[Chimera-users] clip planes in vrml

Damien Larivière damien.lariviere at fourmentinguilbert.org
Mon May 17 00:28:19 PDT 2010

Hi Daniel,

A method, complementary to Tom's approach, consists of using boolean 
tools in 3DSMax (and in Maya I suppose): the clipped object to be 
printed is the intersection between your object and a plane. Then you 
export in 3DS. I can try (I had to do this few months ago). Let me know.


Le 14/05/2010 03:15, Thomas Goddard a écrit :
> Hi Daniel,
>   I don't think any 3d printer software is going to do the computation 
> to handle clipping planes.
>   What you need is that objects that intersect the clip plane have to 
> be rerendered with a capping surface over the hole created by the clip 
> plane cut.  Chimera can make such caps for surface models but the cap 
> surface is detached from the surface that is being cut -- the edges 
> are very close so it is not noticable.  That probably won't work for 
> printing a 3-d model.  But it is possible to compute a cap surface 
> using surfaces generated from volume data, which can in turn represent 
> a molecule using the molmap Chimera command.  This method just 
> displays a subregion of the volume say limiting the z size of the 
> volume grid.  To cut along other axes you could rotate the map using 
> resampling.  This is all a bit complex but I have used it to print 
> models on our uPrint 3-d printer.  This kind of computational geometry 
> for cap surfaces is usually done in CAD (computer aided design) 
> software like SolidWorks.
>     Tom
>> Thanks Greg. I viewed the file with BS Contact and it was fine; Adobe 3D
>> reviewer is the problem. For clip planes, you suggest X3D, but clip
>> planes don't seem to work for that format either. Even if it works, the
>> Zcorp printer does not read X3D- only VRML, PLY, 3DS, and ZPR.  Should I
>> give up on the idea of printing a clipped model?
>> On Thu, May 13, 2010 at 2:35 PM, Greg Couch <gregc at cgl.ucsf.edu
>> <mailto:gregc at cgl.ucsf.edu>> wrote:
>>     On 05/13/2010 11:18 AM, Daniel Gurnon wrote:
>>         Hi all,
>>         I'm thinking of the 3D printing of physical models, and how
>>         informative clipping planes can be....would it be feasible to
>>         add capped-clip planes to vrml output?
>>     Alas, VRML does not support clip planes, you have to use X3D.  Does
>>     Adobe 3D reviewer have X3D support?
>>         I also ran into a problem when I exported a surface to vrml and
>>         tried to view it with Adobe 3D reviewer. The color information
>>         didn't transfer. This isn't a problem when saving ribbons or
>>         bonds as vrml.
>>         Dan
>>     Double check that the surface displays correctly in a VRML viewer,
>>     eg., BS Contact, Octaga, etc.  And if it does (and I predict it
>>     will), then the bug is in the Adobe 3D reviewer's VRML import code.
>>         - Greg
>> -- 
>> ____________________________
>> Daniel Gurnon, Ph. D.
>> Assistant Professor of Chemistry
>> DePauw University
>> Greencastle, IN 46135
>> p: 765-658-6279
>> e: danielgurnon at depauw.edu <mailto:danielgurnon at depauw.edu>
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