I’m often asked by students and tech support why custom weldment profiles don’t work. It turns out that 90% of the time the issue isn’t with the profile itself, but with the location the profile is saved. We’ll walk through not only the steps to create a weldment profile but the common practice of saving to a location that SOLIDWORKS isn’t able to find.
The first step to creating a weldment profile is to build a simple 2D sketch. This sketch should be fully defined and it will act as the cross-section of the structural member you’re using as your weldment. Once your sketch is created, simply click on it, go to File > Save As >Library Feature Part.
The tricky part here is where to save the file. By default, SOLIDWORKS uses a folder called weldment profiles as a top-level folder. If you’d like to save here you're able to skip a step, but many people like to save to a network drive to share profiles across workstations. You’ll notice that when you create that structural member, there are three drop-down options. The first is the standard you’ll be using, then the type of structural member, and finally the size. These first two drop-downs are actually folder locations that need to be established in order for SOLIDWORKS to recognize your library feature part as a weldment profile.
Once you’ve created these two folders, drop your library feature part (or save it to) the lowest level folder (inside the type folder). This is a workaround to using the standards provided by SOLIDWORKS that allows you to create profiles that are workplace specific, not necessarily tied to any standard or type.