FreeCAD and DXF Import

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Revision as of 07:54, 9 September 2021 by Roy 043 (talk | contribs) (Removed the "Import DXF file as sketch" paragraph. Have created a Sandbox page from it: Sandbox:Sketcher_import_DXF_tutorial. The information does not fit this page. And it needs more work.)
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DXF is a proprietary CAD data format for 2D drawings that originated with AutoCAD. More details can be found on the DXF wiki page.


Since FreeCAD version 0.18 there is a new C++ DXF importer, and since version 0.19 also a new C++ DXF exporter. These new components are installed with FreeCAD.

To use the older, legacy, DXF importer and exporter you need to install several files. These files cannot be included with FreeCAD since they use libraries published under a license that is not compatible with FreeCAD.

How to install the legacy DXF importer and exporter


If the files are not already installed, go to the menu Edit → Preferences → Import-Export → DXF and enable the option Allow FreeCAD to automatically download and update the DXF libraries to make FreeCAD automatically download and install them.

For FreeCAD 0.14 or older you have to install manually:


  1. Go to Yorik's Github account and download these files (on the right side you can choose "download as ZIP").
  2. Put the files in your macro folder.
  3. If you are unsure where this folder is, go to Edit → Preferences → General → Macro and check the field named Macro Path.
  • In Ubuntu your macro folder is normally (the folder is hidden, you may need to unhide it):
  • In Windows your macro folder is normally:

See also: Dxf Importer Install

Tips and Tricks

Sometimes DXF Files don't import although they open in other CAD-Programs without problems.

You can try:

  1. Go to Edit → Preferences → Import-Export → DXF and untick the option Join geometry and try again.
  2. Remember that maybe now you won't have coincident endpoints. You will have to make them coincident yourself.
  3. You can do this with the Sketcher CloseShape command v0.15 and above or you can apply the constraints manually.

You can also try:

  1. Go to Edit → Preferences → Draft → General settings and adjust the value of Tolerance (default: 0,05) and try again.

For an overview of all DXF related preferences see Import Export Preferences.