Creating coincident reference planes in SOLIDWORKS

By Lynette Proch on

In today’s video, I want to talk about creating coincident reference planes in SOLIDWORKS. We’ll create a reference plane, and I’ll go over how it works. So, what do we need to do to be able to get these reference planes inserted? The reference plane feature is located in the Features tab > Reference Geometry > Plane. We can also search for Plane using our search command or using the “S” key if you’re in a newer version of SOLIDWORKS. In this example, I will select Plane and look at what information SOLIDWORKS requires.

The plane feature needs references. SOLIDWORKS is going to insert a plane depending on what types of references we give it. Now, these references can be a lot of different things. They can be points, an edge, a whole face, it can be a cylindrical face. It could also be things on a sketch, right? So, I can insert a 2D sketch and draw a line and that could be my reference point.

SOLIDWORKS reference planes
Creating references in SOLIDWORKS

The Reference Plane command is great because you can have it insert a plane wherever you need it to. The tricky part about it is understanding what type of plane that you need. For example, if I know I want a coincident plane, I need to know what kind of references to give SOLIDWORKS.

Now, it doesn’t only do coincidence planes, of course, we have a lot of different other types of planes, but in this video, we’re just talking about coincident. Creating a coincident plane can be done two different ways. We can give SOLIDWORKS three different points to use for references, and it’ll insert a plane at each of those intersecting points.

The other method is to grab an edge and a point. In other words, we can do three references or two. Let’s first look at how we can accomplish this with three points. If we select the point you see in the image below, we can see as soon as I start grabbing references, it’s going to start making some assumptions of what I want. I will then select the second point and the third point. We can now see three different vertices. SOLIDWORKS is going to go in and it’s going to connect a plane between all three different points that I just selected. After clicking “ok”, I have a reference plane.

coincident points in SOLIDWORKS
Selecting three points

Now, let’s look at the second way. First, I will navigate to Reference Geometry tab in the Features ribbon, Next, for this one, I need a point and an edge. Instead of requiring all three reference points, you don’t always need three. You can use two if you want and SOLIDWORKS will have enough information to create a plane.

So just like that, we’re able to create reference planes using Coincident References and add those planes where they need to be so we can create sketches, or whatever we need to do with these planes.