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Claes Lundstrom

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Everything posted by Claes Lundstrom

  1. Claes Lundstrom

    sketchup v vw for 3d modelling

    No program does everything, so therefore I almost always use combinations of tools. In this quick sketch, the NURBS surfaces where generated in TouchCAD, the solid modeling was done in VW, and the rendering in Keyshot. With a little practice, I guess it was under a days work, and all programs did something they where good at.
  2. Claes Lundstrom

    sketchup v vw for 3d modelling

    It's true that most of us use a combination of programs, depending on what you do and what you wish to achieve. Hands up everyone who uses Photoshop for example. Personally, I have about five or ten programs I consider my core inner circle programs. I would definitely not use Rhino for the bulk of architectural modeling, and not for 2D drafting. VW's NURBS implementation could be improved a lot (I almost always use another program there and import the geometry, though not Rhino), but just a few clean-ups in the user interface would take it much closer to Rhino, even though Rhino by no means is my favorite, it's still admittedly better than VW at this. Solidworks and the AutoDesk options are way more expensive, and besides Revit, mostly focusing more on mechanical modeling, so they are perhaps in another league. As for Revit and ArchiCAD, I somehow doubt that they are nowhere near as flexible as VW is for things other than Architectural work.
  3. Claes Lundstrom

    sketchup v vw for 3d modelling

    Personally, I see no point whatsoever to use SU for anything. Have it installed, but never use it. It looks cute for a few minutes, until you realize that most things takes longer to do than in other programs. The user interface, in my opinion, makes simple things complicated. The VW 2018 program folder is 7.6 times bigger than SU 2017, and the reason is simply that there are much more of everything. Simple can be good if you don't have time to learn a way more complicated program, but also means that you hit the roof of what's possible much quicker. SU has admittedly a far healthier third party market, but much of it is of somewhat questionable quality as it's done by amateurs.
  4. Claes Lundstrom

    Loft Surface

    Rendering quality is by far the best of quite a few programs I used over the years. Very good textures. All materials tested (metallic paint, chrome, rubber, leather, glass ) looks very realistic. The background image used was a stock one, it's 360, and it instantly generates shadows and reflections in the model despite the model not really standing on something, and updates instantly and follows the model when you rotate the model. Photo realistic realtime updates. I'm testing on a demo, so what you see are screen dumps from various views, and it takes say 5-10 seconds to get there after a change of say color of view. Seems to communicate well with VW in all sorts of file formats, including IGES, STEP, DWG, DXF, 3DS, OBJ, VRML, Collada, etc. 3DS and Collada allows you to bring over Renderworks stuff like textures and lights, but where Collada works better as it exports as NURBS models whereas 3DS exports as trimeshes. So far good then. Bad things, and the this is a colossal flaw, is that it can't smooth off a polygon or trimesh based model (what the ... where they thinking there not being able to do what virtual all other programs can do), and it's also quite expensive.
  5. Claes Lundstrom

    Loft Surface

    Just out of personal interest and curiosity, I played around some more with this concept to see if a decent car body shape could actually be extracted using this method. Here is what I did: I imported five untrimmed surfaces NURBS to start with (top left). I then cut openings for windows, doors, hood, grill, lights, added various panels to fill the openings and some details to make it look a little better in the rendering. I then exported the model to a rendering program called Keyshot (which I'm currently evaluating anyway) for rendering. All in all, I think it took me well under a days work.
  6. Had a quick look at your model. Hard to say what the problem is as the main object is a Generic Solid. From the smaller parts though, I noted that it consisted of quite a few more steps than actually required. As a general rule in solid modeling, make a proper plan how to get things done before starting, keep it as simple as possible, do as much as you possibly can in the 2D phase, be very precise during assembly keeping corners exactly edge to edge, avoiding tiny steps, very pointy joints, and leaving fillets and chamfers to the final stages of the process.
  7. Claes Lundstrom

    Importing Adobe .Ai.

    Corel Draw is probably the best bet for Windows, but it's not available for Mac. AI's support for DXF has always been a bit crappy. For cutting, which I do a lot of, EPS seems to work fine. Affinity is admittedly still in need need of work, but shows promise as a budget option. The same applies to their other Adobe replacement products.
  8. Claes Lundstrom

    Importing Adobe .Ai.

    I too have a lot of such issues while resisting to spend a not insignificant amount of money on AI, which I would never use for anything other than conversion. My suggestion would be to get Affinity Designer, which costs something like $60 or 70, no subscription fees, reads and writes AI and is a very close competitor to AI in terms of features. As for CNC export, it explicitly sounds like a cutter like for example a Zund, and there the solution is to use EPS as a first choice and PDF as a second choice, DXF as a third choice, and of course being vector based data only. These files are both directly usable by the two most commonly used programs, AI and Corel Draw. Remember to specify the drawing scale though, as it's exported as the VW paper scale and not in full scale as used in real CAD program formats such as DXF or DWG. The reason for this is that there is no such thing as a drawing scale in these illustration programs.
  9. Claes Lundstrom

    Loft Surface

    Easy enough. I started with a 2D arch, converted it into NURBS, Grouped in and compressed it to get that bumper shape using the scaling handles. I then copied it and made a slightly higher and wider copy and then a second copy of the original. I then moved them apart to that the smaller versions where located on each side of the bigger one. I then lofted the curves into a simple NURBS surface. You can then experiment a bit with the shape bu undoing the lofting and modify the curves a bit until you get the shape you want. Yes it's a plain OpenGL rendering. You could try changing the OpenGL settings to get a better looking result though. The default setting is set to low for rounded shapes and never works properly.
  10. Claes Lundstrom

    3 Point Tent

    Based on my experience in designing similar large real tents, I somehow doubt that subdivision is the way to go. It's simply doesn't give the required shape control, and the movie model doesn't look like a real tent. I think it needs ordinary NURBS modeling where you loft curves.
  11. Claes Lundstrom

    Loft Surface

    Easy to do if I understand you correctly. Just three NURBS curves lofted into one surface. All basically based on the same shape, though the one in the middle being slightly bigger in all directions.
  12. Claes Lundstrom

    Loft Surface

  13. Claes Lundstrom

    Loft Surface

    Could be, though a simple texture with transparency and bump map on a comparatively simple shape would probably be more efficient, as much of the work is then done by the video card. Solid modeling may generate huge files, which lags modeling and rendering speed. Should therefore be used wisely and with moderation. In the example, I converted a sphere into NURBS, chopped off the bottom a bit unevenly and the applies a simple texture I created based of a simple leaf shape, which I repeated randomly while making small variations in color and shape in VW 2D. Easy enough. Left picture as it looks on OpenGL and right in Renderworks, where the bumps are noticable .
  14. Claes Lundstrom

    Loft Surface

    A much easier way to build for example a fencer is to just generate a clean basic shape, in this case the entire side panel of a car, and then trim out the opening with simple extrusions from the side. In the case a circle with a rectangle extension (add surface) for the wheel arches and a double line polygon for the door gaps.
  15. Claes Lundstrom

    Loft Surface

    In this case, yes, but my point is that it can also be said about many other reasonable capable NURBS based modeling programs too. VW could have been so much better with just a few minor tweaks.
  16. Claes Lundstrom

    Loft Surface

    After having played around a bit with this, I agree that lofting NURBS curves is the way to go. VW is however probably not an ideal tool for such modeling. It can be done, but it's very difficult. Doing proper proper panel fairing requires a ot of micro adjustments, and VW has two user interface weaknesses in that respect: 1/ You can't nudge any given selection of control points with the arrow keys. 2/ You can't edit more than one patch at the time.
  17. Claes Lundstrom

    Open GL and Opacity

    I also (often) use this rather clunky method to bypass the problem. I actually bug reported this some years back, bit was informed that it works as designed. Let's say that we agreed to disagree whether this restriction was a good thing. To me, it makes no sense to delibetrately restrict a possible way for the designer to do their job as they like.
  18. Claes Lundstrom

    Importing 3d data from drone

    Provided that the data are accurate enough, a simply point cloud should work fine in the DTM to generate a 3D terrain model. What accuracy are they claiming ? Speaking of drones, has anybody used one in combination with a photo modeling program (such as PhotoModeler) to extract terrain data ? I assume a decent drone model such as the Phantom 4, having a good camera 4K video and is able to extract decent stills. I have used PhotoModeler and GoPro cameras to extract data used for creating boat covers (well over 200) and it seems to work fairly well, so that's why I am curious.
  19. Claes Lundstrom

    2D Polygon from 3D Sketch-Up Import

    No it's not SketchUp (have it installed somewhere but never use it as it never adds anything to my work). Besides that, my point is that it would be nice if VW could make use of the algorithms found in OpenGL for extracting edges. As an example, I imported this 3D polygon based model in the pictures into VW. All rendered in OpenGL only. No edges to the left. With edges in the middle. All colors set to white and increased the light a little to the right, and there we have a nice outline drawing at almost no effort. Imagine that we could compose those lines into plain filled polygons.
  20. Claes Lundstrom

    2D Polygon from 3D Sketch-Up Import

    Yes, I totally agree that using thousands of polygons does not work. Ideally, it would be great to have a special display mode only showing outlines, like in OpenGL but without the shadings. I use the Add Surface, Combine into Surface, Compose features a lot as I often import models looking like this. Luckily for me though, the exporting program has an option to just export the outlines, where each panel comes in as a group. The only thing I need to do is therefore to ungroup and Compose the object and job done. Takes a minute or two of minutes to do the job. So, on the wish list in VW would be to have such a feature.
  21. Claes Lundstrom

    2D Polygon from 3D Sketch-Up Import

    No quick solution to this. As an example, I took this fairly simple chair, and did as follows: 1/ Original (left) (Symbol to Group if it's a symbol) -> Convert to Group -> Convert to Polygons with Hidden lines on. Generates many polygons. 2/ Original (left) (Symbol to Group if it's a symbol) -> Convert to Group> Convert to Polygons with Hidden lines on-> Add Surface. Probably took longer than it took to model the chair in 3D. 3/ Original (left) (Symbol to Group if it's a symbol) -> Convert to Group -> Convert to Lines-> Ungroup-> Remove all inner lines-> Assemble using Compose or Combine into Surface. Takes a while but probably the best result. 4/ Simply trace the model manually. Depressing but it works, though it is slow (probably more than the five or six minutes it took me to model the 3D original.
  22. Claes Lundstrom

    Vectorworks to Sketchup

    Not sure why you talk about the file format .3DS, which is a file format by Autodesk 3D Studio Max and has nothing to do with Sketchup. This file format is primarily used for communicating 3D files containing graphics and textures for rendering purposes. I use it mainly for exporting to my external rendering programs. The generic Sketchup file format is called .skp and can be read by VW. Exporting to Sketchup should be possible in several formats, such as DXF/DWG, 3DS, WRML, OBJ, FBX, IFC, etc.
  23. Yes, would be handy if adding control points in a polygon would work more consistently, for example always upwards or downwards in index direction, and with the little red direction arrow that you can turn on in Object Info being on by default when working with this tool, so that you know the direction. As it is now, the only predictable way is to use midpoints.
  24. Claes Lundstrom

    Tool fot Automatic Calculation of the Weight

    I disagree. It can be calculated using the surface area of the tubes included. Sorry for bing a bit metric here, but let's say that the truss consists of for example aluminum tubes having a wall thickness of say 2 mm. The denstiny of aluminum is 2.7 kilos per liter, and one liter spread out over 1 square meter has a thickness of 1 mm. From that follows that a material thickness of 1 mm and a surface area of one square meter has a weigh of 2.7 kilos. 2 mm = 5.4 kilos and so on. So, you basically only need to multiply the density of the material with the wall thickness and surface area in square meters to get the weight. If the truss consists of materials having different material densities and wall thicknesses, you can create a database where one field simply has the density multiplied by the wall thickness, and then multiply that by the surface areas of the respective in a database spreadsheet. This can be elaborated even further by also calculating the center of gravity in three directions, or simply adding a given point weight for a given element, for example a fitting element instead of using the surface area method. I use all these methods extensively and find them very handy.
  25. I guess an option to 3D printers would be to use a print and cut machine. At an entry level, and if you just want to try it a bit, you have for example the Silhouette Cameo, which allows you to cut up to say 200 grams (not sure how thick though) of photo paper and about a foot wide, and has simple printed positioning dots added. The referencing between the "picture" and the cut layout is controlled by these reference dots, using an optic eye in the machine. Admittedly, you still need to assemble the model, but on the other hand you get realistic textures and colors and it cuts very detailed models. Printing and cutting is usually much quicker than 3D printing though requiring assembly. Transferring models from VW works OK as long as you keep the contours as contours instead of with fills for the cutting part. Many cutter drivers seems to have problems with VW's polylines with holes inside, which however isn't VW's fault. I use both 3D printers and print and cut machines and both have advantages.

 

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