How to Use Older Versions of SOLIDWORKS with VXelements

YOU! You like to be on the cutting edge of technology in your industry, right? RIGHT! That’s why you have a Creaform 3D scanner and SOLIDWORKS. (Or you’re interested and that’s why you’re reading our amazing blogs.)

However, being on the bleeding edge of technology can cause some confusion sometimes and that’s okay!

For instance: because you’re such a trailblazer you definitely have SOLIDWORKS 2020 on your computer but there might be some small bugs here and there when using VXelements to transfer entities as you reverse engineer your part. (Don’t know what I mean by reverse engineer? Read my previous blog introducing the two main uses of 3D scanners, reverse engineering and inspection)

So far, SOLIDWORKS 2020 hasn’t been fully been tested by Creaform and just like any initial software release there are some small bugs here and there that you might find annoying. This is why our Manufacturing Solutions team currently recommends using SOLIDWORKS 2019 in conjunction with VXelements instead of 2020. However, VXelements will select the most recent version of SOLIDWORKS on your machine which means it will default to 2020.

There is a way around this and you don’t even have to be a technological genius (even though you are) to utilize it! As you may have experienced while reverse engineering, if you transfer an entity to SOLIDWORKS by right clicking your entity, selecting “Transfer selected entities to…”, and then selecting SOLIDWORKS, it will open up SOLIDWORKS and a Part file for you. This is super convenient but is also contradictory to what we want in this case.

Instead, all you need to do is have SOLIDWORKS 2019 (or another version) already open in a part file. This will cause any entities you create and transfer will go to this version instead of 2020! Huzzah! You hacked the system!


I hope this quick little post was helpful and informative. Don’t forget to check out our other blogs for more information on 3D Scanners, 3D Printers, or SOLIDWORKS!

Nathan Fears
Application Engineer – 3D Scanners & SOLIDWORKS
Computer Aided Technology, LLC

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