File format types and exchanging files with others

Hi all,

My employer’s machinist we outsource our manufacturing needs to uses Solidworks, and that person needs to be able to open and read geometries I generate on Sketchup in Solidworks. I tried sending them the .DXF’s that Sketchup can generate, however they said their Solidworks session crashed when they tried. Does anyone have any suggestions, extensions or otherwise, for how I should exchange files with individuals not using the Sketchup suite?

Try .stl

To back up what Dave suggests, I found an article that describes the steps as exporting to 3DS and then use another program to convert that to STL. I think it was written in the days before SketchUp could go straight to STL.

is there anything that exports better? STL’s generated in Sketchup are often too triangulated to be read properly in Solidworks.

The vary nature of .stl files is triangles. Standard Triangle Language. :wink:

It only creates triangles between the vertices in the model.

Maybe a 3D .dwg?

How big is the object in the model?

Object in this particular model is a hollow cylinder with cuts and whatnot on it about 2 inches long, but its not this part thats been the only issue with .STL exports. For example: I had to export the model into .STL format for a rapid prototyper to 3D print the model, and when the individual I sent the model read back the critical dimensions, the first .STL export scaled the model by ~3.71x dimensions, which looks more like an arbitrary scaling factor than a unit export/import mishap.

I know Sketchup isnt a “Solid Modeler” in the mathematical sense, and thus cant directly export into .STP, but is there possibly an “export/import” path from sketchup to another software that would generate .STP’s ir .IGS?

I expect there is some path via some other software that could get you there. Not sure of the best route. Maybe what Colin suggested?

As for the dimensions with the .stl for rapid prototyping, I would suspect the slicer somewhere along the line. I regularly export .stl file from SketchUp for 3D printing and they are dead on the right size every time. Well, sometimes the dimensions change very slightly in the printed part because of dimensional changes in the media as it cools. But that’s not a problem caused by SketchUp, the .stl file, or the slicer software.

when having conflicts with export/import units in the past, I would include an additional 1cm cube 100mm from objects x,y origin when view from Top in Parallel Projection…

normally that was enough for the recipient to ‘correct’ their import and/or help pin point the deviation…

john this is a free software I found that can import STL’s and Export STEPS

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