Using SOLIDWORKS selected contours when creating a feature allows a user to select portions of a sketch that are generated by selecting individual regions of a sketch or individual contours. This allows for partial segments of one sketch to be used to create a feature. An advantage of using sketch contours is that the sketch can be reused to create multiple features from different portions of one sketch.
Within a single sketch there are often multiple contours available to a user to utilize when creating features. Any boundary generated by the intersection of sketch geometry can be used on its own or in combination with others.
When creating any kind of extruded feature (boss or cut) there is an option called “selected contours” that can be used to select which contours of a sketch will be used for that specific feature.
Below is a picture of a sketch with multiple contours after the extruded boss command has been activated. Because this sketch does not contain one continuous open region the selected contours option in the property manager is automatically selected.
With this box highlighted you can cover individual regions of the sketch to use for the extrusion as seen below.
You can also grab individual contours such as the line for the large square if you only want to extrude that region as seen below.
Once a feature has been created using the selected contours option in the property manager a new symbol is used for the sketch found under the drop-down menu as shown in the image below.
This symbol means that the feature that was created was made using SOLIDWORKS selected contours. Once a sketch has been used to create multiple features you will see a hand added to that symbol. Below is a picture of a simple part that was created using two features that share the same sketch.
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