ZBrush -> Maya -> STL/X Format

Discussion in 'Technologies and Hardware' started by akeno, May 18, 2009.

  1. akeno
    akeno New Member
    Hi Guys.
    I'm having a huge problem and I'm not sure where else to go so here I am posting on forums.. this has been giving me a major headache all night and I'm about to give up.

    Issue #1

    Every Model that I bring out from ZBrush as an OBJ into Maya for resizing, their normals are completely fine. When I upload this object into Shapeways as a STL its giving me normal issues. I sculpt in ZBrush and the polygon limit is only at 200k for this particular model so it's not brutal and it's a solid object with no overlapping parts at all. So I'm confused why this is happening.

    Issue #2

    I have a video game demo reel that I use since I'm an animator and modeler and the object use to be multiple parts. I recently stitched them all together inside of Maya to become one large object (minus the belt, I'm only talking about the body here) and hollowed or non hollowed Shapeways gives me an error about non manifold objects.. the normals seem to be fine.

    Issue #1 and #2 combined

    When I bring all of this into Blender, and I look for the non manifold geometry, both for the 200k poly and the roughly 50k poly object show EVERYTHING to be non manifold, meaning there are tons and tons of yellow lines everywhere separating it which makes no sense to me at all because I'm positive that theres only 1 object there and not multiple layers, and everything is layed out the way its suppose to be.

    Is there anyone else here having EXTREME Maya STL exporting issues? The exporter for Maya in STL is very strange and awkward and is giving me major issues and the other option for it is just plain unreliable. I would try and install it and to no avail I'd get a constant message saying that either Maya 2008 or 2009 needs to be installed, meanwhile it is.. >_<

    This has been very stressful and I'm trying to get this all figured out.. I would love to have a few live models of my creations I made for my demo reel a few years back as a physical object but it seems like that I can't even get past 1 checking manifold stuff.

    These are a few screenshots as to what I'm talking about for the manifold objects. Is there any chance of Maya becoming an acceptable format to upload here? It's a total headache to even figure out the source of the problem let alone get a conversion going without any issues from the client and Maya is one of the most powerful tools out there. It's hard to believe sometimes that their format isnt not accepted let alone a standard OBJ object :s

    http://liaj.net/stlexport.JPG
    http://liaj.net/print.stl

    I get this for every model I export regardless its with triangles for game objects or polygons.

    Sorry I can't attach files here it won't let me in Firefox.
    Any help would be appreciated. I'm totally lost and dumb when it comes to converting to prototype standards and trying to learn it but error after error is disheartening :(

    Thanks!
    Ake
     
    Last edited: May 18, 2009
  2. daddymack
    daddymack New Member
    Hi akeno, I'm currently writing a tut for Zbrush to shapeways. My advice is to export .obj from Maya and download Accutrans. It is freeware and I've been using it successfully to export my .dae files to shapeways without any probs.

    Simply import the .obj into accutrans and then follow the steps shown here

    http://www.shapeways.com/tutorials/converting-with-accutrans -3d

    If your problems don't magically disappear then up the .obj and I'll sort it for you

    Good luck:)
     
  3. akeno
    akeno New Member
    Thanks man, the whole maya thing is really frustrating, makes me want to kick a bag of baby ducks D: Looking forward to your tutorial dude.

    Also.. what is the easiest way to hollow out a really high rez mesh? I dont think my computer can handle it most of the time :s
     
    Last edited: May 19, 2009
  4. akeno
    akeno New Member
    Ok so I found the fix for it.. this is specifically going from ZBrush OBJ's -> Maya -> Prototyping.

    Use Magics/Minimagics and resave your file after checking it to make sure its there. For some reason this also reduces my STL file size from 195 megs to 30.. or even down to 9.. which is great and somewhat confuses me at the same time :rolleyes: sigh at Maya for poor execution.

    I've used this on several different ZBrush models and works flawlessly as long as everything is watertight and you have no holes on your mesh. Hours later! :( For some reason Maya's STL conversion is just really bad.

    I hope this helps any ZBrush to Maya user in the future.
     
  5. Heiner2
    Heiner2 New Member
    I am also using ZBrush, and in xport menue, you can select to export groups or not. If you export with groups, zbrush cuts your model in dozens and dozens seperate parts. Considered that i did this with a model which just had a couple of thousand polys, it could get much more messy when your model has more than just some 10 000 polygons.
    Cheers
    Heiner
     
  6. rbot
    rbot New Member
    I thought the ZBrush users would like to know that at the Pixologic download center there is the 3D Print Exporter, which allows STL exports directly from ZBrush. Hope this helps those going from ZBrush to another program.

    http://www.pixologic.com/zbrush/downloadcenter/zplugins/