Re: Thinning STL files

From: Andre Dolenc (
Date: Tue Feb 11 1997 - 09:02:30 EET

> Both Imageware's RPM and 3D Systems' SL Toolkit contain a rountine to reduce
> the polygon count of a STL model. The user controls the reduction by
> providing a maximum allowable chordal deviation.

As far as I know, 3D's toolkit *is* Imageware's RPM, perhaps take or leave
a couple of modules. What interests me in this posting, however, is that
the author has indicated the *method* used in reducing the no. of triangles.

There are many methods out there and, with the advent of lower cost VR systems,
the topic became of interest to many researchers.

Since the performance of such systems depends greatly on the complexity of a
scene, it is a good idea to render objects that cannot be seen clearly--they
are "far" away--with less polygons.

However, not all methods described and/or implemented are suitable for Rapid
Prototyping. It is absolutely essential that the reduction be carried
out using tolerances and parameters so that users can effectively control
how the final shape deviates from the original one.

Andre' DOLENC (Director, Rapid Tools)
DeskArtes Oy Phone:+358-9-644 335/FAX:+358-9-644 330
Kalevankatu 3A
FIN-00100 Helsinki, Finland

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