6 Replies Latest reply on Jul 30, 2015 6:40 AM by Dave Stokowski

    Point Cloud Disappears from Assembly & Part Files

    Kevin Bennett

      I am working with two parts that were built using scan data as reference geometry.  The scan data was imported using scan to 3D.  I have an assembly that contains both parts and a few others.


      Here's the thing:  everything seems fine, and then after a period of time the scan data/mesh just disappears - from both the assembly and the underlying part files.  Happens to both of them at the same time.  The "mesh" still shows in the feature tree, but you can't show/hide it (that option is gone from the menu).  Solidworks no longer even recognizes it as a mesh/point cloud file - if you go to the "Scan to 3D" menu the edit options are grayed out (see attached screenshot).


      If I load a previously saved version of the files, everything is fine, so it is definitely related to the file itself.


      Any thoughts?  Any help much appreciated, this is a real bummer - the only way to deal with it is to revert to a previous version and redo any lost work.


      Thanks in advance!



        • Re: Point Cloud Disappears from Assembly & Part Files
          James Rix

          I am having exactly the same problem.

          It appears that the cloud data is still in the part file, just not visible.  To get it to reappear; I created a new part file from the cloud and saved it.  Then dropped this new cloud part file into an assembly that had the original part file/cloud and bam,,, the original cloud shows up.

          Additionally, I have an assembly with many part-file-clouds and going through the steps above for one the files, some, but not all of the clouds showed up,,,,

          Could it be a graphics card issue? (my card; ATI FirePro V4800 (FireGL) Drive;

          • Re: Point Cloud Disappears from Assembly & Part Files
            Eric Steen

            We have this same problem, and we have not found a solution.  All of our machines are definitely capable (12 GB memory, Xeon processors, Nvidia K2000), but we have point cloud data disappear, especially when working with point cloud data in parts that are open in assemblies.


            An even more important word of caution- If the point cloud data has disappeared and you save the assembly, thereby saving the parts with the point clouds, the next time you open the parts, the point cloud will be permanently removed from the part.  It will still show in the feature tree, but Scan to 3D will be grayed out and the data will be gone.


            Just make sure you are working from a PDM system so you can reload the older parts with the point cloud data, OR always keep backups of the original point cloud file (XYZ, TXT, etc) so that yu can just import it again in SW.  Of course you would lose and cloud thinning and trimming you had done.


            Very frustrating, hopefully Scan to 3D someday gets some attention from SW as it has basically been dormant and ignored since its inception.

            • Re: Point Cloud Disappears from Assembly & Part Files
              James Rix

              I have continued using clouds over the last few weeks and discovered; When I load a file that had cloud data, but is no longer visible, by simply minimizing all SW windows and loading a new cloud file in a new part file, the non-visible clouds will reappear.

                • Re: Point Cloud Disappears from Assembly & Part Files
                  Kevin Bennett

                  Eric & James:


                  I've found the same things you have - if you load a new point cloud the missing one will disappear, EXCEPT if you save while the point cloud has disappeared it's gone forever.  The problem for me is that most of my work requires me to hide the mesh while working on the rest of the assembly, so I can't tell when it has actually disappeared, and I end up eventually saving with the mesh missing.


                  This is really frustrating.  Come'on SW...does no one have a answer here?  Clearly we aren't the only one's having this issue.  Is there something we should be doing differently?

                • Re: Point Cloud Disappears from Assembly & Part Files
                  Kevin Bennett

                  Another interesting thing I've noticed is that you can't hide the mesh/point cloud from within an assembly:


                  1) If I create a part from point cloud data and import that into an assembly, and then

                  2) Hide that part from within the assembly,

                  3) The mesh/point cloud doesn't hide in the assembly


                  In order to actually hide the mesh/point cloud, I have to open the part file directly, hide the mesh from within the part, and then go back to the assembly.


                  I'm assuming I must be doing something wrong.  I know SW isn't great with point cloud data, but it can't be this bad.  This is a serious issue for us, since virtually all of our work involves scan data as reference geometry. 

                  • Re: Point Cloud Disappears from Assembly & Part Files
                    Dave Stokowski

                    I think I have found a solution to this. I had this problem for ages and just recently had it again which brought me on here.


                    I went back to my individual part files with meshes in them, and starting with the smallest file tried opening them one at a time. I think the process of opening the part file itself initializes the data different because on my machine the mesh then appears. I do this for each file and then the assembly is good. A pain for larger assemblies, but at least it works. I haven't tried it for massive files, I aim to get the mesh file below 5 Mb before I save. I like the SW Mesh Global Simplification operation because it keeps the mesh dense where it counts, and coarse where it doesn't.


                    I hope this helps,