View Full Version : AutoCAD and Lightwave

11-04-2003, 05:24 PM
Hi guys,

I am interested in knowing the best Tips&Tricks one can use to import 3D AutoCAd into Lightwave ...

I am using Lightwave 7.5 ... Some may say go for Export DXF or 3DS and import it directly into Lightwave Modeler then apply the textures ... Well that works fine for low-polygone models however once the model is toooooo complex as i am facing on daily basis :P then another solution is needed ....

I am actually interested in finding a plug-in or a 3rd-party software that does the same procedure 3DS Max use (i mean "Import DWG") where all layers keep the same naming and u can simply start adding textures ....

Attached one of the complex urban projects i am doing .... (Rendering 100% Lightwave;) )

Thanks in advance :)

Chadi :confused:

11-05-2003, 04:09 AM

i get similar problems when importing from vectorworks.

Ive got a piece of software from okino graphics called polytrans, you can get a cad plugin for it to convert from iges, dwg etc.etc.

download a demo from their website, i would give you a link but i cant remember it

11-05-2003, 01:02 PM
Thanks for the tip Kenshin_X_66 :D

I just searched for it .. The link is : http://www.okino.com/conv/filefrmt_3dimport.htm

i guess their demo is lovely ... Many formats covered ...
Do you recommend their software ?

** I think they're the only solution for the time being -- I am waiting to see some new Import/Export features in the new Lightwave version ;) -- **

11-05-2003, 06:27 PM
just got done with a situation like this. polytrans was the only solution for me. i was needing autocad files from a office furniture manufacturer and they are very detailed models to say the least. an entire cube farm along with task chairs was almost unmanageable. i slogged through it and got acceptable reuslts. you will have to play with object goupings and materials to get what you want. i also had problems with some faces being flipped. and some discontiguous polys too. some things were a little munched especially if we did a polygon reduce function. good luck and i hope it works out for you..


11-06-2003, 03:28 AM
Yes polytrans is what you need....

Great piece you have here.... where did you find that nice road texture...?


11-06-2003, 05:09 AM
Thanks for the info ... i guess i should test Polytrans .... i surely hope that Lightwave guys can make a deal with AutoDesk to give us some relief :D

Thanks herve ... the texture has been created via Photoshop ... I simply created some burning on the texture in specific places where the car wheels do not touch that part. I am attaching the texture anyway so u can have a look ;)

White/Yellow lines are constructed (AutoCad)

11-06-2003, 07:34 AM

yeah i definatley reccomend it, plus if your using autocad im pretty sure you can save as dxf, and if im right i dont think you need the cad package which is another 200 bucks.

weve used it here to bring in maya and iges into lightwave and to export as dxf's, max and maya all with no problems.

cool model by the way, did you do that all in autocad?

11-06-2003, 11:13 PM
Hey thanks alot for sharing Chad, it looks cool... definitly... (I thought it was a photo map....)

I forgot to ask you how many polys does your scene have..?

Cheers... Hervé

11-07-2003, 07:14 AM
i too, need to import autocad files into Lightwave, but my models are quite basic. Does this mean i can export the autocad files as 3ds. files and import them into Lightwave?

I have been trying to find out how to import .dxf files into lightwave but can't figure it out. i found this in the FAQ. Can anyone make any sense out of it?

DXF to LightWave-
Use Trans 3d under objects|custom: Dxf option/ Convert blocks on/Arc segments 16
*Note DXF files must be saved in the orginating program with the following options:
Saved in ASCII format
Convert Blocks
Save all entities
LightWave to Dxf
Use Translator 3d under tools|custom: Dxf No other options
*note the DXf extension is not added by LightWave.

btw, i'm using 7.5

11-07-2003, 07:33 AM
if you want to import dxfs into lightwave all you need to do is go to load oject, change file types to all files, find your dxf and you're away. send me a pm if you have any trouble

11-07-2003, 08:36 AM

Thanks for the recommendation of Polytrans ... I will actually purchase it with the Plugin :) Hope it worth all the bucks ...

I tried too many times to Export from AutoCad as DXF, this works perfectly for low polygone models but it always creates sometimes problems for some shapes/curves/grouped entities/ solids ...

Therefore, i used to load the whole AutoCAd model into 3DSMax and Export Selected to DXF according to complexity ... But you can imagine the waste of time in all of this process ;)

Regarding the model, yes .. All in AutoCAd except Lights/Road Lines/ People boxes/ Cars (downloaded form Net) ... The rest via AutoCAd ...

Thanks :)
I just loaded the statistics dialog ...
Points = 681695
Polygones = 770230
Images = 110 (Size 177.2 MB used on 1133 Surfaces)

Rendering Time is excellent = 22 min on a 2.4 GHZ/256MB Mem/ MSI 5900 VGA Card)

You can always export from CAD as 3DS or/and DXF ... Kenshin_X_66 gave you the answer ... Just a remark, always export as DXF to preserve the Layer naming of CAD ... 3DS send naming by textures ... This is very essential to be consistent with Surface naming ... I hope Polytrans takes these things into consideration :p

11-07-2003, 08:39 AM
cheers, i'm delighted, the dxf format works beautifully