Dassault Systèmes has released SOLIDWORKS 2024, the latest incarnation of its 3D design and engineering software (and this writer’s go-to CAD platform). The new version focuses on improving efficiency and collaboration in product development.
Let’s take a look at some new features.
SOLIDWORKS 2024 introduces the Collinear Dimension Command, addressing the clutter of dimension text and arrowheads in design processes. This feature ensures that chain dimensions remain collinear, optimizing the design workspace.
Sheet metal fans will be pleased to know that SOLIDWORKS 2024 enhances sheet metal design with the Rip and Stamp tools. The Rip Tool efficiently creates rips in cylindrical and conical bodies without needing extra features or sketches. The Stamp Tool (pictured above) enables sketch-based, parametric forming tools, streamlining the process and offering control over depth and internal radius.
For the protection of IP, SOLIDWORKS 2024 introduces Defeature Rule Sets in assemblies, allowing users to selectively protect intellectual property while sharing data. These customizable rules enable targeted defeaturing of assembly components based on specific IP requirements, ensuring control over which parts are shared and at what level of detail, catering to diverse protection needs.
Additionally, the software now integrates with Dassault Systèmes’ 3DEXPERIENCE platform through Cloud Services. This integration enhances data management and collaboration, offering access to simulation, manufacturing, and lifecycle management solutions.
Older Version Compatibility
A huge gripe with SOLIDWORKS has always been the inability for users of older versions to open SLDPRT or assembly files with older versions. Typically, if a user with an older version wanted to access a CAD file created with a newer version, they would have to make do with a STEP file.
This has now been addressed (somewhat) because SOLIDWORKS 2024 introduces backward compatibility, allowing files to be saved in SOLIDWORKS 2022 and 2023 formats. The latest release includes options to save assemblies and drawings as older versions, facilitating teamwork with users on previous versions. However, certain limitations exist, and some new features may not function in saved older version files.
Other enhancements in SOLIDWORKS 2024 include improvements in large assembly design, parts, drawings, sheet metal, structural systems, and electrical routing. These updates facilitate interdisciplinary work and effective communication of design intent, streamlining the overall design process.
SOLIDWORKS Projects Coming Soon…
On a related note, I have been working on some awesome 3D printing projects with SOLIDWORKS over the past 12 months, thanks to the free version provided to startups under the SOLIDWORKS for Startups program. We will be sharing some content about those projects in the not-too-distant future, so be sure to check back for more information on those.
And if you would like to know more about SOLIDWORKS 2024, then you can head on over to the SOLIDWORKS website, and contact them for information on local resellers.
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