Most Complete Set of SolidWorks Parts?

The CMU library of SolidWorks parts does not appear to have been updated with some of the more recent product additions. Is this still the most complete set?

Is anyone aware of an alterante source that can be used to fill the gaps?

I would appreciate any info. Thanks.

–Bill Wiley
Coach, Vexy Things


I am unaware of any public collection that is more complete.

I hope to improve on and/or add to the CMU collection of SolidWorks models. But don’t hold your breath. I am learning to use SolidWorks now as FRC 1885 builds an off-season robot.

Because of the fairly extensive modeling skills of the studnets on typical FRC teams, I suspect that there are bunches of Vex models lurking in the hard drives of teams that participate in both FRC and FTC. Trolling through the Chief Delphi site now, and asking you question again (there and here) once most students are back in school might net you some useful results.


Hey! - I just noticed that the site’s product description for the Advanced Gear Kit includes a link for downloading CAD “STEP” files. I wonder how many other components’ descriptions offer similar models???

doesn’t solidworks just read solidworks files?

You can covert CAD files into 3D Solidworks parts or assemblies

Mea Culpa,
I’ve been working on putting together a very comprehensive CAD parts library for some time now, but other projects keep popping up and getting in the way.

I promise that the “super Vex CAD library” is coming, I just don’t know how soon it will be coming.



  1. Do you have a rough time frame?

  2. Are you developing in Solid Works?

  3. Are you using the CMU parts as a baseline?

In any case, the season is almost upon us, and it would be really helpful to have these available so that students would not need to use precious time repeating work that other teams are undoubtedly doing also.

That said, does anyone have any parts beyond the ones at CMU available. If so, perhaps you could post a link here and/or give to John, so that he has a head start.

Perhaps we can start a list here of those available/needed. If it comes down to teams needing to model parts, we could at least alert each other as to which parts we are working on so as not to repeat the effort.

It would still be much more desirable for a single entity to develop all the parts. Vex Labs is the obvious choice because they already have the exact specifications for each part. They most likely also have CAD drawing for the parts already. Therefore, their parts are likely to be more accurate than those constructed by others.

Parts most urgently hoped for:
1x2x35 C-Channel
1x5x35 C-Channel
1x15 “Bars”
Linear Slides
Tank Tread Sprockets and Treads
3x3x35 Angles
5x5x35 Angles
Long Chassis Rail
Medium Chassis Rail
Sprocket & Chain Kit


Why would you need the chain in the sprocket and chain kit. It would only take time to MATE the parts (connect them) Though they still wouldn’'t be useful unless you animated the robot.

Though I freely admit to being a total novice at SolidWorks (I have been bootstrapping myself for a few weeks lately), I do know that [LIST=1]
*]Some movements can be animated,
*]SolidWorks has been adding more and more physic-based animations in their recent releases,
*]The latest version of Solidworks has improved support for modeling belts, etc,
*]I do want to put models into virtual motion to discover “interferences”
*]Without chain or tread to constrain them, some parts of a model will move incorrectly when a physics-based animation is perfromed, and
*]I will need to have the chain/tread show up in my Bill Of Materials.
*]Sprockets without chains/treads attached will look odd,
[/LIST]So, even though I am a SolidWorks rookie, I think that at least a few of these desires are legitimate and feasible.


To clear some things up if you are using the student edition.

For number 3, it only works with the Solidworks Professional Edition (full edition). It does not work with the Student Edition, at least not the 2006 version, maybe the 2007 version has added it.

All of the other things should works with the students edition

I would reccomend buying the student edition with COSMOS (extra $100) so that you can see physic based animations.

Sure - Thanks,

I have the 2006 Student Edition. I have COSMOS. I don’t have the latest commercial version (advertised on the SolidWorks web site). I agree that it is the version that has that “improved” support for belts, etc. However, when those improvements do trickle down to students and educators, it will be nice to already have models in place that can immediately/quickly take advantage of the new features.


I am new to solidworks as well, so my understanding of how all the components interact may be incorrect. At present, I have the Student 2007 edition installed and have spent about 45 minutes working with it.

This version supports animation of rotary and linear motors, but it appears to do so without factoring any loads/materials into the simulation. I do not know if it would be able to simulate a tread or chain. Unfortunately, I am still stumbling/bumbling along and am not yet able to create a chain or tread to find out.

The 2007 version also supports “COSMOS Express.” This software appears to factor in loads etc. I do not have a complete enough assembly with materials etc entered to be able to actually run it. I am guessing that it will support chains etc.

Nonetheless, if our team can at least create static models of the robots, they will be able to check for obvious problems and will save a great deal of time avoiding the rebuild cycle. To do this requires a complete set of parts that includes chains etc.

I would welcome any suggestions for the best way to get up to speed with SolidWorks (for both adults with considerable CAD expereince and for kids with no real expereince.)

I believe that COSMOS express will not be enough to do want you want to do. If you have the full version of COSMOS then you can simulate animations eith loads.
As to getting started, I reccomend working on the tutorials that come with the student edition, they teach you everything you need to know.

Ok. When I got my VEX starter kit this year in June, I opened it and found a Solidworks Student DVD (150 day trial). I installed it on my brother’s mac using boot camp (I didn’t have a windows computer that had a dvd drive yet), and couldn’t find ANY parts.

First of all, was that the 2007 version?

and second, where can i find all these parts (for my version of solidworks)

not sure about the year… maybe 2007

I am pretty sure that the parts don’t come with it. You will have to search the web for parts, or wait for the forum moderators to finish them

It feels like I’ve been working on making this a reality for a loooong time…
We now have all our Vex Part Models ready for public consumption, and posted at

See the announcement here:




This is excellent news. Thanks so much for getting these into the public domain.

–Bill Wiley
Coach, Vexy Things