I designed some items that I currently 3D print and I plan on patenting, however I need to provide technical drawings in India ink or it's equivalent.

Is there anything that will convert from standard 3D printing formats into something I can submit for a patent application?

  • For patents, you don't really need technical drawings per se. You need clear illustrations in black and white. Most 3D CAD software can render with lines only and no shading and this would be adequate. If we knew what software you used, we might be able to help you more.
    – Eric S
    Commented Mar 16, 2019 at 1:45

1 Answer 1


A free online-based CAD program known as Onshape will allow you to import a 3D file (or create one) and use the Drawing tab to generate a "standard" 3-view document. That document can be saved/exported and printed as required.

As noted on the Onshape site, one uses the + in the lower left corner, selects Create Drawing and follows the wizard to create and place the individual views.

  • Onshape has a major problem in this context. If you use it for free, then your files are public. Since the OP is looking to file a patent, public disclosure is disqualifying.
    – Eric S
    Commented Mar 16, 2019 at 13:00
  • It's not impossible to consider that one could generate the drawings, then delete the files, removing that complication. My creations may be public accessible, but no one has done so in more than a year.
    – fred_dot_u
    Commented Mar 16, 2019 at 23:45
  • I thought it was important to point out the important issue. Patents do not require 3 view layouts. No doubt the original software used to design the parts might well be adequate but we don’t know since it wasn’t specified. I like OnShape, but for patent work, the free option isn’t appropriate.
    – Eric S
    Commented Mar 17, 2019 at 3:02

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