thanks matrix (or is it, neo?) for the feedback. Strata does not have an export for the 3DS format from what I've seen. At least, it's not in option when saving/exporting the work. I have the buggy swift3d program and am using it right now, seems fine to me.
p.s. it wasn't me who used the word "stupid," it was a new guy. And am still unable to understand where he was coming from. I'm writing this to say that I'm not sure if you were sticking up for me or warning me? FYI, it wasn't me.
Just to let you know the original post about using Strata said you could not use the dxf format in swift but you can convert you files from dxf to 3ds by using this little gem of a product http://www.stmuc.com/thbaier/ its free and works great. Another great thing about strata is the ablity to do polygon reduction before you import into swift this will make you files smaller and render faster. Also just a note the dxf format will model everything as one solid object. So if you need seperat colors for objects you will need to model them as seperate pieces and reasmeble in swift. Regards, Bill