We really need to be able to scale models on site

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by lensman, Sep 22, 2012.

  1. lensman
    lensman Well-Known Member
    I'm sure I've read it here before but I don't know what happened to the thought. I'd really, really, like to be able to scale my models on site and get instant feedback on price rather than have to upload a new model every time I re-size it. I know one of your competitor's allows that and I love that feature on their site.

    And expanding on that how about somehow letting us copy one model and open up a duplicate so that it could again be scaled to a different size? The resources that Shapeways use on all their member uploads must be incredible and this would alleviate that problem for you.

  2. BillBedford
    BillBedford New Member
    Most software will give you the volume of your model and Shapeways publishes their prices as $/volume so a simple calculation should give you the price of any model you produce. If you use the likes of NetFabb you can scale your model as much as you want and it will give a readout of the volume.
  3. lensman
    lensman Well-Known Member
    Yes, I appreciate that, Bill, but calculating the price based on volume for multiple materials manually is not a lot of fun...

  4. BillBedford
    BillBedford New Member
    Easy enough if you make a speadsheet to do all the calculations.
  5. macouno
    macouno New Member
    Well... when you say... copy a model so you can sell it at a different scale.. wouldn't it be better to just have the customer modify the scale? Then all you have to do is set a "range".

    Actually... I'm quite sure the shapeways folk are working on this sort of thing or at least thinking about it very hard.
  6. Youknowwho4eva
    Youknowwho4eva Shapeways Employee Community Team
    As far as I know this is true.
  7. lensman
    lensman Well-Known Member
    True enough, although I have many private models that I get printed myself and would love to be able to have multiple copies at different sizes without having to upload each and every one (rings, for example).

  8. macouno
    macouno New Member
    That's exactly what I mean... in stead of uploading a lot of models... you upload one and order it at different scales... Perhaps an even nicer way than just scaling is "morphing". Allowing you to blend multiple versions of the same model... the blend could be "just scale", but you could come up with a lot of other ways to use that concept.
  9. lensman
    lensman Well-Known Member
    Sorry, when you referred to "customer" I thought you meant a customer other than the uploader... So, yes, we were thinking along the same lines.

  10. stonysmith
    stonysmith Well-Known Member Moderator
    I also have and will continue to advocate for an option for scalling (up) a model, however.. let's make sure the right expectations are in place.
    It's one thing to ask for a simple range of ring sizes.. but this gets out of hand when you're working on item such as Model Train Parts.

    For reference.. HO scale is 1:87, N scale is 1:160. That means (generally) that a N scale item I design will have to be not TWO but EIGHT times more material if I request for it to be enlarged to HO scale. Hence, also eight times the cost.

    The printer has a "minimum wall thickness". If you design something for the minimum wall thickness in N scale, then if you simply mathematically enlarge all the pieces, then you are making the walls 2x thicker than they "must" be.

    If the designer goes back and makes thinner walls, then the true cost ends up about FOUR times as much, not EIGHT.

    The one problem with this is that it prevents the designer (or a Shapeways auto-tool) from just using math to convert from N to HO. Unfortunately, to do "proper" design, they must re-design the entire item from the ground up.

    The other thing here is that at the best Shapeways can produce at this time (due to that same minimum wall restriction), any detail such as a rivet must be a minimum of two inches in diameter. But, with HO, the diameter can be as little as one inch. This means that the HO models can have much finer details.. which also requires that the designer spend the extra time adding the extra details. In N scale, they're not worth it because they won't show up, but they CAN be added to HO.. it just takes more work.
  11. macouno
    macouno New Member
    stonysmith: that's exactly why I mentioned "morphing between versions" as a better idea than simple scaling. That could solve a lot, if not all, of those issues.