Modeling a Wave Spring in SOLIDWORKS

Due to complex geometry, modeling a wave spring is no easy task. That isn’t the case anymore with SolidWorks. In the walkthrough video above, we’ll demonstrate how you can quickly and effectively design a wave spring to fit your specific needs.

In review, the key to easy wave spring modeling is a 3D equation-driven curve as the path sketch for the sweep.

To begin this process, create a new 3D sketch, under the “Sketch” toolbar. Launch the equation-driven curve tool, also located in this folder.

With the property manager now displayed, we can define three parametric equations (x, y and z) in terms of t. You must also specify a range of values for t to be solved over. The video above gives you a detailed explanation on how to create the math for your wave spring.

Once you have your equations, you can enter your radius for the spring. For the sake of our example, we used a three-quarter inch radius. After entering your math into the “Equation Driven Curve” property manager, accept your changes by clicking on the green check to create your curve.

Remember to verify the curve meets your needs before clicking the green check to accept your changes. This generates the path for your wave spring.

Next, create a new plane to sketch the profile on, by selecting the plane tool from the “Reference Geometry drop” down menu, under the “Features” toolbar. Select the equation driven curve for the first reference and the bottom end curve as the second. This step will fully define a plane perpendicular to the curve.

Sketching on the new plane, you can create a center-point rectangle using the origin as a center point. Add a few dimensions to define your sketch. You may notice the resulting outer diameter of the spring may be larger than what you defined in the parametric equation of the curve.

You can now exit this sketch and start the “Sweep Feature,” located in your “Features” toolbar. Select the rectangular sketch you just made for the profile and the equation given curve sketch for the path.

To make this sweep work properly, under options in the “Sweep Property” manager, make sure the orientation and twist type is set to “Follow Path.” Change the path alignment type to “Direction Vector.” Select the front reference plane for the direction vector. This should prevent the sweep from twisting and bending as the rectangle is swept up the curve.

Click the green check and you have your wave spring model.

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About 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