3D Sub-d Software for Product Design


does anyone know a polygon modeller with good bevel functions and measurement tools, which is small and inexpensive (more silo than alias designstudio)?

wings3d has good bevel etc and is comparable to silo in many respects as regards modeling, doubt it has good measure though…


There’s a “Blender CAD” python script that may help, perhaps a search of the forums will find it.

The best program I’ve used for product design is “Amapi”, version 6 is available for free here ( http://forums.polyloop.net/ ). I have version 7. You can design in either poly’s or nurbs and its bevel tools are very nice.

MOI 3D is available free as a beta for the near future (until its officially released) so if you only need it temporarily… its in NURBs and should export to OBJ. Might work for ya?

thanx for your replies.

i use rhinoceros (nurbs) for modelling but wanted also a poly tool for other approaches in construction and shape thinking.

i think wings 3d is the one.
in blender i am really used to the modelling shortcuts and the specific workflow, but a ‘new’ application is always mind opening (reverse engineers also your blender mind). is it possible that wings3d has no aquivalent function to a ‘loop subdivision’ (str+r)? it seems you have to go the long way: select, cut, connect.

what ever this is no wings3d forum.

Wings3d is inspired by Nendo/Mirai.

It has a lot of additions and evolutions, though…But it comes from organic modelling orientation, imho. Games, hi res modelling of characters…For me is uberfast, I’ve used as main modeler in all game/other 3d jobs.(<-- companies jobs.Took me a heck of an effort to demonstrate/convince was faster than a usual organic modeler guy with it, hehe… :wink: …in the one am now, not games related :,( , I do use Blender (but also wings) for corporate design )

You can do in many operations with coords, just hit tab while you are dragging and so type the exact number.It will do that move instead the one you were dragging. They have added in latest version absolute coords operations or somethin’. I don’t know as havent tested fully that version yet.

oh, yeh, seeing now…is called “absolute commands”. As all, it’s all in rmb menu, in Wings. Is context related, that menu changes depending on where you are (face, edge, vert mode…)

Is more focused the software in organic modelling. I like for example a lot that I can combine standard viewport rotation , pan and zoom while in the drag of any operation, so i can see how it’s doing from any angle, or save viewport angles and position, etc.

Well, is just a modeler.I just like a lot how it feels. You can do pretty well everything in a full project with Blender. I just keep liking do my modelling there and then export to Blender (right now I am rigging a model in Blender, which I modelled in Wings, will animate here of course.)

For subdiv, hit s in selected faces, or in whole object if you are in object mode. In top menu Edit/plugin Preferences/ you can trigger on Do Sabin subdiv. I dunno what’s that, but i guess subdiv behaves slightly different. I just use standard.

I could tell you a lot, but yep, this is a blender forum.
One only thing more then , hitting shift tab lets you preview it subdivided, I think it’s 2x or something the subdiv. It shows the cage if u have wires on (w key to toggle)…you may wish it seen with smooth normals on (tab key) , and lastly, is important on how it subdiv, the hard or smooth edges. You can just click on edge mode (or e key, you can do eveything by keys or mouse, all can be accesed by mouse) , select certain edges and hit your key (in wings, just put the mouse over any menu or command, and hit ins key, then the key you want for that. If want to keep the same keys through installs…I think it keeps em, but if u totally unisntall, you can just keep the text file it generates in the folder, and replace later on in newer wings.But I think now if u just install in other place new ver, it keeps em) for “hard”. In my case, “h”. Or by mouse, RMB, hardness, hard.(same for smooth) .Like with any subdiv tool tho, you can just tesellate manualy a bit an edge area, it’ll make sharper there also.Hard edge is faster and sharper. A combination of both is what is use when doing hi res modelling(like these days character am doing).

There’s no nurbs in here. Must tell you. Is poly+subdiv concept.
There have been ppl modelling a whole mechanic tools garage modelling, ppl modelling boats with it, game levels, buildings…
But imho, the strenght of this modeler is organic.
Yet though, I’ve banged loads and loads of static models for games, levels, with it…and being quite accurate…yet though never cad precission, never asked for that in games…Told just to make it look very real, and nice, that’s all. And for that, freaking worked. From Wings, I allways exported to the integration tool, usually Max, Maya, or XSI. No, sadly not Blender yet in a team, but at home, I’ve replaced my XSI for blender for character animation…You can laugh but…main reason is…is crazy, but for me Blender is somewhat lightweighted, fast, handy… Cool for me to animate or render. With next release, it’ll become also my game level production for my home projects (thanks to multiuv and render baking…YAY! )

but yep, is not a sofware for cad, no way…imho. And the coords etc handling, it’s way more than enough for my usual hi res or game needs, but for cad…Anyway, forgot one thing :
-if u select a face in face mode, there’s an info line up-left corner, says mid point of it.Select two, and its says the angle between em.
-edge mode, select one edge and says length and mid point. select two, and says angle and each edge #.
-vertex mode, select one and says vert coords with many digits. two verts and says distance.
-object, just says number of polies, edges, verts.

and there is the new, redesigned gsculpt!
more user friendly than the previous ones, and has some nifty tricks you wont find in
wings…especially the cut tool…is simply the dream! or the procedural editing…
check out this vid:

I’ll check, anyway.

hey extrudeface thanks for your nice review/minitutorial post. helped me a lot for a jump into. now the post title is a bit misleading - better would be ‘experience with a lightweight and flexible model software for every purpose’.

i am beginning to like wings. when i started with blender i also took a look at wings but it seemed to me to amateurlike. now that i understand better the underlying concepts of sud-d surface, i am starting to like the wings concept more and more. (gaalgergely: also will try gsculpt but haven’t yet, will tell you).

as i said for nurbs and accuracy i use rhino but i like to use different tools in different stages. using a polymodeler feels like hacking shape in computer language (just an maybe naive imagination) - very pure and with only a small but strong toolset.

alright, extrudeface, can you tell me what is your background and your path to cg?