This week has been very exciting. Some users have pushed 3DTin models to new boundaries – they printed them using Makerbot.
Check out this ball maze and a castle, printed on Makerbot and designed in 3DTin. There are many more 3DTin models floating around in Thingiverse waiting to be born in the real world via a 3D printer.
I am sure you want to go beyond the orthogonal sufaces, pointy edges and sharp corners. And that day has come.
Just save the sketch at a smoothness you like and hit export. The export dialog has changed a little.
You can now choose the format and destination from the drop down menu and press download. You will get the OBJ/STL file in the same smooth form that you see in your browser.
Here is an example of a smoothened sketch exported as OBJ/STL and opened in Blender, MeshLabs and Thingiverse. The 3DTin sketch is here.
Behind the curtains
As I mentioned above, generating high-poly smoothened sketches is a CPU-intensive task. Even when it’s done on a dedicated machine with high processing power, it takes longer than a regular http request should take to return. Therefore a limit has been put on the number of polygons allowed in such exports. For now the limit is set to 5000 polygons. If the factory server finds that at a given smoothness the number of polygons exceeds this limit, then it will reduce the smoothness until the number of generated polygons is manageable, in worst case falling back to cubicle mode export. In future I plan to work on improving the smoothing algorithms so that you get better results in lesser time. I have suggestions from some power users about what can be done (thanks Metin), if you have any ideas please let me know too.
I’ve setup the monitoring framework using monit, but I won’t be surprised if the factory server get clogged with simultaneous requests and you take long time to download. Please let me know if you see such downtime.
3DTin has been in the news this week. Checkout some stories:
Very cool that you guys are using node.js to make your browser app work like a web service!