Chapter 8. Patterning and Mirroring


  • Patterning in a sketch

  • Mirroring in a sketch

  • Geometry pattern

  • Patterning bodies

  • Patterning faces

  • Patterning fillets

  • Understanding pattern types

  • Mirroring in 3D

  • Tutorial: Creating a circular pattern

  • Tutorial: Mirroring features

Patterning and mirroring in SolidWorks are great tools to help you improve your efficiency. The software provides many pattern types that also help you accomplish design tasks easily. In addition to the different types of patterns, there are many more detailed options that enable functionality that you may not have considered. A solid understanding of patterning and mirroring tools is necessary to be able to build the maximum amount of parametric intelligence into your models.

Patterning in a Sketch

You can use both pattern and mirror functions in Sketch mode, although sketch patterns are not a preferred choice. The distinction between patterning and mirroring in Sketch mode is important when it comes to sketch performance.


Although there are many metrics for how software performs, in SolidWorks, the word performance means the same thing as speed. Sketch patterns have a very adverse effect on speed.

A little test

You can hear a lot of conflicting information about which features are better to use in different situations. Users coming from a 2D background often prefer to use functions such as sketch patterning because it looks familiar, without questioning whether there is a better way. When in doubt, you can perform ...

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