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i-Space: 3D Printer
Consisting of the Digital Makerspace, Digital Visualisation Room, One Button Studio, Digital Studio and Digital Creativity Workstations
3D printing refers to the process of turning a digital design into a physical object. It allows you to "print" a 3D object layer by layer out of materials like plastic, metals or organic materials. In the past, 3D printing was primarily used by engineers for prototyping. Now with lowered cost and more advanced techniques, you can print out almost everything, including clothing, food and even replicas of human organs. To print in 3D, you first need to create a 3D model design. This can be done using either a 3D modelling software or through a 3D scanning tools.
Below are some additional resources for you to know more about 3D printing and 3D model design.
3D Modelling Software
• Create a new model
To print something in 3D, we start by creating a 3D model design, usually in STL or OBJ format. Here are some tools that will help you build up your 3D model quickly. For beginners, we suggest starting with Tinkercad, a free and web-based tool that allows you to import vector graphics and turn them into 3D models.
(Beginner) A free web-based 3D design and 3D printing app for everyone. One unique feature in Tikercad is that it allows you to import vector graphics and turn them into 3D models. [Available in Library PC]
(Intermediate) An easy-to-use 3D modelling tool. Start by drawing lines and shapes, then pull surfaces to turn them into 3D forms. SketchUp has a free version SketchUp Make and also a paid version with additional features - SketchUp Pro.
(Advanced) Free and open source 3D creation tool. It supports the entirety of the 3D pipeline - modeling, rigging, animation, simulation, rendering, compositing and motion tracking, even video editing and game creation. [Available in Library PC - G/F, 3/F]