Troubleshooting Sheet Metal Flat Patterns in Drawings

By Dave Stenberg on

Have you ever experienced your sheet metal flat pattern not appear in SOLIDWORKS Drawings? In this Video Tech Tip we talk about how to troubleshoot the problem and the most common solution.

Let’s say you have a sheet metal drawing that appears to be normal with no sheet build errors or trouble flattening in the part environment (similar to the one in our video). Yet somehow, this “error free” part is not appearing how it should in the SOLIDWORKS Drawing View Palette. Back to the drawing board, or in this case the part environment, to troubleshoot the problem. 

The recommended way to enter the Flat Pattern view is by the Flatten command on the Sheet Metal tab on the Command Manager. From here, navigate to the Configurations tab and check the derived configuration, Default SM Flat Pattern. This is added automatically when you create a drawing of a sheet metal part and can help identify the problem. If this is active, that flatten button should show as depressed. If it is not, this could be the error.

After successfully flattening the part, the next step is re-testing the results in your drawing. If all of the steps were followed, the flat pattern should now appear correctly in the View Palette.

For more tips and tricks on best sheet metal approaches in SOLIDWORKS, watch our on-demand webinar.