There are many shortcuts and options in SOLIDWORKS that help users mate components together to create assemblies quickly and easily. This blog describes one such example – Multiple Mate Mode. This gives us the ability to mate multiple components to a common reference in a single operation, which saves a lot of time.
In this carburetor assembly, the needle, holder, O-ring, washers, and gas inlet all need to be mated together. Additionally, the main component they will all be mated to is the carburetor body. This will require numerous concentric mates and coincident mates between each of the components and the body, adding to the number of mates listed in the feature tree.
Instead of creating each of these concentric mates individually, we’ll leverage Multiple Mate Mode. When you’re in the Mate property manager, you’ll find the Multiple Mate Mode button to the left of the Mate Selections box. When this is toggled on there will be two selection boxes – one to define the Common Reference (blue box) and the second to define the entities that you want to mate to the reference (purple box). In this example everything was mated together with a concentric mate; using the inner cylindrical face of the carburetor body as the common reference (highlighted in blue), and selected the faces of the other components accordingly (highlighted in purple). Make sure you don’t click the green checkmark before you are finished adding all of the entities you wish to mate. Doing so will end the multi-mate.
In addition, we’ll check the box to Create multi-mate folder. Doing so will group the concentric mates we just created into a nested Multi-Mate folder in the list of mates. This is a great option to have checked on as it cleans up the mate folder in the Feature Manager Design Tree, and makes it easier to make any modifications to the mate parameters.
Any of these mates can be removed from the folder by right-clicking on the individual mate and selecting Remove from multi mate, whereas right-clicking the Multi Mate folder and selecting Dissolve Multi-Mate would remove all mates from the multi-mate folder. In contrast, mates that share the same common reference can also be placed in the folder by dragging and dropping the mate in the Feature Tree. One thing to note is that Multiple Made Mode is limited to Standard Mate types only. You can find a video demonstration of this utility, along with other useful tips, on our YouTube channel! Thank you for reading!