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I have an svg file which is a template for a piece of armor. It is made up of centerlines with a certain thickness and is intended to be printed and used as a guide to manually cut or engrave the black areas on foam.

I am trying to use this template with a 3d printer, but when importing the svg to either Blender or Fusion 360 all I get is the centerlines as edges and loose the thickness. To be able to engrave the 3d model I would need to have the outlines of the thickness of the lines.

Is there a way to convert the centerlines to outlines? I could trace it by hand but it is an intricate design and would take a long time.

Thanks!

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If the path is just an ordinary path, ellipse, polygon, rectangle object, with a stroke, select it and click Path > Stroke to path

If the path is a Spiro path or BSpline, or has some other Path Effect, then click Path > Object to Path, followed by Path > Stroke to path

If the object is text, then Path > Object to Path will convert text to outlines.

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You can select and convert multiple paths at the same time, with all of these methods. Another problem you might come across is if you have multiple shapes converted to outlines, you can Unite them using Path > Unite to create one outlined shape rather than overlapping outlined shapes.

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You can check if everything has been converted to paths by clicking on them with the Edit Paths by Nodes tool. You can also enable a visible red outline for selected paths if you click Edit > Preferences > Node, then under Path outline, choose the option that says "Always show outline".

Note: Once you have changed artwork to outlines, it's not reversible. So better to work on a copy of the file, if you want to retain the original paths/strokes/text.

  • amazing answer! Plus it included the Unite operation which I did need to use! – aspirino67 Apr 18 '18 at 3:06
  • FWIW, working on a copy of an original file is always a good advice, IMO. <g> – Rudy Velthuis Apr 18 '18 at 15:27
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Select the path, use Shift-Cntrl-C and this will "convert to a path (“outline”) the stroke of any object" which should then allow that to be exported as an svg with the correct thickness respected. Were it me, I'd do this to a copy of the path so you retain your original in case needed.

You can also use Cntrl-J to dynamically offset a given path if you need to create wholly new entities to carry that thickness information.

Hope this helps.

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