Patchwork 3D Enterprise 2020.2 X4

Wire Import

Importing Files in the Wire Format
Geometry Data

The different types of geometry data interpreted are:

  • Groups,

  • Meshes,

  • Polysets,

  • Shells,

  • Surfaces.

Existing parameterizations are not interpreted. As a result, imported surfaces are given the default parameterization (type BOX).

Material Data

The material data interpreted are:

  • "File" type textures,

  • RGB color parameters,

  • Some parameters from the Phong and Lambert models.

For each Surface or Shell, the first shader only is retrieved. A Matter material is created from this shader and assigned to the corresponding object.

A standard Matter material is created by retrieving color data. Furthermore:

  • For "Phong" materials, intensity and specular roughness data, along with the diffuse intensity, specular filter and transparency, are retrieved,

  • If it is a "Lambert" type material, the diffuse intensity is recovered.

"File" textures in the original material are added to the texture library, and the first one is assigned to the diffuse color map of the material.

Wire File Format Import Options

All options for importing Wire files or folders are gathered in a dedicated dialog box. This dialog box is accessed from Shaper either by selecting Model > Advanced > Wire folder, or from the Model tab.


This dialog box contains the options for importing surfaces.

Visual quality : the tessellation size may be set using either the slider or the field linked to it. By default, the tessellation is generated with a Tolerance of 0.5 mm between the triangulated surface and the NURBS surface.

Grouping surfaces: three options are available for grouping surfaces.

  • By Layer: A Shaper layer is created for each Wire layer. Groups of imported surfaces are assigned to the Shaper layer associated to their initial Wire layer. The groups are made up as follows: for a given Wire group containing at least one Shell or Surface, a Shaper group is created with the surfaces it contains. This option is activated by default.

  • By shader: A Shaper visibility layer is created for each Wire shader. The groups are created similarly to when using the By Layer option.

  • By Layer Hierarchy: A Shaper visibility layer hierarchy that reproduces the Wire layer/group hierarchy is created.

Transformation: this option is for defining how surfaces with symmetry are imported.

  • No symmetry: no symmetry is imported.

  • Use layer symmetry: the symmetry defined in the layers of the Wire file is used (the plane of symmetry is retrieved). This option is activated by default.

  • No symmetry on shaders with suffix: a symmetry with the default plane (equation z = 0) is used for all surfaces whose shader does not have a name including the specified suffix.

Kinematics: this option allows importing object graphs as kinematics graphs. A null surface is attached for each group of the Wire data tree. The null surfaces are attached to a visibility layer named Wire Import Kinematics and the kinematics hierarchy is accessible in the dedicated tab. This option is enabled by default.

Topology: these options control the sewing process and grouping the surfaces.

  • If Use topology is activated, then an attempt at converting Shells into Parasolid surfaces is made. Shells may be imported as meshes if the option Convert to mesh in the Topology conversion failures box is enabled. These meshes are built using the Alias tessellation engine.

  • Autostitch is for controlling the attempts at sewing imported surfaces. If Autostitch is enabled, then an attempt is made to:

    • sew the surfaces of a Shell together,

    • sew the surfaces of a group of objects with the same shader,

    • sew the various parts in a list of Shells.

The options Use topology and Autostitch are enabled by default.


This option imports the file’s cameras as cameras. These cameras are saved in a group of cameras named wire import – filename. This option is activated by default.


The options for importing textures and materials are contained in this box.

Import textures: this option allows you to import textures of the "file" type, possibly specifying a maximum size. It is activated by default.

Reuse shader information: if a material with the same name already exists in Matter library, then it is used. Otherwise, this option allows the material library to:

  • Create a new material systematically (No),

  • Create a new material only if there is no material with the same name in the default library (Use default library),

  • Create a new material if there is no material with the same name in the specified library (Use specified library).

Topology Conversion Failures

This box is for defining the actions to perform in case of a topology conversion failure.

Save failed objects: this option is for saving Shells that could not be imported as files, using Alias file format. It is disabled by default.

Convert to mesh: this option converts Shells whose import failed using Alias tessellation engine into meshes. It is disabled by default.


A log file can be specified using this option. This file may be deleted if no problem occurred during the import by selecting Delete if everything went OK. No default file is specified.

Update Mode

Update current model with imported file: when this option is enabled, the Shaperexisting surfaces of the current model with the same name as surfaces of the imported file are updated. The geometry, comment, symmetry and material are updated. If a group of surfaces with the same name exists, its color and material are updated, and the new surfaces attached to it.

The group name is defined as follows:

  • For a Shell, it is the name of the Wire Shell node,

  • For a list of Shells, it is the name of the Group and the shader name linked with #.

Keep textures: when this option is enabled, updates of a surface or a group of surfaces do not take the material into account.