Onshape is a great software that provides you with mobility, easy access and a very user friendly environment that can easily fool you into thinking you are not using a highly professional Mechanical CAD system at first encounter. But not only you do but it constantly evolves and at the same time remains also easier and faster to use with a minimalistic design mentality on its GUI and a great aid surrounding each command tool. But there is still more you can do to make yourself more productive:

    • Plan and think ahead
    • Name everything
    • Learn your hotkeys
    • Use your drop down menus
    • Use view tool settings

Before you even power up your computer just sit down, grab a piece of paper and a pencil and scribble ideas on how you will approach your design. Create a path or several and decide which on is the best to follow that will give you the best results, as time efficiently as possible. Sometimes you will find that there will be cases when designing in different CAD software that some of the same tool will not be available and that alters the original design path idea. Plan your steps. It may seem as a headache now but it will save you up much time later on.

Try to make documents/parts/assemblies/sketches easily to spot without having to look for too long to locate them. Give descriptive names that will trigger your mind so next time you open the file a flash of familiarity and knowledge about it will hit you instead of wondering what it was that you did with it last time.

Don’t be afraid to use the hotkeys. And don’t worry for not knowing them all, with time and practice they will become a second nature and save you a lot of time and frustration from trying to find certain command tools or spend less time playing target practising with your mouse cursor and more time designing.

Onshape has a great variety of right click drop down menus that appear on different places along your screen and adapt based on the cursors location giving you the ability to have most useful commands at your fingertips.

Onshape provides you with a variety of view tools under the “view tool menu” that allow you to visually inspect and easily spot areas or features where in the Shaded default view you wouldn’t be able to. Some of those tools include: Shaded without edges (suggested for presentation reasons), hidden edges removed, hidden edges visible, translucent and curvature visualisation. Working on your design using various view modes, where necessary, saves you time and results in fewer errors.

Onshape also includes the ability to view a cutaway section of your design, apart from identifying internal problems this can also be useful on educational presentation where structure/system analysis or function demonstration of the model is required.



At 4DeltaEducation we truly believe that core to all is education. We have created an online training platform for people who want to master the latest vocational technological advances within the world of Engineering. To date, we have created courses in Computer Aided Design and 3D Printing, and we are working on more.