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3d scan of stones

Hello, I’m in the Seattle, WA, USA, area and have a small piece of meteorite that I’d like to get a 3d scan of so I can incorporate it it a design in Rhino or other CAD software. Is anyone aware of a local service that can scan something roughly sized 10 x 7 x 3mm with very fine resolution? I’m open to mailing it off to be scanned, but can’t seem to find the right place using the major search engines.

Any advice appreciated.

Thanks, Aaron

I’m not sure of a place, but Green Lake Jewelry there in Seattle may have the equipment, or at least know someone who does. If you’ve never been there, it’s worth popping in too; their store is gorgeous, and has a huge shop.

Wow, I didn’t know about that shop. Thanks!

Thats pretty tiny given the precision. I doubt most places will be able to do this to the level you require.

BTW, I ended up using a local (Kent, WA) industrial 3D scanning/metrology company to get the scan. Literally named “Digital Scan 3D”, which is an incredibly on point name for the business. :wink:

They had an equivalent of the Solutionix D700 scanner that is made for scanning small objects. Beautiful output in a .stl format with very good resolution of even the smallest depressions and bumps. I can use it as a “slicer” to cut a 3d model of the setting, cast it, and it will perfectly fit the contours of the edge of this very irregularly shaped stone.

One-off cost was $285, which would be very pricey to do too often, but perfect for this particular situation. It was done essentially same day. Dropped of the stone, later they emailed me the STL file, went and picked up the stone the next day. With better coordination you could probably get it done while you wait, I just happened to drop it off at around closing time.


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I know you got this piece covered, but wanted to give what I have done. May or may not work for all pieces. But I’ve done unique shaped rose cut stones. I just scan them with a traditional photo copy machine. The pdf goes into rhino at the correct scale. I then trace the shape and form the stone from there with measurements. Just make sure you are going in the correct direction because the image can flip on you.

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Thanks for pointing out the copier idea. It does work pretty well for stones with a uniform perimeter. In this case imagine your hand held in front of you, cupped, face down, with the thumb tucked under the first finger, and the tip of the pinkie bent down a little bit. There was not a uniform circumference height, or anything from any angle. I tried taking pictures from all axis X/Y/Z and each 90 degrees and to regenerate the border by using them as references photos in Fusion and/or Rhino at various attempts. But it just wasn’t getting me close enough. The scan landed it perfectly. I could design the prongs as artistically as I wanted, and then use the scan of the stone to precisely align where the groves would land to hold it. This was an extremely non-uniform stone and frankly exceeded my ability to free-hand build a design to hold it. I learned quite a bit along the way though. :wink: Sometimes the journey is move valuable than the destination.