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Turning a vector image into a sketch

ptc-4827481
1-Newbie

Turning a vector image into a sketch

Hey-- I'm creating a trophy using Creo Parametic (for the 3D printing award given at Minnesota FIRST Technical Challenge State Championship), and I was wondering whether I could use a vector image obtained from the logo of the sponsor of the award (Stratasys) and import that straight into sketch, or otherwise avoid having to somehow trace over the original image. I've been looking through a bunch of threads on PTC communities, but besides saying that it's really easy, nobody seems to actually provide instructions on importing a vector image.

--Nick Aarestad

FRC Team 2220

Eagan FIRST Robotics

1 ACCEPTED SOLUTION

Accepted Solutions

You will probably not be able to import it straight into a sketch, but it's likely you won't have to draw it from scratch. In fact, I'd recommend against importing it into a sketch because doing so causes Sketcher to have to work out possibly thousands of equations to govern the geometry. The equations in anticipation of changing the sketch - which is a logo - which you are unlikely to want to change.

From the end result to the start ->

The approach I usually use is to create a datum curve based on an IGES (.igs) format file. The datum curve can be used as a basis to make a sketch (like use-edge or offset-edge) or as sketch references. Since the datum curve is not constraint driven, there aren't any complicated constraints or equations to create or manage or regenerate.

I typically create the IGES file using by exporting the graphics from a drawing. This can be advantageous because the original artwork often comes with undesired extras - borders, for example.

The artwork gets on the drawing by importing it as a .dxf or .dwg file, but there are other filetypes that are available, including IGES.

The .dxf or .dwg files are exported from programs like Adobe Illustrator or using pstoedit along with Ghostscript with Ghostview. pstoedit and Ghostscript with Ghostview are free programs that are handy to have for CAD and graphics work.

The reason Illustrator and Ghostscript and Ghostview are handy is that most professional publication is done using the PDF file format and Illustrator and Ghostscript with Ghostview can read that file type.

So PDF-(1)->DXF or DWG -(2)->IGES -(3)-> datum curve.

1) Adobe Illustrator or Ghostscript with Ghostview and pstoedit

2) Creo Detail

3) Creo

While it seems complicated and will be complicated the first time, the conversion process is faster than I have typed these instructions.

If you have a different starting format you might skip the first conversion or perform a different one.

The reason I worked this out is to rapidly model purchased parts for which only catalog pages are available for documentation. Mounting provisions are usually dimensioned, but the locations of air vents and electrical plugs aren't. Since those details are important to conceptual design the model needs them, but since their precision is not critical it isn't worth non-disclosure agreements. PDF versions of the items are available in catalogs and brochures; converting them makes for rapid model design. In particular, many brochures have 3-views; taking them through the drawing step allows the linework for each of the views to be separated onto individual sheets for import into correct orienation relative to coordinate systems.

The result is a wireframe that can be referenced to create any solid geometry desired; geometry which carries all the detail the vendor cared to display (2000 vent holes? No problem) without complicating the model with unusable features.

View solution in original post

4 REPLIES 4
sm
1-Newbie
1-Newbie
(To:ptc-4827481)

What is the format of your vector file? Can you share a sample?

ptc-4827481
1-Newbie
(To:sm)

My file is in Adobe Illustrator native format, but I can convert it. I assume you're asking for the vector version of the logo? If so, here it is, uploaded to Google Drive.

You will probably not be able to import it straight into a sketch, but it's likely you won't have to draw it from scratch. In fact, I'd recommend against importing it into a sketch because doing so causes Sketcher to have to work out possibly thousands of equations to govern the geometry. The equations in anticipation of changing the sketch - which is a logo - which you are unlikely to want to change.

From the end result to the start ->

The approach I usually use is to create a datum curve based on an IGES (.igs) format file. The datum curve can be used as a basis to make a sketch (like use-edge or offset-edge) or as sketch references. Since the datum curve is not constraint driven, there aren't any complicated constraints or equations to create or manage or regenerate.

I typically create the IGES file using by exporting the graphics from a drawing. This can be advantageous because the original artwork often comes with undesired extras - borders, for example.

The artwork gets on the drawing by importing it as a .dxf or .dwg file, but there are other filetypes that are available, including IGES.

The .dxf or .dwg files are exported from programs like Adobe Illustrator or using pstoedit along with Ghostscript with Ghostview. pstoedit and Ghostscript with Ghostview are free programs that are handy to have for CAD and graphics work.

The reason Illustrator and Ghostscript and Ghostview are handy is that most professional publication is done using the PDF file format and Illustrator and Ghostscript with Ghostview can read that file type.

So PDF-(1)->DXF or DWG -(2)->IGES -(3)-> datum curve.

1) Adobe Illustrator or Ghostscript with Ghostview and pstoedit

2) Creo Detail

3) Creo

While it seems complicated and will be complicated the first time, the conversion process is faster than I have typed these instructions.

If you have a different starting format you might skip the first conversion or perform a different one.

The reason I worked this out is to rapidly model purchased parts for which only catalog pages are available for documentation. Mounting provisions are usually dimensioned, but the locations of air vents and electrical plugs aren't. Since those details are important to conceptual design the model needs them, but since their precision is not critical it isn't worth non-disclosure agreements. PDF versions of the items are available in catalogs and brochures; converting them makes for rapid model design. In particular, many brochures have 3-views; taking them through the drawing step allows the linework for each of the views to be separated onto individual sheets for import into correct orienation relative to coordinate systems.

The result is a wireframe that can be referenced to create any solid geometry desired; geometry which carries all the detail the vendor cared to display (2000 vent holes? No problem) without complicating the model with unusable features.

Thank you! This worked really well.

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