Best STL viewer/editor?


What's the best STL viewer/editor?
I know that most CAD applications can open the STL format but they are not very efficient. I guess that there are more specialized ones able to work better and faster with these files.


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17 Answers

I find this free viewer (3D-Tool Free Viewer) works well for checking .stl files:

Make sure to click the second Download button from the top to download the free viewer.

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That one is the one I'm currently using because I also thing is not too bad.


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Thanks for the suggestion....just got it and so far looks promising! I am able to view and get measurements of the parts in the STL file! So glad I don't have to import those files into a CAD software and figure out a way to measure the part that way!! Whew! Dodged a bullet thanks to this!

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I programmed to view STL files because the other programs were not efficient. It’s so fast you can browse a folder full of STLs in seconds.

There’s a performance comparison with other programs on that page. No editing files, though.

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I have been using a a trial of 3Matic... This allows me to analyse, fix & repair, edit, add/remove features from stl, open multiple stls in assembly, and create features (like mounting points through extrusions and cuts)...

This is very useful software and you can edit parts just like in a standard CAD format, but with meshs and stls! So it allows you to skip the reverse engineering process and modify directly to stls. It is also expensive at around 3000 dollar bills!

Does anyone know of any similar software that is cheap/cheaper or free???

This would help massively with my work!!

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Thanks for the tip about Meshlabs! Worked perfectly.

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You could try "netfabb Studio basic" - free tool for import of STL and you could also export in some other format. It could repair, analyse, stitch and more...but you have to GOOGLE it as the version for free is not any longer on their website.

Another tool for just viewing is "eDrawings 2014" from Solid Works. Works fine. You just have to register to download.

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First there is no need to have a 3d stl viewer if you have a 3D printer.
But like some of you already said 3DTOOL is for me the best tool to view STL files and other CAD files. And it does have some nice features also, like a RP build platform simulator to see if your design fits on a specific 3D printer. Measuring tools and annotation tools and cross section tools also.
What i like the most is the ability to send a 3d model to a client that does not have any 3d cad applications at all. Simply send a 3d tool format file to a client. And they simply click on it and open the file without the need to have a expensive CAD software. And here comes the glory it does uninstall automatically if you close the file.
you can also make some animated views like in solidworks eDrawings.
Or exploded views... Simply great !
But if you really need to do some fysical adjustments like repairs...I think Meshlab is indeed the best choice.

Comments 0 is the best I've found (and I've tried all of the above). Free, lightweight, fast loading browser.

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Here is a cloud based STL viewer (free and no installation is required. Just use you web-browser):

Note: It is currently in early stages of development.

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ArtisGL 3D Publisher is the universal easy-to-use 3D tool, which allows to import 3D content (supports about 40 3D formats), view, design and edit it. ArtisGL 3D Publisher provides several options for publishing and distributing high quality 3D content in different ways and formats.
ArtisGL 3D publisher is available for free download from Windows 10 store

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This one can be an alternative -
It is free, you have to complete form for download.

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