If you’re a SketchUp user interested in learning Shapr3D or adding it to your current workflow, it’s important that you try not to use Shapr3D like SketchUp. Even though they may seem similar at first glance, the underlying technologies are completely different—Shapr3D is a solid modeling CAD system, while SketchUp is a mesh modeler. So, Shapr3D is a different tool that requires different workflows.
Below, you can find a breakdown of Shapr3D’s benefits in comparison to SketchUp.
Shapr3D is designed to be precise; the models you create in the app are accurate to 10 decimal digits, so each body you create is accurately represented. On the other hand, SketchUp is not designed that way; for instance, if you sketch a circle, it’s actually an n-sided polygon. If a SketchUp file is a raster image, then a Shapr3D project is a vector graphic.
- Output quality
When you design a model in Shapr3D, it’s guaranteed to be watertight, solid, and manufacturable. The app ensures that there won’t be problematic self-intersecting surfaces, etc., so you can directly export anything you create in Shapr3D for manufacturing (including CNC milling, injection molding, and 3D printing) without any post-processing.
In SketchUp, though, oftentimes you need to polish the models with post processing to make the model ready for manufacturing.
Shapr3D’s compatibility is guaranteed with most CAD systems, since the app is based on Parasolid, the same engine used for those systems. The app is adaptable because of its import and export capabilities:
- You can import and edit any model that was created in any other 3D modeling tool. After you edit the model, you can push back your changes to your other modeling tool—something that you cannot do in SketchUp.
- You can export high-quality CAD models, which can then be imported and further processed in any CAD system. Not only that, you can export mesh data from Shapr3D and import that into SketchUp.