Nurbs Modeling Addons? How?

Hi People,

For those who don’t know me my name is Wesley Vanitou I am a CG Artist from Guadeloupe (Carribean).

I have a question about NURBS modeling. I’m pretty sure everybody knows Fusion 360, Solidworks, Freecad etc and I want to know:

  • How long/hard it will be to implement proper NURBS modeling tools in Blender?
  • How many devs will be needed for this type of project ?

I am not a programmer (And don’t plan to be) but I would love to support a project like this in the long term alongside blender main dev. I know this is a thing who never will be considered by the dev team they have too many awesome works to do but it will be interesting I think.

What is your opinion about it people?


As a polygon and nurbs modeler I tell you to forget about this in Blender.

Over years we often tried to bring this to the BF attention but it was never given much resources.

Maya or Max for me are ideal tool because they offer you as a designer the proper tools for making
objects ranging from organic to hardedge/mechanical forms.

I think over the years here and there that from BF there was maybe an interest but their main focus
was on other valid projects with improving Blender - sadly.

Maybe look into FreeCad?

might get more in 2.8
but how much ?


post 439 in

will have to see what we get and the tools too?

happy bl

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A pipeline for the interim: ?

I’m also very interested to use Blender as a CAD/CAM tool and support for NURBS is a must for that. Maybe we can start a campain to attract some interest developer to do this?

it looks that some one is already looking into it !

which is nice

happy bl

IMO, the commercial NURBS programs such as Rhino and Alias have very long history and are very well developed.
I doubt it is really worthwhile to have opensource NURBS alternatives, especially for manufacturing purposes.

CAD programs need tight tolerances for manufacturabilty. I doubt a NURBS implementation of Blender will be good enough for CAD that can be outputted for manufacturing.

Well, myself I’m working in furniture industry and personaly I don’t need tolerances bigger than 0,1mm.

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I don’t think like you, Blender is accurate for many types of jobs, and for small jobs is prefect. I’m looking for a way to make CAD drawings with Blender, and I believe that this is possible, I am also preparing some tutorials on workflow, using freestyle.

And also for the implementation of Nurbs in Blender, I think I was one of the first to ask to developers, something like that, more than 15 years ago, but I haven’t given up hope, and now I find myself very well in CAD drawings with Blender.


i’m also working right now on a project doing some CAD drawings
and major problems is too add proper dim
there is the new measure addon but got some problems with printing and zoom

and with printing how do you keep proper scale !

would like to see some good PDF and video tut on that subject

another problem is Not all CAD’s use same way to use Nurbs
some use Weight differently then other soft and make it more difficult to convert to blender
also there are different algos for nurbs !

happy bl

To me, the use of nurbs in blender is to be able import cad geometry without write an extra file, my model use to be heavy in cad, when this are meshes is even worst. messed normals, are a major drawback very often. I use to render glass for my work, some times is impossible generate a correct shading for my imported models. All kind of industries rely on software like blender just in order to showcase their products in cad stage; this is why nurbs is important for blender from my point of view, not as modeling tool otherwise visualization tool, the real blender strength.

My two cents.


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Some people are doing interesting things on freecad:

maybe we could start a kickstarter project for nurbs development in blender, i belive would get a lot of funds, but we need a mentor and credible guy from blender comunity to lead the project.

did anyone started some addons to help do some import export between CAD and Bl for the differernt Nurbs in CAD ?

would be interesting to begin something if possible

if there is a need for some built in new Nurbs might be possible in the SVN from Mauge

happy bl

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Hi, I found this just now, I do not know if it works! I try later.
Also exists a library in Python to import and export in CAD.

The aoc-xchange project provides a Python package named aocxchange to read and write from/to IGES, STEP, BREP, and STL files using PythonOCC.

Then, as far as the scale of the SVG, I set the correct scale, with LibreCAD, but LibreCAD, no matter the SVG, so you have to use Insckape, which exports to DXF_14. You have to know a measure of it somewhere, or you can add a scale bar in rendering, as in the old projects, and use it as reference in scaling.

One last thing, Freeship export to IGS, subdivision surfaces, with extreme precision, and amazing speed, they don’t seem to perform calculations. To me, it would have a script, which exports the subdivision surface in IGES. and vice versa. .

This is a job for Ideasman42

most of these are for Python 3D soft
so not really compatible with Bl

The one for IGS import only Bspline
there are a lot more curves type in CAD if I remember well

anyone has some list of the different type of Nurbs lines or surface in CAD?

happy bl

I’d love to have CAD tools in Blender. I don’t know how to use rhino or anything like that (I did try to learn it, but I didn’t get far and then evaluation period expired, I’m afraid to buy a license and then not use it because I don’t know how to), in the past I’ve found myself modeling hard surfaces that would be done a lot faster and more accurately using nurbs tools.

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Just saying, that I’m also interested in doing some cad work in Blender, and I know a bunch of other people who would also like to use Blender for basic cad jobs. However with past experiences (years ago) it’s just too cumbersome compared to most cad tools… Maybe this could be one area to improve in the future, make some kind of cad mode for blender. I guess it would draw many people who are into this stuff to Blender, but then there are also many other free alternatives, so…

I totally agree with you. Let’s organize!

But besides NURBS also we will need a “Drawing” Editor Type (like this one) who can handle dimensioning and spreadsheets (for BOMs and future parametrics).

P.S. And don’t forget that Blender already have a CAM module called BlenderCAM, and some other CAD related projects in different builds, so maybe we can unite somehow all this stuff together and make something like BlenderCAD-CAM or similar. :slight_smile:

i think this guy have done a very well work in the gsoc project to improve curve tools…i guess this is the most important part to become more CAD useable in blender.

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