4 Replies Latest reply on Nov 28, 2011 7:45 PM by Robert Lansdale

    Can SolidWorks models be exported to 3D Max?

    Kate Brown

      Hi everyone,


      I have never worked with SolidWorks, however I am well versed in using AutoDesk 3D Max. I was wondering if anyone knew if SolidWorks could export a model in a PNG sequence or as a file format that can be opened into either 3D Max or even Maya? For anyone that knows 3D Max, you can export a model in many different using cameras. Unfortunately I am not sure if SolidWorks works in that same way?


      Thank you so much and I hope someone can solve my problem.


      Yours Kate

        • Re: Can SolidWorks models be exported to 3D Max?
          Robin McCaffrey

          Solidworks has a variety of export options.  I'm not certain, but I'm fairly confident that 3ds Max will be able to open either a .stl or a .igs file format from Solidworks.

          • Re: Can SolidWorks models be exported to 3D Max?
            John Picinich



            You might want to check out Sycode's translators for converting SolidWorks models into 3DS format.




            Hope this helps.


            - John

            • Re: Can SolidWorks models be exported to 3D Max?
              Robert Lansdale

              I rarely post to forums, as I keep to paid advertising elsewhere and the SolidWorks Express Edition. But since anyone can post whatever they want, I'll make a general statement for those who are interested.


              We pioneered and brought all the main, professional CAD coversion software to 3ds Max users over the last 17 years. One in two of our sales are either SolidWorks or  Pro/Engineer to 3ds Max, Maya, Cinema-4D, Lightwave, etc. While people buy what they feel is acceptable to them without really understanding how it works, the professional and guaranteed solution has been our SolidWorks to 3ds Max conversion pipeline since its 1996 release point. Also, as I have to point out daily, 3ds Max by itself cannot retain the proper vertex normals of the source CAD file, leading to shading artifacts and "black banding" if you use a free converter like the old 16-bit DOS-level .3ds format, STL, OBJ, etc. or you assign any 3ds Max geometry modifier which will lead to loss of the originally assigned CAD normals which we will import (there's a longer technical explanation I'll leave out..).  3ds Max is a direct carry-over from the old 1985 CAD-3D program from the Atari|ST which only allowed for triangles and no vertex normals, but only "smoothing groups" (which is still the very basis of baseline geometry in 3ds Max today, as nothing really changes in the 3D world over the decades). So, our integrated pipeline within 3ds Max ensures that the loaded SolidWorks file data comes in with proper geometry, assigned vertex normals, materials, choice of configurations, meta data, etc. The conversion occurs inside of 3ds Max from native SolidWorks files, either via a direct link-up between 3ds Max (or Maya) and a live running copy of SolidWorks, or just from native .sldasm and .sldprt files without any local copy of SolidWorks on your machine (you would only load in the top-level .sldasm file and not all of the files). 32-bit and 64-bit versions of 3ds Max (v8 to 2012/2013) and Maya (v8.0 to 2012/2013) are supported.