How to add Watermark to SolidWorks Drawing (with linked value)

How to add a Watermark to SolidWorks Drawings
By Matthew Lorono
For whatever reason, watermarks are sometimes necessary, even on drawings. Since SolidWorks has no watermark feature, and does not allow the user to change the order of certain drawing entities, a workaround is necessary. Here the most effective and powerful method useful for Drawing Templates and Sheet Formats.
1. Open the drawing.

2. Create a drawing layer by choosing the layer icon.

Layer Toolbar

3. Change the layer name and description to something identifiable.Then click on the color block in the Color column and choose a very light color.Select OK.

Layer Window

4. Goto pulldown menu File and select Properties.
5. Add the property Watermark.As a place holder, give this property the value of “PRELIMINARY” or something similar.

6. Edit Sheet Format.

7. Use Annotation Note to create and place the entity that will become the watermark.

8. Edit the properties of that Note to adjust its font, angle, size, etc as desired.Then, link the Note to the custom property Watermark, as shown in the figure.Select OK.

Annotation Note Properties Window

8. Change the layer of the Note to the newly created layer.

**UPDATE: New functionality in SolidWorks 2013 makes steps 9 and 9.5 no longer necessary, please see this article for details: Sometimes it’s the little new things – Watermarking **
9. Right Mouse Button click on the Note and select Make Block and accept.

9.5. Due to some funky behavior that I’ve discovered by SolidWorks when loading a watermarked template into an existing drawing, I’m adding this one step: Once you make the block, change the layer of the block to the same layer you set for your Note.
10. Save the Sheet Format (under pulldown menu File and select Save Sheet Format).

11. Edit Sheet.The Note will now appear underneath all other objects on the Drawing Sheet.

12. Save this document as a Drawing Template (under pulldown menu File and select “Save As”, then change Save as type to “Drawing Templates”).
This creates both the Drawing Template and Sheet Format with an embedded watermark.To change the text of the watermark in any drawings that use the Drawing Template, simply go back to Files>Properties, and edit its text value.To remove the watermark, simply replace the current value with a space.These instructions are geared towards SolidWorks 2007 or earlier. SolidWorks 2008 or later instructions will be similar, though how to access some of the functions may have changed.

Author: fcsuper

As a drafter, mechanical designer and CAD engineer, I've been in the mechanical design field since 1991. For the first 8 years of my career, I was an AutoCAD professional. I utilized AutoLISP and many other AutoCAD customization features to streamline drafting activities for 6+ drafters and designers. I authored several custom functions, one of which was published in the March 1997 issue of Cadalyst Magazine. Since 1998, I've been used SolidWorks non-stop. I've worked to utilize the SolidWorks' user environment to simplify drafting and design activities for 20+ engineers. I've created this website to provide current information about SolidWorks from a variety of contributors. More recently, I am now employed by Dassault Systemes as SOLIDWORKS Sr. Product Definition Manager to improve drawing, annotation and MBD related areas.

11 thoughts on “How to add Watermark to SolidWorks Drawing (with linked value)”

  1. Thank you for this! It has helped me to do what I have been trying to achieve. Just a question: will the same apply for a pictured logo? Cause I’m having a real problem adding it into my drawings. Even the option ‘send to back’ doesn’t send it to the back of my drawings, only text.

  2. For some reason, images are placed at the forefront of everything on a SolidWorks drawing. I’ve always thought this was weird. It has annoyed me on more than one occasion.

    However, if you are using SolidWorks 2008, there may be a solution for you. As long as you do not wish to move it around all the time, you can edit your Drawing Sheet paper image itself to include your graphic watermark.

  3. This is really tricky…….

    I want the full path of the current drawing at any corener of the drawing sheet….

    is it possible to get the file path as watermark whenever i start a new drawing.?

  4. I’m not sure at this moment. You may need to create a macro that finds the full path and then inserts it into the cust property value.

  5. I am converting over from AIV, and am finally seeing the benefits. Seeing this watermark simply being lined to a custom property is giving me hope. Now, can someone point me to an example of creating a pulldown field for the same type of linked property for the watermark? …and can I simply call on another property in one of those properties?

  6. Mark,

    There are simple macros that you can use for this, and also, I believe SW 2009 and new functionality built in that can allow you to do this in the custom properties manager

  7. The watermark (on the sheet format) still shows up in front of the lines and edges of the parts. How do you force it behind everything? Is it an option with the layers as to which layer will show up on top of another layer?

  8. The trick to making sure that your dimensions and drawing views are visible in front of the watermark is the step where you make you text a Block using the Make Block command. That will for some reason do the equivalent of “Send to Back” in most layered programs.

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