Autodesk and Lincoln team up for 3D printed creativity at Great Create

Autodesk was pleased to partner with the Lincoln Motor Company at the Great Create, a fundraising event at the Nasher Sculpture Center in Dallas. Autodesk provided large scale 3D printed models of the new 2015 Lincoln Navigator, to be painted by two artists on site, Charlie Skala and Chisum Pierce. In addition, we provided smaller models of the car to be painted by children attending the event.

Over 200 of the little cars were painted by children at the event, in a wide variety of colors and designs.

Staff from Autodesk's 123D consumer software group demonstrated a 3D printer at the event, just like the one used to produce the smaller models.

The process of creating these models and preparing them for 3D printing was interesting. Keep reading to learn more!

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Autodesk Meshmixer for YOU

We've been ramping up our Meshmixer production lately and released a new update with YOU in mind. See, we are gathering all of your feedback and suggestions and adding it into the application. We are especially excited for the new 3D printing workflows that are coming with each release, some examples below.

Patterned Bunny Pack

Make Slices  

Many of you requested to have 3D printers that we did not list in the pre-populated list of 3D printers. We heard you and decided to let you add your own 3D printer so you can layout and arrange a print job for your specific machine. Its fairly intuitive to set up if you at least know the build volume of your 3D printer.

Here is a list of what's new in Meshmixer 2.3, released yesterday, April 21st:

  • New add/edit custom printer so you can prep your 3D prints for any 3D printer
  • New Make Slices tool: Slice an object into a number flat slices. Two techniques: Stacked or Stacked3D
  • New drag/drop solid objects in addition to parts. Addition of primitives category
  • Added part categories to the Meshmix panel to accommodate growing libraries of parts and solids
  • New Separate Shells tool to separate combined but separate geometry into separate objects
  • Better naming of newly created objects from duplicate, separate, etc…
  • PLY binary format support (which is handy for importing the per-vertex color meshes coming in from depth cameras)
  • 3Dconnexion space mouse support
  • Lots of bug-fixes and stability improvements

By the way, it is now even easier to give us your feedback and suggestions directly from the application! You can see a new menu item named Feedback that you can use to send feedback (good or bad) directly to the developers. With this, you might possibly define some of the next features in the upcoming releases!

How do you use Meshmixer? What would you like to see next?

Pendant

Pendant designed in Meshmixer. A multi-material print on a Stratasys Connex machine

 

Easter Bunny 3D remixes with Meshmixer

Come Spring, here at 123D secret headquarters we start thinking about bunnies and Easter eggs - but also about robots and rockets. We decided to combine these interests by digging through our collection of 3D models and putting together a collection of Easter Bunny 3D mashups using Meshmixer.

We have an extensive collection of Easter Bunnies, Retro Robots and lots of other cool stuff, all of which works great with Meshmixer. So we set to work to make a collection of somewhat untraditional Easter Bunnies. We hope you enjoy them, and are inspired to try some remixes of your own!

In the middle right is Castle Bunny, protecting his carefully hoarded Easter Eggs with a castle that rolls on tank treads from one of the retro robots. Meshmixer's Make Solid feature was used to prepare all the meshes for combining. Keep reading to learn more about the rest of the bunnies.

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Rockets and Robots: exploring STEM education with 123D

April is a big month for rockets and robots, and for STEM education in general. Here at the Autodesk 123D world headquarters, we are pleased to provide you with tools and project ideas that will help you explore this field.

Coming up first is Yuri's Night, a celebration of the first manned flight into space, on April 12th. We have an extensive collection of 3D rocket models in the 123D Gallery, and we've gathered them together for your convenience. Check out some of them below. You can download them, change them, 3D print them and share them with your friends. Stay tuned for tutorials on how you can use 123D Design, Tinkercad and Meshmixer to make some great things.

Soon after that, two major competitive robotics events are coming up, both from April 23-26: The VEX Robotics World Championship in Anaheim, California; and the FIRST Robotics Competition in St. Louis Missouri. We'll be publishing simple robotics projects to get you started in this field, integrating electronics and 3D printing.

You can also find some great 3D models of robots in the 123D Gallery - we've packaged up some of them, but feel free to go exploring: there are a lot more! Use them as a starting point for some fun projects.

Keep checking back, for fun and easy projects you can do, and a surprise guest!

HIGHFIV3D: Autonomous Reassurance Device – Part 2

(I only had a small speaker on hand, please forgive the audio)

I started working on the electronics component to the HighFiv3D machine this week. In my previous post, I went from using a piezo senseor to an accelerometer; then this week I decided to do a tilt sensor before getting frustrated trying to debounce it. So ACCELEROMETER it is...!

The first step was gathering parts. After a bit of advice from Gian Pablo and Rob, I figured I'd need an Arduino Uno, a Wave Shield and the accelerometer to start. We have some Arduinos on hand at Pier 9, but you can get everything from Adafruit, retailing for about $60.

The Wave Shield is basically another circuit board that sits directly on top of an Ardiuno and allows for .wav files to be played from an SD card. Now I can record the audio with my laptop, convert to the proper file type (.wav) and store them on an SD card for random play when prompted; in this case, when the accelerometer is moved.

I used Adafruit's Wave Shield Kit, v.1.1, for which they have a great tutorial on soldering and building the actual board. If you can solder, it's very simple. You'll need a 2GB SD card (it can't use anything larger) that is formatted - I used the SD formatter that Adafruit suggested, but Mac's Disk Utility will work. Once the board was built per the instructions, I only added some female headers to make testing easier.

For the accelerometer, the only soldering that's required is the wire leads that will run from the Arduino to the Shield/Arduino. I chose Yellow/Blue/Red for my X,Y and Z motions, black for power and green for ground (my electronics aptitude has been dictated by motorcycle wiring). Just leave a foot or so of wire slack to test the sensor.


Once the shield was finished, I started working on the coding. My programming experience is pretty limited (I once made a light blink with an Arduino, but that's about it). Fortunately, there is a HUGE community with pre-written codes (Sketches), so you can get away with not having to completely write it yourself. I pulled from Adafruit's example sketches for the Wave Shield and the accelerometer. The Arduino forums are a good resource too. But, since I sit next to him, I asked Gian Pablo to help me with the shield code first.

From Gian Pablo:

The great thing about using the Arduino for DIY projects is that it is so widely used that you can almost always find an example or project that to get you started. For this project, we used the WaveShield from Adafruit (https://www.adafruit.com/products/94) to provide audio output. It is a simple Arduino shield with an SD card slot and audio output. We connected an accelerometer, an ADXL335 on a breakout board.

For programming, we just used one of the examples from Adafruit as a starting point, in this case the Play6_HC example (http://learn.adafruit.com/adafruit-wave-shield-audio-shield-for-arduino/play6-hc). We wanted to modify it so that instead of reading a button press to trigger the audio response, it would respond to sudden motion of the accelerometer, and allow for some time for the hand to settle down each time (if someone gave it a good whack). This only required 3 lines of code, and then we had to make some slight changes to the rest of the program so that it would choose a random response each time.

After a couple of hours we were good to go!

The only .wav files I had on hand were from Star Wars and Nacho Libre (don't ask), so I put them on the SD card, followed some directions, and voila... my little shield was talking to me. Incessantly.

Then, with the accelerometer tuned in - I was eventually able to activate random files by hitting the sensor. I was frustrated for 2 days because I kept getting an error, but we eventually realized that the file names were too long!! With just the shield, the file names didn't matter, it just played whatever is on the card. However, with the accelerometer and randomization, the same files wouldn't play because they were over 8 characters. Once I abbreviated them, it would play perfectly.

 

 

Meet the Meshmixer band – musical mashups made easy

Meshmixer really is the ultimate tool for remixing 3D models. In order to learn about some of the new features that have been added, the 123D team got together to jam. We made some musical mashups based on remixes of 3D models from our gallery - and we'd love to share with you how we did it.

We made five different band members, using different techniques. From left to right: Beethoven Mechaspider, the Elefan, Guitar Golem, Keytar Kritter and Horndog.

The Mechaspider combines a model created in 123D Design, the Mechanical Tarantula, with a scan created with 123D Catch, Beethoven's head. We used the new Make Solid feature in Meshmixer to turn the spider model into a single unified part. You can adjust the resolution and accuracy of this operation until you get something that works. We added the model of Beethoven to the same project, and used the Inspector feature to close any gaps. Finally, we positioned the head using the Transform tool, and used the Boolean Union operation to join everything together. 

The Elefan started off with the Elephant Conductor model from the 123D Content Library, which is perched on a music box base. The Plane Cut function sliced off the base. Then we added a Hook'em Horns Hand, used Mirror to get two of them, and used Transform to size them and position them appropriately. Finally, selecting hands and body, and applying a Boolean Union pulled it all together.

Guitar Golem starts with the Wood Golem and the Guitar Antenna topper, both from the 123D Content Library. The first order of business was to load both models into Meshmixer, and size them correctly relative to each other. The guitar has a cylindrical fitting that we don't need, so we used Select mode in Meshmixer to select and delete. We needed to pose the Golem so we used one of the hot new features in Meshmixer - the Soft Transform. First select the parts of the limb that we want to move, then choose Deform -> Soft Transform, and select the Non-Linear option. This treats the boundary between the selection and the body as if it were rubber, and makes for a really nice way to pose models.

Keytar Kritter is based on the Metal Golem and the Keytar. Once again, the new Make Solid tool was key to make the Keytar into a single solid piece. Soft Transform came in handy to pose the Golem, adjusting both the arm position and the fingers to make it look like he is really rocking out.

Finally, Horndog starts with the Ghostbusters Terror Dog made in 123D Creature, combined with the Tambourine around its neck and the Bugle for ears. We used Make Solid and Boolean Union as before (see a pattern?) but then applied a major new feature. The Tambourine and the Bugle have very fine details that would not print well, so we went to the new 3D Print area in Meshmixer, and used the Adaptive Thickening option to make sure that there were no details less than 2mm in size.

All the models were printed on our fancy Objet 3D printers here at 123D secret headquarters, but the advanced support options in Meshmixer will let you print on a Makerbot or other affordable printers. Give Meshmixer a try - it's free, and should be an essential part of your toolbox if you're doing anything with 3D printing!

Meshmixer Update!: Your 3D Printing Sidekick Adds Patterning and More

Well, it's only been about a month since the last update to Autodesk Meshmixer, which included more powerful 3D printing workflows. Today, Autodesk Meshmixer updated again with the 3D printing workflows you requested, many general enhancements, and a few surprises.

Autodesk Meshmixer Update

 

We are having a lot of fun playing with the newly added "Make Pattern" tool and 3D printing the results. Make Pattern lets you create a unique cage-like structure that conforms to an objects surface (like below) and more. 

3D Patterned Objects

Examples of objects patterned in Meshmixer

 

As for the 3D printing additions, one highlight is the support for assigning multiple materials (for printers that feature multiple material prints). For example, you can now assign what objects are assigned to the Left/Right extruder for your Makerbot Replicator 2X. Here is a print I made with 2 materials on an Objet Connex 500. It is a 123D Catch capture of Autodesk's CEO Carl Bass in Vero Clear combined with the Autodesk brand "A" in Vero White. This was stylized and prepared for the Objet printer all in Meshmixer, then printed all in one go!

Multi-material 3D print

This is a multi-material print I created in Meshmixer and printed to a Objet Connex 500

 

Last but not least, thank you for all of your feedback on Autodesk Meshmixer, and please keep it coming! Due to growing popularity of this free app, we are looking to make more regular updates so you can continue to push the limits of your 3D printing amazingness. So, if you would like to give us praise or even scold us, send any feedback to meshmixer@autodesk.com.

15 Free 3D Furniture Models for Your Architectural Projects (Part 1)

I came across quite a few excellent 3D models of various furniture items while planning my architectural project which, I thought, once 3D printed would breathe in extra realism to my model. This post will highlight some of my favorites - you can download them for free to use in your own projects!

Note: Here is a complete list of furniture-related models (1664+ pcs.) found in 123D Gallery. Models mentioned in this post are from the Premium 123D collection, however even Free 123D membership owners can download up to 10 premium models per month. Stay tuned for part 2 which will include both premium and free furniture items!

Tan Lounge Chair

Download model (.stl) | Convert to other 3D file formats


Captains Chair

Download model (.stl) | Convert to other 3D file formats


Cabinet

Download model (.stl) | Convert to other 3D file formats


Executive Chair

Download model (.stl) | Convert to other 3D file formats


Leather Recliner

Download model (.stl) | Convert to other 3D file formats


Open Patio Umbrella

Download model (.stl) | Convert to other 3D file formats


Sectional Sofa

Download model (.stl) | Convert to other 3D file formats


Sofa Pillows

Download model (.stl) | Convert to other 3D file formats


Swing

Download model (.stl) | Convert to other 3D file formats


Bath Towel

Download model (.stl) | Convert to other 3D file formats


King Size Bed

Download model (.stl) | Convert to other 3D file formats


Traditional Sofa

Download model (.stl) | Convert to other 3D file formats


Armchair 4

Download model (.stl) | Convert to other 3D file formats


Picnic Table Octagon

Download model (.stl) | Convert to other 3D file formats


Patio Lounge Chair - Padded

Download model (.stl) | Convert to other 3D file formats


3D print these models

Follow below steps to print these furniture pieces on your 3D printer:

  1. Download a model of your choice by clicking on any one of the "Download model (.stl)" links found under model images.
  2. Download Meshmixer, a free, powerful tool from Autodesk to work with 3D models. Go to Meshmixer page for more info.
  3. Print model after setting it up and refining it in Meshmixer.

Optional: paint your models with basic acrylic paints, which could be found at any art supply store. Seen above is my quick paint test of the "Tan Lounge Chair".


Register for free to download these, and many more 3D models:

Register now

123D Make, Self Portrait as Kali

Self Portrait as Kali p1 

Anna Kaziunas France's sculpture "Self Portrait as Kali" was created from several photographs using the program ReconstructMe. She created two 3d models that were then merged with MeshMixer to create two sets of arms on a single torso. Both sets of arms are broken off at the forearms, as if the original scan were of an ancient statue that had been damaged over time. The final 3D model was sliced into 125 individual flat pieces using 123D Make, then routed on a ShopBot PRS Standard out of 1/2" MDF. The slices were then assembled and painted by hand.

The skull beads that make up the necklace and the belt were created from a 123D Catch scan of a single prop skull. OpenSCAD was used to import and manipulate the the skull scan into single and multi-face skull beads. The beads were smoothed with MeshMixer and printed on a first generation MakerBot Replicator. The beads were individually painted and strung as a belt and necklace, then used to adorn the assembled body.

123D Make cut outs of sculpture

This work has been displayed at the 3D Printed sculpture show "Bits to Its" at the Landing Gallery, in Rockport, ME and debuted in "Saturnalia" at the Candita Clayton Gallery in Pawtucket, RI. 

 

#FANTASIZ3D

 

Sculpture Details:

Title: Self Portrait as Kali

Medium: printed plastic, routed MDF, paint

Date of Creation: 11/19/2012

Size:

32.5" tall

26.194" wide

12.228" deep

 

123D Make, Self as Kali

123D Make

 

Top 5 3D Printing Features in the new Autodesk Meshmixer

 

Autodesk Meshmixer free all-in-one 3D printing application

Autodesk Meshmixer free all-in-one 3D printing and more application.

Autodesk Meshmixer updated today with a nice all-in-one suite for 3D printing, making it the ultimate free sculpting, mixing, painting, 3D printing application out there. Most notably, when you are ready to print your multi-mesh mashup, you can click the "Print" button which loads an arsenal of simple analysis and layout tools to arrange, heal, and even print directly to a 3D printer. See the video below for an quick teaser of what is new.

 The integration with 3D printers is intended to make the process to 3D printing even more streamlined. The healing tools require no training at all and will make just about any model printable. If you want to save time and material, then you can give your model a wall thickness so that it's hollow inside. Also, the generation of support material is an artform in itself. Of course, the experienced Meshmixer users can still find their original re-meshing, sculpting and healing tools they have grown to love for that extra level of control.

With all that in mind, here are my Top 5 Meshmixer Features for anyone interested in 3D printing.

5. New feature: "Make Solid". Now you can mash a bunch of meshes together and use "Make Solid" to heal them all together into a 3D printable object. See my Danielle Steele-like book cover I whipped together below from some 123D Catch captures I downloaded from 123dapp.com.

Make Solid

Make Solid makes these 123D Catch captures watertight!

 

4. Automatic repairing (I counted 1 click!). Whether it be a messy, unprintable model or you just want a sanity check for 3D printing your refined creation. The addition of an option to automatically "Repair Selected" is an easy hands free way to make any model 3D printable. Find it in the print bed layout screen.

3. "Hollow with Wall Thickness" will save you time and material when printing. Essentially giving your model a wall thickness that you decide, making it a hollow print rather than a solid print with infill. You can visualize how thick your model is with the slick see-through representation.

2. Analysis tools: Strength, Stability, and Slicing. This unique set of tools is perfect for visualizing how your printed model will look and perform before printing it. My favorite is the "Stability" tool where I can make sure my print will stand upright. Using this, I can push the limits of how I mix and sculpt, ensuring the printed object will not topple over!

1. Print direct to your 3D printer (Windows 8.1 supported). Windows 8.1 users will have the option to print directly to their printer, bypassing the need to go through another app such as Makerware, eliminating this extra step.

Don't take my word for it, try it for yourself...its free for Mac or Windows (32/64 bit) at its brand new page: 123dapp.com/meshmixer.