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How to Open a DWG File – 3 Easy Ways

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by Benjamin Goldschmidt
Jan 28, 2019

How to Open a DWG File – 3 Easy Ways

Think you might be interested in a model, but the file is a DWG? This article discusses several easy ways to open a DWG file, both for viewing and editing.

How to Open a DWG File DWG Files 101

You can view DWG files online using Autodesk's cloud-based platform.
You can view DWG files online using Autodesk's cloud-based platform. Source: Autodesk

DWG files are a proprietary drawing format originally designed for use in AutoCAD. Over the years, DWGs have become extremely popular for both 2D and 3D modeling.

There are three main methods that can be used to open DWG files: DWG viewers, 3D modeling software, and online cloud-based platforms. The following list contains some popular options for each type:

DWG Viewers

3D Modeling Software

Cloud-Based Platforms

Have some DWG  files you want printed? If you don’t have access to a 3D printer, or if you want high quality prints in a particular material or with a certain finish, consider using a 3D printing service. To find the one that best suits your needs, check out All3DP’s Price Comparison Service. We provide real-time estimates from a wide range of services, including Shapeways, i.Materialise, and Sculpteo! Just note that only certain services accept DWG files, otherwise you’ll need to convert them to STLs or OBJs.

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How to Open a DWG File Autodesk Fusion 360

The Fusion 360 upload interface is quite simple to use.
The Fusion 360 upload interface is quite simple to use. Source: Benjamin Goldschmidt / All3DP

Perhaps the best option for opening DWG files is to use an Autodesk product, since the format is updated every few years. Doing so using Autodesk Fusion 360, for example, is quite simple:

  1. Navigate to the folder you’d like to upload your DWG file to.
  2. Select your file.
  3. Press upload.
  4. Once the file has been uploaded, you can open and edit your file with ease.

How to Open a DWG File Autodesk Viewer

Upload your DWG using a variety of sources.
Upload your DWG using a variety of sources. Source: Benjamin Goldschmidt / All3DP

The next best option, especially if you don’t have an Autodesk product, is to use the company’s online viewer. The steps are as follows: 

  1. Navigate to Autodesk Viewer.
  2. Sign in to your Autodesk account. (You can create one for free.)
  3. Upload your file using sources such as Google drive as well as a simple file upload from your computer.
  4. You’ll be asked if the .dwg file you uploaded has any sub files. If not, you should select “no more files”, at which point your file will upload.
  5. Once the upload is complete, the DWG will automatically be displayed in 2D mode.

License: The text of "How to Open a DWG File – 3 Easy Ways" by All3DP is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

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