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Author Topic: Experiments with 3D scanning - Oldschool methods with newschool tech.  (Read 928 times)

Offline Mammoth miniatures

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As anyone who has followed my other threads might know, I dislike digital sculpting.
Something I've wanted to try for a while is taking some of my hand sculpted figures and scanning them to create STL files, But your normal hobbyist 3d scanner simply doesn't have that kind of resolution.

Luckily we have a very high end 3d scanner at work, and I have a fair bit of free time!
So here is my first attempt at scanning a large figure (about 80mm tall) and converting it from a clay sculpt, to a digital file, to a 3d print.

The scanner works really well - it can't handle very fine texture but it captures all the contours and anatomy, and alot of the detail does come through. The process is fast - multiple scans are auto composited to create a whole model, which the scanner can automatically repair to create a watertight mesh.

I then drop this mesh into Zbrush and draw texture back onto the model - this is great for me, As i enjoy the texturing tools but don't find Zbrush very intuitive when it comes to actual model making.

Finally, I printed off the newly detailed STL at half scale and TADA! A hand made mini, shrunken down!

I think there's real potential here - I can sculpt far larger, with nice materials like monster clay, without the need to worry about casting limits. I can create life size props and costumes and make multi pose figures from a life size scan of a person...the possibilities are endless. In a way it feels very oldschool, as I'll likely be working from a 3up figure and reducing it, But withou thte need for a pantograph.

Anyway, here's a short vid of the process and of course, some pictures.

https://youtu.be/UtifIi5pi8A









I'll absolutely be messing with this more over the coming weeks.

(for anyone interested , The original large figure is avaliable as a resin cast from mammoth miniatures, and the STL is avaliable through the planet 28 patreon.)

Offline DivisMal

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That’s really intriguing. Are there any advantages beyond your preference in handsculpting? I.e. can you do different things with such a sculpt or even better?

Offline Mammoth miniatures

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That’s really intriguing. Are there any advantages beyond your preference in handsculpting? I.e. can you do different things with such a sculpt or even better?

Well the biggest thing at the moment it is frees me up in terms of scale - I can make a model large inr eusable clay, scan it, digitally edit/detail/alter it, and then decide if i want it to be 2,6,10,15,28 or 54mm. But I can also do things like use real cloth/paper to create drapery, or sculpt on a posable armature and make multiple poses quickly from a single sculpt without needing to do any rigging on the computer.

Offline DivisMal

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Yes, indeed. That is an advantage. My eyes tell me these days to do only 28mm or larger, but a couple of years ago, I would really have liked to have many models just in 15mm in the same quality and style they were available in larger scales.

Offline Mammoth miniatures

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Had a go with a smaller miniature - My scaly mud dragon sculpt. This is about as small as I feel the scanner can go before it becomes a bit of a waste. However, again we can see that the scanner captured the bulk of the form and the outlines of the detail. Editing in Zbrush only took about 15 minutes. This one is not as good as the last, But I'm still happy with the result.




The original sculpt.

Offline fred

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A very interesting way of working - seems eminently sensible to continue to use your existing physical material sculpting skills, but then blend that with digital work for scaling and detailing.

Offline Mick_in_Switzerland

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I find this very interesting.

Will this change your business model?

Would this allow you to offer your figures / creatures in say 28mm and 15mm by using a resin print as the master for casting the smaller scales?

How would you feel about selling the STL so customers can print their own at any scale.


Offline Mammoth miniatures

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How would you feel about selling the STL so customers can print their own at any scale.


That was actually he motivation for giving this a go (well...that and I have free time and a workplace full of neat toys)
I have the gogmagog up on patreon now, But the ideal would be to start sculpting larger master sculpts and then digitally enhance them for patreon distribution at multiple scales. I'd still like to keep providing resin casts of hand sculpted 28mm size stuff, But it'll certainly free up what I can produce and how I can provide it to people.


Offline Tactalvanic

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well done finding a way to make something you dislike into something you do.

and fit it in with your existing not inconsiderable existing skillset.

I think its a brilliant way to re-use the 3 up process in conjunction with modern tec.

and as the tech advances the scanning will improve in quality no doubt, so it means you can carry on doing the bit you love - sculpting in the physical medium.

and customers benefit with the availability of the model in differing scales after scanning.

whats not to like?

Offline Mammoth miniatures

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Gave the scaly mud dragon a go - This time I printed it larger than the hand sculpted master (orange) and I think it's come out quite well. This is the other use of this system - Making large monsters at an easier to handle scale, then making them bigger. I've wanted to do a mammoth for a while but haven't had the time to commit to such a big figure, so maybe this is how i'll do it.


Printed scale up is in grey


Offline Mick_in_Switzerland

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Re: Experiments with 3D scanning - Oldschool methods with newschool tech.
« Reply #10 on: July 06, 2022, 05:58:15 AM »
Thanks for your answers. I shall follow this with interest.

Offline Mammoth miniatures

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Re: Experiments with 3D scanning - Oldschool methods with newschool tech.
« Reply #11 on: July 17, 2022, 12:24:52 AM »
Right, No students at work over the summer so I spent my a couple of hours last week making this happy chap - A sort of mixture of an old citadel dragon ala nick bibby, and a Victorian inaccurate dinosaur.

The original sculpt is mosnter clay, about 20cm tall. The scan came out wonderfully although because of the dark colour of the material it didn't capture as much fo the finer texture as the resin cast figures I tried previously - The scanner seems to prefer lighter objects and struggles with anything dark or shiny.





The STL of this toothy dude is on my pateron right now, along with the mud dragon and the gogmagog.


Offline Dr DeAth

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Re: Experiments with 3D scanning - Oldschool methods with newschool tech.
« Reply #12 on: July 17, 2022, 07:46:34 AM »
Would be interesting to get a scanner big enough to scan a person, then get some re-enactors to pose in different positions.  Instant figure range  lol
Photos of my recent efforts are at www.littleleadmen.com and https://beaverlickfalls.blogspot.com

Offline beefcake

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Re: Experiments with 3D scanning - Oldschool methods with newschool tech.
« Reply #13 on: July 17, 2022, 09:54:24 AM »
Very cool. How much was the 3d scanner may I ask?


Offline Mammoth miniatures

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Re: Experiments with 3D scanning - Oldschool methods with newschool tech.
« Reply #14 on: July 17, 2022, 11:15:27 AM »
Would be interesting to get a scanner big enough to scan a person, then get some re-enactors to pose in different positions.  Instant figure range  lol

The scanner I'm currently using can do that, I'm fact we have scans of all the 3d digital technicians printed out at about 54mm scale and you can see the outlines of phones in their pockets and the stitching of their jeans.

Very cool. How much was the 3d scanner may I ask?

I work at a university, so these are a perk of the job and not my personal scanners. The one I'm using costs about £10,000, but that's because it's a large high def scanner capable of scanning everything from coins to cars. A smaller desktop model that would give the same results for what I'm doing, but the same company, is about £2000.

I haven't tried out any other models, but this is a very high end piece of industrial gear so naturally the price is aimed more at businesses and educational institutions.

I am eyeing up the smaller model for my own studio tho...

 

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