My experiments on importing Altium boards containing 3d models

Hi All,

I have been trying to import Altium PCB’s into Kicad recently, and not every 3d model imported perfectly. I’m planning to create a bunch of Altium files each containing a 3d shape made in a different way, and try to import each one. I’ll post those files here, and create bugs when a file failed to import.


I’ve made an Altium file with an extruded cylinder, and that is not imported.
PCB_Project.PrjPcb (36.7 KB)
PCB1.PcbDoc (160.5 KB)
PcbLib1.PcbLib (105 KB)
Schlib1.SchLib (4.5 KB)
Sheet1.SchDoc (9.5 KB)
See also the screenshot:

Edit: I’ve created the bug report for this one: Altium PCB import error, 3d model is missing (#15058) · Issues · KiCad / KiCad Source Code / kicad · GitLab

This seems like a circle extruded by Altium to get the 3D-shape. Kicad currently doesn’t support the feature to extrude a 3D-model on its own. So I’m not surprised this 3D-model is not imported.

A open gitlab-issue: Generate simple 3D models inside KiCad / support extruded outlines and footprint height property (#3453) · Issues · KiCad / KiCad Source Code / kicad · GitLab

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No, Altium has put the commands to create a cylinder and a sphere in an awkward place. To create them I had to do the following:

  1. Open the pcblib file, press p, and choose “Add extruded 3d body”
  2. Draw a few points, and press escape:
  3. Right-click on the extruded 3d model, and choose properties. Then choose “cylinder” or “sphere”

    The moment sphere is chosen, the points drawn in step 2 are replaced by a square indicator.

    When the square is moved, a crosshair is shown indicating the center of the shape:

This makes me believe Altium makes a true 3d shape, and embeds it in the saved file somewhere.

I’ve updated my bug report to include this scenario

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