February 17

How to Make a SOLIDWORKS Drawing Template: Everything to Know

How to Make a SOLIDWORKS Drawing Template: Everything to Know

Adnan Gohar

Table of Contents (click to navigate)

What is a SOLIDWORKS Drawing Template?

Templates are part, drawing, and assembly documents that include user-defined parameters and are the basis for new documents. You can maintain many different document templates. For example, you can create: A document template using millimeters and another template using inches. SolidWorks drawing template is purchased along with the package from the basic SolidWorks License. [1]

Introduction to SOLIDWORKS Drawing Template

SolidWorks is one of the most popular CAD packages in industry use today. The drawing template has the file extension .drwdot. Drawing templates contain all the document specific information that is found in the Tools > Options > Document Properties dialog. This includes specifications for units, drafting standard, font selections, arrow sizes, pre-defined views, etc. Some drawing templates may be saved with a sheet format already selected, or they can also be saved as a blank sheet with no sheet format visible.

When creating drawing templates, you can include a number of settings and options to help customize your template to meet your exact requirements. One way to customize your drawing template is to add specific SOLIDWORKS predefined views as required. You are a designer, an engineer, technical support, or maintenance staff. You usually use Drawings to mill in manufacturing, or explain your innovation to your manager, or show your product to a customer, or store them as documentation. However, you always have to do the same initial steps when you create a new drawing. You set your paper size, units, view settings, many times. Sometimes, you spend 20 minutes for a Drawing, but the time for these settings is 15 minutes. It’s a big waste of time. [2]

In SolidWorks, Drawing Templates is your solution.

Here’s how it works:

  1. Create a new drawing and choose a sheet size.
  2. Edit the Sheet Format, change View settings, set Document Properties, make Predefined Views, and create Layers.
  3. Save this Drawing as Drawing Templates format (*.drwdot).

A suggestion for you is you should to create many Drawing Templates corresponding with sheet size. Besides, the Drawing Templates names should include the size. For example, you usually make Drawings with A4 and A3 size. Therefore, you should to make 2 custom Drawing Templates with name “A4-SizeDrawing.drwdot” and “A3-SizeDrawing.drwdot”.

Drawing Template Tutorial: How to Make a Custom Drawing Template

By default, a template for each file type; part, assembly and drawing, will be included within the installation. Select Drawing Template.

Drawing Templates corresponding with sheet size. Besides, the Drawing Templates names should include the size. Select appropriate size according to requirement. Here we selected B ANSI) Landscape which is 279.40mm wide and has height 215.90. [3]

To edit Sheet Format, you need to right-click on the graphic area and click on “Edit Sheet Format”. When editing the Sheet format, you can change the style of sheet (by modify the line, the color, the text,), add your company logo and company name, insert the sign etc.

Now that the border is finished, some sections for information need to be added to help keep the template organized. To add in sections, they simply need to be sketched in. Go over to the sketch tab and select the line or rectangle command. Create some boxes and proportion them to the size and shape that is desired for the custom template. An example of the sections made for this blog is shown.


After the sections have been added in they need to be labeled. This can be done by placing annotations notes in each box. The Note command can be found under the annotation tab on the toolbar near the top of the screen. A note is placed in each box of the title block.

This is done to give an input location for information about the drawing. Note size and shape can be adjusted by double-clicking on the note itself. An example of the layout for notes in a drawing template is shown.


Notice that there is still a large empty space inside title block area. Typically, in this space or one like it, a decal belonging to either the person or the company is placed to show ownership of the template. These pictures also help make the template look more aesthetically pleasing. For this blog example, the Perception Engineering logo will be added. To add a picture to the template the edit sheet format command must still be activated. If it is not, click on the command again. Go to tool on the toolbar at the very top of the screen and drop down the menu. Find the sketch tools menu and hit that drop-down menu as well. Under the sketch tools menu, there will be a sketch picture command. After clicking this command simply select the desired picture from its file locations and it will be placed onto the template. The picture can then be sized and edited in its property manager on the left-hand side. An example of this is shown.

To modify Document Properties, you need to go to Tools> Options> Document Properties. In Document Properties, you can change the settings for Dimensions, Detailing, Drawing Sheet, Units, and Line Font, “Document Properties” is different with “System Options”. If you change the settings in System Options, this mean the change will apply for all Parts, Assemblies and Drawings. However, if you change the settings in System Options of a Drawing, this mean the change only apply for this Drawing. When you create a new Drawing, you have to set the settings in Document Properties again. Luckily, with this problem can be fixed. What you need to do is making your own custom Drawing Templates, and when you create new Drawing from these Templates, you don’t need to set the settings on Document Properties again.[4]

Predefined Views is a helpful tool for you to save your time. For example, first, you go to Insert> Drawing View> Predefined to make a Predefined View (Front View). Then, you go to Insert> Drawing View> Projected View to make 3 Projected Views (Top, Right, Isometric) from the Predefined View. Then you save the Drawing template. After that, each time you create a new Drawing from this template, you just need right-click to the Predefined View and select Insert Model. And then, you will have 4 Views from the model you inserted.[5]

Layers have been available for many years in SolidWorks. To create a new Layer, you should click on Layer Properties (Layer or Line Format toolbar), then in the dialog box, click New and enter the Name of a new Layer. Then can assign many visual aspects as visibility, line color, line thickness and line style.

Now that the new drawing template is complete, it must be saved! To save this as a template to be used all that is needed is to save the file as a drawing template (*.drwdot) file. After it has been saved as a drawing, the file locations need to be edited to pull the template. Click on the gear at the top of the screen and select file locations in the menu on the left side of the pop-up menu. Under the “show folder for” drop-down menu, select Document Templates. All that is left to do is select the folder that the drawing template was saved in and it can now be pulled to use as a template anytime.

How to Make a Drawing File in Drawing Template

Now, we will talk about the how to insert the 3D Design in Drawing Template and how we will get Standard 3D view. To Insert the 3D designed model you need to go View Layout>> Model View >> Browse. And insert the desired component.

When part is inserted, you have multiple options to adjust your model in terms of size, view and color scheme too.

Here we can adjust the Standard View (Isometric, Front, Back, Right Side, left Side, and Diametric, trimetric) Display Options(Shaded, Shaded with edges, Hidden Lines Visible, Hidden Lines Removed and wireframe) and Size ratio (1:1, 1:2, 1:3, 2:1, 2:2,3:1 etc.)

To dimension and view the standard three views (Front, Top and Side View) you need to follow (View layout>> Standard 3 Views and press the Enter key in Screen. Then we can dimension the different sections of Component/ Model views. To dimension you need to follow (Evaluate>> Smart Dimensions).

Some features or areas of Model are small and discrete. To make them we need to dimension them separately. TO do this you need to follow (View Layout>> Detail View) and make a circle about the area where you want to get details.

In the last you need to save the Dimensional Drawing views. To do this we have different options I.e. different formats in which we can save our file for example in Image Format (JPEG), PDF format, DWG format etc.



[1] http://help.solidworks.com/2018/english/solidworks/sldworks/c_document_templates.htm

[2] https://www.innova-systems.co.uk/how-to-create-customised-solidworks-template/

[3] https://seacadtech.com/create-drawing-templates-solidworks/

[4] https://www.javelin-tech.com › Home › SOLIDWORKS Tech Tip

[5] help.solidworks.com/2017/english/solidworks/sldworks/t_creating_a_template.htm

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About the Author

Adnan Gohar is a Chemical Engineering Graduate Student and Research Fellow at NWFP UET Peshawar. His specialty is Reaction Engineering with numerous others. He is a strong writer and researcher.

Adnan Gohar

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