Wednesday, May 18, 2011

More Skinning Tests

I ran some more skinning tests this evening, its definitely got promise. This picture shows a 0.4mm carved cube skinned at 0.2mm in the middle. On the right is 0.25mm carved cube and on the left a 0.4mm carved cube for comparison. The outer shell feels very smooth to the touch. It would be good to transfer this to all top surfaces too. It would look better and may make closing PLA structures easier, mine always seem to have problems closing fully.

L: 0.4mm carve : M: 0.4mm carve w/ 0.2mm skin : R: 0.25mm carve

Tomorrow I think I'll try some of the more tricky prints, like the drive gear from the extruder.


  1. I don't know if you noticed but you seemed to have lost some height on the Right .25mm model. Its very slight, could be the picture. Amazing work by the way. I will be following your blog while I get some money to start building my mendel.

  2. Thanks, I'll measure them when I get back from my current trip. I doubt they are different heights, its probably just the photo since at 0.2 and at 0.25 they are an integer number of layers. Also, there's a lip on my workbench and they are balanced on it, one could have shifted slightly.

    BTW, the more complex prints came out just as nice but I didn't get chance to post the pictures before I left.

  3. Can't wait to see the more complicated prints :-)

  4. James, is the new SF beanshell with Skin your code. It is very nice except that it extrudes perimeter+perimeter, loop+loop ,infill..
    So you extrude on hot filament before it can cool that decreases build quality...

  5. I didn't realise it was released yet! The Skin plug-in is based on my work - I had a lot of help from Enrique with the plug-in framework and the code.

    Depending on when you have selected to print the perimeter will impact on when the new skin is printed. Instead of printing the original perimeter layer, it replaces the old perimeter with this sequence:

    Lower skin perimeter, lower skin loop, upper skin perimeter, upper skin loop.

    It doesn't print straight-away on hot filament, but it doesn't give it very long, however, there is no other alternative other than stopping the infill part way through to print the lower perimeters and then finish with the upper perimeters.

  6. I think it would be a nice addition if the outer perimeters had a back and forth option covering the whole outer loops area in one pass instead of two separate loops - does that make any sense?

    current top down view

    ==== two outer loops
    ==== second layer loops

    suggested option

    /\/\/\/\/ one loop to replace two
    \/\/\/\/\ second layer offset (note the start position from the above)

    Basically, you would end up with a much more light defusing pattern and could call it matte skin. It's only hard light that makes our prints look ugly, white ABS always looks good because of the matte finish :)

  7. what is the test status now?
    any good news?

  8. Hi Mel.

    With help from Enrique we created a plug-in for Skeinforge that allows user to enable skinning. It's been tweaked a bit since this post and it now also skins any top surfaces too, which I find makes it easier to close objects.