Home » How to rotate a sketch in SolidWorks?

There are various methods for manipulating sketches in SolidWorks.  This tutorial will cover the use of the “Rotate Entities” and “Modify” tools.  Use the rotate entities command for selected or all entities.  The modify command will rotate the whole sketch, and redefine which direction is horizontal.  Follow the instructions using the example from the end of the article “How to fully define a sketch in SolidWorks“.

Rotate Entities

Begin by right clicking Sketch1 and selecting “Edit Sketch”.  In sketch mode, select “Rotate Entities” from the CommandManager.  Click the white box in the “Entities to Rotate” section and select all entities of the sketch.  Use the center of the circle as the point of rotation and set the rotation angle to 180°.  Relations may exist between entities for rotation and other entities in the sketch.  The “Keep relations” option only applies  to these relations.  Relations between selected entities are maintained.

SolidWorks displays the preview of the rotation in blue.  Click the green check mark to complete the rotation.

Rotate the sketch again, but only select the three line segments for rotation.  For this command select keep relations to maintain coincidence to the circle.

Dimensions or relations are required to fully define the sketch.  Refer to “How to fully define a sketch in SolidWorks” to fix this.


If sketches axes are upside down or at some angle, use the modify tool to relocate them.  In the example below, the direction of the sketch origin axes are reversed.

In an active sketch, select “Tools” – “Sketch tools” – “Modify…”.  Next, set rotation to 180° in the modify sketch window, press Enter to complete the command.  This rotates the entire sketch and the axes are displayed properly.

Follow the same procedure for sketches of any complexity.