Please note that Lumion does not officially support SOLIDWORKS.
Unexpected results from the import to Lumion might occur and we are unable to fully support any issues.
Lumion supports the following file formats for imported 3D models: .DAE, .FBX, .SKP, .MAX, .3DS, .OBJ, .DWG, .DXF. The preferred formats are FBX, SKP or Collada DAE.
1. What 3D formats for Export does SOLIDWORKS Support?
- External Link: Importing/Exporting SOLIDWORKS Documents
See the table in the Help document to see what formats are supported. Example:
Mostly for import or export of images. See also:
- External Link: Supported File Formats (SOLIDWORKS Help)
2. Suggested Methods:
One of our developers investigated export options a while ago and wrote some guidelines. There isn't a single clear path how to get your model from SOLIDWORKS into Lumion. Hopefully, this helps.
2.1: Get the Simlab FBX exporter for the SOLIDWORKS plugin:
Please note this is not a free plugin. But with this plugin, it should be straightforward. Export the model to .FBX and import it into Lumion.
- External Link: SimLab FBX Exporter for SolidWorks
2.2: Open or import the SOLIDWORKS project in AutoCAD:
Then export as 3D .DWG and import it into Lumion. (This was suggested by a user back in 2014). Lumion supports current versions of AutoCAD and DWG and well as LiveSync for AutoCAD.
2.3: Save the SOLIDWORKS project as an .STL file:
Import it into Blender, it is a free model tool comparable to 3ds Max and Maya. Then export it as .FBX or .DAE and import it into Lumion.
See the first nine minutes of this tutorial on how to get the model into Lumion and fix and/or improve the model. After that step export the model instead of setting up the render in Blender.
- External Link - Video tutorial: HOW TO: SolidWorks model in Blender
Blender can be downloaded here:
- External Link: Blender
2.4: Export to IFC.
SketchUp imports IFC, then import with Lumion from the Skp file.
3. Other methods:
3.1: SOLIDWORKS document that has mesh:
- External Link: SOLIDWORKS Help: Exporting Files
To export a SOLIDWORKS document that has mesh the Help file offers two Lumion supported file formats when using File - Save As:
- ScanTo3D (*.3ds)
- ScanTo3D (*.obj)
You must have the ScanTo3D add-in enabled to display these file types.
We do not normally recommend using 3ds as it is a legacy very old file format.
Export to .Obj requires the inclusion of may materials/textures unless you are using Lumion Materials only.
3.2: Exporting a SOLIDWORKS Model for Use with AEC Software:
"The Export to AEC Wizard helps you prepare a SOLIDWORKS model so you can import it into AEC software."
Use this workflow AEC -> SAT -> Skp only supports IFC and STL, not STEP or SAT.
You need some other middleware software to convert/read an STL or STEP and make it a mesh.
You can export (File -> Save As) to DWG that Lumion supports however the export is for the drawing only. So it is not in 3D as a solid mesh and then needs to be created in another 3d modeling software such as SketchUp.
3.3: Export a DAE file?
There is no Export to Collada DAE in SOLIDWORKS. Import yes, but no export/SaveAs to a DAE file (Collada format) and import it in Lumion.
3.4: Okino converter:
Use this third party 3D converter tool. It lists SOLIDWORKS as a software for direct conversion to other formats such as FBX and Collada DAE that Lumion might be able to import (not tested).
- External Link: Importing and Converting from SOLIDWORKS CAD Files
4. Tips & Troubleshooting
4.1: Why can't you see the model after importing and placing it in your Scene?
The Insertion Point for the Imported Model in Lumion corresponds to 0,0,0 in SOLIDWORKS.
If a model is far away from the Insertion Point in Lumion, you need to move the model closer to 0,0,0 in SOLIDWORKS, before exporting it to Lumion.
4.2: Why can't you assign a Lumion Material to individual surfaces?
Lumion will always combine surfaces that use the same material in SOLIDWORKS. If you want to assign a Lumion Material to a specific surface, you must assign a unique material to that surface in SOLIDWORKS before importing the model.
- Knowledge Base: What CAD software is compatible with Lumion?
- Knowledge Base: How do you import a model from your CAD software?