Sometimes it’s the little things or Freedom to zoom around (New in SolidWorks 2013)

This entry is part 5 of 12 in the series New in SolidWorks 2013

SolidWorks had an interesting and small limitation  for a long time.  If you were editing an annotation note in the graphics area of your drawing (by double-clicking on it), you couldn’t use the mouse wheel to zoom in and out around the document.  Sure, you had access to increase and decrease zoom level using other means, but that would be focused on the center of the screen in both directions.  As such, linking your note to other annotations on other areas of your drawing usually involved planning one step ahead.

Starting with SolidWorks 2013, the mouse wheel now zooms in and out while you are editing an annotation note in drawings.  For example, if you are creating your general drawing notes and wish to add a link to a dimension in a drawing view at the other end of the drawing sheet, you can now simply zoom out with the mouse wheel, move the mouse cursor to the dimension and click it, then use the mouse and wheel to zoom back to focus the screen around the general notes while you are still typing.

Another use may be if your annotation note is not yet set to wordwrap and text is extending off the screen.  You can now quickly zoom out to see all of the text and set the note’s bounding box so that it wordwraps, then zoom back in to continue your edits.

This is going to be one of those little things that you won’t even notice when you use it.  You’ll prolly won’t think twice about it, acting as though this was the way it has always worked.

Standard Views without Zoom-to-fit

When using Standard Views in SolidWorks, the resulting view of the model is normally Zoom to fit.  This is regardless to the zoom level of the current view.  So, if I’m zoomed in to look at a specific feature a very long part, when I change from Front View to Rear View, the model will be resized to fit to screen.  This might be unexpected in some cases, as it requires extra steps to return to the area where I was working on the model.

With newer versions of SolidWorks, there is an alternative.  A toggle setting is available under Tools>Options…>System Options>View.  Unselect the Zoom to fit when changing to standard views option.

The only draw back is that this toggle is buried deep within the Options window.  This makes the task of dynamically using this functionality difficult.  Otherwise, this is a great function.

Click to see larger view

Zoom to fit when changing to standard views