SVG Export local alternative

EDIT: It’s here! SVG Export local alternative - #9 by Seb_Shapr3D

While waiting for a native Shaper3D SVG export option, I found a method that can be used to produce SVG files completely on the iPad.

I had been using Mac software (Fusion 360) to convert a file exported from Shaper3D as a STEP file to SVG. This worked fine but required going to the desktop, which in my case meant leaving the shop. Obviously being able to accomplish everything on the tablet is preferred.

There is a very basic freeware CAD app available in the App store called TinkerCad. It is oriented toward young people as a way to design shapes for projects like Lego and Minecraft. More to the point, it allows importing STL and OBJ files and exporting SVG files.

TinkerCad handles creating the two dimensional SVG vector graphic via it’s working grid plane. The section of a body intersecting the plane becomes the SVG image.

My process is to export a body from S3D as STL, import it into Tinkercad, orient and move the body such that it intersects the grid plane at the point the desired SVG image is produced, then export as an SVG. I plan expanding this technique to “slice” bodies successively as needed for maker type projects.

One note, the bounding lines created in the resulting SVG file are minuscule. Depending upon how the file is observed, it may appear empty. I use the files for Shaper Origin projects and at first I thought something was wrong. Once imported to the workstation and viewed at working detail, I could see the lines were there.

I post to assist others in getting SVG files from S3D. The Shapr3D development team might also use the idea of a body and a selected intersecting plane as the straightforward basis for an exported SVG.

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I’m on the BoD of The Discovery Cube in Orange County, Ca. I donated ten 3D printers To the Cube for educational programs, and we began with TInkerCAD. The we began transitioning to Shapr3D for the advanced students, as it’s free for educational institutions. We use both TinkerCAD and Shapr3D together, as TinkerCAD has text creation, which we export to Shapr3D.

An excellent additional suggestion for text that never occurred to me. I am eager to try it.

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Hi @Fillister, thanks for sharing this. I saw from your other post that you are using SVGs as inputs to the Shaper Origin (super cool product! :smiley:). I saw that it relies on color coding as an input to the router about what type of cut to use. What is your workflow to add that information to the SVG?


I agree, Shaper Origin is incredible and combined with Shapr3D for project design is exceptional.

It’s true that colors applied to the bounded areas in the SVG file specify the cut types. But I have found in the majority of cases I have never bothered with the extra step of coloration anyway. The on tool cut menu provides cut type. So I import an SVG image of a mortise for example; display the cut menu, specify cut depth and designate the cut as being inside the mortise bounding line. Color does not matter, I simply tell Shaper Origin what I want it to do while cutting.

When there is a reason for coloration, I use InkScape on my Mac to open the SVG and color the bounded area. I have looked at some options on the iPad, but learning yet another iPad application for just coloration is more effort than I want presently. (Plus I am hoping the Shapr3D team will be giving me and maker community an SVG option before too much more time has past)


Thanks for the insight, that is good to know. I will explore SVG export and interoperability with CNC machines like the Shaper Origin and see if it is something we can work on. I will keep you posted.

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I volunteer my time to assist with any testing should the need arise, My career was as a developer, so I am familiar with the process and constraints.


I just got my Shaper Origin and i was so sure I could use Shapr3D so now I’m a bit sad. I also purchased a 1 year subscription on Shapr3D so I’m really missing the SVG right now.

Shapr3D 4.9 is now available on the App Store and includes SVG Export. In this first release it will export any sketches from your model to SVG, meaning that if you want to use this to make cuts (with a CNC or laser tool) of the faces of a 3D model you should first project those faces to the base plane.
We have however added the option to save connected lines as a polyline. If you are planning to use the exported SVG for any kind of cutting make sure to select this option to ensure a smooth continuity of the machine’s operations.

We would love to see some examples and stories of how you use this and hear your feedback about the feature. If we see significant usage and demand we have some other ideas for future improvements such as being able to generate the SVG directly from face selections.


Hi, could you point me in the right direction on how to project faces to the base plane? :slight_smile:

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Hi, sure! :slight_smile: Please follow the steps below:

  1. Double-tap on the orientation cube to get everything back to the default position
  2. Select Project from the tools
  3. Select the body to project
  4. Select the grid to project onto
  5. Make sure that the Projection Type is Sketches (The option between the Done and Cancel buttons)

It is still a hassel to use Shapr3D svg for the shaper origin color coding could solve things.
Did you ever contact shaper tools for a add in like thee have with fusion?


Hi Mike,

Yes, we have been in contact with shaper tools to learn more about their needs regarding svg. At the current stage we are aiming for a general export solution and having specific solutions like colour coding is further down on the roadmap.


Support for my Shaper unit is very exciting! As an aside, the addition of line color support in exportable 2D drawings will make integration with my laser cutter, and my two vinyl cutters possible as well!

Line color support will also aid in my design work… I have often wished I could color all my “helper guides” one color, leaving the lines I use for forming 3D shapes another. The idea that maybe in the future we could simply hide those helper guides by line color instead of deleting them is very cool, indeed.

These are updates I am very much looking forward to… keep up the good work!


Indeed, it would be a great help if Shapr3D would allow the creation of an SVG file from a face selection. I’m still trying to figure out what Shapr3D really does when exporting to SVG. I usually get a zip file with 2 or more SVG files. Where can I find more info about the logic of the SVG export ?
Another approach would be to export from a view on a drawing. Currently there is however no provision for SVG files !
Any help will be much appreciated as I truly would like to use Shapr3D for my work with Origin. And by the way, I currently import SVG files from Shapr3D into Shaper Studio which allows me to easily define cut depths and profiles. I juts wish I had better control about what exactly appears in the SVG file created with Shapr3D.