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Creating 3D Objects using Photogrammetry: Step 3: Viewing, Printing, and Editing

Use pictures from your phone to turn real world objects into 3D Models that you can manipulate in programs like Blender.

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Cleaning Up the Model Using Meshmixer

A timelaps, animated gif of editing in Meshmixer

Meshmixer is free software from Autodesk for Windows and macOS used to prep objects for print. While you can go on and edit your scanned object in software like Blender, you may still want to clean up your scan before importing. Here's how to do that with Meshmixer.

Screenshot of Meshroom showing how to import

Importing the Object Model

When you first open Meshmixer, you will be given several options. Click on the Import button, and then navigate to where the file is.

Tools to Clean Up Your Object

undefinedSelect

Using the Lasso setting for the Select tool, you can easily select and delete the largest of the additional pieces. Lasso the section that you want to select, and then push the delete key to remove the selected piece.

undefinedEdit

Within Edit tool set, you can use Transform to rotate, move, and scale your object. You can use Plane Cut to get some of those hard to get rid of some of those hard to remove piece near the base of your object.

undefinedAnalysis

Even though an object may seem solid, there may still be tiny holes. For an object to be printable on a 3D Printer, it needs to be "water tight." To remove these tiny holds and make an object water tight, select Analysis, and then Inspector. The Inspector will fill in these holes. It will also remove any small bits of debris that may be left in the scan.

undefinedSaving Your Changes

When you are done working with your object, select Export to save your object as an OBJ, STL, or another file format.

Viewing and Editing Your Object

Windows 3D Viewer

Windows 10 now comes with a 3D Viewer that can open most popular 3D file formats. Visit the Microsoft Store for more information: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/p/3d-viewer/9nblggh42ths?activetab=pivot:overviewtab

Blender

Blinder is a free, open source program for Windows, Linux, and macOS. It is used by many artist for 3D animation. You can download Blender at https://www.blender.org/

Tinkercad

Tinkercad is a free, web-based 3D viewing and editing tool. You can use Tinkercad on any modern web browser without installing any additional software. You can access Tinkercad at https://www.tinkercad.com/. We have a tutorial on Tinkercad at https://nhresearch.lonestar.edu/3DPrinting/Modeling.

3D Printing and Scanning

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