Creating a Basic Rotation Animation in Visualize

Jonathan Lin

Solidworks Visualize has a lot of tools at your disposal for creating animations. This guide will cover how to create a rotation animation in your project to simulate spinning wheels or other bodies that may be rotating or orbiting a center of rotation. In this guide, we’ll be creating an animation of one of the tires in the sample project: “1969 Camaro”.


A rotation animation is actually very simple to create. There are two ways of creating a rotation animation:

1. Right clicking on the group or part in the 3D Viewport -> Animation -> Add Rotation Animation




2. Right clicking on the group or part in the Model Tree -> Animation -> Add Rotation Animation





From there, you’ll see a new animation appear in your animation timeline at the bottom of your screen:




Congratulations! You’ve made your very own rotation animation.




Let’s look at some of the different options that we can use to edit our animation. To bring up the animation properties, simply double click or right click on the animation click on “Edit Animation”.






Direction and Rotation Speed

If we look above at the original animation, we can actually see that the wheel seems to be spinning backwards. To change its direction, we simply add a negative sign to the beginning of the “Total Rotation” parameter.




We can increase the speed of our rotation by either increasing our “Total Rotation” (found in the Animation Properties) or by setting the animation loop type to “loop” and decreasing the length of the animation ribbon in your timeline.




Axis of Rotation

The Axis of Rotation will set the axis that the model, part, or group will rotate around. You can switch between the 3 cardinal axes at will by simply selecting the drop down menu and changing the axis.

You can see an example of this down below (pay attention to the different axis of rotation selected in the bottom right).




Ease in and Ease out

Easing in and easing out simply adds an “acceleration” to your rotation animation. Setting a higher “ease in” and “ease out” value, we can make our (in this example) wheel speed up to full rotational velocity and slow back down to being stationary.




Center of Rotation

The Center of Rotation parameter allows you to set a center for your rotation animation. You can the set the XYZ coordinates of that center in the three text boxes. We can see the effects of changing those coordinates down below:




If you're still having difficulty creating rotation animations, feel free to call Hawk Ridge Systems Technical Support at 877.266.4469 (US) or 866.587.6803 (Canada) or submit an email to 

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