5 Replies Latest reply on Jan 23, 2018 12:30 PM by Richard Gergely

    Imported step file doesnt show colors

    Devin Gibson

      Recently I have tried to import several .step files of Printed Circuit Board Assemblies into SolidWorks that were created by our Electrical Engineer in Altium. When the file is imported, everything goes as expected except the apperance of the PCA is entirely gray (the default SolidWorks gray) instead of the colors I am expecting. I think I know what caused the problem I just don't know how to fix it.


      Here is what happened:


      The first time I tried to import the most recent .step file I'm working with I got the "template is not valid" error, which I had to go through for each individual PCA part, when I did complete the process I had my PCA as a SolidWorks assembly as expected, the colors for all the parts were there. First thing I did after that was search how to fix the error. The first solution I found said to resave/recreate the assembly template file. When I did that and tried to re-import the .step file the error was gone, but the PCA was no longer imported with all the colors. When I tried importing a second .step file to see if the missing colors was a consistent problem, the "template is not valid" error came back. I went to the internet again to find a solution and I found the forums talking about making sure the default template settings were correct. I have made sure that was correct and now I no longer get the error, but every step file that I import still does not display all of the colors. I tried redirecting the default template paths back to templates of olders version of SolidWorks, but problem remained.


      So , I am pretty sure the change happened when I saved a new version of the assembly template file, but I can't find any information on how to fix that, or how to create a new assembly template file that will import the colors with the part. Additionally, when I open the step file in eDrawings it shows the PCA how I wold expect--part with all the colors--so I am pretty sure it isn't an issue with the .step file being the right file type to import colors. I'm almost certain it is a SolidWorks issue.


      Anyway, and help would be greatly appreciated because I really don't want to have to color the whole PCA again. Thanks!



      I had a co-worker import the same .step file onto his computer, SW2014, and the file loaded as expected. So now I am pretty sure its my copy of SW or something to do with my settings.


      Message was edited by: Devin Gibson

        • Re: Imported step file doesnt show colors
          Jeremy Feist

          first - if feasible, you and all of your co-workers should be using the same template files (probably on a network location, if you are not using a PDM system).


          second, it sounds like your assembly template has a color assigned at the assembly level. one option might be to copy your coworker's assembly template to where your templates are and try using that (make a back-up of yours first ).

            • Re: Imported step file doesnt show colors
              Devin Gibson

              I am actually the only one in the company with a license. My co-worker has is own private copy, but I will keep that in mind because we are considering purchasing more seats and making sure we are all using the same template files will be important!


              I haven't tried copying the SW2014 template because the issue still happens when I use the SW2018 default template, but I will give it a try.

            • Re: Imported step file doesnt show colors
              Paul Risley

              We had a problem with importing Step and other native files about a year ago. After a couple of consults we found out from our VAR the best option for importing any native file is to use the default templates provided with every installation of Solidworks. In other words when importing any native files use the default *asm,*part files and you will remove any "template" corruption of your imported files. While our problem was not specific to what you are describing it sounds like it might very well be the same issue with an override in the coloring scheme on your templates.

              • Re: Imported step file doesnt show colors
                Andy Sanders

                If I'm not mistaken, Step 203 format will not pass colors but Step 214 (or later) will.  So if you're getting a Step file, have it output to at least 214.