Learning more about inkscape: The hard way

So recently I had gotten a subscription to a site that promised “premium” laser cutting patterns made by professionals in the industry. I picked up a file that was supposed to be a “book stand” but ended up being the file was made by someone who threw a bunch of Quran symbols onto the pattern. No big deal, I can remove them an additional 10 minutes to clean it up shouldn’t be an issue at all…right?

To my horror I started to attempt to edit the file…here’s a close up of every single line in the damn thing!

each line is straight and NOT an actual node, meaning you have to manually click on each little line of which sometimes they just put slivers in there and delete it by hand. So rather then waste alllll that time and still have a pretty inferior product I’m working my way through completely rebuilding the pattern from the ground up. And I’ve already spoken with their customer service department about a refund or compensation, apparently they don’t actually know what they are doing when it comes to reviewing user submitted files and this is the result. Have to say now I realize and appreciate what GF staff do for us by reviewing the user submitted files!

I’ve been asked not to mention the site name till they have a chance to look into it and confirm my findings


There are lots of tricks to solve for this problem that might work here.

Without seeing your file, I can’t say for sure, but the command “select same…” can go a long way to removing stuff you don’t want.

Also joining nodes to convert this into a single shape instead of a series of line segments is also possible. Most likely whoever designed this did it in a cad program, many dxf file conversions look like this.

You can also use groups to limit the scope of what you’re trying to select, etc. Depending on the complexity, it’s true, sometimes rebuilding is the easiest trick, but often there’s a way to get things done.

Anyway. I’d have to see the actual file to give you more direct pointers about how I would correct for jankiness in this particular downloaded SVG.


I looked at potentially using some of those tricks myself there are over a million individual lines that would need to be joined manually apperently. It’s faster and cleaner if I rebuild the pattern

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If it’s literally a million that’s ummm hard to deal with :slight_smile:


every…single…line…they are all like this, even the big “straight lines” are like this! The count before I started in was something like 1,002,450 lines in total

The one good benefit to all this has been that I’ve now forced myself to learn some of the tools and shortcuts I never really bothered to do before. so there’s that


You can select all of them, go to the node tool, then select all nodes and join endpoint modes. It would make them a single path.


They don’t have any nodes to select, I’m pretty sure they did this in a cad program or possibly paint xD

Ah ha, you don’t have paths, you have line segments. Select them and then do object to path. Then you’ll have your nodes.


Honestly most of the lines aren’t straight and trying to merge them into a path was very problematic so I’m gonna do what I’ve been doing I think and just make it my own and rebuild

98% chance this was originally a CAD file that was exported to PDF. because that’s exactly what a revit file looks like when exported to PDF and then opened in Illustrator.


Sounds about right! It’s been years since I setup the CAD lab at the learning center in York, but that sounds about right for sure

i work at an architecture firm. i have to deal with it all the time.

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I think the 1st step would be to cancel that subscription, delete the bookmark, and never buy from that site again! :grinning:
I buy all my files on Etsy and cost a few bucks each… literally.

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Yeah I plan on doing that actually most of the other files I got are the same condition :grimacing::grimacing::grimacing::grimacing:

just make a polyline of it

I you go into the design and the node editor select an area and hit the join nodes command it will put a tiny line between every empty node to the nearest empty node. If one goes and jumps a big space there is a break between two nodes right next to it, and thus do thousands of repairs at a time, thus it can be very fast if you are careful.

BTW - Happy Birthday :partying_face: :tada:


Thank you!

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I have learned a lot from figuring out how to re-create things. Unless this book stand is extremely complicated, I agree it’s probably easier to draw it your way than to fix up all the errors.


Honestly, at this point I’ve invested about an hour into it and now it’s a challenge to improve my designer skills :sunglasses: