I was recently asked to split a model for a client and the part had such a high face count that solidworks couldn’t work with it (it could be a mesh but would not turn into a surface or solid) and meshlab would crash when I would try and reduce the face count. According to meshlab the part had 1.7 million faces. Would it be possible to have a face reduction feature in as a tool for clients or even the hubs themselves?

The reason I was trying to open it in solidworks is because the client wanted the to have “lugs” put in and printed in two parts as outlined here and here


So I found out the issue that I was having with MeshLabs. When I was simplifying I was not using the planar simplification option. When that is selected it significantly increases stability and it takes about 2 seconds to complete even on a laptop. I have uploaded a picture outlining the Important parameter.

Could they not reduce the polygon count in the software it was designed? I know in Fusion 360 you can set the detail level when exporting. Another suggestion is to ask for the design file and open that in your program instead of stl.


yes and no. If they have the original file then they could re export it. However if the part is off of thingiverse or another website that might not be an option.

If they have the original file then you are 100% correct.

Ahh, I didnt think of that. I wonder if meshmixer could handle it.


Hi, What do you mean with ‘high face count’?

look at the image, low count is lower resolution and all blocky. But eventually you reach a point of diminishing returns where increasing the count provides no visible benefit besides making the file larger and slower to manipulate


Geomagic will convert the file but buyer beware the software is expensive.

Meshlab can do what you’re asking. Meshmixer is terribly slow for large STLs.

I tried using Meshlab to reduce the face size using the Quadratic edge collapse detection filter. I let it run for over 12 hours on a stable run (it crashed about 7 times 10 min in). I did not run out of system resources as I was doing this on a i7 machine with 16GB of ram with a powerful graphics card so resources are not the limiting factor.

Yeah, none of these tools are particularly stable. Do you want to upload somewhere and I can try have a go?

Jobs like this should involve STEP/IGES files instead of STL.

The case that I had the part was from thingiverse. So getting then original file was not an option.