BluePrint add on to blender

i know right now that this is gonna start a flame war… it just is… because there are non believers… its a fact.

I want to see an add on to create a blueprint view like in Inventor or Revit-Arch or Auto-CAD (all owned by auto desk).

lets face it… ive seen people using this application for the millitary, for small time construction… im even using it right now to help me add a walk in closet to an office to add a “4th bedroom” to the house and increase its value… It would be nice if i, and others, could make blue prints without an hour of arm bending to blender to get dotted lines for hidden objects, using faked borders, and having to manually write in the scale.

there needs to be an Editor… personally i believe it should COME WITH BLENDER… where you can click and drag an edge from the ortho view you chose and it will automatically label the scale like in auto desk apps, have places to write in blue print information, ETC.

I know there are gonna be a couple people who LOVE this idea… a couple people who are kindof MEH… and a lot who will say we dont need it at all… but imagine being able to model somthing like a car, then create blueprints for others from it.

Just a thought, and thats where im sure its gonna stay, but i would love to see some consideration to the thought.

Where does the AutoDesk one or whatever you’re using fall short of what you need? In other words, if you’re already using something else for the task what do you need Blender to do it for?

Either way, I’d work out a real proposal of how you would need it to work and then use it to see if you could snag an interested developer.

autodesk doesnt really work for me because im a student and dont ACTUALLY have 30,000 dollars worth of design applications, i just use student EDs of them… and everything is restricted in many ways.

I said what it should do… i want competition with autodesks blueprint function. minus actually building it, its not that complicated.

I was just giving you advice on how to go about getting a feature like that made. I could suggest they turn texture paint into Photoshop, but that isn’t really that useful if you catch my drift.

To me it looks as though you’ve pretty much left the entirety of the work on a potential developer. They have to go out figure out what this blueprint function is all about. Then they have to figure out how to work that functionality in Blender’s UI. Plus actually develop the tools. I just don’t think you’re going to interest anyone that way.

If you have mockup designs, clear explanations how and why to implement various tools, you are more likely to get a developer interested as you’ve reduced the overall burden. You gotta sell ideas, not just pitch them.

I don’t know if it’s useful but there are some free CAD programs out there if you weren’t aware. DraftSight and FreeCAD off the top of my head.

Sounds like you’d have better luck talking to these people. They’re even soliciting feature requests.

I don’t think that’s a reasonable recommendation (as in: this sounds like a waste of time). Exactly how many times did a non-trivial feature in Blender materialize solely out of a user proposal? I’ve counted zero times, maybe you can do better.

But what do you bring to the table? I don’t understand the idea behind this kind of thread: people requesting something, but offering nothing. If somebody was interested in implementing a feature like that, they wouldn’t be waiting for a bunch of forum users to start a discussion on it.

Here’s my proposal to add some gravitas to your words: Describe what it is that you’re after, then pledge that you will support development with a given amount of money. Everyone who is interested can weigh in on the pledge - resulting in a hypothetical monetary sum that represents user interest and developer incentive. If (and only if) that hypothetical amount attracts an interested developer, you can move on discussing things like a detailed functional spec, payment and escrow.

Let’s face it, people are using the wrong application.
If people need a CAD tool for their work, why do they use a non-CAD tool and then complain it’s not a CAD tool? I really don’t get it. Nice to have? Maybe, but not the nature of the application.

And there are plenty of good, free and even opensource CAD tools:

Personally I am more for a decent export or vector lines from blender. Then process those drawings in a dedicated drawing app.

That said I absolutely love the implementation in Revit. You make a 3D model -> You specify an interactive section plain -> you draw on that plain. And if the section plain is moved the lines you have attached to the plain moves too. They even update if you have constrained them to some of the section geometry. That is a great workflow. Yet Really hard to implement in Blender.

I am working on a section script but would need to make it into a modefier to get it interactive I believe. And then I need to develop vector export. Meaning: its a loong way off.

In the mean time:

Instead of adding functionalities to a specific program (which, when done by Microsoft, is stigmatized with “bloatware” by penguinistas) would not be wiser, simpler and faster to add good import/export of customary CAD file formats and let people build their own pipelines as they prefer? If there are licensing problems (likely with Autodesk) what about creating a standalone non-GPL (e.g. BSD) program to covert file formats? It is my way of handling programming: instead of solving problems, I eliminate them <Terminator soundtrack playing in the background> :evilgrin:.

That NanoCad is nice. I’ve been using Draftsight in the past and found it to be really slow and the interface just different enough from AutoCad to be annoying. Thanks for posting these.

my issue is the blue print its self tho, not the software, if maya, revit, or inventor where my preference over blender i would just buy one of them, but this wouldnt be bloatware as a “add on”

Everyone is acting like this is somthing no one wants. even CGCookie did a tutorial on how hard it is to fake, but how to fak it. I SAY AGAIN!!! If i improve on vague blueprints to a car, it might be nice to make new ones i can share with the community. if i model somthing, ANYTHING that someone might google blueprints for, and they cant find any, why is it i have to then import it into some really expensive application to help out??? I like blend swap but periodically i dont want to share a model i spent 3 months working on but id be ok sharing how i did it. Im not talking about designing sky scrapers or entire engines, but things that would be useful to the general user community.

by compitition i dont mean that i need autodesk to be taking hints from blender, but maybe blender can take a couple hints from autodesk. personally blender can take a lot of hints from autodesk, but i know that wont be happening any time soon seeing as how in the last 2 versions they have seemed pretty against making their own simple curve lofting system. Now not even BSurfaces works right for me.

all this functionality you want is found in CAD programs not 3dsuites, I stand to be corrected but I don’t think any of the other suits like max, maya, modo do what you are asking for. Every time someone has tried to use blender as a cad tool I have pointed out the same thing that it would be tedious and time consuming to get working drawings out of it. I am with Arexma on this you gotta use the right tool for the job and Blender is not it.

are you asking for some way to auto convert pic to mesh or curves lines?

inskscape has a script to convert pic lines into curves
but does not work 100 % of the time and points density is very high !

then import into blender as SVG

also there is a script in blender that can help with this
but have to find it !


To be honest, for me you haven’t described anything enough to call it an idea. Could you explain it in better detail so we know what you are actually asking for? What does “a blueprint view” look like? Do you have some urls or links to videos you can include. I’m not looking for a list of what AutoCAD does that Blender does not, more what particular features you need to do whatever it is you are trying to do.

Here is what it looks like… it automatically takes a front, side, and top ortho, and aperspective view/render when you export it.

You guys are right, maya and 3dsdont do this, but they can export to inventor which can. im not saying lets turn blender into a CAD application. but if i want to make better blueprints for a car model i made than why is it i have to spend 3500 dollars? or if i just want to see how a new wall might look in my house than why cant i make a top down drawing?

the idea should have been self explanitory, and i personally think a lot of you are fighting it because you think that blender is “fine” as it is… but anyone who settles for fine is wasting their time

If you make a blue print from a 3d model instead of a photoshop drawing than you can get the different views to line up PERFECTLY without trieing which is somthing i think a lot of people would find helpful… blue prints you dont have to fidget with for a half hour just so you can average out the different edges that dont line up

Um you can add text and render to solid white and then do a black edge highlight, this works for most situations,
also exporting with CTRL+Printscreen and then using paint or gimp to add comments and dim’s is good

I can design in blender, anything you need…

Do you want some sort of blender file header and window layout/UI changes that are more cadlike?

to convert form 2D views with perspective may be
have you seen blam which can use different view and perspective to make 3D model!


Yes, if you take the time to explain it…

Now that you have done so, do you mind now telling us what part of the above is hard/difficult to do for you now? I mean you can change the camera to Orthographic, duplicate your object and move into the different orientations, then render. Is it the particular kind of shading you need? Something else I’m not thinking of?

whats hard is creating a solid format without 30 minutes of arm bending… creating new texture, faking wire frames that only span borders, using dotted lines with an xray effect to show hidden meshes…

i learned sketchup 9 years ago, then inventor and blender. once you get the hang of blue print view… U DONT WANT TO FAKE IT!!! and clearly no one here has ever used it because if they had than this wouldnt be an issue and everyone would agree, CAD or not that it would be nice if blender had it… YES, in theory you could just co into quad view and take a screen shot, but it is also shaded, it does not inharently line up the verts, and if you put it in wire than it is just straight up messy, and yes you could put it in gimp, paint, photo shop, but if you have an elaborite design, than you are adding time taking screen shots not saving it which is the point of a blue print tool in the first place.