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STL as Mask (think photoshop masks) before print preview

Posted: Fri Apr 07, 2017 9:21 am
by Amittt
Hi S3D world!

It would be a unique and time saving feature to be able to use STL's as masks (think photoshop masks). Sort of like how if you place your model half on the virtual build plate and half off of the build plate, when you preview to print, only the half thats on the build plate will be sliced and printed.

I would like to be able to use STLs as masks. For example, look at the screenshot of a lithopane of me (handsome right? Aw thanks you're so nice)

The hexagon STL would serve as my STL mask and and the model right is what would actually slice to print. This would be obviously cool for lithopones and stuff but I can't even imagine all the other super creative uses this feature may have.

Thanks for checking out my feature request! Let's make this happen!!

Long live S3D,

Amit Fernandes

Re: STL as Mask (think photoshop masks) before print preview

Posted: Sat Apr 08, 2017 8:32 am
by brian442
That's an interesting idea! I guess right now you could use S3D image to 3D add-in and then export the STL file it creates and cut it up in a CAD program to get the shape you want. But this would definitely be easier.

Re: STL as Mask (think photoshop masks) before print preview

Posted: Sat Apr 08, 2017 10:58 am
by upsm
It would be cool the have "mesh filters", like in Slic3r modifier mesh-es, to define processes. Then you can print only that process for e.g.

Re: STL as Mask (think photoshop masks) before print preview

Posted: Thu Nov 01, 2018 11:46 pm
by Jkush
Wanted to chime in with a variation of the same request. Here's a link to the other thread I posted on using separate meshes for slicer boolean operations.


This is something Cura has implemented and it's a fantastic option. You have the ability to assign specific profiles / or profile properties to a separate mesh so it can influence specific operations in the slicer. My biggest issue was wanting to add a hollow space inside infill on large parts.

Pics from other thread added here -

S3D test mock up
S3D infill hollow.jpg
Cura slice using boolean insert mesh to create inner space with 0% infill
Cura_hollow infill.jpg
End goal is to have a slow printing outer wall, three fast printing inner walls, a 1" deep layer of infill with a single fast printing inner cavity wall, 1 bottom and 1 top layer for the inner cavity wall.

The main outer shell object has a profile with 10% infill, one slow outer wall, three fast inner walls and 6 top and bottom layers.
The insert mesh (inner cavity object) has a 0% infill setting with a single fast printing wall, 1 top and 1 bottom layer.

Hope this all makes sense !

Re: STL as Mask (think photoshop masks) before print preview

Posted: Thu Jan 10, 2019 9:35 am
by wfcook
The feature described by jkush would be extremely handy. I have a very large print (70+ hours print time) that I wanted to make faster and lighter by removing the material on the inside. But since I have a fairly high number of outer perimeters (5), the effect was just the opposite.

Improve hole strength

Posted: Sun Feb 02, 2020 12:57 pm
by svenyonson
One of the weakest parts of a Simplify3D print are the holes - this is because the number of outlines/perimeters is the same as for the shell itself. I know that I can just increase outlines/perimeters, but this adds unnecessary print time and plastic. I would like to see a separate setting for wall thickness in holes, expressed either in number of wall outlines or a percentage of the hole diameter (preferred). This is especially evident when you are using threading into the hole with the screw or if you have to slightly enlarge a hole with a drill.

The compiler should be able to easily detect interior holes and apply this setting.

Re: Improve hole strength

Posted: Mon Feb 03, 2020 7:01 am
by zemlin
I'd suggest being able to select number of perimeters on a particular face or set of faces, manually selecting the faces. Your application might be for holes, but others might like additional perimeters on other features for whatever reason. Also, asking the software to detect features, and detect them correctly and reliably sounds like a tough order to me as holes can be at angles, slots, or who knows what else - and with STLs, you can't detect a circular surface, as everything is faceted.

Re: Improve hole strength

Posted: Mon Feb 03, 2020 7:25 am
by arhi
attm you can do this by cutting the cylinder around the hole as separate object and selecting separate process for that object and setting in that separate object different number of perimeters & fill and everything else ...

I think it's time s3d implements the modifier meshes (like other slicers) where you can just add a mesh (in case of holes a cylinder) and use that mesh to define different process inside it ... it's ton easier than cutting your object into sections