Where Did AMF Go?

Every once in a while you’ll run into a problem when 3D printing After some diagnosis you’ll realize the root cause of your issue was STL, the prehistoric file format most commonly used by the personal 3D printing industry.    There’s no other way to say it, but STL sucks. It permits invalid 3D models… Continue reading Where Did AMF Go?

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Waiting For AMF

Some months ago (March actually) we wrote about a new file format for additive manufacturing that had been approved after long discussion: AMF, the Additive Manufacturing Format.    This new format included a variety of key features to dramatically improve the information content found in 3D models. Meta data, materials, colors, textures and more were… Continue reading Waiting For AMF

MiniMagics2 Released

Materialise has released a new version of their MiniMagics software, which is used for management of STL files. What can it do? Here’s a short list:   Import and save .STL, .magics or .mgx files Compress STL files up to factor 20 View parts and rotate, pan or zoom Detect bad edges and flipped triangles… Continue reading MiniMagics2 Released

.STL Overview

There’s a terrific overview of .STL and in fact the modelling and 3D printing process available at InstaTuts. It takes you through a simple explanation of how .STL works and how it is produced by modeling software. Eventually the model (a boxer, pictured) is sent to a Dimension SST 3D Printer for production.  Via InstaTuts

Replacing .STL

We wrote on the problems with the prehistoric .STL format the other week, and bumped into a potential replacement: GTS. It’s an open source project: GTS stands for the GNU Triangulated Surface Library. It is an Open Source Free Software Library intended to provide a set of useful functions to deal with 3D surfaces meshed… Continue reading Replacing .STL

.STL To Be Replaced?

RapidToday posts an interesting interview with Hod Lipson, chair of the ASTM Committee on Additive Manufacturing Standards’s task force on file formats. The topic: .STL. You ask what’s wrong with .STL? Lots, it turns out. The 1987 vintage standard is so old you could legally buy it a beer in most states. As RapidToday points… Continue reading .STL To Be Replaced?

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Last September we wrote about Lattice Technology’s 3D model storage format, XVL, which offers significant (i.e. up to 99%) savings over other formats. Now though, they’ve gone even farther by announcing XVL v10 that “delivers 2 times more compression of 3D data than the previous XVL formats, along with vastly improved memory consumption and speed… Continue reading XVL – Now EVEN SMALLER!

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My Model is Shrinking!

We bumped into Lattice Technology, a company that produces 3D modeling software. What’s the big deal? Actually, it’s a small deal: Lattice uses a unique storage format, XVL, that offers tremendous space savings over conventional 3D storage formats. According to Bill Barnes, GM of Lattice: “Our converters use the industry’s best translation technologies and allow… Continue reading My Model is Shrinking!

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Through The Barrier

Previously we reported on a breakthrough in 3D software that permitted Revit 2009 users to easily access 3D Print Services via a special .STL exported for Revit 2009. Now Bim & Beam are collecting sample images of printed 3D objects that result from the use of the new software. Via Bim & Beam

STL Barrier Broken!

One of the ongoing bugaboos of 3D printing is that most 3D printers accept a limited number of 3D input files. Most typically, STL is expected. If you don’t match the protocol of your printer, you can’t print. One of the biggest hurdles has been making it possible for existing 3D models to be printed,… Continue reading STL Barrier Broken!

.STL ?

Frequently we’ve mentioned the use of .STL files when describing 3D printing services. But what are they, exactly? .STL is a computer file format, specifically designed to capture a three-dimensional model of an object. This kind of file format is frequently accepted by 3D print services as a way for you to tell them precisely… Continue reading .STL ?