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CAD tip CAD tip # 13013:

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Q - question

Converting a 3D mesh to a 3D solid in Fusion 360.

A - answer A significantly simplified 3D mesh conversion (STL, OBJ, 3MF) to 3D solids or 3D surfaces is available as a new feature in Autodesk Fusion 360 starting its July 2021 version. Speeds up and simplifies 3D printing and CAM machining workflows.

Compare the process with all those legacy complex non-parametric methods requiring a transition to direct modeling, further limited by the max. complexity of the 3D mesh. See, for example, tip 11387 or tip 10537.

When initially inserting a mesh model (or multiple models at once), it is indifferent whether you use the INSERT > Insert Mesh function in the 3D MODEL ribbon or CREATE > Insert Mesh in the MESH ribbon. When inserting dimensionless STL and OBJ files you need to specify the units, 3MF files have dimensional units defined directly in the model.

Unclosed/Open 3D meshes will be converted to 3D surfaces, and closed, watertight meshes to 3D solids. It is possible to choose between a Parametric conversion (preserves upstream parametric relationships in the timeline, multi-volume solids) and Base feature conversion (non-parametric, suitable for more complex or substantially altered objects). You can also choose Facetted (classical), Prismatic (prismatic, creates cleaner solids, easier to edit) and Organic conversion methods. Only the Facetted method is available in the free Fusion 360 hobby license.

Any warning about the number of model facets is merely a warning of a possible longer conversion time.

Whenever possible, use the prismatic method to convert classic 3D objects. This often requires that Face Groups are created in advance (PREPARE > Generate Face Groups). You can then easily modify the resulting solid by directly manipulating its geometry.

100% *  CAD,CAM 
11.7.2021    421×   FAQ  
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applies to: Fusion360 ·

See also:
Tip 12749:Generate parametric mathematical 3D surfaces (meshes) in Fusion 360.
Tip 12237:UnfoldRS - unfold 3D surfaces to 2D in AutoCAD.
Tip 12184:Overview of CAD formats supported in Inventor 2020 (import/export/AnyCAD).
Tip 11590:How to replace a 3D mesh model with a grid structure?
Tip 11545:How to export a sliced 3D model from Slicer for Fusion 360?

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