Archive for the ‘ CG ’ Category

Latest 3d print : Shatter Vase

I’ve been interested in Voronoi diagrams for a long time: I really like the organic cellular structure they create.
I ran across a set of pluigins for Maya called SOuP that allow for the ‘shattering’ of 3d mesh via a Voronoi algorithm. I set about to writing a Python script I could apply to any volumetric polygonal solid in Maya to apply this shatter (the by-hand process is over on my Mel Wiki), and this vase was the first usable version I came up with: I modeled the smooth “interior” section of the vase first, and then generated a slightly larger version which I ‘shattered’, and booleaned the two together. It is now a trendy art-piece in my bathroom window. For the pics with the blue-glow, I just dropped a small LED in there .

Note, it is not water-tight: Just for fun I filled it with water: There’s still some sloshing around now inside the print…

  • Printed with ‘natural’ PLA on Makerbot Replicator, using “medium” settings in Makerware
  • Extruded at 210 deg, HPB off
  • 2 shells, 5% infill
  • Printed in about 5.5 hours, weights 85g, which works out to $1.91 in filament cost (for a $45 spool).

You can download the .stl for printing over on Thingiverse

I had some other experimental prints dealing with Voronoi shattering that led up to this one, which you can see in the below image:

  • The print on the far right was my first attempt:  That was 12 hours in, before the printer stopped extruding :(  But it shows off some of the cool infill patterns and support materials:  It was a little over 3″ cubed, had it finished.
  • The print 2nd from the right printed successfully:  I did a full volumetric shatter on another smaller cube.  I duplicated the object in Maya:  One of the objects I did the process where I convert the wireframe to a polygonal solid via blobby-particles.  the other object I strategically deleted different Voronoi chunks, and then merged the two together.  The final version looks like random polygonal volumes held together by spider-webs.
  • The remaining prints are unrelated, but make a nice backdrop ;)

Latest 3D Print – Endangered Species: Rhino

I got the idea to model the bust of a rhino, and print it in a “wireframe” style like I’d done with previous designs. This one is produced with a different wireframe creation technique however, where I instead generated blobby particles along the polygonal edges, and converted the results back into polygons.

I tried to minimize overhang issues by tracking the angle of the edges via a Python script in Maya. Very little cleanup was needed after print: No raft or support material needed.

The frame is actually a pattern I drew on some scrap MDF (nothing 3d printed there) , jigsawed out, and then routed the edges plus slapped on some white paint. Print is affixed via epoxy.


  • Successfully printed in “natural” PLA on Makerbot Replicator.
  • Sliced using Makerware, “medium” settings:
  • 2 shells, 10% infill, 210 deg extruder, HBP off.
  • Printed in 4hours, 41min, and weighs in at 52g… which worked out to a material cost of $2.29 (not counting shipping…).
  • Print size at the neck is about 3″ wide, 4″ high, close to 6″ long from neck to nose.

You can download the stl file over on Thingiverse.

Latest 3D print: Geo Bracelet

Modeled in Maya while sitting at a coffee shop near Stanford (man did I feel like I fit some sort of stereotype). After working on “Geo Necklace“, I wanted to try something slightly more complicated. This “bracelet” is two combined tori: The base is 8-sided, the top is 6-sided. No overhang issues, but I did have to pick out some interior loose filament. Spray-painted it two-tone blue/red.


  • Printed on Makerbot Replicator.
  • Successfully printed in ‘natural’ PLA with “medium” settings in Makerware:
  • Extruded at 210 deg, HBP off.
  • 2 shells, 10% infill (presuming there is any infill at al).
  • Took 50 minutes to print, used 13g of PLA.

You can download the .stl file over on Thingiverse.

Latest 3d print: Geo Necklace

I recently ran across a post showing what looked like (to me) “low poly wireframe 3d-printed jewelry”.  Inspired me to try something similar on my Makerbot Replicator.  Half an hour of modeling later in Maya, 51 minutes of printing (PLA), and I came up with the below design.  Just a conceptual prototype of what could be in the future.  I spray-painted it two-tone black\red so that it could be reversible.  My lovely wife graciously let me photograph it on her neck:  Wouldn’t fit on mine ;)

Download the .stl and get other info over on Thingiverse.

New 3D Print: GeoLight

One of the reasons I picked up the ‘natural’ (semi-transparent) PLA is to experiment with lighting designs.  In my head, I like the idea of printing out geometric shapes and seeing light filter out of them.  This print was my first attempt at creating a ’3d-printed lampshade’.  First, pictures:

Interesting things to note in the above pics:  The bottom left pic shows how support material is generated to help with printing ‘overhangs’.  The bottom middle picture shows me beginning to break out the infill material from the inside of the print.


  • Modeled in Autodesk Maya.  I wrote a Python script to help me auto-constrain polygonal platonic-solids to a hemispherical NURBS surface to get the overall shape.
  • The inside diameter of the top hole is about 3.5cm :  This gives a nice friction-fit to the threaded light socket I picked up from Home Depot.
  • This is the first time I’ve printed with support material.  Probably contributed to the 26 hour print time on my Makerbot Replicator.
  • I had the printed plugged into my Kill A Watt:  It used 1.63 kWh of juice to print.
  • I plugged a 40watt halogen bulb into it, and left it on to make sure it wouldn’t melt….  It did.  I came back in a few minutes later with the bulb completely melted to the print.  I was able to get the bulb out… and there’s no visible damage on the outside… but I’ll have to sand down the hole to get a new bulb in there.  In the future, I’ll either use a LED bulb (far less heat), or do a re-design to make the interior space… larger.

Overall it was a good first experiment into the world of lamp-shade design.   You can download the stl files over on Thingiverse.