About the SOLIDWORKS Essentials training course

SOLIDWORKS expert, Mark Alexander, talks about his design experience, how he moved from Autodesk to SOLIDWORKS, and what you can expect when you take the official SOLIDWORKS Essentials training course at Innova Systems…

Hi, I’m Mark and I’ve been at Innova Systems for just over two years. Innova Systems are an official UK Reseller for SOLIDWORKS, fully authorised to provide genuine SOLIDWORKS training courses. Since forming in 2002, we’ve trained well over a thousand people in all kinds of industries. There are a lot of courses on offer, but the first step on the ladder to SOLIDWORKS mastery is the SOLIDWORKS Essentials course; a five day, two part course held in our Cambridge, Enfield and Nottingham training centres.

SolidWorks Training Innova Systems Cambridge
SOLIDWORKS training at our head office in Cambridge

My passion is sharing my engineering knowledge with people from all walks of life and ability levels, training them to use SOLIDWORKS 3D Design Software. I also work in the Innova Systems technical support team, helping our customers get the most out of the software.

I have hands on experience in several different industries, learning to design in the “traditional” way twenty-odd years ago, rolling my sleeves up and getting stuck in at the drawing board. As time went on and technology improved, I transferred my skills over to AutoCAD 2D.

It became apparent that things were going to change for me yet again when my boss started asking me to design in 3D using SOLIDWORKS. “It’s what everyone else is using”, he said. I was working for an agricultural company at the time, designing huge grain storage silos. If I’m honest, I was hoping that they would change their mind and stick with Autodesk, as that was what I was used to, but they went with SOLIDWORKS.

Daunted and overwhelmed, I embarked on the five day SOLIDWORKS Essentials course, gradually getting my head around the SOLIDWORKS way of doing things (I had to relearn what I learned in AutoCAD) and, once it clicked,  I realised that I’d been doing everything wrong all along! SOLIDWORKS just “makes sense”.

I’ve been using SOLIDWORKS for over 6 years now and have also completed many other courses, such as Weldments, Sheet Metal, Advanced Part Modelling and Assembly Modelling. Over the years, I’ve designed all kinds of stuff from hip implants, particle accelerators, windows, bridges and even lab equipment, encompassing each of the different SOLIDWORKS disciplines along the way.

SOLIDWORKS Essentials Training Idler Arm 3D Print Model
You’ll be designing parts like this Idler Arm in no time!

The SOLIDWORKS Essentials course:

We’ve had all sorts of people on this course from complete beginners, to self-taught designers – perhaps wanting to learn the “right” way to do things – and people with years of experience wanting brush up on their skills. I’ve even trained one customer that had never used Windows, or two button mouse, so this course really is for everyone and anyone with the desire to learn. Design experience is not required!

We know one-on-one time is essential in a classroom setting, so we limit attendance to a maximum of six to eight people on our courses. This means you’ll always get the help you need from your instructor.

All the fundamental features of SOLIDWORKS are covered during the SOLIDWORKS Essentials course, including: 2D sketching, part-modelling, assembly modelling (including bottom-up design and dynamic motion), detailed drawing creation for parts and assemblies and associative design changes.

Part one of the training covers the basic methodology of SOLIDWORKS and we start at the very beginning, showing you how to start a new document. We really try to make sure that everyone gets a good understanding of how a real, finished part is designed and constructed, so we look at various 3D printed objects (applicable to several industries) and break them down into individual shapes in a SOLIDWORKS assembly.

In part two, we’ll show you how to take your designs and understand the methodology to take this to a finished model, or manufacturing drawing, ready for the production line.

Before you attend the course:

SolidWorks Certification Innova Systems
SOLIDWORKS certification presentation

Although not essential, if you already have SOLIDWORKS installed, or are using a trial version, we recommend that you load up SOLIDWORKS and take as many of the built in tutorials as you can (the first 3 in particular are very useful). For those of you with an Autodesk background, there’s a great tutorial that will help make the transition to SOLIDWORKS a little smoother (I can assist with that too, of course).  As with anything in life, the more you put in, the more you’ll take out.

When you complete the course:

You’ll be presented with an official SOLIDWORKS certificate of completion from your instructor and you’ll be ready to return to work, able to create basic models based on standard geometric shapes. You’ll take home the full course workbook too, which is very useful to refer back to and I guarantee you’ll be creating even more complicated designs over the coming weeks.

Of course, there are loads more courses that you can take to further your SOLIDWORKS skills. like our Weldments, Sheet Metal and Advanced Part Modelling courses, for example. We do find a lot of customers returning to us for this reason and I love watching every one of them progress with the software.

Hopefully you’ll be next…

Interested in finding out more about our SOLIDWORKS Essentials training course?
Call us now on (01223) 200690 or complete the form below to speak to an expert