I’m sure there must be a load of questions on this subject, but I haven’t found a working solution yet, so I’d like to open a new discussion. I hope you don’t mind.
I’m just getting into SLA printing for miniatures, mechanical components and some simple ‘show off’ objects. 3D printing has been taking off slowly for a few years, a half decent FDM printer can be bought for a couple of 100s ($/£) and SLA is coming down in price all the time. Blender is wonderful for hard/soft modelling and of course rendering is superb. Printing support is still a bit lacking, and I guess there is the decision, should blender be a printing app? Well, why not? Why not have the ability to print your imagination. For the sake of this post I’m thinking about the show items and following is a simple example.
It’s really pretty easy to Duplivert a sphere around a geo sphere, apply the Dup, then turn the original object into a wire frame, you’re left with a ‘molecular style’ bunch of balls and rods. Lovely.
But this object of course is many objects with many crossing edges. If the objects have been sub divided and smoothed you’re looking at many thousands of verts. Yes, it would be perfectly possible to manually ‘manifold’ this object, but it would take several hours if not a whole day.
I have found a couple of manifold addons, which either don’t install with 2.79b or just appear to cut holes everywhere. And here is the question again, should Blender handle this kind of thing, or should this be the domain of the slicer? I can turn this question around and ask, why not develop a blender slicer? Where is the prefect place to do all this solving, surely from within blender.
So the question is; does anyone have, know of any addons or scripts to help with this process? Is it being worked on?
While on the subject, what’s the most technically difficult object you have (or thought about) printed from Blender, it would be really interesting to know.
Many thanks folks.