Various SolidWorks Discussion Forums (Part 2)

To continue with Part 1 of this article, here are more SolidWorks related forums.

Solidmentor Solid Forum– This site is well organized and contains many resources, including forums dedicated to SolidWorks discussions.  It lists posts by topic in the Solid Forum area.  Membership (free) is required to participate.  Activity is low, with new posts appearing on a weekly to monthly basis; though when new messages appear, replies appear in rapid spurts thereafter.  The forums on Solidmentor have an unfinished feel to them.  I think this is why activity is still very low despite the popularity of the general website.  At this time, I do not recommend the Solid Forum, though I do recommend the overall Solidmentor website.

SolidWorks Forums– This is the home site for the forums managed by SolidWorks Corp.  Forums exist for practically every nuance one could imagine within a SolidWorks discussion, such as Assemblies, BOM, Design Tables, Surfacing, Routing, Toolbox, COSMOSWorks, and User Groups (just to name some).   Within each forum, messages are ordered by most recent activity.  Personally, I’m not fond of the fact that so many categories for forums exist on the site.  Membership is required to view and participate in discussions.   Membership is technically free.  SolidWorks Corp frequently watches the forums for their own purposes.  Some people don’t seem to like this fact.  There are a lot of knowledgeable participants, several of which are SolidWorks Corp employees.  This means that most inquiries are addressed quickly.    This is by far the largest SolidWorks forum site, with tens of thousands of members.   Participation is heavy.  However, participation does not seem to include most members.   One point of caution, be sure to use the non-Java interface.   The site is well moderated.  I recommend this site, in part because of the activity level, and in part simply because it is the main site for SolidWorks discussions, and it is run by SolidWorks Corp itself.

SolidWorks Yahoo! Group– This is main SolidWorks based forum on Yahoo! Groups.  It is dedicated to SolidWorks.  Topics can be listed either in order of recent activity, or by topic.  Membership (free) is required to participate in the forum.  This group provides a significant number of other resources, such as download, weblinks, and polls.  Activity occurs on an hourly to daily basis.  I personally co-moderate this group.  I recommend this group for the activity level and additional resources; oh and yes, also because I help run it.  🙂

SolidWorks-APl Google Group– This is a Google group that is specifically for discussions regarding SolidWorks API.  It lists posts by most recent topic.  Membership (free) is required to participate in discussions.  This group is a good place to ask API related questions.  It is for more advanced users.  The group has seen more activity in the past than it does now.   However, if someone does post a question, it is often answered by others fairly quickly.  It appears to be loosely moderated.  Activity is weekly to monthly.  I do not recommend this group because of its low activity.

SWcad– This is another Google group.  It is dedicated to SolidWorks related discussions.  It lists posts by most recent topic.  Membership (free) is required to view and participate in discussions.   Activity is on a daily to weekly basis.  It is tightly moderated.  New users are placed on probation.   I do not recommend this group due to low activity levels. 

Please comment if you know of any other groups.  Feel free to check out all the groups I listed, even if I do not recommend them.   Some that do not suit me may work well for others.  However, I personally visit and participate on all of these sites.  Also, feel free to comment on my opinions here.

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.

5 thoughts on “Various SolidWorks Discussion Forums (Part 2)”

  1. Why would you not recommend the forums on SolidMentor? Unfinished feel or not, the people who frequent the site, and respond to the posts, are extremely knowledgeable about SolidWorks. Ben Eadie, Matt Lombard, Josh Mings, CorBlimeyLimey (of eng-tips “fame”), etc all participate, along with many others. I think you’re doing a disservice to SolidWorks users, and SolidMentor, with your comments, fscuper.

  2. Jeff, I disagree with the importance being placed on SolidMentor’s forums. I figured I would take some heat for the non-recommendation. However, I feel it is an honest assessment.

    The main forums do have prominent and knowledgeable individuals. The SolidWorks forum itself kicks butt on the other forums by a long shoot in terms of size, activity and knowledge base.

    SolidMentor’s forum just doesn’t see all that much activity. Until it does, I cannot responsibly recommend it.

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