How to edit stl file?!

Would asking if it’s possible to edit an stl file.


Having this stl and I need to delete the “U” base…

Hi - you can use boolean operations - like in this case you can create a body, and then subtract that body from your STL. Would this help?

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I tried to create a body, but I don’t know how to extract it… I think I can just extrude :weary:

Hey - there is a subtract tool. Here is how to use it:

Also, we have put together an article on how you can modify your STL imports:

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Thank you so much :pray:

I have an stl file of a sign. I am just wanting to make the sign thicker. Not larger in any other way. Can this be done in shapr 3d? I just purchased shapr3d last night mainly for the ability of modifying stl files. It reads that you can import them. But if you can just import and not modify, I don’t see the use of it. So without this ability I will be canceling my year subscription. Is there a video or walk-thru that will assist me with this and other stl file issues? Thank you.

Hi Vincent, please can you share a screenshot of your design lets see if we can suggest a workaround.
Currently, STL files can only be modified in the app using the Boolean tools (intersect, Union or subtract).

It usually involves creating a new body that you will then use to modify the imported design with the Boolean tool that best works depending on the result you want.

Here’s our great short video on using the tools:

In this instance I am wanting to thicken the sign as it is too thin for my needs. How can I achieve this? Thank you.

Vincent, something to keep in mind, is that an STL is an “export” format, and not an editable format. It’s not a limitation of Shaper 3D, but rather a limitation of the file format. Usually one would use the 3d file for editing. An stl is an object essentially. Once you save a file to an STL, it has limited use outside of being a 3d model. I would seriously consider before I cancelled anything. Dude, I came up from tinkercad, then moved up to the “big boy” Autodesk products. In the last 3 weeks since buying Shapr, I’ve designed exclusively in it. It’s so easy! When I say easy, I mean my 12 year old is designing hinged and jointed parts, and 3d printing on his own now. It’s insane how powerful this app is! If you have a vector of the sign, I’d start from scratch. Import it, and make your sign 200% better, because you’ll have access to all of the features, instead of only Boolean edits. This app changed my game !


Thank you for your comments. I understand but it would save a great deal of time to be able to just modify as their are thousands of files that I would like to 3D print, I am not a designer or artist in any form so it would save a great deal of time to be able to just tweak a file to what I want and not completely reinvent the wheel in a sense. No disrespect intended. I’m not selling them so I am not concerned with using someone else’s work to my benefit. It is just a hobby and fun for me. How would I obtain or create this vector you mentioned?

A vector is an image that contains the information necessary to fill in the spaces between pixels when you scale it. They’re basically infinitely scaleable files. You can vectorize images using many different apps. One of my favorites, is a program called inkscape. It’s actually completely free! I actually use it more than I use My adobe creative cloud, as they have many plugins that are useful for my CNC, Vacuum forming, and Laser cutting, and Plasma CNC machines. it’s almost the “standard” these days for those who use CNC driven machines. Vectorizing an image makes it usable in anything from Tinkercad, to adobe illustrator. Watch a Youtube video or two. You’ll get the hang of it in minutes!

Can I vectorize a stl file?

A vector is a 2d file. You can extrude them into a 3d file, and create a cad file, but there is no way to turn a completed .stl into multiple parts… well, ALMOST no way! Sometimes you can get lucky, and in your slicer program, you can break an .stl apart into its original parts, but this is only if it was saved before the different bodies were joined. Once they are joined, or grouped, the properties for the individual components are discarded, and it becomes one part. Look at it this way, an .stl is a brick. A step file is Legos. You can’t take the brick apart, it’s a brick. You can cut portions of an .stl file off, and add new parts, but you cannot disassemble it for editing. With LEGO blocks, you can break it apart and change it. When I design a part, I always un-group it before exporting to an .stl. This way if I have a small tweak I need to make, I can do it right in the sliver, instead of going back to cad, changing, then re-exporting it.