Week 3: 3D Printing and Scanning

Assignment: 3D print something and produce a scan of another project

3D Printing

This week, I decided to design and 3D print a terrarium. I’ve been really into geometric shapes lately (in case that wasn’t obvious from the last few projects) so decided to build a dodecahedron.

My first thought on creating one was to extrude a pentagon at a draft angle. Once I managed to do this, I realized I wasn’t sure how to make the top edges angled as necessary. After some Googling, I found a tutorial on how to parameterize and create a dodecahedron on a Fusion 360 forum here.

Once I had my dodecahedron, I worked on the extrusions. I wanted to make a pattern of extrusions that went deeper over layers to make it easier to plant succulents. I created some parameters and experimented with different angles/depths of extrusions until I arrived at the following design. If I had more time, I think it would have been interesting to try shelling it out into curves instead.

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3D Scanning

fluteFor the 3D scanning part of this week’s assignment, I thought I would scan a little figurine that I’ve had since I was 10 years old. I started by using the AutoCAD 123 Catch app to scan a water bottle just to get acquainted with things. The scan kind of failed miserably — though I think this may have been because the water bottle was a very regular and symmetrical shape.

The scanner int he machine shop worked a lot better. My figurine had a lot of detail so I wasn’t sure how well it would work. Randi and I also tried scanning Tofu (one of the robots in the Personal Robots Lab) which had a lot of fur to see how much granularity the scanner would pick up.

The scan it produced was actually quite good — though a tiny bit creepy!



  • finished dodecahedron terrarium

    finished dodecahedron terrarium

  • finished 3D model of terrarium

    finished 3D model of terrarium

  • 3D scan of flutist figurine

    3D scan of flutist figurine