Maker’s Toolbox, Meshmixer 3.0 Lands

We’ve been working on some awesome new features and improvements for Meshmixer and its is all available for you to download and play with now (for free!). While there’s too much new stuff to describe in detail here, I can tell you that there are some innovative tools for those looking to model for multi-material 3D printing.

While these original tools cater to the needs of those with access to multi-material 3D printers, they also double for some pretty handy modeling tools for those with other intentions than 3D printing.

In fact, another addition to this release is an Unwrap tool...which is a common frustration point for many Makers- unwrapping 3D geometry to be able to lasercut or CNC out of flat material such as aluminum, wood, or fabric.

See the video below for some highlights:

 

 

There are lots of odds and ends here that were included based on your feedback…so keep it coming. You can always give it from within the app (click the “Feedback” menu) or email us at meshmixer@autodesk.com. Meshmixer is free, so you can't go wrong!

Here’s a comprehensive look at what’s new in Meshmixer 3.0, available for Windows (64, 32bit) and Mac:

- new Complex objects that contain internal partitions (beta!). Complexes make it easy to design for multi-material 3D printing!!
Generate Complex tool to create a Complex from face groups
Split Complex decomposes a Complex into separate solid shells
- new Export mode that automatically decomposes Complex on write
- new Align to Target tool to automatically align meshes in 3D
- new Unwrap tool flattens surface patches
- new SVG Export can export meshes as SVG (edges, colors, etc). Try it with Unwrap!
- new Mesh Query tool for visualizing mesh properties
- new measurement-based scene scaling workflow in Units/Dimensions tool
- new Select Intersecting action in Select tool (double-click on other scene objects)
- new Preserve Group Borders and Project To Target options in Smooth Boundary
Remesh can now automatically preserve sharp edges
Make Pattern can now clip to active Target object
Make Solid updates and new mode to automatically preserve sharp edges (slow!)
- huge Booleans stability improvements
- minor improvements to TransformSmoothReplace and Reduce
- export support for SMESH format
- Pivot-drag positioning shortcut can now terminate on any surface in scene
- new unlit-texture shader
- support for Autodesk Screencast
- crazy bugfixes
- tons of UI improvements to indicate disabled/unavailable menus and settings
- lots of [scripting API improvements]

Have fun!

Pixelio Kickstarter launches, a perfect scanning companion for 123D Catch

Have you ever had mixed results using the free 123D Catch app on your smartphone? Often the photos can come out blurry or poorly exposed which directly affect the quality of the resulting 3D model you would get from the app.

Well, the folks at Smart3D have found a solution for you in their first product, Pixelio. The Pixelio Kickstarter launched this week, which is a great 123D Catch scanning companion. Essentially, you can place your smartphone with the 123D Catch app running in the Pixelio Multiscanner and let it move around the object in the center, taking optimal photographs using "Virtual Finger" technology for creating that perfect capture.

In addition to scanning with 123D Catch it is very handy for creating stop motion movies, and 360 panoramas amongst other creative uses, all while keeping your device charged.

Check them out and get in early if you want over at Smart3D's Kickstarter, some of the preliminary models using 123D Catch are very impressive as the affordable Pixelio serves as an programmable, automated assistant to shoot the best photos for 3D captures.

Halloween DIY: Turn your head into a disembodied candy jar :0

Our friend Maker's Muse has come up with another interesting use of our apps, 123D Catch and Meshmixer. He's really good and I recommend subscribing to his YouTube channel, as he regularly creates these insightful videos about 3D printing.

This time Maker's Muse captures his head with 123D Catch and brings it into Meshmixer to hollow out for a sliced off zombie head full of candy. Check out the video below for his process. 

If you are having trouble capturing someone's head with 123D Catch, you can refer to a previous blog post: How To Capture a Person with 123D Catch.

Happy Halloween!

Meshmixer 2.9.2: Experiments

I've been having some fun with the new version of Meshmixer (version 2.9.2) we are releasing today. I've been following fans of Tinkerplay and 123D who have experimented with 3D printing mashups using the Tinkerplay ball and socket connectors and decided to assemble my own.The result: "Foodman" (the name just came to me) which is composed of my captures of fruit and vegetables made with 123D Catch and the new Tinkerplay part libraries that are included with this new release.

Its been a pretty easy workflow with the new improvements to the "Make Solid" tool. Now, not only are mixed up objects magically turned into one 3d printable object, but also the colors are preserved! By the way, it is pretty easy to import the captures from my 123D account within Meshmixer by clicking 123D. I'm going to print this guy in color and see how he holds together...

Though a small update with a ton of bug fixes the new updates to "Make Solid" tool made this experiment with colorful captures from 123D Catch captures from my mobile and Tinkerplay parts possible. Here is a list of the new things in Meshmixer 2.9.2:

  • New TinkerPlay part libraries
  • Make Solid can now bake uv/vertex colors to vertex colors of new mesh
  • New region-growing capability in Selection tool
  • Pivot improvements (.mix import, duplicating linked pivots, new Create modes)
  • Many bugfixes! (texture support, vertex color painting, remeshing, ...)
 
It is available now at 123dapp.com, so have some fun being a mad scientist!

 

 

123D Captures Windows Phones and Tablets

The 123D family recently expanded to include 123D Catch and 123D Sculpt+ for the Windows Store. 123D Catch is also now available for Windows Phone through the Windows Phone Store.

This breaks new ground on the Windows mobile platforms for 123D and broadens the availability of these powerful, free apps for anyone with a Windows device. 

For those new to the apps, 123D Catch uses the camera on your phone or tablet to shoot photographs around something, then upload the photos to the cloud where they are turned into a realistic 3D model.

123D Sculpt+ is a digital sculpting application for tablets, allowing beginners to get into digital 3D sculpting and professionals to do their work on the go.

Both apps boast an ever growing community of 3D photographers and digital sculpturers. Share your creations with others for praise or critique, or simply keep it private for your own use, it is up to you!

The apps are freely available now on the Windows Store (123D Catch, 123D Sculpt+) and Windows Phone Store (123D Catch). To get them, just search and install from the Window Store app on your device.

So,  a couple of reasons for those of you with a Windows device to maximize and share your creativity...and have fun while you're at it!

123D Circuits Video Series : Servo and More!

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Ready to get your How-To on?  We've recorded a handful of awesome new videos that teach basic and advanced concepts of electronics in 123D Circuits.  Each video is based on an existing circuit and with one click you can duplicate it, learn from it, and build it into bigger and better projects.  

Circuit: Arduino and Servo


Circuit: Potentiometer


Circuit: Blink LED with an Arduino


Circuit: Oscilloscope Basics

For more 123D Circuits how-to videos please visit the 123D Circuits Playlist.

Meshmixer 2.9 Saves the Day!

Many of you have been writing us to say thank you for the unique ways that Meshmixer helps you with 3D printing your creations. Today, we say thank YOU by releasing Meshmixer 2.9! There are some spectacular new features in this release...

For those who work with full color models, such as those coming from depth cameras, 123D Catch or 123D Sculpt+, Meshmixer now supports maintaining the color with most tools in Meshmixer. For the geeks: UV textures are supported while editing. Now you can sculpt, remesh, boolean, erase and fill, reduce, etc all while maintaining the integrity of the color on your model.

For example, see the illustration below showing the upgraded Reduce tool that maintains the color texture of a 123D Catch capture while reducing the size and complexity of the geometry.

What is truly a game changer for this release is the addition of precise transforms and the new Pivot tool. The Transform tool now has a properties panel for precise input of position, rotation, and sizing. Now you can enter the exact location and orientation you want your objects to be.

For example, I can perfectly size and align these two objects to each other for an interesting boolean difference result.

 Also, using the new Pivot objects, I can place pivots in many different ways (optionally linking them to objects) and use them in many of the existing tools. For example I can drag one pivot to another and snap the attached object accurately for a quick alignment. 

 

Here is a list of what is new in this release:

  • Updated most Tools to properly handle Texture Maps
  • New Pivots objects for simplifying precise positioning
  • New Create Pivot tool to place Pivots in many different ways
  • Existing Tools now snap to Pivots when possible
  • Updated Transform tool with precise input of translate/rotate/sizing
  • Transform tool can use a Pivot as arbitrary center-of-rotation
  • Rewritten Align tool with many new alignment modes
  • Fast Pivot-to-Pivot interaction to rapidly position objects
  • Rewritten Remesh tool with new remeshing modes
  • New Adaptivity setting in brush tools
  • Improved support for multi-user installations
  • Improved stability, particularly startup crashes, network-related crashes, and GPU issues
  • Support for Anti-Aliased Rendering in Preferences (disabled by default)

 

Finally, everyone should check out this 3D printed short film. Filmmaker Gilles-Alexandre Deschaud wrote to thank us for Meshmixer and told us how it streamlined 3D printing everything seen in the film. More on this story soon...

123D Circuits : Blink LED with an Arduino

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This week's video on Electronics teaches you how to blink LEDs with an Arduino in the 123D Circuits virtual circuit simulator.  Its super-simple because the code is already pre-written and saved into the Arduino.  Opening it and making changes is a snap!  And don't stop there... we're growing the list of how-to videos every week!

This link will take you to the playlist of all videos 


So far we've been keeping it simple by getting the main point across in under a few minutes, but if you watch the whole video you'll also learn some engineering science!  Check out the video below.

Click here to open the original circuit in 123D Circuits.

123D Circuits is a fantastic place to go to build electronic circuits without leaving your computer.  It's as simple as dragging together components and watching them come alive in your web browser.  It's fast, it's free, and it's quite powerful.


You can do this yourself, just head over to 123D Circuits and sign in, then create a "New Breadboard Circuit" then follow along with the video.  You never know, this could be the beginning of something big - we think so!

 

 

123D Circuits Video Series : Measure Current

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This week's video on Electronics teaches you how to measure electrical current with a multimeter in the 123D Circuits virtual circuit simulator.  This is the companion video to last week's "Measure Voltage with a Multimeter".  You may follow along with the video, or just watch and be entertained.
This link will take you to the playlist of all videos 


So far we've been keeping it simple by getting the main point across in under a few minutes, but if you watch the whole video you'll also learn some engineering science!  Check out the video below.

Want to see the finished Current Measurement circuit?  Here's the link!

123D Circuits is a fantastic place to go to build electronic circuits without leaving your computer.  It's as simple as dragging together components and watching them come alive in your web browser.  It's fast, it's free, and it's quite powerful.


You can do this yourself, just head over to 123D Circuits and sign in, then create a "New Breadboard Circuit" then follow along with the video.  You never know, this could be the beginning of something big - we think so!

 

 

123D Circuits Video Series : Measure Voltage

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In continuing our new video series on Electronics we're hoping you walk away from this tutorial knowing how to measure voltages in real life and in the 123D Circuits virtual circuit simulator.  You may follow along with the video, or just watch and be entertained.
This link will take you to the playlist of all videos 


In this video we're still keeping it simple by getting the main point across in under two minutes.  If you watch all 7 minutes you may even learn some engineering science!  Check out the video below.

Want to see the finished Voltage Measurement circuit?  Here's the link!

123D Circuits is a fantastic place to go to build electronic circuits without leaving your computer.  It's as simple as dragging together components and watching them come alive in your web browser.  It's fast, it's free, and it's quite powerful.


You can do this yourself, just head over to 123D Circuits and sign in, then create a "New Breadboard Circuit" then follow along with the video.  You never know, this could be the beginning of something big - we think so!