I have been using the SolidWorks group of products for six or seven years now. I was initially exposed to the software while at the University of Calgary and liked it enough to encourage my first employer to switch off ProE. Although I am glad that we switched now, if anyone out there is considering switching CAD software watch out. These days, the time I spend in SolidWorks is usually counting mouse clicks and looking for ways to pick up efficiencies to get a job done quicker, not looking for new features. That is why I am always pleased to find a useful new tool in SolidWorks even though it has probably been there the whole time. The following tutorial is example of a cool feature my partner Shawn Hansen found while trying to make a pitch to a customer on the interior design of a dog house (example here). For the Engineers out there not taking full advantage of your CAD software take this great example as advice to do some reading.

Camera Views In SolidWorks

Adding camera views can give detail on what something will really look like in perspective view and can be useful for helping customers visualize their final product. Camera views are not usually necessary so should be used sparingly.

The picture below shows the view on the left using a camera view tool and the standard CAD view on the right.

To add a camera view in SolidWorks, do the following:

  1. Add a sketch with camera location and direction of line-of sight (could also use the edge of model if it is appropriately located.
    Figure 1: Sketched a line on the top panel of the cabinet (plane indicated with an “x”)
  2. Add camera view. Right-click “Camera” -> “Add Camera”:Select a vertex from the sketch for “Target by selection” and a line for “Position by selection” and set roll appropriately (typically 0).Increase “Field of View” angle to desired angle of view. Hit Okay.To view the camera view, right-click on the new camera view and click “Camera View”. To get out of camera view, right-click and de-select “Lock Camera View”.

 

What a difference adding perspective can make when pitching a design to a customer.

Thanks to Shawn for sharing this great tutorial.