Getting your CAD file to the physical world is often the longest mile in 3D Printed Design. Printing resolution is getting higher and the materials are getting stronger, but most models have to be manually checked to see if they’re printable. Even after careful fine-toothed inspection, things get missed and valuable time is wasted. As the demand for direct CAD to Manufacturing increases, the need for some sort of automated checking process is exploding.

Fix with One Click

Out at Purdue University and armed with funding from Adobe, researchers have developed a neat little system that automatically checks and corrects your CAD critters. It takes a model and simulates the force of gravity or common ways of holding a piece and then revises the mesh by thickening, hollowing or adding a strut.

This is a pretty tantalizing piece of work – one more tool for 3D printing companies, CAD users and even customers to perfect their work before its printed. Already lots of people have been jumping on board the automated CAD correction train. Sculpteo put alot of effort into their automated file-fixing service. 3DMTP just released an online service to take virtually any architectural format and convert it into a 3D printer format. The problem is that not all 3D printers are made the same – each has their particular quirks and habits. My last experiences with 3D printing services was a lot of back and forth over email and phone to adjust designs or try different 3D printers – at expense to their printing time and materials and my own time.

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Source: High Performance Computer Graphics Lab