- File formats supported
- Controls in the 3D viewer
- Problems viewing your file?
- System requirements
File formats supported
All types of files can be hosted and managed on GrabCAD
Additionally, the following formats can be previewed in the viewer:
|CAD FILE FORMATS||Software||File Extension||Versions Supported by Viewer||
|Autodesk||Inventor||IAM, IPT||Up to 2017||Yes|
|AutoCAD||DWG, DXF||Limited support||No|
|Dassault Systemes||CATIA V4||MODEL, SESSION, DLV, EXP||Up to 4.2.5||Yes|
||CATIA V5||CATPART, CATPRODUCT, CATSHAPE, CGR||
R4 to V5-6 R2016 (R26)
||CATIA V6||3DXML||2011 - 2013x||No|
||SolidWorks||SLDASM, SLDPRT||Up to 2017||Yes|
||Pro/ENGINEER / Creo||ASM, NEU, PRT, XAS, XPR||Pro/ENGINEER 19 - Creo Parametric 3.0||Yes|
|Siemens||I-deas||MF1, ARC, UNV, PKG||Up to 13.x (NX 5), NX I-deas 6||Yes|
||JT||JT||Up to 10.0||Yes|
||NX||PRT||Unigraphics V11.0 to NX 11.0||Yes|
||Parasolid||X_B, X_T, XMT, XMT_TXT||Up to v28.1||Yes|
||Solid Edge||ASM, PAR, PWD, PSM||V19 - 20, ST - ST9||Yes|
|Neutral||IGES||IGES, IGS||5.1, 5.2, 5.3||Yes|
||STEP||STP, STEP, STP.Z||AP 203 E1/E2, AP 214, AP 242||Yes|
||VRML||WRL, VRML||V1.0 and V2.0||No|
|Other||ACIS||SAT, SAB||Up to v26.0||Yes|
||Industry Foundation Classes (IFC)||IFC, IFCZIP||IFC2x Editions 2, 3 and 4||No|
||Stereo Lithography||STL||All versions||No|
||Universal 3D||U3D||ECMA-363, 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Editions||No|
||VDA-FS||VDA||Version 1.0 and 2.0||
|Images||JPG, PNG, GIF, BMP|
|Documents||TXT, PDF (2D)|
*Advanced features include geometry-specific measurement options (face-to-face, length of edge, etc) and more file formats available under "Download As..."
Conversion to neutral format ("Download as...")
Nearly all CAD files can be converted to .STL using the "Download as..." feature under the File Options menu. If advanced features are available (see above) the following formats are available:
- STEP (.stp)
- IGES (.igs)
- STL (.stl)
- Parasolid (.x_t)
- ACIS (.sat)
- JT (.jt)
- VRML (.wrl)
After selecting which file format you would like to download your file as, we will start the conversion and email you when the file is ready. This may take several minutes depending on file size and complexity.
Controls in the 3D viewer
Mouse and keyboard controls
While in the viewer you can use various mouse and keyboard actions to manipulate the model. The various functions are outlined below.
|Rotate||left-click and drag|
|Pan||right-click and drag|
|Roll||left-click and drag in the corner of the viewer|
|Zoom||scroll wheel or two-finger scroll on a touchpad|
|Zoom to fit||double-left-click or "F" key|
|Select feature *||left-click on a feature to show its properties|
|Select solid *||shift+left-click on a feature to select the solid body and show its properties|
|Select multiple features *||ctrl+left-click on multiple features to show their contained properties|
|Hide Body||right-click on a component and select "Hide"|
|Isolate Body||right-click on a component and select "Isolate"|
|Show All Bodies||right-click on a component and select "Show all"|
* New feature!
Available only on select file types
You can review these by clicking the question mark at the top right of the viewer which will bring up a help menu.
Views and manual controls
At the top right of the viewer there are red controls which allow you to change how you view your model.
The manual controls are
- Rotate: arrow buttons
- Zoom: - and + buttons
- Return to default view: center dot button
- Default views: "Views" button
You can select a feature (face, edge, or vertex) and properties will appear around the selection. This is only supported for file types where precise geometry (called BREP) is available. This excludes tessellation-only file types such as STL, as well as Inventor files, whose BREP data cannot be read by the GrabCAD viewer. These selection properties will also not be available for assemblies with missing components. Check the lower left corner of the viewer window for "## dependent files not found."
You can also select a whole body using shift-click to get other properties such as volume.
You can measure separation between two features by using ctrl-click.
The assembly tree
The assembly view options allows you to see all the components and sub-components of an assembly in the viewer. When clicking "assembly view" button at the top of the viewer a window will appear in the top left corner of the viewer. In here you can check or uncheck the box next to a component's name in order to hide or reveal that component.
The explode option allows you to virtually pull the components apart in the viewer. When clicking this option a window with a slider will appear. Moving the slider to the right will separate the parts and moving to the left will bring them back together.
Section (cutting plane)
The section option will open a window which allows you to virtually slice through your model to see the inside components. You have the option to choose the axis in which the cutting plane is displayed in the viewer. You can drag the arrow on the cutting plane to move it back and forth through the model.
The measure tool option located at the top will allow you to measure the distances of the components in the viewer. There are several differnt options on how to measure component which is outlined below.
length of edge
||Select to measure the length of two selected edges|
radius or diameter of edge
||Select to measure the radius or diameter|
distance between faces
||Select to measure the distance between two selected faces|
distance between points
||Select to measure the distance between two selected points|
angle between faces
||Select to measure the angle between two different selected faces|
||Select the unit of measurement (mm, cm, m, in, ft, ft-in)|
The 3d compare tool lets you compare different versions of your CAD model. This option is at the top of the viewer and opens a window allowing you to select which versions and configurations to compare, a slider to switch between the different versions, increasing or decreasing transparency, and an option to colorize the differences between versions. You are also able to compare to another file which will prompt you to select the file you want to compare.
Problems viewing your file?
Sometimes you may find that the GrabCAD viewer does not match the default view in your CAD system. Some known limitations include:
- Material appearances and surface decals are not displayed, except with some Sketchup (.skp) files
- Component colors may not display properly depending on if the color was applied at the assembly or part level
- Very large files or complex files may not be viewable, or may be slow and hard to manipulate
Notice something else that looks wrong? Let our support team know by clicking the link in the lower left corner:
Assemblies need to have their component files present in the project or in a common parts library project before or during upload in order to be viewed properly, except for SolidWorks assemblies which can be viewed without any component files. If components are missing or were uploaded after the assembly you will see one of these messages:
Click these messages for more information. If you are the author of the file, you will see the paths of the missing files, otherwise you will just see file names.
For help gathering all component files into one project see How to get your assembly's files together.
If you are having trouble with viewing configurations, see How to view assembly configurations.
If your files is failing to process for viewing, please check the list of supported file formats below.
For further support, visit Google Chrome Help.
The viewer should work by default in Firefox. If it does not, try the following:
- Type about:config in address bar.
- Type webgl in the search box.
- To enable WebGL, set webgl.force-enabled to true.
Still not working? If you’re on Windows, try this:
- Set layers.acceleration.force-enabled to true.
- Set gfx.direct2d.force-enabled to true.
For further support, visit Firefox Help.
To view files in 3D, please enable WebGL in Safari:
- Open the Safari menu and select Preferences.
- Open the Advanced tab, check Show Develop menu in menu bar.
- Open the Develop menu in the menu bar and select Enable WebGL.
For now, the 3D Viewer is not supported in Safari for Windows or Macbook Pro with Retina Display.
If you are seeing problems in the 3D viewer on Internet Explorer 11, such as 3D compare or section view, please make sure you are running Version 11.0.7 or later. You can find this out what version you are currently running by going to Settings --> About Internet Explorer
Graphics card requirements
We use the latest technology to provide the most benefit to our users. Unfortunately, our 3D Viewer does not support these older graphics cards:
All operating systems
- NVIDIA GeForce FX Go5200
- Intel GMA 945
- ATI FireMV 2400
- ATI Radeon HD4200
- ATI Radeon 2600 series
- ATI Radeon X1900
- ATI Radeon HD 6490M on OS X 106.
- GeForce 7300 GT
- AMD/ATI cards
- Nvidia QuadroFX1500
- Nvidia cards with Nouveau drivers
- Nvidia cards with Nvidia drivers older than 295
- Optimus dual-GPU configurations
- Intel Mesa drivers earlier than 7.9