New Prusa Surprise

My old Prusa got fried. The plug from the power supply melted. I replaced the plug, but I could never get it working again. Every time the header for the bed turned on, the control card re-booted. I figure that there was a surge that damaged the Rambo board.

A new board would be cheaper, but 1) it might not be the problem or the only problem and 2) if it worked, I would still have an older version of the Prusa.

So I sold some stuff and bought a new Prusa and here’s the surprise.

I paid over $100 to have it shipped, but then I got a message from DHL that the package would be held hostage unless I paid $50. That maybe a little dramatic…I owed import duties. I was a little surprised that this wasn’t communicated clearly when I purchased the printer. It might have been in the fine print somewhere, but I never saw it and was concerned it was fraud. To make sure, I went to DHL and paid over the phone.

Start/Stop Combo Button

I posted a start/stop button on CGTrader today. I was looking for something to model in low poly and I was inspired during a walk through our machine shop. The start/stop button on the bandsaw is a little detail that can be added to machine models.

Reference Photo

My idea was to model it buttons with details (hi-poly) and then again with no-details (lo-poly). Then bake the diffuse and normal maps from the hi-poly model to the lo-poly model. It didn’t work as suspected.

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Garden Trellis

Today I finished a wooden trellis. It’s a design similar to one I found in one of my wife’s catalogs. I might actually make this one. I need something for my tomatoes to grow on.

It did not take long for me to create the model in Blender, but it took some effort to convert it to a single mesh and game ready textures.

The Garden Trellis is available for download at CGTrader.com

https://www.cgtrader.com/3d-models/exterior/landscape/garden-trellis-d766e8b7-7866-4fca-a619-4601482b1b5c

Safety Barrier

When I sit down to create a new model, I try to come up with something that will be helpful to someone creating a complex scene. Today’s addition is a safety barrier. These barriers are often used in industrial settings or somewhere that needs crowd control.

It was modeled with curves in Blender and then converted to a mesh. The material is very simple. It’s a yellow, non-metallic surface with some procedural bumps to make it look like paint.

Safety Barrier available at CG Trader

https://www.cgtrader.com/3d-models/exterior/street-exterior/safety-barrier-24921f63-358e-4c14-832a-838a58aa0e50

Photogrammetry for Old Machines

When I am tasked with modeling old equipment, I like to do a photo scan (photogrammetry) first. This allows me to go back when I’m done with the design and compare important features. If you have ever made a part and then discovered it was off by 1″ when you went to install it, you’ll understand the value of this.

I once designed a bracket for a generator. I used a tape measure to draw the as received part. Normally, when I use a tape measure, I don’t use the end of the tape. I just don’t trust that the end isn’t bent or the slot in the tape that allows the end to move 1/16″ isn’t damaged. I line up one edge with 10″ and then take the measurement subtracting 10″ from what I read on the other end.

Well…I use 10″ now. I used to measure by lining up the first edge with 1″ and this created the problem with the generator bracket because I forgot to subtract the 1″. The bracket was about 20″ tall and I forgot to subtract the 1″ from the measurement. If I had started with 10″, my error would have been obvious when I was drawing the new bracket.

The lesson learned was that initial measurements are sometimes wrong. If you are modifying a design, that initial photo scan can tell you alot.

So…today I scanned a fluid drive. This is an old American Standard Size 315 Gyrol fluid drive. The size “315” refers to the diameter of the oil circuit inside the fluid drive where 315 = 31.5″.

Even though 99.999% of artist don’t know what a fluid drive is or how it works, they may find the old authentically dirty look an interesting addition to an industrial scene. I didn’t do much work after scanning it. So if you want to use it in a large scene, you may want to decimate it a bit.

https://www.cgtrader.com/3d-models/industrial/industrial-machine/size-315-fluid-drive

Luggage Cart

I suppose the platform truck has limited use, so I try to think of a similar model that would have more use. I’m guessing more stories are told in hotels than in big box home stores, so this time I molded a luggage cart.

Luggage Cart
https://www.cgtrader.com/3d-models/interior/other/luggage-cart-f73602cc-8968-4771-a37b-96d0dd06ff47https://www.cgtrader.com/3d-models/interior/other/luggage-cart-f73602cc-8968-4771-a37b-96d0dd06ff47

Platform Truck

I took a break from creating CGTrader models for a while. When CAD work fills my day, it’s hard to get motivated to do even more drawing when I get home. Fortunately, I have a job where I wear many hats and lately I have been doing more Photoshop and Blender work, and it has inspired me to get back into Blender modeling.

I have started modeling again.

Today I modeled a platform truck. The only place I have ever seen these trucks is at Home Depot or Lowes, but maybe it will come in handy for someone.

platform truck 3D model

https://www.cgtrader.com/3d-models/industrial/tool/platform-truck-56de2931-c1a9-446d-be9d-3109649945f7

Exporting OBJ files with textures from Blender

This one drove me crazy. When I would post my models that I created in Blender and exported as OBJ files, people would complain that the textures weren’t included. And they were right.

I have found the solution. Before you export the file, use the “Pack All Into .blend” function. This can be found in the menu. Click File – External Data – Pack All Into .blend.

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Hotel Nightstand

With COVID-19 making a insane world crazier, I haven’t had to travel for work in a while. Almost a year after lock-downs, I had my first onsite trip to a power plant in western Pennsylvania. I worked the night shift and had nothing to do in my downtime. Even though modeling on a laptop is far from ideal, it’s better than watching daytime TV. So with a tape measure in hand, I modeled the nightstand, lamp and alarm clock.

The whole scene is available on CGTrader: https://www.cgtrader.com/3d-models/architectural/decoration/nightstand-bundle

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