Export to STEP AP 242

Hi @chuck ,

Not sure if you noticed this one.

I can provide an example privately if you would like to take a look. Just let me know.



Hi Dan. Sure, send your example. I don’t know when we would be able to add 242, but it does seem to come up lately.


Hi all,
I just found an article showing specifications of Step AP203/214/242.
Look like Step AP203 and AP214 are withdrawn (ISO lifecycle stage 95.99) as International Standards. They were deprecated with the publication of AP242 in 2014.

I have used Rhino lot of times to get data from different file types and missing this one would be a pity, given that support for native Rhino files from CAE software is rare.



@theoutside, the link does not work for me.

try now, sorry public view didn’t get checked.

FWIW, you don’t need to view or even keep track of it. We’ll post here when/ if it’s fixed. The reports are for our internal devs, not necessarily the public, however in typically McNeel fashion we try to be as transparent as possible, thus the links.

@theoutside, yes. :slight_smile:

As AP203 and 214 are EoL, Rhino support for AP242 seems like a must. In any case, the extra features the latter supports would make it very attractive for a lot of people, especially those who have to data exchange between Rhino and one of the big-name solid modellers frequently. Porting things like dimensions and materials info both ways would be great.


Upvoting this…242 seems to bring over layer sets into Rhino from other apps as sell when I have the option to use 242 sending data to Rhino


Can we, the Great Unwashed, have some kind of statement from the Gods (aka McNeel) as to whether or not the intention is for Rhino to import and export AP 242 and if that’s a ‘Yes’, will it happen in R8?

Is there any movement on this? The AP242 is needed within manufacturing workflows. This would avoid a painful detour through Inventor. Thanks!

As it sits ATM, this is scheduled for v8 development.


I’m having issues with delivering .Step files for machining. There seem to be incomplete/corrupted. It is fractionally harder to isolate the problem because I can only deliver AP203 and AP214 files and not AP242. The machining guys are saying that AP203 and AP214 are EOL and the issue might be in the software on their side not being maintained for these variants in their recently installed 2021 version of the software they use.
I’m not convinced that the problem is on their side as I am having similar problems with .IGES files but it would be nice to be able to tick the AP242 box and narrow in on whatever the underlying issue is.
I’m sure I’ll figure it out but I wanted to vote in favour of AP242 support sooner rather than later.

Hello - if the same problem also occurs in iges, then there may be something to fix in the geometry itself- can you send us a file or send to tech@mcneel.com with a link back to this topic in your comments?


A post was merged into an existing topic: Blocks make model extremely slow

Giving this thread a nudge. Comment was made that it’s earmarked for development in V8, yet the YouTrack hasn’t been updated in a long time and there’s been no sign of it to date in V8 Beta.

Is it going to happen any time soon? Now that object properties and metadata has been made a feature worthy of the name in V8, AP242 would seem to be the ideal way to port all of this lovely information to other CAD packages. And then there’s curves, text, PLM data - all of that stuff.

My local build of V8 has the ability to save as AP242, although it does not save any of the things you are hoping for - just what we currently handle in AP214. I’ll make that public as soon as I’m sure I’m done with some minor tweaks to V7 STEP. It will not be a small task to get true AP242 import and export. We are working on it and do hope to have something worthwhile for V8.


Hi @chuck
I see you are working on STP 242 on V8.

Maybe this is a bit out of topic but I wanted to chime in as we are dealing with STEP.

Do you plan to implement also Part → Block / Layer conversion for STP as SolidWorks files are currently imported?

Please find discussion here

I can successfully import a STP file and have parts converted in blocks then to layers using this great plug-in from Pascal

Nevertheless it is not yet possible to export a Rhino file to STP converting layers to blocks on the fly.
This way I can keep my original layer hierarchy as blocks become parts in the solid modeler which will open the STP file.

I had already some discussion with @pascal but is not clear for me if we have just to wait for a new plug-in from him or if this feature has been filed among requests and will be implemented sometime in Rhino.

Thank you all again for the great work you are doing.
I know the resources are limited but I think that import/export capabilities are crucial to Rhino.

This is more complicated than it sounds. A Rhino document can have both layers and blocks, as can a STEP file. If a file contains both, there could be a problem. A script like @pascal wrote for changing blocks to layers wouldn’t really work here since it would change your 3dm data to something you don’t want. I guess you could undo that after exporting but that shouldn’t be necessary. I need to think about this some more.


Ok, I didn’t thought of this.
Importing it’s easier as new geometry it’s simply dropped in a fresh file.
Export is a bit different, let’s think about it!