STL Question

I have an stl file I imported into Sketchup of wings with a heart in the middle. At the present it has no background, just the out line of the wings. How can I do this in Sketchup? I’ve attached a pic so you can see what i’m talking about. Thx

Can you clarify what it is you want to accomplish? Add a background to the SketchUp 3D model?

I updated the pic to better show what I trying to do. Where the arrows point I’m wanting to print a white background then the heart and feathers will be red then back to white for the letters, Hope this better explains it.

Your profile is incomplete. We do not know what version of SU you are using. It would be nice if you could post the SU file with the STL imported but I can only open version 17 or previous.

You want to fill in those gaps in the wings?

Yes that’s correct.

You need to double click to go into the group (or right click and explode the component). You then need to use the pen tool to complete the border inside the gap in order to make a face.

I don’t have SketchUp with me at the moment so I cant make you an example sorry. Have you used SketchUp before, are you familiar with creating faces and the rules around them?

If not then the first three videos on the youtube channel will run over everything well enough, here is the link to the first one:

Ed: it looks like it’s a complicated edge so you may need to make multiple faces. You will also need to give the new plane depth if you plan to print it and be careful about the minimum thickness, you will need to check your printer settings to see what the minimum tolerance is.

Ed2: I noticed that some of the elements are also ‘free floating’ , everything needs to be attached in order to print it as a single piece, otherwise those bits will just fall off. You will need to add in supports.

Thx mics_54 for the reply. I’m using Version 17. I’ll attach the files requested to this response.

Heart and Wings.skp (2.7 MB)

Heart and Wings.stl (2.1 MB)

1 Like

Thx liamk887 I’ll check the videos you mentioned out.

1 Like

If liam is on it I’m sure you’re in the best hands. I’ll follow and learn too :slight_smile:

Not good news I am afraid, not sure where you got the file from but it’s full of holes, literally. So it’s going to need quite a bit of work to fix it up manually unless somebody has a handy plugin.

Nevertheless, here are the steps to ‘fill in’ the gaps in the wings.

  1. Using the pen tool simply trace a single line on the top edge (see the two green pen points). Ignore the triangular face also selected.

  1. This will create a single solid face. However note, that due to the missing geometry pre making the face, this method has also filled in gaps in some of the other areas, this is why you need to fix up all those holes first.

  1. I turn the face into a group so it is separate from the rest of the model. Using the push/pull tool I then drag down on the face to give it depth.

  1. The new face is now a component inside the gap in the wings.

  1. However if you printed like this then there would be no distinction in the surface so we bring the group down on the Blue axis.

  1. However when printing you really need a single hollow object in order to get a good print, this model now has multiple internal walls. In this instance there is a double wall due to the component we created. Wall 1 + 2 are the existing geometry, Wall 3 has been created when we used the push/pull tool. You will need to go in and clean up this in order to get a good print.

There was a good thread the other day where somebody had an issue with 3D printing as they could not close the geometry, I will link it here when i find it.

Overall this is just a quick guide to show what you need to do but to be honest it’s quite a bit of work. Iv’e also generalised a lot here, the above instructions are not the most efficient method either (just the easiest to explain quickly).

If I was doing this, I would re-draw this shape in an image editor (Microsoft Paint, Photoshop, Illustrator etc) and import the shape to create again.Trying to fix this in my opinion is not the quickest or most efficient solution, having to fix the mesh and cleaning up the inside for printing is going to take a while.

If you can, see if you can get somebody to draw this shape for you in Illustrator and send you the Vector path. It’s not a complicated shape for somebody familiar with it and it will save you about a day’s worth of work (longer if it’s new to you).


You need to be looking at using The Dave Method when you are working on such small things.
I have used it here to make a copy component that is scaled by 100, this then allowed me to use a section plane through it to ‘Create Group from Slice’, which gave me a clean profile to use.
That slice can then be modified however you need to get the faces and thickness you want.
All edits you make to the large one will be reflected in the small one and when complete you can simply delete the large one and use the small one.
I have added the model, if it doesn’t make sense I can make a demo at another time.
Heart and WingsBox.skp (2.2 MB)



This topic was automatically closed 91 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.