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Claes Lundstrom

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  1. I agree that VW's ability is covering the basics, whereas other more specialised programs are needed for mode complex tasks. I work with these things on a more or less daily basis, but I have to confess that I never use VW for this, mainly because what I do is highly specialised and therefore well above what VW can do in terms of unfolding.
  2. Unfolding very much depends on the method used and how good the shape control is. Rhino's variation can sometimes be a bit sketchy and may or may not be all that reliable on more complex shapes.
  3. Here is a simple corridor outside my office. Not very impressive as such, but shot with my iPhone 13 Pro Max and Scaniverse. I basically walked around pointing the camera towards areas the program says are uncovered. I also had to walk as the area is probably three times longer than the 5 meter range of the lidar. It also handled the slope in the middle and the beginning of the stairs reasonably correct. I exported the model as OBJ to VW 2021 and what you see is OpenGL as it came out without doing andy lightning at all. On some pictures, I used the Clip Cube to give a cut in view, as the model is pretty much a closed shape.
  4. I think the Matterport 2 Pro camera consts $ 2795 and a 25 project per month subscription something like 50-100 $ a month. https://buy.matterport.com
  5. You probably need something more expensive than a mobile app. Been playing a bit with my new iPhone 13 Pro to evaluate the Ladar features, which are nice but probably not accurate enough for professional use. Also, the range is limited to about 0.5 to 5 meters. For more accurate measurements, you probably need a laser or photo based system. Having said that about the iPhone, I tried a number of programs with mixed results. Many where pretty rubbish, but so far I have found one that was quite nice and worth downloading. It's called Scaniverse and it was free. Did a quick scan in a 20 sqm room and despite having lot's of flaws, partially due to lack of experience I guess, but still felt like a 3D photo that you can spin around, with nice realistic textures. It also exported fine into VW using OBJ, with the only flaw being the model being tilted due to flipped YZ (Please add a flip feature in the import dialogue as both flavours are common). The dimensional accuracy on the model was within say a couple of centimeters, which I guess is reasonable for a Ladar based system. The chair was another test I did. Took a couple of minutes to do and generated a model around 100 K triangles. Not very practical as a production model, but I guess it can serve as a guide for recreating a model that you don't have.
  6. The shell fail may be caused by the model being grouped. Make sure that it's a single ungrouped model. Shell admittedly works better on a generically generated NURBS shape. Older versions of VW actually handled mesh to NURBS conversions better though. Here is a fun little project: I generated a boat hull shape in an external program, forming a closed volume. I then generated a copy being 1.2 mm smaller in all directions, forming an inner volume floating inside the outer volume. I then exported the two shapes in separate layers, and merged each volume into a single mesh. I then did a Solid Subtraction, cutting out the inner volume from the outer. It took quite a while for VW to do it, but it worked. I then divided the model into two parts using solid subtractions, to make it fit into my humble $200 22 x 22 x 25 cm 3D printer envelope. The 45 cm long model took about 40 hours to print . I was actually surprised how well it came out. To sum up, I think the VW units relying on Siemens Parasolids actually works quite well. It shows that this engine is one of the best.
  7. A bit clunky perhaps but try the following: 1 / Convert the mesh to NURBS surfaces 2/ Ungroup 3/ Add Solids 4/ Run a shell calculation on one of the facets, and all parts get a thickness.
  8. It may be a group or symbol. It must be basic shapes.
  9. It depends on the model. NURBS based models can sometimes be more leaky in the conversion to STL, whereas Mesh models stay the same as the original. My suggestion is to check the volume of the model and if the value makes sense, it's more likely that it will work regardless of method. The quality in the Mesh conversion refers to the conversion between NURBS style objects, which can have almost any mesh resolution, and Mesh resolution, which is what it is in VW. What resolution you need depends on where you really can't see the difference when printing, that is, when the mesh resolution is finer and more dense than the printer can replicate.
  10. I have noted the same thing. The problem I have had is when working with some self generated objects, in this case a group of meshes, that I converted into solids. I'm also absolutely sure that they form a real closed shape. If you however perform a solid subtraction, you can see that the shape does not close (as in you bottom picture), and that's why it doesn't work. Been experimenting with adding closing patches where it's open, convening the parts to meshes and then adding them as solids, but I'm not sure how well it actually works. One thing that you can do to validate if you got a truly closed volume is to calculate the volume. If the result make sense, not being way too big or small, it may actually be valid. Converting to Generic solids may also indicate if you have a truly closed shape.
  11. STL does not support textures, but OBJ does. Many printer drivers also support OBJ for importing. It may not be of any use if the 3D printer does not support color printing though. Personally, I work with printed textures on flat printable materials such as cardboard, fabrics and sheets of plastic instead to simulate and give a illusion of a more complex shape. There is of course a limit to how far you can stretch that in terms of complexity of the shape, but probably more than you think.
  12. Yes, you can covert meshes into generic solids, but they maintain the mesh grid underneath. When I export my meshes into NURBS objects when exporting from TouchCAD I get real NURBS surfaces that matches the mesh shape very closely. If I can do it using (Vector)Script from the outside, then surely, it should be possible to do it from inside as well. I use it all the time and it works well for me despite its limitations. In reality, I usually use a mixture of NURBS and meshes. Whatever works best at any given time. The programmers just have to sit down and do it. Admittedly, what comes out of TouchCAD is very well defined and therefore well suited for this type of conversion. OK, it doesn't always work, because TouchCAD can generate shapes that can't be replicated in VW, but I think such a tool would be useful anyway despite being flawed here and there. Here is a simple example. Same model from start. Six original panels. Left NURBS, right mesh. When put together (mid) you get the typical flickering colors generated by two surfaces on top of one another having different colors. The NURBS still consist of six surfaces, and are fully operational as solids from start.
  13. Getting a bigger hard disk is more important. 256 is not enough. At least a 1 Gig SSD if you ask me (what I have). It is actually significantly more important than getting more RAM. The virtual memory in the M1 is simply fantastic according to many tests, where the consensus seems to be that it seldom makes much of a difference to add more RAM. It's not at all as with Intel processors, where more RAM is very important. I tested a couple of minutes of 4K video in iMovie on an 8 GB ram Mini, and found no lag whatsoever. Tried the Dodge / Burn tools with a very big brush and on a 168 megapixel image and it was pretty much instant reactions there too (Photoshop lags painfully when doing the same thing). These programs are of course Universal Binary already, so they work at full speed.
  14. I personally use Keyshot for this. It is a rather expensive app but delivers very believable high quality visuals quicker than anything else I have tried. The background in the example is just a plain photo, and yet models gets well integrated into photos in a realistic and seamless way and more or less in realtime. I use OBJ out from VW which works fine, but it supports a wide range of file formats from VW.
  15. Easy. Covert the text as mentioned before Extrude it and ungroup Apply a champher at the back surface insert it into the block to engrave and run a soldi subtraction.
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