SOLIDWORKS exported STEP file only includes one of my assembly components?!

Article by Saeed Mojarad (CSWE) updated January 26, 2018


You have been asked to send a SOLIDWORKS STEP file of your assembly and you know that it only takes a few seconds. You open your assembly and save it as *.step. Of course, you open the STEP file to make sure that everything is OK.  But when it loads up you see that only one of the components is saved! You may think that you made a mistake at some point and will try again. But the result is the same. So what is going on here?

The problem happens when you have a component in your assembly with the exact same name as the assembly. Although it is not a good practice to have the same names for different files but let’s see how we can fix this issue.

To fix the problem open File Explorer in Windows and switch to View tab. Then click on Options > Change folder and search options.

Windows Explorer

Windows Explorer

In Folder Options window switch to View tab again. Under Advanced Settings find “Hide extensions for known file types” check box and clear it. Press OK to accept and close the window.

Folder Options

Folder Options

Now you can go back to SOLIDWORKS and try again. This time it will export the whole assembly to STEP file.

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Saeed Mojarad (CSWE)

Saeed Mojarad is an application engineer at Javelin Technologies. He received his B.S from Mazandaran University, Iran; and his M.S. from École de technologie supérieure (ETS), Canada. He has several years of experience using SOLIDWORKS in different industries such as manufacturing and aerospace. Currently located in Calgary, he is helping SOLIDWORKS users all across Canada as a technical support and SOLIDWORKS instructor.