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Importing SolidWorks 3D Image into Illustrator??

Mar 31, 2010 2:09 PM

A customer has Solidworks 2010 (3-D CAD program) and created a complicated 3D model that he wants to use in a brochure. Solidworks creates color, shading and does a nice job, but the colors are ugly and apparently cannot be changed inside Solidworks.

 

I need to get this image into Illustrator CS4 (Mac platform) in vector format so I can change the colors. They can send me a DXF format, which comes over as vector data, but it loses all color, shading, and each little line segment and curve is a discreet object. I found I can convert it to a smart paint object, but that is not really ideal and will take a lot of time to redo.

 

Though Solidworks has a PDF, EPS and AI export feature, it rasterizes it first before converting, so it comes over like a digital camera image as one big bitmap blob. That won't work.

 

Does anyone know how to export a full color vector based image from solidworks, and them import it into Illustrator so I can retain shading, etc, and just change the colors?

 

Any help appreciated.

 

Thanks, Lou

 
Replies
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    Mar 31, 2010 2:26 PM   in reply to Lou Dina

    You would either need a plug in like strata has or bring it into Photoshop as a 3D Model.

     

    You can paint a model in Photoshop and keep it a 3D model.

     
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    Mar 31, 2010 6:17 PM   in reply to Lou Dina

    Yes you need CS 4 Extended

     
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    Mar 31, 2010 7:46 PM   in reply to Lou Dina

    CS 5 ill be announce on the 12th and perhaps this is an opportunity to upgrade.

     
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    Apr 1, 2010 4:16 AM   in reply to Lou Dina

    The whole workflow is wrong and unfortunately a typical case of where neither party involved understands the other (no offense), i.e. screwhead vs. artist. You have a number of options, but my advise is based on UG/ NX and AutoCAD, so I can't vouch whether it will work in SolidWorks.

     

    • CAD operator creates a "named view", then converts it to a 2D plan view/ elevation for export as a line drawing. Should take care of any obscuration issues, but may require to consolidate some of the specifics of the drawing
    • Export a 3D PDF, but choosing to also embed all existing data as 2D, including custom views
    • Create a 3D PDF, open it in DeepExploration. Create your own view and tracing by choosing a suitable fiel format (AI, PDF, 2D DXF etc.)

     

    If you have  Acrobat Pro Extended, you can also edit the 3D PDF in 3D reviewer and create your own sub-sets/ assemblies and export them as separate 2D drawings as high-res TIFFs. and of colurse, since you already have 3D data, using 3D features to render a bitmap file  or produce a tracing would certainly work, too.

     

    Mylenium

     
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    Apr 1, 2010 4:18 AM   in reply to Lou Dina

    Oh, sorry, just saw that you are on a Mac. That sucks. Utterly the wrong computer for any kind of CAD based work...

     

    Mylenium

     
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    Apr 1, 2010 4:44 AM   in reply to Mylenium

    With older CAD programs I woUld have the CAD operator save a view of the 3D model as a eps and import that.

     

    So Mylenium's suggesting is the way to go.

     
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    Oct 7, 2010 2:53 PM   in reply to Lou Dina

    This is a reply to an OLD post, but the post *was* marked as unanswered, after all.

     

    The answer is - Dassault have written a plugin for  Photoshop (CS3 - CS5, both x86 and x64) called 3DVIA.

     

    This plugin allows Solidworks and Photoshop to talk to each other directly.

     

    I have not verified it's capabilities but if you want to install it and give it a try visit http://www.3dvia.com/products/3dvia-for-adobe-photoshop/

     

    Regards,

    Ben.

     
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