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SolidWorks eDrawings viewer to SketchUp

Discussion in 'Tutorials' started by matt_o_70, Jan 30, 2014.

  1. matt_o_70

    matt_o_70 New

    Dec 15, 2013
    Likes Received:
    I was following the recent Build thread of the FROG Router by Neil Rosenberg over in the CNC Router section. Neil shared the CAD Model of his build that he made with SolidWorks. One problem for me was not having SolidWorks on my PC. There is a free SolidWorks eViewer available for download that you can use to view and inspect assemblies.

    I played with Neil's FROG CNC model in eDrawings a bit and discovered that there is a work around - to use it to output files from his original models which you can then later measure or modify in SketchUp.

    Open the assembly that has the part that you are interested in Exporting. I have opened the Side Carriage Left.SLDASM. Since the flat plates are the parts that I am interested in measuring I have selected it in the tree view on the left.


    The Selected the part you are interested in exporting is highlighted. You can Right Click and Hide All if you want to be able to view just this part alone.


    Save your self a COPY of the part with the Save AS menu item and I checked both option boxes (allow STL export and enable measurements). I had hoped that I might be able to measure the copy but that did not work out. You can however Save a copy of the part to .STL

    Then you can then IMPORT your newly created .STL file you just made from eDrawings program into Sketchup.

    Open SketchUp and choose File>IMPORT... This will require the STL plugin if not present.

    Some trial and error is required with the Options button to set the import units correctly. For this file Importing the .STL as Meters did the trick. If at first you do not see your part right away it may be very small due to improper units selected at import menu options.

    At first you will also have lots of extra lines to delete (side effect of the .STL creation process) to clean up the parts to simplest form.

    (Update) Great tip From Mark to instantly clean up the imported .STL file:
    1) Select all right click > Make group.
    2) Window >Soften Edges then Check the Box for > Soften Coplanar edges



    I posted this info with the hope that it may benefit anyone looking to work with these files with only freely available software. It's a little bit of work but it can be done.

    Attached Files:

    #1 matt_o_70, Jan 30, 2014
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2014
  2. Mark Carew

    Mark Carew OpenBuilds Team
    Staff Member Moderator Builder Resident Builder

    Jun 28, 2013
    Likes Received:
    Thanks for posting this! On the line clean up I have found that when importing STL models to SketchUp you can quickly clean them by (make sure they are a group or component) right clicking them and using the soften edges feature.

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