Which CAD system??

Discussion in '3D Jobs Board' started by chrisleis, Feb 3, 2012.

  1. chrisleis
    chrisleis New Member
    I created a (complicated) shape using 123DCatch (3D shapes from a set of fotos). The shape is "just" a surface so far, a mesh with 0 thickness. I do not want to simply close it and print it as a full not hollow part, because that costs a lot more.

    To be able to 3D print it, I d like to add thickness to the mesh by extruding it for example. And then I have to put some holes (cylinders) into it. Thats basically it.

    Can anybody recommend a (free?) CAD system for these tasks? I tried several already, but no real success so far.

    Many thanks!

    Attached is a screenshot of the 3D mesh (a hand).

    UPDATE: I managed to extrude very nicely with MESHMIXER now. But cannot put cylindrical holes through the extruded surface...

    Last edited: Feb 3, 2012
  2. meshmixer
    meshmixer New Member
    Hi chrisleis, you can create holes through the extruded surface using two ways in meshmixer:

    1) select an area on either side and use the 'Bridge/Handle' tool. This will join the two selected areas with a tube, and remove the selected areas. If you want a crisper edge, after you accept the bridge, immediately (ie before clearing the selection) run the 'Transform' tool and just accept. This will insert a sharp edge. Also to create a smoother selection boundary you can use the 'Smooth Boundary' tool. And you can use the 'Smooth' tool after the bridge to smooth out the hole interior.

    2) The most recent version of meshmixer07 now supports Booleans operations, so to create a hole you can import a cylinder and subtract it. See help here:


  3. chrisleis
    chrisleis New Member
    Thank you for your help!!

    On the surface I have, I would like to create holes which run exactly parallel to the surface normal. (Subtract a cylinder with an axis parallel to the surface normal). I have difficulties defining/doing that in meshmixer and Blender.
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2012