6 Replies Latest reply on Jan 5, 2015 11:44 AM by Koko Katanjian

    Solidworks to collada

    Craig Shaffer

      I'd like to convert a solidworks file with the colors setup in solidworks to a collada dae file.  The purpose for this is to create ROS models of a robot.  We do all our work in Solidworks so I want to create a toolchain that makes it easy to get from Solidworks to a .dae file.


      I've scoured the internet and there doesn't seem to be such a tool.  There was a solidworks to collada plugin from labs.solidworks.com but labs is gone and I can't find the installer anywhere. 


      I've got blender but there doesn't seem to be an easy way to get from solidworks to blender either.  I could go the stl route but then I'm forced to manually put all the colors back in.

        • Re: Solidworks to collada
          John Burrill

          If you export to STL or VRML97, SolidWorks will include the part colors.  You're not going to get individual face colors or material maps or anything like that, but basic colors will show up.

          Unfortunately, SolidWorks only supports appearance textures in the Luxology file export-which is proprietary.

          There's a company called simlab that makes FBX and OBJ file exporters for SolidWorks.  The plug-in costs a little money, but they offer a 15-day trial and if they're the only one's providing this level of support, It's easily worth it.

          • Re: Solidworks to collada
            Koko Katanjian

            i have been working with 3d models for animation and art, as well as solidworks CAD, and they are two sides of the same coin. but the materials that come on a collada (.dae) have to be mapped on what is called a UV map, whereas solidworks or cad materials apply materials to individual faces. at most there might be a plugin out there to export as collada. the issue with that is, the edges in solidworks are vector based, whereas in 3DS max, or maya, or what have you is based on points on a coordinate plane, so you're gonna end up with a high poly count. but if you manage to export or convert exported files from solidworks to a .dae, you can open it up in 3ds max or maya, and then UVmap it yourself manually. I personally recommend using 3ds max if you are unfamiliar with any programs to UVmap. once you get it into there, all you have to do is add a Unwrap UVW modifier to the individual primitives, or parts, then you get what you can draw, or create materials onto.


            overall no, solidworks is incapable of creating its own UVmaps and textures. it rather applies them to the faces on a part file.

            so unfortunately there is no easy way for solidworks to do it for you. the long way around is gonna have to be taken, but i can give you recommendations on what i think is the best software to UVmap with, and personally belnder's is a bit chunky, and difficult, wheras in 3ds max is completely dynamic.


            3ds max has a student license that lasts 5 years. if you're not a student, just slap a bunch of fake stuff in there, and boom you have 3ds max.