VIDEO TUTORIAL: How to convert a 3D CAD model from STP STEP or IGS IGES formats to GLB or OBJ


Tutorials | 11/11/2023 |


3D CAD models are essential in professional settings such as industry and manufacturing, architecture firms, and design studios. These files can be manipulated and edited using specialized CAD software.

The Main CAD Software

Here are some of the most popular CAD software used by professionals:

  • Fusion 360 Autodesk: A cloud-based 3D CAD, CAM, and CAE platform for product development.
  • Solidworks: A 3D CAD software for product design and development, providing tools for creating, simulating, and visualizing designs.
  • CorelCAD: A 2D and 3D CAD software with precision tools for creating technical drawings and designs.
  • AutoCAD: A 2D and 3D CAD software with tools for drafting, detailing, and visualization.
  • Tinkercad: A browser-based 3D CAD software with an intuitive interface for designing models for 3D printing and other applications.
  • FreeCAD: An open-source 3D CAD software with tools for modeling, simulation, animation, and collaboration.
  • SketchUp: A 3D CAD software with an easy-to-use interface for creating and editing models for architecture, engineering, and construction.
  • Bentley: A 3D CAD software for infrastructure design and construction with tools for modeling, analysis, and simulation.
  • LibreCAD: An open-source 2D CAD software with tools for creating geometric shapes, dimensions, and annotations.
  • IRONCAD: A 3D CAD software for creating mechanical and industrial designs with tools for modeling, simulation, and animation.
  • Solid Edge: A 3D CAD software for creating mechanical and industrial designs with tools for modeling, simulation, and visualization.
  • SOLVESPACE: An open-source 3D CAD software for engineering and product design with tools for modeling, simulation, and visualization.
  • BRL-CAD: An open-source 3D CAD software for engineering and scientific research with tools for modeling, simulation, and visualization.
  • Rhino: A 3D CAD software for product design, architecture, and engineering with tools for modeling, simulation, and visualization.
  • Siemens NX: A CAD software for product engineering and development, and manufacturing, with advanced tools for 3D modeling, simulation, and documentation.
  • QCAD: A 2D CAD software with a simple interface for creating accurate and detailed 2D drawings.
  • PTC: A CAD software for 3D modeling, design, simulation, and analysis, with advanced modeling tools, parametric design, rendering, animation, and simulation capabilities.
  • CATIA: A CAD software for product design and development with comprehensive tools for 3D modeling, simulation, and rendering.
  • OpenSCAD: A CAD software for creating 3D models of parts and assemblies using code-based descriptions, with support for 2D and 3D modeling and the ability to generate models from mathematical equations.

If you want to convert a 3D CAD model but don't have access to the original design software or it doesn't work, there is another way to do it. Here's a tutorial on how to convert 3D CAD models:

Convert a 3D CAD Model to .GLB or .OBJ Files with CAD Assistant

cad assistant

CAD Assistant is a free 3D software that offers a viewer and converter for commercial use. To download it, follow this link: https://www.opencascade.com/products/cad-assistant/

Here's how to convert a 3D CAD model using CAD Assistant:

  1. Open CAD Assistant
  2. Select a 3D file to import in the following format: STP (STEP), IGS (IGES), LOG, OFF, 3DM, VRML, WRL, MSH, XBF, BREP, GLB, GLTF or OBJ
  3. Export the file by saving it in .GLB or .OBJ format

Note that the .GLB format retains more details of your model (organization of the meshes) while the .OBJ format brings all the meshes together and simplifies further processing on the 3D model, such as reducing its size. Here's a tutorial on how to compress and reduce the size of an industrial 3D CAD model using MeshLab and Blender: Tutorial on reducing the size of a CAD 3D model

Video Tutorial for CAD Assistant Conversion and Augmented Reality Display with AR Code

Converting a 3D CAD Model to Other File Formats

Once your file is in .GLB or .OBJ format, it can be easily converted using classic 3D software such as Blender or MeshLab. Here are the links to download these software:

  • Blender: Blender is a free and open-source 3D creation software used for making animations, models, artwork, and games. It supports a wide range of 3D modeling techniques and features including modeling, sculpting, texturing, rigging, and animation. It also supports post-production editing, such as compositing and video editing. https://www.blender.org/download/
  • MeshLab: MeshLab is an open-source, portable, and extensible system for the processing and editing of unstructured 3D triangular meshes. It offers a wide range of features for editing, filtering, cleaning, and rendering 3D meshes. MeshLab can import and export a wide range of formats, including OBJ, STL, PLY, OFF, 3DS, COLLADA, PTX, and V3D, among others. https://www.meshlab.net/#download

Conclusion

3D CAD models are an essential part of professional settings such as industry and manufacturing, architecture firms, and design studios. Specialized CAD software is used to create, manipulate, and edit these files. If you need to convert a 3D CAD model, CAD Assistant is a free software that can help. Once the file is converted to .GLB or .OBJ format, you can easily edit it further using software such as Blender or MeshLab.

Frequently asked questions

What are 3D CAD models used for?

3D CAD models are primarily used in professional settings such as industry and manufacturing, architecture firms, and design studios. They can be manipulated and edited using specialized CAD software.

Can a 3D CAD model be converted if I don't have access to the original design software?

Yes, you can use a free 3D software like CAD Assistant to convert a 3D CAD model. It offers a viewer and converter for commercial use and supports a wide range of formats.

What other software can be used to convert a 3D CAD model once it's in .GLB or .OBJ format?

Classic 3D software like Blender or MeshLab can be used to convert a 3D CAD model once it's in .GLB or .OBJ format. These software offer a wide range of features for editing, filtering, cleaning, and rendering 3D meshes.

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