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Mesh to solid plug-in for Rhino


#1

I recently looked into buying the Rhino plug-in Mesh-to-solid.
Having bought a number of usless programs in the past, I decided to
investigate before buying. I down loaded the demo version but it was
restricted to a very small number of meshes. I sent one of my ring
designs to the vender and asked that they convert it to solid and
return it to me by e-mail. They didn’t bother responding. I
contacted a relative who is in I.T. He found a friend who had been
unlucky enough to purchase the product. I sent several of my designs
to him. They took hours to process and locked his computer up each
time he tried to convert to solid. Then I sent a very simple wedding
ring design with the mesh size reduced drastically. This time it
worked. He sent the solid file back to me. I tried to do a simple
boolean subtraction and it didn’t work. THEY WANT $350 FOR THIS
PROGRAM… Has anyone out there had bad experiences with Rhino
plug-ins? R.H.


#2

This plug-in sounds a little too good to be true. Converting a mesh
into a NURBS solid is usually seen as a very high-end application and
the programs I am aware of (GeoMagic Studio, RapidForm, Surfacer,
etc) all cost over $10K. What I might suggest is to purchase Smurf, a
Rhino plug-in that I have heard good things about. However, Smurf
only works with Rhino 2.0 at present. To produce a NURBS solid from a
mesh is a tedious and labor intensive process best avoided if at all
possible. The CAM program I use (VisualMill) works just fine with stl
meshes so I can mill or RP meshes, but have to use a different
program to edit them. The good news is that in version 4 of Rhino,
you may be able to work with meshes with the same features as the
NURBS toolset.

All in all, most of the plug-ins available for Rhino have nothing to
do with the authors of Rhino (Robert McNeel & Assoc.) and they are
presented on Rhino’s web site as a convenience. I suggest creating a
Customer Review describing your experience.

On the other hand, Booleans can be very tricky. Coplanar faces can
occasionally cause Booleans to fail. Tolerances can sometimes be
adjusted to allow Booleans to work (try first tightening tolerances).

One thing you might consider to reduce polygon count in your meshes
is the program Decimator from GeoMagic. It is a wonderful and
intelligent piece of software that reduces polygon count with a
minimal affect on the overall shape of the mesh. I have reduced
polygon count up to 75% and still produced a good useable mesh that
is much easier to work with.

Good Luck!
Jeffrey Everett


#3

Hi Robert! When you say ‘mesh to sold’ I assume you mean nurbs to
polygons? You might want to have a look at trueSpace (and
jewelSpace) where you can work directly in polys. I think Rhino now
converts to reals solids (polys) well and easily if the original
nurbs model is properly constructed. Which plug-in were you trying
out?

Janet in Jerusalem


#4

Hi Robert, I have recently started using rhino and am still getting
familiar with it. Are you trying to convert a regular mesh item into
a PolySrf?

Could you avoid using a plug in all together and just use the
MeshToNurb command at the command line. I use this command to convert
mesh diamonds into PolySrf. Maybe it does not work for complex items.
Don’t know. This command has been a huge time saver for me.

Please let us know what you learn.
-walter


#5

I don’t know what the geometry of a solid is, but Rhino does have a
MeshToNurb command that I have used successfully to utilize stone
models that are distributed on the web.