SOLIDWORKS 2019 What’s New – Segmented Imported Mesh Body Tool – #SW2019


New to SOLIDWORKS 2019 is a Segment Imported Mesh Body tool. This new tool group portions of a mesh BREP body into faces bounded by sharp corners, planar faces, and cylindrical faces. This Segment Imported Mesh Body tool looks at extracting:

  • Groups of faces that form planar and cylindrical faces
  • Faces that are separated by sharp or creasing angles
  • planar faces in a mesh BREP body so they can be used as sketch planes, references, etc.

This tool is best used with CAD files that are exported to mesh (STL/OBJ/OFF/PLY/PLY2) and then re-imported back into SOLIDWORKS and converted to mesh BREP bodies. Although there is a chance this Segmented Imported Mesh Body tool can work with scanned files with more organic geometry, these types of files often have irregular geometry that this tool will not be able to segment.

First, to utilize this new feature, you will need to specify Import Options for STL/OBJ/OFF/PLY/PLY2. Within SOLIDWORKS 2019, go to Tools > Options, System Options tab and select the Import section. Select the options to Import as Solid Body and to Create mesh bodies bounded by single faces.

When a mesh BREP file is imported into SOLIDWORKS 2019 with these settings, the facet lines within the mesh files are visible. Furthermore, segments can now be created for crease angles.

Once the mesh BREP file has been imported, right click on the Imported1 item in the FeatureManager tree and select Segmented Imported Mesh Body.

Within the Segmenting section, select on Crease Angle and Select Bodies and within the graphics area select on the mesh BREP body and click OK. Note that when using this new tool, it’s probably a good idea to use the Pin at the top of the PropertyManager to prevent the dialog from closing for subsequent Segment Mesh commands.

Regarding the Crease Angle Tolerance, as tolerance is decreased, the preview detects more angular faces; as the tolerance is increased, the preview detects less angular faces. The images below show the differences in faces detected for 75 degrees Crease Angle Tolerance versus 9 degrees.

Under Segmenting, click on Planar Segments and Select Body and then within the graphics area, as before, select the mesh BREP body and click OK.

Finally, under Segmenting, click on the Cylindrical Segments button and again, Select Body, and within the graphics area, select the mesh BREP body and select OK.

Once finished, the FeatureManager design tree shows the different features: the angular, planar, and cylindrical segments respectively as Segment Mesh1, Segment Mesh2, and Segment Mesh3. As with most features in the FeatureManager design tree, you can modify these features by right-clicking on them and selecting Edit Feature.

I hope this part of the What’s New series gives you a better understanding of the new features and functions of SOLIDWORKS 2019. Please check back to the CATI Blog as the CATI Application Engineers will continue to break down many of the new items in SOLIDWORKS 2019. All these articles will be stored in the category of “SOLIDWORKS What’s New.”

Nathan Marsh
Sr. Support Engineer
Computer Aided Technology

Design Innovation Month – October 2018
What is DI MONTH?

CATI is declaring October Design Innovation MONTH.  We’ve created a month-long series of events and activities around design innovation especially for our customers.  Attend a SOLIDWORKS 2019 event, enter our rendering contest, and learn about some cool tips and tricks at the daily online events. Plan your month at