CAD Project of the Month: 3D Spoon Tutorial

While it’s unlikely that every 3D designer’s lifelong ambition is to create a 3D spoon masterpiece, we do know everyone has to start with the basics. Hence, a simple, but highly effective 3D tutorial perfect for CAD beginners.

The first half of the video below takes you through the easy process of creating a 3D model using only a couple simple tools. The second half of the video, which we’ll be diving into next month, shows how you can take the 3D design you’ve created using our CAD software and turn it into a printed 3D model.

Much of this project can be completed using the Mesh and Subdivision tools native to ViaCAD 2D/3D and ViaCAD Pro.

The project starts you off right away using the mesh block tool to create the cube your spoon’s head will be formed from (take advantage of the data entry window to maximize accuracy).

  1. Using the gripper tool you can push/pull  the shapes you’ve created, and you can build the spoon handle by simply pulling out the center cube of the object. Make sure to use the select deep tool and to hold the ctrl key while push/pulling. This ensures you’re targeting the cube you want instead of manipulating the entire side.

Bonus Tip – It’s useful to have your Inspector Box open throughout this project – it’s located below the top menu on the right side of the screen.

  1. After this basic spoon shape is made, click ‘view’ in the top menu and select ‘front’ to change your view.
  2. Next you can use non-uniform scaling, which you can find in the inspector box, to increase or decrease the size of your 3D spoon’s head. You can also change the size of the neck separately, which will initially change with the rest of the spoon head.
  3. To start rounding the edges of your spoon you will again use the scaling tool. Select every corner of your spoon head while holding the shift key and, with uniform scaling selected, scale toward the center of the shape. You should start seeing the corners rounding off.
  4. Once you’ve selected the two points of your spoon head and extended them to your liking, switch back to ‘isometric view’, which is listed in the view dropdown.

Bonus tip – We find this view to be very useful when looking at 3D drawings and designs, and we recommend to everyone who uses our CAD software to play around with the different views to find what works best for them.

  1. From here, you want to click the subdivision tool and select your shape. In the video, we subdivide our spoon three times, which rounds off the 3D model perfectly. To make additional changes like deepening the bowl of your spoon head, lengthening the handle, etc. you can toggle subdivision and control facets on and off (using the ‘T’ key on your keyboard) so you can precisely make changes to your object.

So there you have it! Stay tuned next month for another post where we dive into the rest of the video and show you how to 3D print your ViaCAD creations using Shapeways and other 3D printing software.

 

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