Design Tutorials

Add Custom Heraldry to Tabletop Minis With Meshmixer

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Earlier this month, Geek & Sundry featured the new Shapeways tutorial video The Ultimaker Conversion Tutorial: Add Custom Heraldry to a Miniature. This week on Tutorial Tuesday, we’ll build on that and show you how to create, remix, and add features to tabletop models. One way to easily create a custom tabletop figure is with Hero Forge, an in-browser, character designing app… // Column at Shapeways

Thickening 3D Models With Blender

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So, you have a 3D model, but it’s too thin to print reliably — or too thick to have the fine detail you want. How can you fix it? In this week’s Tutorial Tuesday, we’ll focus on that one specific modeling skill. There are a lot of tools you could use for thickening or thinning a model, but today we’ll explore Blender, which produces reliable results and a good mesh, even with challenging designs… // Column at Shapeways

CAD in the Cloud With Onshape

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Are you a design amateur but starting to need more professional design software? Hobbyists and educators can get access to parametric design, collaboration tools, and cloud file management for free with Onshape, a powerful alternative to the engineering CAD software Solidworks. In this Tutorial Tuesday we’ll get you from zero to cloud-CAD in just a few videos… // Column at Shapeways

Learn to Fly With Wings3D

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In this week’s Tutorial Tuesday, we’ll expand our design toolbox to include the 3D modeling program Wings3D. Wings3D is free and open source, but includes much of the functionality of paid professional software like Autodesk’s 3ds Max, as well as topological mesh modeling software like TopMod. Wings3D is a low-poly subdivision tool, which means that you can create… // Column at Shapeways

3D Design Electronics in Tinkercad

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It’s back-to-school season, so this week’s Tutorial Tuesday will focus on using 3D printing and design to enhance learning of another subject: 3D design and printing for electronics. Specifically, we will explore a brand-new feature in free online 3D design software Tinkercad that combines 3D printing and circuit design, based on Electronics Lab and 123D Circuit.io from Autodesk Circuits… // Column at Shapeways

Repair and Prep Structure Synth Models

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A couple of weeks ago we discussed how to make complex designs with simple Structure Synth code, but what we didn’t mention is that the resulting models can need a bit of cleanup before they are printable. Because of the way Structure Synth models are constructed, they often consist of a large number of overlapping objects, and this can lead to some pretty nasty geometry… // Column at Shapeways

Easy Pendant Creator Walkthrough

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There are lots of ways to go from a 2D image to a 3D model, but one of the easiest ways is with the Shapeways 3D Printed Pendant Creator — even if you aren’t technically making a pendant. This Tutorial Tuesday, we’ll take you through the creation of a simple design with the Pendant Creator, including ways to tweak your image graphic so that it works well with the Pendant Creator tool… // Column at Shapeways

Learn to Code in 3D With BlocksCAD

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Happy Fourth of July! Today we’ll take it easy with a look at 3D design with BlocksCAD, an accessible block-based CAD programming tool that you can work with online in your browser. BlocksCAD works much like the popular intro-to-code language Scratch, but instead of creating animations, it is designed for creating 3D models. The fastest way to learn is by watching BlocksCAD in action… // Column at Shapeways

Porcelain Topographic Models with Terrain2STL

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Sometimes you just want a little piece of Earth to call your own. For example, here’s a Porcelain Ceramic relief map of the Shenandoah Valley region around Harrisonburg, Virginia. But where do you get the map data? There is a lot of it online, but not all of it is suitable for 3D printing or easy to export. Here’s where the website Terrain2STL comes to the rescue… // Column at Shapeways

Full-Color Prints from Trnio Photogrammetry

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Autodesk discontinued 123D Catch in January as part of a transition to their more extensive photogrammetry software ReMake, leaving many educators, students, and amateurs without an easy pathway for making quick, simple scans. Enter Trnio, a new iPhone app that guides you through the process of taking photos of an object, then stitches those photos together to create a 3D printable scan… // Column at Shapeways

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