Stories from my 3D Journey with Blender, Solidworks and 3d printer
I'm a CAD guy from way back. I started with Cadkey in 1988. My go-to drawing tools are now Solidworks and Blender. I've been machining and CNC programming for over 30 years and have recently been 3D Printing with a Prusa I3 MK2.
My photogrammetry skills are getting better thanks to some new equipment and a podcast that inspired me to invest in some new equipment. My first model armed with new knowledge and prototype equipment is a partially burned log from my fire pit.
For the last month, I have been working on a design for an automated photogrammetry turn table. The table is made from 3D printed components and uses an Arduino to rotate the table in small increments and then fire my Canon DSLR. The turn table is functional at this point, but I’m adding some additional features like a knob to control amount of rotation and a pause button.
In the Shader Editor of Blender, holding down the Shift key while right-clicking and dragging on a link between nodes combines all of the links that cross the selection area into a single, curved link.
This can help to reduce clutter in your shader network and make it easier to see the relationships between nodes. By combining links in this way, you can simplify your shader network and make it easier to understand.
To use this feature, simply hold down the Shift key while right-clicking and dragging over the links you want to combine. The links will become curved and grouped together, reducing clutter in your shader network.
So give this quick tip a try the next time you’re working in the Shader Editor of Blender and see how it can help to simplify and improve your shader networks!
By default, links in the Blender shader editor are straight lines, but did you know that you can change them to be curved like a noodle? This can help you create a more visually appealing and organized shader network, making it easier to see the relationships between nodes.
Here’s a quick tip on how to change the shader links in Blender to be either straight or curved:
I just spent the last hour in Blender trying to bake a diffuse texture from a model created with photogrammetry to a lo-poly model created in Blender. I checked and double checked every setting. I went back to tutorials that I watched years ago. I looked for new issues that might be caused by the latest version. I finally found the problem.
The software I use for photogrammetry is Zephyr. It outputs the textured models in several formats. The two formats that can be imported into Blender or OBJ and FBX. I chose FBX. I chose poorly.
No matter what I did, I could not bake the texture from the FBX model to a low poly model.
When I went back to Zephyr and exported as OBJ, all my problems went away.
And I went down to the demonstration To get my fair share of abuse We’re gonna vent our frustration If we don’t, we going blow a 50-amp fuse
You Can’t Always Get What Your Want by the Rolling Stones
I wasn’t frustrated, but I beat them by 10 amps. This week I blew a couple of 60 amp fuses. As a reminder that I need to order more spares, I have two blown fuses on my desk. I decided that they could be used to test what kind of results I can get modeling with photogrammetry. I get questionable results when I have labels that are on a cylindrical surfaces. Since your eye knows what to look for when looking at text, texture errors in the labels really stands out.
The following story is about how I converted the photogrammetry model into a good mesh with good topology. If you’re interested in how I messed up and blew a couple 60 amp fuses, then jump to the end.
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.
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.
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.