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3D Textures or Bump Mapping for 3D printing

Hi all i am trying to find a way to create at textured surface on 3D printed models and can't seem to find a way to do this in Bricscad, i have attached a youtube link to show what i'm talking about. Unfortunately it is in Solidworks which i opted against buying.


  • There isn't a tool in BricsCAD that works the way of your example video. STL doesn't actually look to be the best (or easiet) option for bump, colour, or texture mapping as it doesn't include that information. For textures, assuming your 3D printer will support it, the preferred formats seem to be VRML or OBJ, as the both allow for texture maps to be included. BricsCAD doesn't export directly to either of these formats, so you would need to look at a 3rd party plug in, such as Automesher, or an alternate applications, such as Blender.

    GrabCAD has some discussion here on 3d printing textures here that may give you useful ideas:

    Jason Bourhill
    BricsCAD V21 Ultimate
    CAD Concepts

  • actually, you can likely do what you want in bcad using regular solid commands.
    You are essentially making an array of items along a solid, then adding or subtracting them.
    I know how to set UCS on face of object, then use copy or array, but not sure about a curved surface.
    Solids people could tell you how to get a line on a complex curve, then use divide command and a block at intervals.
    So its a bit more by hand, but then it seems like solidworks was not that much better. It had odd areas.
    Boy, you get LOTS of triangles from those little bumps and things.
    I encounter this when doing civil engineering triangulated surfaces. I use .net, and found a surface simplification library called
    geometry3Sharp, at
    Now I can take any tin model down to any triangle count I want. I use that to take point cloud models down to manageable size.
    So FDM printing of textured models is very marginal, even on stratasys printers. Maybe resin or powder printing is better.
    You gotta really want that to do it, given the poor results in the video on horizontal faces.
    If you do, hand arraying the bumps should be the least of your troubles, and can be done in bcad.

  • edited July 8

    You may make use of your bump map. Play around with the numbers and biases, but if you have the correct map, UVs, and enough triangles via subdivide, you should be able to get the details out. However, excessive displacement can cause triangles to collide and intersect, resulting in unstable slicing. It will also be HEAVY. Here is a helpful guide about 3d printers

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