SketchUp STL
Import and Export STL files for 3D printing
SketchUp STL

The STL file format is widely used across different 3D printing and modeling interfaces. For instance, many of the models you might find on Thingiverse.com are available in STL format, and several popular 3D printers accept STL files to prepare models for fabrication. This extension provides import/export functionality for STL files to and from SketchUp, so you can easily export SketchUp groups to STL, or import an STL design and manipulate it within SketchUp.

Once you install the extension, you’ll find two new options under the File menu:

Export STL: This function requires you to select one or more groups for export (so you’ll need to group your geometry before using this).

Import... (STL): With this plugin, you’ll find STL as a supported format within SketchUp’s Import command. STL files will be imported to SketchUp as a group.

For questions or help with this extension, head on over to the SketchUp help forum.

Note: This extension was originally developed as separate plugins by Jim Foltz, Nathan Bromham, and Konrad Shroeder. Now, it’s in continual development as an open-source project on GitHub that’s hosted by the SketchUp team. Stay tuned for updates!

Reviews

Julie V's picture

I'm having the same error - any tips? thanks!

works fine, thank you

MLG_Master X.'s picture

works brilliant!

Rafik A's picture

when import STL file the program stops responding ...specially with size more than 3MB file

Jhoni G.'s picture

very nice, it worked for being first time and running this small personal project.

Alberto V.'s picture

Mu bueno! Refrescante y excitante

igor I.'s picture

STL Import is not working in SketchUp 2016 (windows 8 x64). Please, fix!

Rob D.'s picture

I'm having some trouble when importing STL files. If I try to upload an STL-file, SketchUp sais it's 'Importing geometry...', but at the moment it starts importing geometry, SketchUp bugs, it freezes and stops responding, so I have to close the program. How can I fix this problem? Does someone have this issue too?

Antoni P.'s picture

But... How can I open a STL file?

h's picture
h

when i try to import an STL file the program stops responding

Mike C.'s picture

How can I contact the developer?

I am running Sketchup 2016 on a Linux operating system, running in an emulator "Wine".

The problem is that when you export, the popup window with the 2 options is blank, and I cannot click on anything, so it does not even go to the save file window.

I am wondering if there is a way to bypass that popup window with the options and go directly to the "Save to file" window to choose where to save the file?

Marios S's picture

Well that's not sketchup's problem. This is really not a purpose of Wine and is very hard to fix the compatibility layer between nt and unix. Sooo you have better install Windows. I have dual boot Win 8.1 and Kubuntu

David H's picture

This is very helpful. I will try it on my next design. Thanks to Eric B and and William S.

Tim J.'s picture

This extension said it installed fine (both through the downloaded rbz file and through the extension warehouse). Unfortunately, neither seemed to change anything. I have no STL export option under the file menu (nor any other menu I can find)

James D.'s picture

I installed it. Seemed to work fine. But then when I import STL file, it says importing geometry, then repairing, Then done. BUT IT'S NOT LOADED. Am I missing something here?

I can export fine but import is not working

Johan E. B.'s picture

At first, the download seemed not working. Now it did. I have an .rbz file - what am I supposed to do with it?

Michel V.'s picture

Hey,

I didnt know what to do at first either. I wanted to send a model of a logo stamp to someone who wanted to print it for me, and he could only print STL files for some reason so I had to download this. in Sketchup, go to "window" - "peferences" - "extensions" - "Install extension..." and select it at "downloads". finally worked after hours of sweating. for some reason I am able to draw pretty complex shapes in Sketchup but I don't know anything about extensions or HTML code or whatever so it was quite a challenge for me, but I was able to find it ou.

af;lkj A.'s picture

Followup:

The STL Export option under the File menu isn't working for me.

By accident I found the Export option under the Tools menu instead.

THAT one works for me.

I also installed CADSpan which mentions that it has an STL Export option.

Between the two, I'm exporting STL now just fine.

Maybe this will help some others having problems.

af;lkj A.'s picture

I can't export. Using Make - Sketchup 2015.

I can import.

There's an "Export STL" option.

When I click on it, I get an STL Options" window
with nothing in it.

William S's picture

I also found it wasn't working in Sketchup 2016 until I uninstalled Sketchup 2015, when it suddenly started working again.

It's not easy or straightforward, that's for sure!

Kyungchan M.'s picture

Horrible process for installation of extensions.

Download does not work fix for 2016:

From within Sketchup 2016, go to Window-- > Extension Warehouse. Login. Find extension. Enable extension.

Hope this helps.

Kyungchan M.'s picture

Cannot get "install" button to show up to install this extension. Only "download" button shows which later does not work when trying to install the extension in 2016. Also, why a login needed to install a free extension? Another nudge towards Autodesk products.

stephen a's picture

Are you in a browser or in SketchUp Window->Extension Warehouse? Login makes it easier to manage your extensions on multiple machines, and not your assumption.

AMAL A.'s picture

hi since i install the extension, my sketchup is loading for very long time !!!
can you explain that plz ?

Gérald N.'s picture

I can't event instal the extension, does it work only with sketchup pro ?

William S's picture

Works on Sketchup Make, though maybe only for STL export?

What do you get when you:

Start Sketchup
Click on Window
Select Extension Warehouse
In the Upper right, click Sign In if it doesn't have your name
Log in using your Google Credentials (first time only)
In the search box at the top, enter stl and hit enter
In the results, select Sketchup STL by Sketchup Team

There _SHOULD_ be a box labelled "INSTALL", if it says "DOWNLOAD" then you didn't sign in, and it's not going to install (downloading doesn't work).

Alex S's picture

Worked for me, thanks!

Michael L.'s picture

Yes we did exactly this and it still doesn't work on Pro 2016, this is a problem with sketchup not us. it has my entire workload at a dead stop due to this reason.

William S's picture

Looks like it's not that simple, and there's a lot of additional complexity in there somewhere. When I upgraded to Sketchup 2016 it didn't work again and I couldn't install that no matter what I did, until I uninstalled Sketchup 2015 and then it worked. Or something like that. Not very stable software at any rate.

b

William, if you're having trouble, you can always upload to 3DWarehouse and click on the "I want this to be 3D printable." checkbox at the bottom of the page.  This will generate an STL file.  In the mean time, if you can provide us with any other details about how you think this didn't work, let us know, and we'll try to reproduce the error.

Gérald N.'s picture

It works !! Thank you very much William

Eric B.'s picture

Downloaded the stl extension to export the Sketchup file to my 3D printer but the image loads extremely small in my 3D printer software after exporting. I created the file using a scale in inches. How can I get it to export correctly?

j C.'s picture

Hi Eric,

im having the same problem, were you able to resolve this?

Eric B.'s picture

No, no one has responded. I need to find out how to convert my drawing to mm before exporting. Not sure if there is a way to do that without redrawing.

David H's picture

See what I wrote below; did you find any additional help or solutions?

Sam R's picture

Eric B.
No offense intended but perhaps the reason no one has replied is because the answer is so simple no one wants to offend.
Lets say you draw a line 10mm long. and save the file as 10mmlongline.skp then you re open the file only to have wished you drew a line
0.39370079 long. Sketchup does not care mm or inches. you need only to change your units in sketchup. this is pretty much the same in say AutoDesk's Autocad. UNITS UNITS UNITS... if you do a little research you would could see for your self.
Signed
"No one has responded" .

David H's picture

I have had the same issue as Eric B - I designed and generated an STL file for a coaster (like for under a glass or cup), and on Sketcher it is showing as a 74" wide, but when printed is 3" wide. It all scales proportionately, so it looks fine, but now I need to scale it up in SketchUp to get it to the 4" wide I wanted (I actually had to set it for 100" according to the measuring tool in SketchUp to get a roughly 4" object when printed). I am using a NewMatter Mod-T 3D printer.

It all scales proportionately, so it looks fine, but I have to use a scale of 25" in Sketchup = 1" in my 3D Printed object. This was true for another design also.

I am not sure why Eric B wanted to convert to mm, other than to see if it would scale as expected. So from my perspective the conversion does not matter, it is the scaling.
And for Eric B - Try selecting all components, and scale it up by 25 times when using the measuring tool. See if that is closer to what you want. If you have designed a 2" square, make it be 50" and see if that looks ok.

Eric B.'s picture

All I had to do was change my scale to mm and resave it as an stl file and it comes up just fine now. Problems like this others may criticize because of the easy fix but not as plain and simple to the new users like me. This was my first design that I created in 3D and using a new program for the first time. The default is inches, so I had no idea that my 3d printer would not like that scale. Thanks to those with helpful hits instead of criticism.

William S's picture

The problem is that your printer's slicing software is expecting mm, so your design in inches is causing issues.

My recommendation is to do all your design work in mm, then everything works out to be the right size, and you don't have to upscale everything by 25.4

Ryan J.'s picture

Built a model in inches and tried to export it in inches. Got a tiny little thing that wouldn't even print it was so small. I had to convert my model to mm and then export to mm before I was able to print at the correct size.

William S's picture

So here's the thing about installing versus downloading:

If you see a Download button (because it opened in your web browser), it's not going to work.

If you see an Install button (because you are logged into the extension warehouse using your Google credentials), then click on that and it'll work.

If you see a download button, go back to Extension Warehouse and log in using your google credentials...

Kyungchan M.'s picture

Tried this. Does not work.
Thanks though.

Joan Marc B's picture

I'm having some trouble when importing STL files.

Sketchup is recognizing STL format but not loading any geometry. In fact, Sketchup gets bugged

Any solution? Someone is having the same problem?

Thanks SU!

Rob D.'s picture

Did you solve this problem? I have the same problem and I don't know how to fix it...

丽婷 张.'s picture

211313

Kin Wai H.'s picture

thanks

Dany B.'s picture

merci beaucoup

prius R.'s picture

for all those people having problems installing this please note.
installing this from the website directly wont work.

you need to install it from inside sketchup.
theirs a link to install extensions at the top of the page.
choose this one and itll work.
good luck

Nic H.'s picture

Thanks! Super helpful.

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