SOLIDWORKS ‘S’ Key Shortcut toolbar tutorial

The ‘S’ Key shortcut is one of the main commands in SOLIDWORKS. Using it brings up a fully customisable menu next to your cursor, making your workflow more efficient and streamlined.

One of the main shortcuts used in SOLIDWORKS is the shortcut toolbar, which is activated using the ‘S’ key. This brings up the fully customisable menu of commands next to the cursor, making your workflow more streamlined and efficient. Much like the mouse gesture menu, the S key menu is contextual, meaning the commands which populate it are dependent on the current command or file type which is open.

If you want to learn more about the mouse gestures and how to customise them, please read our SOLIDWORKS mouse gestures guide.

Customising the ‘S’ Key shortcut in SOLIDWORKS

To personalise the ‘S’ Key shortcut toolbar either go to Tools>Customise or right click anywhere in the command manager and select ‘Customise’. You can also bring up the shortcut menu by pressing ‘S’, then right click on the menu and select ‘Customise’. This creates a new dialog box which acts as a hub where all menu customisations are made. Select the ‘Shortcut Bars’ tab.

Within the Shortcut Bar tab, you will see a large selection of icons, each representing individual commands or additional Flyout menus. These can be filtered using the dropdown menu above the buttons interface.


Flyout Toolbars S Key
Flyout Toolbars customisation in SOLIDWORKS


These can then be dragged to the corresponding box to the right of which we have four to choose from. Part, assembly, drawing and sketch.


Part Box


Assembly Box Toolbar


Drawing Box Toolbar


Sketch Box Toolbar


You can see from the images above that each menu has different command set. You are not restricted to different commands in each menu. For example, the part and sketch shortcuts both have a boss/base extrude command, allowing the user to start an extrude when in the context of a sketch or not.

TIP: Take some time to identify which commands you use most frequently to get the most benefit out of using these shortcut toolbars.

Each tool bar comes populated with a set of commands by default, but these can be changed to suit you. To do this, simply drag the icon from the left table over to the toolbar on the right.


Shortcut Toolbar



Customising the Flyout Toolbar

SOLIDWORKS doesn’t restrict you to adding single tools to the shortcut menu. You can also add Flyout toolbar, which themselves can also be customised! To add the flyout toolbar, repeat the same process as before but drag across a button from the Flyout toolbars section in the Shortcut Bars tab.

The easiest way to customise these Flyout toolbars is to first activate them. This can be done by right clicking the command manager, going to ‘Toolbars’ and selecting the one you want to customise. In this example, we’re customising the ‘Surfaces’ Flyout.


Customising Tool Bar


Once activated, we can now add the buttons we want to the toolbar. Simply search for the command in the search bar and drag it in. This can be seen in the animation below.


Flyout GIF for S Key


Next time you open up the Shortcut toolbar and select the Flyout for Surfaces, you’ll be able to use whatever commands are most useful to you!

NOTE: If a command cannot be used in the current context, for example, ‘Move Face’ when there’s no face to move, it will not appear in the Flyout.

That’s how to use the S Key to launch the Shortcut Toolbar in SOLIDWORKS!

As you can see, shortcut keys, menus and toolbars are a great way to streamline your workflow. If you regularly use SOLIDWORKS and are looking to speed up this process, combining shortcut menus can help you increase your efficiency even further.


We hope you found that useful!

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