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Editing 3D scans for plastic production question

Question asked by Peter Hunstein on Sep 24, 2009
Latest reply on Sep 24, 2009 by Peter Hunstein

My mother-in-law approached me for help with a product she wants to produce. She called me because I'm the only one in the family with any manufacturing experience let alone an understanding of 3D. However this is completely beyond my experience and I was hoping someone here could give me a bit of insight so that I might know how to proceed, or at least guider her in the right direction. The product is a child's doll that I assume will be blow molded (or rotomolded?). A prototype model was sculpted in modeling clay and she paid a local service bureau to scan the doll parts with their NextEngine 3D scanner. That's where things are as of right now. I have a CD with the scans in STEP and IGES format and don't know where to go from here. Since the parts were hand modeled in clay they aren't smooth, and that is reflected in the scans. I'm assuming I need to find someone with software that can easily smooth these surfaces and fix minor imperfections rather than try to somehow convert these to parametric models by creating splines using the vertexes of the surface mesh. Am I even in the ball park here?





One of our seats of Solidworks 2009 is Premium and I think has Scan to 3D with it. Is that something I should look in to learning for this? I tried opening one of the STEP files In SW and playing with Scan to 3D, but All but one of the menu items were grayed out (Curve wizard I think). Was this because it was a STEP file?