1 Reply Latest reply on Mar 1, 2007 2:33 PM by Matt Lombard

    best import format to produce useable surfaces (stl?)

    Kevin Dahlquist
      Ok, so I've had the best luck at importing stl files to solidworksbut only in the sense that the result is a model which appears asline item: 'STL graphics' and accurately represents the mesh Iintended.  However, the data shown can so far be used forvisual purposes only.  At best, I can trace over the contoursand get some generally useful data. My question is what toolsand/or import options/formats can I specify that will produce amore useful mesh?  I can't seem to do anything with the modeldata that I have other than look at it and guesstimate contours. I'd like to at least do things like trim with surface, oroffset surfaces- anything real.  
      Thanks for any help!
        • best import format to produce useable surfaces (stl?)
          Matt Lombard
          For anything "real", you are not going to be able to use a "mesh". The best format for this data is a Parasolid, but STEP and IGES are acceptable, as well as ACIS (SAT) and VDA.

          The difference is between the mesh (point based tessellation - faceted) and NURBS surfaces (math based smoothly interpolated surface data).

          If you have ScanTo3D, you can do more with the stl data. There is an option on import of an STL to bring the data in as a graphics body, a solid body or a surface body. Selecing Solid or Surface does not automatically convert the model into a smooth NURBS surface, it is imported with all of the same tiny edges and facets you see in the graphics body, but you can perform normal modeling operations on it such as cut or trim.

          Best of luck.