How to use shell feature in SOLIDWORKS?

Feature details: The shell tool hollows out a part, leaves open the faces you select, and creates thin-walled features on the remaining faces.

Tip: You should apply any fillets before you shell a part.

If the Shell tool in SOLIDWORKS has problems shelling a model, the Error Diagnostics section appears in the Property Manager to help you diagnose the problem.

There are two way to apply shell feature in SOLIDWORKS:

  • Shell with Uniform Thickness
  • Shell with Multi-Thickness Faces

Shell with uniform thickness:

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Click Shell (Features toolbar) or Insert > Features > Shell.

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In the Property Manager, under Parameters:

TIP: Some fields that accept numeric input allow you to create an equation by entering = (equal sign) and selecting global variables, functions, and file properties from a drop-down list.

  • Set Thickness to set the thickness of the faces you keep.
  • Select one or more faces in the graphics area for Faces to remove box

Tip: When you shell a multi body part, the Solid Body  box appears. After you select a face to remove, or a body, the box disappears.

  • Select Shell outward to increase the outside dimensions of the part.
  • Select Show preview to display a preview of the shell feature.

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Part after applying constant thickness shell.

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Shell with Multi-Thickness Faces

You can create shell features with different thicknesses for different faces. You can remove faces, set a default thickness for the remaining faces, and then set different thicknesses for faces you select from the remaining faces.

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Part which will be used to understand application of shell feature in SOLIDWORKS.

The second box in the property manager of shell feature is used for providing multi-thickness in your part.

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let’s say that we want the pink shaded region to be of 1 mm thickness.

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To accomplish this design requirement, select second box in property manager, and select the face (here, pink shaded region).

After selecting this face enter the value of thickness required. Here 1mm.

This means that only this face of the part the thickness will be 1mm. everywhere else, it will be 0.50mm.

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To provide another face with different thickness, again select the face and enter the thickness.


Contact us for more information and help on shell feature in SOLIDWORKS at or

call 03 86770871