GrabCAD Print for SOLIDWORKS

In this article:

How to get the add-in

The SOLIDOWORKS add-in is included in the GrabCAD Print installer. SOLIDWORKS versions 2014 through 2017 are supported (64-bit only).

If you already have GrabCAD Print installed:

  1. Go to "Add or Remove Programs" (also known as Programs and Features) in the Windows Control Panel
  2. Find GrabCAD Print and click "Uninstall/Change"
  3. Click Add-ins

If you do not already have GrabCAD Print installed:

  1. Sign up and download the installer
  2. During the installation, make sure the option to include the add-in is checked. If you do not see the option to include the add-in, make sure you have a supported version of SOLIDWORKS installed. 

How to use the add-in

1

Log in

Log in by opening the Task Pane, then choose your  company account

2

Open a part, then open the Print Preparation tool

Printing an assembly file is not supported in the GrabCAD Print SOLIDWORKS add-in, but you can do that in the GrabCAD Print desktop application.

3

Select your printer

This list shows the printers in your network with UPnP enabled, the remote printers connected through your company account (cloud icon), as well as offline printers (-x- icon).

The selected materials show what is currently loaded in the printer, but you can change materials if you plan to change them on the printer before starting the job. The available slice heights are the same as in GrabCAD Print, as well as Insight and Catalyst. 

4

Set up your tray

As soon as you open the Print Preparation tool, you can go straight into re-orienting the part. With a single click, you can pick a face to be facing down, and then the automatic tray layout will put this in an optimized location for the selected printer. 

For more orientation controls, uncheck the "Automatic tray layout" checkbox.  Adjust the scale with the Scaling box, or hit Scale to fit to print the largest possible scale in the current orientation. For advanced tessellation controls, go to the Options tab: 

If you hit the green checkmark to exit Print Preparation, your print settings will be maintained as part of the .SLDPRT file when you save it.

5

Print, save, or view estimates

In the Actions group, you can choose between:

  • Estimate - shows time and material consumption estimations.  
  • Print - sends the job to the currently selected printer.
  • Open in Desktop - Closes the add-in and opens the GrabCAD Print desktop application with your tray. This is how you access more advanced print prep, such as multiple parts per tray, Slice Preview, and printing to a J750. 
  • Save As... - Allows you to save a GrabCAD Print project file, or an STL of the current tray layout. 

Hit "Go" to perform the selected action. 

The estimation results also show your tessellation settings and a thumbnail of the tray:

Results can be exported as .CSV, .XLS, and .HTML.

When you Print, you can go to the Schedule view online to see the status of your job. If you don't have GrabCAD Print Server set up, you will need to open the GrabCAD Print desktop application to see the schedule view.

Known limitations

All of the features listed below are available in the GrabCAD Print desktop application.
The SOLIDWORKS add-in cannot... 

  • ...print directly from a .SLDASM file.
  • ...print multiple bodies in a part assembled.
  • ...prepare multiple trays at once.
  • ...print with non-default infill and support styles. 
  • ...print to the J750 printer.
  • ...show a Slice Preview.
  • ...let the user drag models freely around the tray.

Additionally, the SOLIDWORKS add-in cannot be open at the same time as the GrabCAD Print desktop application.

Use the "Send Wish" button to send us your feedback and questions directly from within SOLIDWORKS.

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