How to Animate Springs

Over the years I’ve received many questions on using SolidWorks Animator. SolidWorks Animator helps you create compelling animations from SolidWorks parts and assemblies allowing you to communicate designs more effectively. With simple point and click operations, you don’t need to be an expert in animation. The Animator can do some pretty amazing things… a lot more than record moving components.

A popular request I get is showing how to animate the compression and extension of springs. This was a very difficult task ten years ago. Even if it was possible, I didn’t find it worth the time and effort. Over the recent years, SolidWorks made this easier by allowing you to avoid creating a helix for the path of the spring. See below or go to for a video which explains how to animate spring compression and extensions.

I hope you enjoy it. Please feel free to email me with any questions on the steps involved.

Jim Byrne

Jim Byrne
Applications Engineer
DASI Solutions


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2 Responses to How to Animate Springs

  1. Scott Byrne says:

    Looks good Jim. I’m curious if your path needs to be a straight line, of if you could have the helix follow some type of curved path like a spline?

    • Jim Byrne says:

      Good question Scott. I used a straight line for the sweep in this example since I was referring to a simple spring. However this same approach could be used for a phone cord that follows a nonlinear curve. Boy… it won’t be long before folks don’t know what I mean by phone cord. I don’t think my kids have ever seen one!! 🙂

      Here is a link to an image of a sweep done this way.

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