Since SOLIDWORKS’ release in 1995, Dassault Systemes has iterated many times over to give us the mature CAD product we know and love today. Enhancements – both large and small – help to drive the CAD program that has aged like a fine wine.
Seemingly small enhancements, however, can be just as important as the big ones. For example, in the 2013 release of SOLIDWORKS, they introduced the “right-click to confirm command” feature that has helped saved me tons of time and gives me a much better user experience.
Though the Pattern Driven Component Pattern looks no different from the surface, the enhanced logic of the command makes this easier to use. Frustrated users in 2021 and earlier releases may get a dialog that looks like this:
As users, we hate to see errors like this that don’t quite make sense. I thought I did everything right when I inserted my fastener into the model and commanded SOLIDWORKS to pattern the remaining patterned holes with the fastener. Yet, I still got this error.
This error was caused because I used two hole wizard holes in the original “seed” instance, but I only used one fastener. No matter which face I selected, I would still get the error above.
The red box highlights my seed instance, and the red “prohibition” symbol shows all of the invalid selections that I cannot select for my “driving feature or component” in the PropertyManager.
In 2022, I can now pattern an instance of this component, regardless of whether it belongs to the seed or a patterned instance.
This improved flexibility with the Pattern Driven Component Pattern command allows users to increase their production without the need to debunk error messages. It makes for a more streamlined, robust process. It just goes to show how smaller enhancements are still incredibly important to improve a software like SOLIDWORKS.