Using Instant 3D in SolidWorks 2014

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When the developers at Dassault Systemes came up with the name of the Instant 3D function, they weren’t exaggerating. This simple interface lets you dynamically edit any drawing or part, just as you would in a 3D design suite such as Maya or Cinema 4D. We’re sharing a quick lesson from Chapter 6 from our SolidWorks 2014 training course by Dean Kerste to help you get started.

Instant 3D is not the right tool for every job. While you gain flexibility, you lose some precision, and when you are working within specific dimension requirements, such freedom can be problematic. But if you are in the early stages of design and wanting to manipulate a model in real time without restrictions, Instant 3D is at your disposal.

For the project file used in the example below, CLICK HERE.

To turn on Instant 3D mode, simply find the toolbar icon in the top right of your SolidWorks Features tab, as shown below.

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Now that Instant 3D has been activated, you can select any feature of your part for modification. Simply highlight and click. You are now given onscreen dimensions with interactive points called handles. You are also given color-coded X, Y, and Z dimension arrows. Clicking on an arrow lets you instantly manipulate the dimensions of your feature in that direction. Holding down the left mouse button brings up an online scale that lets you increment your adjustments to .1 or .05 units, as shown below.

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For more, watch the whole video below. Instant 3D is one of the more creative features of SolidWorks 2014, which has a whole host of features for design, prototyping , and analysis. If you’re new to the software, be sure to see all of the lessons in our full 7-hour SolidWorks tutorial series for beginners.

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