3ds Max STL Export Errors

Discussion in 'Design and Modeling' started by Sol3, Jan 4, 2010.

  1. Sol3
    Sol3 Member
    I designed an object in 3ds Max, did an STL Check, and there were NO errors.

    When I exported my model and uploaded it here it said that I had non-manifold errors.

    To check that, I opened my STL file in Blender (Um...confusing coming from Max!), and it basically reported that ALL of my edges were open. :eek:

    Again, I did an STL check and it reported that all is well.

    Another thing...it's importing HUGE objects!

    I have my system units to 1 unit = 1mm.

    This particular model is about 9 inches wide and long, and about 1 inch tall (it's a display base for another model).

    I can't even figure out how large the base is in Blender, but it's HUGE!

    Oh, woe-is-me, but what am I doing so wrong?

    This is 3ds Max 2010, but the same thing occurred to me a couple of years ago in my older version 6.

    Any ideas?
  2. virtox
    virtox Active Member Moderator
    Did you try binary STL export or ASCII ?
    Sometimes max -> stl-ascii->shapeways seems to produce weird errors.

    For diagnostics :
    What does the max script from this topic give for results :
    http://www.shapeways.com/forum/index.php?t=msg&th=714&am p;am p;start=0&S=00677b4e68f49c8b72ca06cb715182f8
    It contains a very slow crude manifold check, but probably not useful if you have many polygons.
    Should however shed some light on the size issue.

    Oh, and did you select millimeters as the upload unit ? Apparently STL itself is dimensionless.

    You can also sent or post your file, then I can check it for you.


    Last edited: Jan 4, 2010
  3. Sol3
    Sol3 Member
    Thanks for replying! :)

    I tried both binary and ASCII, I tried mm and inches, and I always get the same results. :(

    Thanks for posting that script thread!

    I used it on the object I'm trying to export, and within Max it shows that everything is fine.

    Might it have to do with the fact that I have the educational license?

    Attached Files:

  4. Sol3
    Sol3 Member
    Oops, I just realized this should be in the software forum. :blush:

    I should also mention that I can create a simple one-segment box and it comes out as non-manifold in Blender as an STL.

    That's without editing the basic box at all.
  5. iguffick
    iguffick New Member
    When you import your file into Blender, the import can separate faces so that shared vertices are doubled.
    Press TAB to go into edit mode.
    Use A to select all vertices (may have to press A twice as it toggles between select all / select none).
    In the 'Mesh Tools' box, change Limit 0.001 to 0.
    Press W then select 'Remove Doubles'.

    If you now un-select all with A, then 'Select > Non-Manifold' you will get the non-manifold vertices shown. It sometimes makes more sense to switch into edge select mode, it will then highlight the edges.
  6. Sol3
    Sol3 Member
    Thank you for this, it will definitely help in the future!

    I rebuilt the base for my sculpture, and this time the STL export worked and my model is verified as printable (of course, it's almost $500 just for the base in white detail!), and I'll finally be able to have a physical model of my sculpture! :)

    I'm just tweeking the actual sculpture now...hope it works!
  7. Sol3
    Sol3 Member
    Somehow everything has magically repaired itself and I now have two items in the gallery. :D

    Gonna be a little while until I can order them, tho. :(