Detailed Cabling on Line Diagrams in SOLIDWORKS Electrical

Users can define pin to pin connections without necessarily drawing them out in a schematic drawing, by doing so on line diagrams by adding cables.

In the video tutorial above, we’ve drawn a couple of symbols with a motor that we’ve associated with a manufacturer part and a contactor relay that we’ve associated with a manufacturer part, in a blank diagram.


When we select the “Draw cable” button on the diagram tab, we can choose a cable style to use and simply draw a line connecting one symbol to the other. For the purposes of high level line diagrams, this might be good enough, but users have the ability to specify point to point connections of the cable directly from here.

To do this, we can double click on the cable and this brings up the detailed cabling window.


We can see the contacts available for each component on the left and right hand sides, which were included when we specified the manufacturer part number for each component. All that is missing, is the definition of what cable to use to connect them.

Users can either add a cable to the project from the SolidWorks Electrical database by clicking “Add a cable” or in case a user has already reserved a cable to be added, we can click the “Cores reservation” button to bring up a list of cables that are already in the project.

In the tutorial video above, we can see a couple of cables that have already been used elsewhere, and one cable that was added that is not being used. When we expand it, there are checkboxes next to the entire cable, as well as the individual conductors within it.


It is not very common, but it is possible to specify to use one or more conductors of the cable between these components and then specify the other conductors in the cable to be used between different components.

For now, we’ll just click the “New Cable” button to add a new cable to use in this project. we’ll filter for cables with four conductors and click the green plus to add the one we’re looking for. We’ll click Select, and the cable is now available to use. We’ll then click the checkbox next to the entire cable to use it, and click OK.

When we do, the manager updates and shows the cable along with its conductors, so the next step is to associate the wires on each end of the cable with the appropriate pins from the motor and contactor.


To do this, we can click on each cell for the cable to highlight it, click on the corresponding pin on the component and click “Connect.” When we do, we can see the mark and pin is added in the origin field.

We can repeat this process for each of the other pins.


On the other side, if the conductors on the cable correspond to the same order the pins are shown on the component, we can control-select or shift-select the conductors on the cable and component and click Connect, to connect them all at once.

So this is another method of defining pin to pin connections of cables without drawing everything out in a schematic. This information will be available to show in reports, which can be covered in other lessons.

For now, we’ll click Close and you can see the cable is added with its unique mark on the line diagram.


Another place this cable will show up, is if we go to the “Project” tab and click “Cables,” we can see the same mark shown here and when we expand it we can see the items shown in blue letting us know that pin to pin connections have been established.

You can learn more about SOLIDWORKS Electrical and the new capabilities in SOLIDWORKS 2016 by signing up for a free membership.

About the Author

Sam Sanchez is an Applications Engineer with SolidProfessor and a CSWP. Sanchez is an alumni of UC San Diego, and in her free time enjoys 3D printing and hanging out with her dog Ruby. You can see more training videos on a wide range of CAD, CAM & BIM topics at