18 Replies Latest reply on Mar 28, 2011 3:24 AM by Neil Larsen

    T-Splines tsElement webinar today

      At 12 noon EST  register at: https://www1.gotomeeting.com/r...

       

      Mark

        • Rhino+T-Splines vs Modo
          Charles Culp

          Mark, and others.

           

          I am looking into this software again. It looks like there are a couple workflows we could use.

           

          Modo>.obj file>tsElements

           

          Rhino>.obj file>tsElements

           

          Rhino+tSplines>.tsm file>tsElements

           

          As of right now, are there any benefits to Rhino+tSplines method?

           

          I have never used Modo, although I have briefly used Rhino, and I have extensive experience 10 years ago with 3D Studio. Does Modo's modeling tools compare with Rhino? Obviously, they have some pretty nice rendering tools which I would love to play with, but are not exactly going to benefit my company's bottom line.

           

          I think I have some more questions that I might ask on the tSplines forum, but I'm really interested in a comparison of Modo to Rhino+tSplines, or even Modo to Rhino.

            • Re: Rhino+T-Splines vs Modo
              Kevin Quigley

              Charles we recently purchased both Modo and TSElements for SolidWorks. In tandem with this we are continuing to evaluate Rhino+TSplines. The initial workflow I persuaded myself we needed was Modo to SolidWorks via TSElements. This does work well for some shapes - it is especially useful for the more organic forms and getting those transitions you really struggle with using a NURBS modeller alone.

               

              As you mention Modo works very well with SolidWorks (and to be honest this was the main reason we opted for that route to start with). Modo's rendering and animation system is ideal for hard surfaces typical of product design.

               

              Like anything else it is not the ideal solution or workflow. The critical thing about working with t Splines is getting the patch network right - and this takes a few attempts usually. The lack of T Spline editing capability inside SolidWorks (by which I mean the ability to weld points, apply creasing etc) is quite limiting - but if you accept these limitations it still works well.

               

              For this reason I am having another look at getting Rhino and T Splines. We are not Rhino users so that is a bit more of an investment for us, hence why I am taking my time! Fortunately we use Macs here and the Rhino v5 Mac beta is free :-) Unfortunately T Splines is Windows only :-( But what it does allow us to do is to properly assess what Rhino offers.

               

              One of the reasons I have never liked Rhino is the interface (just too Autocad for me) and the lack of associativity. This is certainly better in v5 but all the other modelling apps we use have extensive curve to surface associativity making edits and tweaks very simple. Rhino does offer this to some extent but it is a bit hit and miss. Where Rhino does score highly though is in the huge range of the application - it handles point clouds very well (we have a Next Engine Scanner), it offers extensive surface deformation tools, the cage editing is fantastic.

               

              In terms of modelling style, modo and rhino are totally different. Modo is very much a sub div polygonal engine, whereas Rhino is totally curve and nurbs based - except if you get T Splines. With the T Splines plug in Rhino becomes very Modo like.

               

              I've seen the kind of products your company makes (joysticks etc) and to be honest either approach would work well, but Rhino+TSplines would probably be the better option for covering all modelling bases. There area  couple of fantastic webinars for Rhino/Tsplines out there - look at the bike frame one and the joystick one. These show how easy Rhino/Tsplines can be. Similarly for the Modo side, Luxology have several great new tutorials. One is a Sunglasses and the other (older version) is a Backpack. The Sunglasses one in particular is great for new users.

               

              Final word is that if you are happy pushing control points around to tweak the shape either approach is good. But if you want to have some additional functionality such as applying edge weighting and creases, or just having total control over the transitions, then the way to go is Rhino/Tsplines.

               

              Personally we will no doubt buy into RHino/TSplines soon, then we will have both!! Final word, Luxology have a fantastic licensing policy and a very supportive user network, if you buy Modo you won't regret it. What we are finding is that we can start to do the "ideation" in Modo, even if we are going to model in other apps for production.

              • Re: Rhino+T-Splines vs Modo

                Charles,

                 

                Modo does work as a workflow and I'll be producing a video soon showing this. The disadvantage that it has over Rhino is that it can only translate to SW/tsElements via OBJ format.  Because of that if you put creases into your tspline in modo (edge weighting) you will not get them coming thru via OBJ - from Rhino t-splines you do because there is a direct .tsm translation built into SW environment.

                 

                I can not comment on the benefits of Modo over Rhino in general or vice versa because they are both our partners   Wait for my tsElements Video soon and then you can decide.

                 

                Regards

                 

                Mark

                  • Re: Rhino+T-Splines vs Modo
                    Kevin Quigley

                    That is exactly the issue with TSElements via OBJ. All that nice edge weighting  and Pixar Sub-D control you add in modo gets lost as what TSElements does is use the sub-div control cage to generate the TSpline surface as it imports into SolidWorks. Compare this to Rhino/TSplines, and you have a lot more control over edge weighting and very fine detailing and all that comes through into SolidWorks as a TSpline surface.

                     

                    Probably a good analogy would be TSElements via OBJ is good for getting the big surfaces and the problem transitions. Rhino plus TSplines does all that but offers more localised surface controls and more control over the mesh shape (which is quite important once you get into SolidWorks).

                     

                    Of course once the second generation product comes through a lot of this will be irrelevant!

                     

                    If I had a preference, the ability to work in Modo with a TSpline surface type export or a Tsplines plug in, would be my preferred option. Modo just encourages shape exploration.

                • Re: T-Splines tsElement webinar today
                  Keith Parker

                  Mark - will there be a way of viewing the webcast afterwards?

                    • Re: T-Splines tsElement webinar today

                      Yes,

                       

                      Coming soon. Stay tuned.

                       

                      M

                        • Re: T-Splines tsElement webinar today
                          Matthew Sederberg

                          Just getting the webinar video posted now. In the meantime I've attached a bunch of simple T-spline primitives that we referenced in the webinar. These are some primitives (box, cone, cylinder, plane, quadball, sphere, torus, etc) with different resolutions, and some simple T-spline models, like a head, heart, propellor, DS logo, etc. Hopefuly these are helpful.

                            • Re: T-Splines tsElement webinar today
                              Charles Culp

                              Matt,

                               

                              Quadball is not a perfect sphere.

                              Sphere 2x4 is, but has less nodes.

                               

                              With regular splines, you need 8 points to get a good circle approximation, so an 8xsomething sphere

                               

                              Care to give me a little nitty-gritty as to how t-splines handles this and why you only need 2x4 to get what looks to me like a good sphere, and why quadball doesn't? I do get the purpose of quadball, just trying to understand why sphere2x4 works with so few nodes.

                                • Re: T-Splines tsElement webinar today
                                  Matthew Sederberg

                                  Hi Charles,

                                   

                                  The quadball isn't intended to be a perfect sphere; it can't be. It's purpose, as you probably know, is to just give you a nice primitive to push and pull that doesn't have collapsed control points on the poles.

                                   

                                  Sphere2x4 also is not a perfect sphere. T-Splines, as implemented commercially, are all degree 3. You can degree elevate a perfect sphere (which are degree 2) so that it will be an exact degree-3 sphere in T-Splines; however, when you degree elevate, you get a lot of creases in your model. This isn't bad unless you want to push/pull on the model, which is what people often like to do in T-Splines. By default, when we convert spheres to T-Splines in Rhino, we'll rebuild them so that they are easier to work with but aren't exact any more.

                                   

                                  We just made Sphere2x4 with the tsSphere command in T-Splines for Rhino.

                                   

                                  I've attached a perfect sphere, degree elevated and converted to T-Splines. You'll notice that it's not as nice to push/pull.

                                   

                                  Matt

                              • Re: T-Splines tsElement webinar today
                                Keith Parker

                                Thanks for that Mathew - really interesting.  I have a client with Rhino who can't really use it & they need some 'organic' shapes doing by me in SldWks.  If I can convince them to share costs by getting T-Splines for Rhino then I'll get the Add-In for SldWks.  Here goes...

                                  • Re: T-Splines tsElement webinar today
                                    Matthew Sederberg

                                    Great Keith!

                                     

                                    One other option to throw out there -- if there is a possibility for repeat work this this client, we offer premium modeling services. You subcontract out your job to us, we make your model, with steps saved out so you can see the process, and also a video that has an explanation. We're fast. Depending on your situation, this can be a lower-risk way of throwing T-Splines into your process and succeeding on the first project.

                                     

                                    Matt

                                  • Re: T-Splines tsElement webinar today
                                    Neil Larsen

                                    Very interesting functionality. I would be keen but apparently it doesnt work with SW09...

                                    If I push and pull on the points as shown for the bike frame I would want to be able to end up with a smooth progression of the whole shape other than by repeatedly eyeballing and tweaking bits of it. With more than a few control points it would get persistently lumpy I think.

                                    The webinar doesnt show any combs or curvature in edit mode is that possible? or perhaps points can snap to a SW sketch or spline (a bit like boundary Mark?) ? or there can be a fall off of influence for the movement? perhaps hold down shift to scale rather than move with the arrows - so you can say make something more or less elliptical without messing up the other axis for instance

                                    I'm thinking you would want to preserve big sweeps, x sections generally and stay in plane with other stuff...

                                      • Re: T-Splines tsElement webinar today
                                        Matthew Sederberg

                                        Hi Neil,

                                         

                                        Many if not all of your requests are available in T-Splines for Rhino today, such as soft manipulation with a fall off influence.

                                         

                                        There's a bit of a technical runaround to have curvature and other displays in SW when in edit mode. We're putting out a point release of tsElements, hopefully late next week, that will have Zebra in edit mode.

                                         

                                        As you mention, you can hold down Shift when dragging the triad arrows in tsElemenets and you'll be scaling instead of translating the selection.

                                         

                                        Thanks,

                                        Matt

                                          • Re: T-Splines tsElement webinar today
                                            Neil Larsen

                                            Ok cool thanks for the response.

                                            ..Shift.. so great minds think alike eh

                                            If curvature is technically too difficult zebra would be helpful provided the lines flow across/along the surface patches well.

                                            Maybe use OpenGL reflection of light tube tunnel as an alternative? anything to better gauge the overall form.

                                            Combs on a chain of selected edges if it was possible would be great I think.

                                            Is it possible to display SW reference pics and feature sketches concurrently with the T splines edit even if they dont interact/ have relations?

                                            I am thinking I might want to display a free hand dwg while I manipulate the points to match or make a pleasing approximation.

                                            I have asked Mark before on a couple of occasions if SW ref pics could be textures instead of being tied to the FM and rebuilds in which case they ought to be able to be displayed/buffered along with the T-Splines view?

                                            Anyway great tool so far. Will keep up with developments

                                              • Re: T-Splines tsElement webinar today

                                                Hi Neil,

                                                 

                                                Yes, you can have sketch pictures viewable whilst editing your Tspline, as long as they come before the Tspline in the FM.  I not quite sure what you mean by "textures" verse the way we do it right now?

                                                 

                                                Regards

                                                 

                                                Mark

                                                  • Re: T-Splines tsElement webinar today
                                                    Neil Larsen

                                                    Well honestly I am not quite sure how its done presently but on the basis of previous conversations the pics are tied into SW workings and subject to rebuilds for some obscure reason.

                                                    I had asked why this needs to be....thinking they could be simply turned on /off in the view like a billboard texture.

                                                    Theres a post of mine somewhere in the forums about this you replied to...

                                                    I presumed in this case you couldnt display stuff from both TSplines and SW in the same window but ok you say you can which is fine.

                                                    Pity this functionality has arrived at 5 to midnight in the big scheme of things.