Make my boss love me!
June 10, 2007 7:51 PM   Subscribe

I need to impress my non tech-savvy new boss, save her money, and open new business opportunities. Is there a free (perhaps open source) or inexpensive *easy to use* program for Win XP to convert DWG files to TIFF?

I have found a few programs in the 60-85 dollar range. However I thought that someone here may have some recommendations or point to something I haven't seen. Thank you so much.
posted by thatguyryan to Computers & Internet (10 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I believe Irfanview can do this. There is a Batch Convert function in the software that I use to convert between many different image formats. Oh and it's free.
posted by ronmexico at 7:56 PM on June 10, 2007

DWG is not an image format, however. It is a vector-based CAD format, and one of the major features/flaws of the format is that lineweight information is not contained within the DWG file itself -- lines are given a layer, a color, and only occasionally an explicit width, and then a small external file (a CTB file usually -- color-dependent Plot Style Table file -- or a STB -- Plot Style Table File) correlates colors to line widths for output (to postscript, PDF, DWF, plotter, etc.)

thatguyryan: can you give a little mroe info? what is producing the dwgs? what is the ultimate output device? how critical is lineweight fidelity? Do you have CTB files for the DWGs in question?
posted by misterbrandt at 9:09 PM on June 10, 2007

How many files do you wish to convert? There is always the tried and true print-screen method if it's only for a few files that are also able to fit in one screen. Just bring up whatever DWG viewer you use, then hit print-screen, bring up GIMP and paste into it, then save as TIFF.
posted by philomathoholic at 9:23 PM on June 10, 2007

ThumbsPlus knows about DWG format and can convert pretty much any format it knows into any other format it knows. (Obviously it can't go from bitmap to stroke, but it can go from stroke to bitmap.)

The home page used to be here, but right now it doesn't answer me. I don't know if that's temporary or permanent.
posted by Steven C. Den Beste at 10:02 PM on June 10, 2007

[Also, ThumbsPlus can do batch conversions.]
posted by Steven C. Den Beste at 10:03 PM on June 10, 2007

I'm 99% sure that the plugins package for IrfanView allows you to do this.
posted by jammnrose at 1:26 AM on June 11, 2007

Irfanview does do it, but it's dwg support on the free version of the dwg plugin is total crap.
posted by bigmusic at 2:42 AM on June 11, 2007

Yes, the free version of Iirfanview is useless for converting .dwgs. It converts them to something, but the something is ugly. I didn't want to do the conversion badly enough to buy the right plug-in, so I don't know how good that is.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 6:32 AM on June 11, 2007

You might look into a combination of tools... eDrawings is a free viewer from SolidWorks that we use around the office to view drawings and print to PDF.

eDrawings has nothing to do with tiff natively. There are, though I have no experience with them, tiff printer drivers available. A Google search will turn up a bunch.
posted by friezer at 7:23 AM on June 11, 2007

Response by poster: Thanks for the leads. :) I need it to be easy to use (read: my boss needs this to be as close to highlite, right click convert as possible) It will be used to convert batches of perhaps up to 20-100. The output results need to be quality as they will be used to print commercially in full sizes of 36 or 48 inches for contractors to use in building.
posted by thatguyryan at 7:42 PM on June 11, 2007

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