Fixing frequent mistakes


1. Designing (modeling) for 3D printing

The file sizes depend of your export settings and of the model complexity. 

Certain functions, as the fillet function, or the text function (based on a high vectorized sketch) will strongly increase the size of your exported file. By default, the export in .STL have satisfying standard settings. 

If your file is too heavy to be imported on Sculpteo platform, you will have to use the mesh design workbench. Try to reduce the level of precision directly in Freecad, or if your model integrates many fillets, curves or sketches base on text (or vectorized graphic), try to export it in a more appropriate format as the .IGES or the .STEP

If you can’t obtain a satisfying surface, use the Mesh smoothing function (the iron icon). Then select the zone to smooth. 



As presented before, the orientation is especially important to determine the inside and the outside of the 3D file. 

If your part is a volumic part in Freecad, you won’t get orientation issue. In fact, Freecad doesn’t allow creation of parts incohérents in the volumic workbench. 

You can then reverse the orientation by clicking on the related arrows. In the case Freecad generates issues during the export ( eg : for a complex file ), Sculpteo automatic tools will manage the repairing (because the parts generated by Freecad are easily orientable). 

The Mesh design workbench propose a very useful tool in the analysis of mesh issues 

39-evaluate .jpg 

You can start separated analysis and use the automatic repairing mesh tool

40-evaluate .jpg 

This tool allows to merge (fusion) or subtract two or various meshes. It’s useful when you want to combine two meshes on which you want to realize a cutting or smoothing operation.

41-boolean mesh.jpg 

For using that tool, Openscad is needed (free and open source software)

The multi bodies files are directly managed by FreeCAD

For files repetition (various copies of a same model), the most suited solution is to use the online Sculpteo tool for series production (up to 20 pieces). It permits optimization of the files disposal. Thus it impacts the production cost.