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STL Export Options

You can set the export options when you export SolidWorks part or assembly documents as STL files.

To set the STL export options:

  1. Click File > Save As.
  2. Select STL (*.stl) for Save as type, then click Options.
  3. Select from the options described below, then click OK.
    Option Description
    Output as
    • Select either Binary or ASCII as the file format. Binary files are smaller than ASCII files, but they are not supported in some other systems. Select the type supported by the target system.
    • Unit. Select the unit of measure.
    Resolution Controls the tessellation of non-planar surfaces for Stereolithography (STL) output. A lower deviation setting produces a more finely tessellated STL file. Files generated with higher accuracy settings (increased tessellation) are larger in size and slower to generate.

    Coarse or Fine

    Preset resolutions.


    • Move the Deviation slider to adjust the deviation Tolerance, which controls whole-part tessellation. Lower numbers generate files with greater whole-part accuracy.
    • Move the Angle slider to adjust the angle Tolerance, which controls smaller detail tessellation. Lower numbers generate files with greater small-detail accuracy, but those files take longer to generate.
    As you move the two sliders, the corresponding concentric circles adjust accordingly. The circles show, approximately, how the tessellation will vary as a result of the settings. (See Preview below.)

    Show STL info before file saving

    Displays a SolidWorks dialog box (when you click Save in the Save As dialog box) that contains the following information: Triangles (number), File Size, File Format, and the directory path and file name.


    Displays a faceted model preview in the graphics area and displays the Triangles (number) and File size information in the Export Options dialog box.

    Do not translate STL output data to positive space Makes exported parts maintain their original position in global space, relative to the origin.
    Save all components of an assembly in a single file (assemblies only) Saves the assembly and its components in a single .stl file.
    Check for interferences (assemblies only) Performs an interference check on an assembly document prior to saving. Export of an assembly with coincident or interfering bodies to a single .stl file produces a file that may be unsuitable for some rapid prototyping systems. It is recommended that you check for interference between the components prior to saving the assembly document. For more information, see Interference Detection.
    Output coordinate system Select a coordinate system to apply for export. If you select -- default --, no transformation matrix is applied.
  4. Click Save to export the document.

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