Find us at SXSW!

 

This weekend in Austin, Autodesk 123D will be making a guest appearance at the Atmel Tech On Tour site as part of SXSW Create. We'll be cozying up to the Makerbot 3D printer inside the Atmel truck, which will be parked nearby the Create festivities in the Hyatt Regency parking lot (see map below). If you come hang out with us we'll hook you up with some sweet 3D printed goodies. 

If you don't already know, Atmel is responsible for making the chips inside your Arduinos and your Makerbots, so we have them to thank for helping bring to life the amazing things you design.

If you're at SXSW this weekend there will be lots of opportunities to catch us in the Atmel truck, starting on Friday March 7th from 9am until 8pm, then Saturday 9am-8pm, and Sunday 9am-6pm. 

  • But wait, there's more! You can also catch us at a few other events:
  • - Saturday March 8th 9:30-10:30 am: You don't want to miss Autodesk CEO Carl Bass' keynote speech on the Robot Revolution
  • - Saturday March 8th: TechShop CEO Mark Hatch will also be speaking about the Maker Movement and giving a book signing from 5:00 to 5:20
  • - Sunday March 9th from 3:30- 4:30pm come see Carl Bass speak with Shapeways CEO, Pete Weijmarshausen, about the future of 3D printing. 
  • - Stop by SXSW Create for TinkerCAD demo’s and 3D printing fun from MakerKids
  • - Be sure to catch up with our Friends at Shapeways and get a free 3D scan!
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Looking forward to seeing you in Austin!

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.

Conversation Hearts – with a 3D printed twist!

One of our Autodesk Pier 9 teammates, whose very relevant name is Audrey Love, got into the #LOV3D theme this month by putting together a wonderful project that leverages the Pier 9 makerspace and Tinkercad for art!

Every two years, the school Audrey received her degree from, University of Nevada, Reno - School of the Arts, hosts a Valentine's Day Art Auction. This year, she was invited to submit a piece for the Valentine's Day group show. This is her third time participating in the group-exhibition - she loves contributing to the show because all of the money raised through the auction supports the Sheppard Gallery's amazing programming.

 

Her goal was to make a piece that was reminiscent of one of those chalky-candy conversation hearts, but larger....and snarkier. She has limited experience with 3D design software, so she used Adobe Illustrator to create the "Whatever Forever" text, then imported it to Tinkercad. From Tinkercad, she was able to extrude the text and manipulate it's depth.

 

Using the heart-shape generator in Tinkercad, Audrey was able to make 2 different hearts: one would be a cavity that would be inset within another heart. She also transformed the text to be a hole, that would be 'carved' into the heart once it was printed. The end effect is a really lovely light-catching message embedded within the resin.

Audrey told me about the process of printing the piece:

"I have access to some really nice 3D printers here at Pier 9, and decided to use a special kind of translucent resin to print the heart. The piece is 3468 grams of translucent UV-cured resin 3D printed on an Objet Connex 500 printer. After the print came out of the machine, I took a lot of time cleaning it, and preparing it be shipped to UNR's Sheppard Gallery. The end result looks great, and I am glad to know that the proceeds from the piece are going to a good cause."

We are so stoked Audrey could ramp up her 3D design skills for such an awesome project. If you are in Reno or nearby, you definitely don't want to miss the chance to catch this wonderful collection.

Charm Your #LOV3D Ones for Valentine’s Day!

In honor of love, we will be spending the month of February showcasing how 3D design, printing technology, and creativity serve as an extension of the heart. If you're looking for Valentine's Day ideas, then look no further.

To kick off this month of love, we are introducing Charmr. With Valentine's Day only a few days away, you can skip the card store and head straight to our latest addition to 123D, which is sure to make your Valentine feel extra #LOV3D.

 

Get your Valentine's heart racing by using Charmr to create customized, 3D-printable pendants just for them. This is the perfect way to make something unique for your #LOV3D ones while showing off your creativity, all without breaking the bank. Here is a quick how-to guide to get started.

Charmr is just the beginning of our month of being #LOV3D - be sure to continue checking back for more tantalizing content to inspire you in all your love-related endeavors. 

Happy Lunar New Year!

Happy Lunar New Year, everyone! To help ring in the new year we printed out one of the awesome models you can get with a 123D Premium account. Say hello to our New Year's Lion!

 

The model looks like this:

Not bad, right? 

Have a wonderful time ringing in the Year of the Horse, and be sure to share any cool 3D captures, designs, or prints that you create in honor of Lunar New Year with us. 

PS Check out the sweet Pixlr Lunar New Year Sticker Pack that we used in the photo below. They'll here until February 14th so make sure you trick out all your New Year photos before they're gone.

Making a Super Nintendo USB case with Tinkercad

 

One of the greatest aspects of the holidays, birthdays, and other special events is the opportunity to give someone a meaningful gift. Tinkercad user Matt Mustarde was faced with the question of what to get his younger brother for his 13th birthday, an age that is considered a milestone for many people. Matt, a Washington State University student, took to Tinkercad and applied his mind towards solving the problem of what to get his brother.

Armed with a standard 32GB flashdrive, a Printrbot+, and Tinkercad, Matt designed a USB case shaped like an Super Nintendo (SNES) controller, knowing his brother is a huge fan of video games. Matt also went the extra step and pre-loaded the flashdrive with lots of games for his brother to play.

I had a chance to speak with Matt to learn more about his creative process:

"I really just wanted to make something special for my brother! He loves computer games but has a crappy laptop so I figured I'd aggregate the best games and put it on a cool custom drive. The actual designing took about a day, I used an actual SNES controller and made a vector of it to get the profile just right. That's why I used Tinkercad, because it's so convenient for importing vectors and making simple models."

 

When I asked Matt about his history with 3D printing, he told me, "I've been printing for about 2 years now, originally on my robotics team's printer. I bought a Printrbot+ kit back in February and love it. Basically I'm just a student with a hobby and love sharing my work." And of course, in true Maker fashion, Matt has been kind enough to share his design with the community through Thingiverse

This is the kind of story we love to hear, where 3D design and printing inspires creativity in people and they share it with the world. Thanks to Matt for sharing your experience with us - we can't wait to see what you do next!

 

 

5 Last Minute Holiday Gifts to 3D Print

One of the greatest things about 3D printing technology is the ability to create what you want when you need it, rather than relying on traditional manufacturing routes - especially around the holidays. With Christmas only a few days away, now is the perfect time to forget about overnight shipping costs, so get your 3D printer up and running instead!

We will get you started with 10 ideas of what you can 3D print last minute for you friends and family. Just a note that included with any of these gifts should be a standard speech explaining how 3D printing works - people unfamiliar with the process find it new and fascinating!

 

 

1) You can't go wrong with a classic, customized tree ornament. This one is for 123D Make by user Brandon Cole

 

 

 

 

 

2) You can't go wrong with a bookmark for any friend that loves to read. Check out this octopus bookmark by Natalie Kendrick made using 123D Design

 

 

 

 

3) Jewelry is a great options for creating quick and personalized items for loved ones. Check out this link for tons of pendant and necklace ideas

 

 

 

 

 

4) With miniature terrariums being all the rage these days, your indoor gardening friend will appreciate the thought in adding a little personality to their little ecosystem - like the little 3D printed frog in this one

 

 

 

 

 

5) If you're dreaming of a white Christmas but there's no snow to be found, then consider celebrating with your own model of a snowman to keep the winter cheer alive, like this one by Lindsey Vandenberg

 

 

Bonus: If one of your gift recipients is blown away by your 3D design and printing prowess, be sure to send them towards our holiday deals for their very own MakerBot Replicator 2 and 123D Premium account so they can join in on the 3D printing fun as well.

We hope this list has helped to inspire you during the final countdown towards trading gifts. From all of us at Autodesk 123D, we wish you Happy Holidays and a fantastic New year.

LeWeb and the Next 10 Years

Every year thousands of folks gather in Paris, France to discuss the latest innovations coming from the world of technology at a conference called LeWeb. This year marked the 10th year of the LeWeb's operation, and as such they gave the conference a theme of "The Next 10 Years." 

3D printing was one of the major themes of the 3 day conference, with an emphasis on the maker movement and the ability for individuals to fabricate the things they want. There was consensus among the speakers that the way technology is progressing allows for consumers to use readily available software, like Autodesk 123D, and hardware like the UItimaker pictured above to design and improve the products they use. 

Mary Huang of Continuum Fashion presented her innovations in the world of combined fashion + technology. She explained the reality and the potential for people to design the things they want for themselves, without limit, and used her company's products as an example. 

It's exciting to see the subject of the 3D printing technology take its place among mainstream conversations about technology and future trends. As we look ahead towards the next 10 years the opportunities are limitless when it comes to what we can design and create for ourselves with this amazing technology.

Sketch and Text with Tinkercad

We are pleased to announce new Shape Generator capabilities available in Tinkercad!

Tinkercad offers some great shapes to help get you started, and with the introduction of Shape Generators (formerly known as ShapeScripts), the power to create is completely expanded.

Now, we don’t expect everyone to be able to create their own Shape Generator using Java Script, although we definitely encourage all of you to take a try. So in order to make Shape Generators more flexible and accessible, we added sketching capabilities using the Autodesk Creative Platform. To learn more about sketching with ACP, check out this link.

So let’s see how we can apply this to a Shape Generator. Check out our in-depth instructions below to become a Shape Generating master, and be sure to share the new shapes you create. Happy sketching!

Read more »

How a young boy is using Tinkercad to help the world see

Meet Ritik Mehta, a 13-year-old 3D printing enthusiast with a big heart.

Ritik has grown up in a world where it is possible to 3D print your dream designs at home with the help of easy-to-use 3D design software applications such as Tinkercad. Like the other kids of this 3D printing generation he’s taking the first step of many more to move towards a world where people help each other with 3D printed goodness.

Lately he has been very engaged in making his own custom glasses. This gave him the idea to provide an opportunity to everybody to own customized glasses and, at the same time, be part of a unique charity to help kids in Africa and Asia see the world as they should.

 

And just like that with the help of his father, he turned his idea into reality; so if you are in the Antwerp, Belgium area on Saturday December 21st, make sure to stop by Designcenter de Winkelhaak to see Ritik's vision come to life. Here you will be able to make your own custom glasses from the 3D design to the 3D printed model. Professional designers and 3D printing experts will assist you, and the money made from the event will go straight to ‘Eyes for the World’, an important non-profit foundation which believes that everyone, all over the world, has the right to see well.

Join us in helping Ritik show that money is no object when it comes to how 3D printing technology can benefit everyone.