11s
  16. 17m 15s
    1. Understanding threading concepts
      7m 17s
    2. Using a helix and Swept Path to create a thread
      4m 2s
    3. Understanding internal threads
      5m 56s
  17. 17m 25s
    1. Using equations to drive a sketch
      5m 5s
    2. Working with complex calculations
      2m 6s
    3. Integrating Microsoft Excel to manage design tables
      7m 10s
    4. Building assemblies using part configurations
      3m 4s
  18. 23m 17s
    1. Working with drawing templates
      6m 49s
    2. Setting up drawing options and sheet properties
      3m 43s
    3. Choosing the correct projection angle
      2m 21s
    4. Adding model views to a drawing
      10m 24s
  19. 16m 8s
    1. Creating general dimension notations
      6m 37s
    2. Creating ordinate and running dimensions
      3m 0s
    3. Dimensioning holes and curved features
      3m 8s
    4. Using the autodimension tools
      3m 23s
  20. 14m 38s
    1. Creating holes and callouts
      5m 8s
    2. Adding center marks and centerlines to a drawing
      3m 46s
    3. Adding item notes
      2m 57s
    4. Making drawing revisions
      2m 47s
  21. 11m 42s
    1. Adding assemblies to drawings
      2m 10s
    2. Including a bill of materials
      1m 42s
    3. Adding balloons to specify parts on an assembly drawing
      1m 39s
    4. Adding a title block and sheet properties
      2m 8s
    5. Building an exploded view for an assembly drawing
      4m 3s
  22. 1m 2s
    1. Next steps
      1m 2s

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Watch the Online Video Course SOLIDWORKS 2014 Essential Training
6h 20m Beginner Dec 09, 2013

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

SOLIDWORKS is the world leader in 3D software for product development and design. Start creating manufacturing-ready parts and assemblies, as well as detailed drawings and bills of materials. In this course, author Gabriel Corbett shows how to create 2D sketches that will become the basis for your 3D models. You'll use the Extrude and Revolve tools to turn 2D sketches into 3D parts, then create more complex geometry with sweep and lofts. Then learn how to use the cut features to remove material and shape parts, and use mirroring, patterning, and scaling to modify parts. Next, you'll combine parts into movable assemblies and subassemblies. Finally, you'll create accurately annotated drawings, complete with itemized bills of materials that relate the final parts and assemblies to a manufacturer.

Topics include:
  • Creating your first part
  • Starting a new sketch
  • Adding and removing relationships and dimensions
  • Sketching polygons
  • Creating offset geometry
  • Moving, copying, and rotating elements
  • Working with planes, axes, and the coordinate system
  • Using Revolve and Loft to create 3D objects
  • Trimming with the Revolve, Loft, and Sweep cuts
  • Creating smooth and angled corners with fillets and chamfers
  • Designing with sketch blocks
  • Working with subassemblies
  • Creating threaded parts
  • Integrating Excel to manage design tables
  • Adding dimension notations to a drawing
  • Rendering an image of a part or assembly
Gabriel Corbett

Mating parts together in an assembly

Mating parts together is a fundamental skill of working with assemblies. Mates are very similar to sketch relationships, we choose 2 or more faces planes lines or points and then choose how we want to have them connected. The most basic is a coincident mate, this is basically just saying you want the two items touching. Let's take a look. Over here we have an example of a block and we have a couple of components we want to attach to that block. We want to make those components together. This component here is the first component in our assembly and it's fixed. It's not moving around. Now what I want to do is I want to add these other components to it.

So, come up here to the assembly tool bar at the very top, or on the assembly ribbon. And come over here to mate. And the way mate works is it automatically will help you choose the correct mate depending upon your selections. So, in this case here, I want this face here to touch this inside face here. And, if I just click on those two faces, notice what happens is it actually moves over till those two faces happen to be aligned if you look at it. From this angle here, now the parts not perfectly aligned because still down here but that's our first mate in fact it takes 3 mates in general to full define where 2 components are in relation to each other.

So my very first mate notice it's this face here and that face there, and those are going to be mated together. Go ahead and click on OK, to accept the mate, and notice, the default mate that it chose, was this one called coincident. That means those two faces are going to be touching. You can also make them parallel, you can make them perpendicular, you can just lock it in place. You can define the distance, and the angle. You can flip the direction, or you can even undo the last one. So, if you're happy with it, go ahead and click on OK, and it mates those together. Next the thing I want to mate together is maybe one of these faces here so, in this case here I'm going to choose this front edge and spin it around and choose this edge here once those mate together.

Again, it's using a coincident mate. And go ahead and click, OK. This way I should be able to actually grab this component now. Actually slide it back and forth. And you can see that it, because this face and the back face are mated. And these two top faces are mated. This will actually slide. And you can actually take a look at the motion that's going to be happening between the components. Next, if I slide it all the way in here, I can define, maybe, a mate between these faces here. What I can do is I can say, this face here is going to mated along with maybe one of these bottom edges.

As soon as I do that you can see these components come together. Click OK, when you're happy with it, and now you can notice, we have a couple of issues in our design. This is one of the key points of many things together inside a solid work before you build the components. You can see, well this is sticking out just a little bit here, and you know these angles really aren't the same, so maybe we want to go back to our design, see what these errors are in our design. Why these things don't fit together perfectly like we would expect them to. A quick way to do that, you can always jump right back into those parts and make the modifications.

Click OK, when your happy with the mates and if you do want to go back and change a part click on the part notice we have an in context menu that pops up with a bunch of options and I just want to go over those really quickly. The first one is hey, let's go open that part number 2 is let's edit that part inside this assembly. We can come over here, we can hide that component. We can change its transparency. We can suppress it or turn it off or take it out of the assembly temporarily. We can obviously add some mates to it. We can view the mates that are attached to it. We can come over here and take a look at some of those component properties. Click on again and come back here and edit the feature itself.

I can go ahead and edit the sketch. I can change how it looks. I can copy those appearances and paste them somewhere else. Here I can paste an appearance that I copied from somewhere else. Down here, I can select others, I can select sketches, I can zoom in, I can look normal through this, I can fill it and chamfer. So, I've got a bunch of things I can do all within this assembly environment, just by clicking on the part. In this case here, if I wanted to modify the part, let's just go ahead and click on, Open part. It opens it up. I can open up that Boss extrude. Make some change, maybe I'll change it to 3.5.

Click OK. Exit out of that. And as soon as I close out of this it saves the part. Open the assembly, and notice that I automatically updated the part, and now it fits perfectly in the assembly without having to bring it in again, or any other things we have to might change on it. And now obviously works perfectly, and you can always go back and change things as needed on the fly. Lets go through a couple other mates. In this case here, I'm going to go ahead and I'm going to go grab this wash looking part and I want to place that over this pin. I'm going to go ahead to mate and I'm going to choose this outside cylinder.

And I'm going to choose this inside cylinder. And notice those two parts slide together and by default it chooses for you. It can concentric mate. Go ahead and click, OK. And now I have this mate. I can click, OK again. And notice I can slide this component forward and backwards. In fact I can spin it around. But, it's still not touching this face here, so I might want to add one more mate. So go back up to Mate. Or, if you don't want to choose that originally, you can actually click on the face, hold down Ctrl, move the model around. Ctrl+click the other face, and then click on Mate, which will automatically bring those right together for you.

Click, OK, and there they are mated together. Next, let's mate these two components, here. You have a couple different options there. One of them, I could just choose the outside cylinder here, and choose the inside. And those would slide together. Or if you didn't want to do that one, you could choose this face here and you could choose this face right here, and again, those would slide together, and actually, you kill two birds with one stone on that one. Because not only does it make them concentric, but it also brings them together in the right location. So you can really think through a lot of different ways to put these things together in different methodologies.

Also, if that were to happen to flip upside down, you can always flip it the other direction. And flip it other ways. So, you can modify how these components go together and you have a lot of options. Click, OK. Things are looking good. All your components made it together. And notice I want to point out a couple of other things over here on the tree. Notice these components here have a little minus sign, right next to the icon. This one down at the bottom does not, because it's fully defined. Whenever an item is fully defined in an assembly, it will not have a minus sign. If there is still some degree of freedom for that item to move, it will have a little minus sign.

So both this component here and this component here, both have the ability to still spin around their shafts. And that's why they're not fully defined. Now, in this case here, it doesn't really matter, but I just want to point out that sometimes, you can look at a component, and make sure you know that it's undefined, or under defined, and that's why. These basic mate tools will help you build your models. When building mates, try to choose items that are stronger. Versus weaker items. For instance, parts start off with three fundamental planes and we can not remove them. So, if you choose to make two planes together there's no way to break this mate.

However, if you made a corner point to some other part anything that changes that point will break that mate. Try to think about the easiest and most robust ways you can mate your parts together.

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