With Flow Simulation 2016 users no longer have to model two separate solid bodies for use with the Two-Resistor Component feature available in the Electronics Cooling module.  To add a Two-Resistor Component model to your Flow Project, simply open the property manager and select the top surface of the one component that represents your chip.  This selected top face will represent the case node and the software will automatically populate the “Components to apply the Two-Resistor” field with the corresponding part file.  The bottom face of the component is still considered the board node and defined automatically.  The top and bottom faces representing the case face and the face touching the board still need to be parallel to one another.

For older projects that have existing Two-Resistor Components already assigned, those instances will be automatically converted to the new style feature.  You will not have to re-apply these instances.  Simply edit your Two-Resistor Component feature created in a previous version in 2016 and you will be given a message to perform the conversion.

Flow Simulation will simply add both the case and junction bodies to the “Components to apply the Two-Resistor” field and choose the case surface.

Another benefit to the change is that you no longer need to enter the dimensions of the chip when creating your custom Two-Resistor Components in the Engineering Database.  The program can automatically determine the width, length, and thickness of the structure.


Please note that multiple bodies can still be selected to represent the chip however their faces must be touching just as in previous versions.  This will allow you to continue using older geometry but will allow you to re-assign with a “new style” Two-Resistor Component feature if necessary.


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When modeling in SOLIDWORKS, its very useful to have Temporary Graphics available to really see what is being added or removed from the model before the task is completed. We have been contacted regarding why Temporary Graphics will not show the correct geometry preview when Draft is enabled in a Boss/Base Extrude, or Cut Extrude.

Below you can see that the Draft Option was selected for the Boss/Base Extrude, but is not previewed.

To make the Draft visible in your Temporary Graphics you will need to adjust your System Options. Tools>Options>System Options>Performance>(check) Use shaded Preview. This will fill in your “wireframe” view of your temporary graphics and show a more accurate representation of the new intended feature.


After these options have been adjusted you will now see the Draft option being applied to the Boss/Base Extrude and Cut Extrude. 

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In SOLIDWORKS Electrical Schematics there are 2 basic ways to add a new manufacture part to the ‘Manufacturer parts manager’ library. First method is to open the ’Manufacturer parts manager’ and click the ‘Add manufacturer part’. The difficulty with using this first method is you need to know the Classification, Number of Circuits, Circuit type and number of terminals per Circuit, in order to make the new manufacture part. This Tech Tip is going to go into the second method which I find easier to create new manufacture parts on the fly and add it to the library for future use.

Follow these simple steps to add a new manufacture part

1) Draw your new wire(s) of your schematic, add a symbol that represents the type of device that will represent the new manufacture part you wish to add. This typically will open the  ’Symbol properties’ window automatically, if it doesn’t, right click over the symbol and select ’Symbol properties’

2) On the ‘Symbols properties’, select the ‘Manufacturer part and circuits’ tab, click the ‘Add manually’, this will open the ‘Manufacturer part properties’

3) On the ‘Properties tab’ fill in ‘Reference’, select the Manufacturer from the pull down menu or type in if new, the class will be set already from the symbol that was used. Add additional information if you so choose.

4) On the ‘Circuits, terminals’ tab there will be one or more circuit(s) already created with the correct circuit type(s) to match the symbol that you picked.

5) If you choose to type in Terminal marks select the circuit on the top half and then type in the Marks below.

 When you click OK, you’ll be prompted to add it to the part to the catalog. If you click yes then the manufacture part that you just created will be available for other schematic users connecting to the same company Electrical server and future schematic projects.


Aside from manually adding new manufacture parts as mentioned here, you can first start out by checking a download of manufacture parts libraries from the ‘SOLIDWORKS Electrical Portal’ to see if it contains the part you need.


If this is your first time to the site register for a new account.


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When employing the skeleton or layout technique of model creation at the part or assembly level, it is helpful to highlight the Layout Sketches so that they stand out. The recommended method to highlight your layout sketches for ease of use is to add color to them.  Using Layout Sketches, a designer can generate multiple ‘complex’ Layout sketches in a part that represent both the size and location of major features of the part.  In an assembly, a layout sketch may be used to size in-context parts and/or represent the location of parts.

Sketch color intro.gif

An unused sketch appears ‘Grey’ by default.  If you have an existing sketch that is hidden you can ‘show’ your sketch by right click on the sketch and selecting the ‘Eye’show sketch.png icon, or it also can be shown from the Display Pane like this:

Show Sketch.gif

It is also important to note that you may need to enable the display of sketches from View>Hide/Show>Sketches.

To highlight your Layout sketches and make them stand out you have a couple of procedures for adjusting the color:

Procedure #1:  You could set Tools>Options>System Options>Colors, setting for Sketch, Inactive, to a contrasting color you can see against the part’s material.

inactive sketch color.png

Procedure #2: To paint different sketches different colors we need the Line Format Toolbar (Tools>Customize, Toolbars tab, check Line Format).  Then to add color to a sketch, select the sketch from the feature tree and use the Line Color button to choose a unique color for the sketch.

line color.gif

Stay tuned for my next tip on how to color your Layout Blocks.

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When modeling in SOLIDWORKS, all designers rack up quite a bit of mileage when using their cursors.  As an example, when accepting or editing a sketch we need to make a stop on the confirmation corner to exit a sketch. Starting in SOLIDWORKS 2016 and using default shortcut settings, you can use the ‘D’ key on your keyboard as a shortcut to hopefully minimize some of your cursor movement and bring some portions of the SOLIDWORKS interface to you.

1.  The first behavior will move the Confirmation Corner to the location of your mouse pointer.  When editing a sketch or editing a feature, you can now press the ‘D’ key and the two options normally available on the Confirmation Corner will show up next you your mouse pointer location.

2.  The second behavior will move Selection Breadcrumbs to the mouse pointer location.  Selection Breadcrumbs is also a new feature in 2016 and it is a context based menu that depending on the selected entity will display features, sketches and other elements.  This will allow you to quickly edit and modify your model through the top level of your assembly or your part model.  When selecting an entity, this will trigger the display of the Selection Breadcrumbs menu, selecting the ‘D’ shortcut key will move the Breadcrumbs menu directly to the position of the mouse cursor.

Minimizing mouse cursor movement will help delay, wrist fatigue with long stints of modeling and help streamline your design techniques using SOLIDWORKS overall.



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