3D Scanning and Printing

This week I attempted to design a 3D object and print it.   I also played with a working 3D scanner, and investigated some other scanning techniques.

Simple 3D Object

   Initially, I was trying to think of a cool 3D object that could only be printed.    As time went on, I also thought about a simple 3D object that I could design in the 4 hours before the batch needed to be sent to the printer (given my poor cad skills).

   In inventor, I designed a "Magic 8-Ball" -- essentially a cube inside of a sphere that could answer all of the profound questions of the universe.

   I had some troubles with fillets on the corner of the cube in the 8-Ball.   Hopefully I didn't do anything too wrong -- as I thought what I was trying to do was simple, but the error messages seemed to suggest that what I was trying to do was too complex.

   Here is an image of the rendered object:
8 ball
   Hopefully what comes out of the printer will be the same!


The previous owners tore holes in the kitchen ceiling to create a drop ceiling.   I've been wondering if it is possible to create patches for it via 3D scanning (or possibly mold making). 
kitchen holes

   Again, thinking simple, I wanted to scan a piece of metal celing rom our kitchen.      Using the Z-Corp scanner, I ended up with the following result:tile sample
virtual kitchen tile

Other Scanning Investigations:


    Microcenter has refurbished Kinects for $80.    Unfortunately, they also require a $30 power supply/adapter cable to work.    While I could get basic functionality running under Linux, when I tried to compile various libraries/tool-chains they failed under 64 bit Linux.    I just made a quick investigation, and didn't get a chance to dig deeper into the problems.
    I installed openkinect and ran the following to test functionality:
kinect hello world!


    I also purchased a web cam to try to use with David under VMWare running Windows 7.    This would allow a 3D object to be scanned with a web cam and a laser line generator.   The package installs and runs, finds a camera, but won't calibrate.    I haven't confirmed if it is the camera, software, or emulation.   The camera is a Gear-head WC4750AFB (identified as a JSB PC Camera B67B9AA62) if anyone has any ideas.    It may not like that the camera has a higher resolution than 640x480.  
    Update:  The software seems a little picky.    The scene did show up, but really small.   It calibrated once, and seemed to start to scan, but it was hard to tell if it was the object.    In trying to save the results, I lost the scan and then it wouldn't recalibrate.    Will need to try some more another time.    The camera was set to capture at 640x480 mode.
russian soldier david scan