Re: [rp-ml] What is the best reverse engineering software available?

From: John Brock <>
Date: Thu Jul 29 2004 - 21:31:40 EEST

Hi Glenn:
    That's the dream. No such system truly exists. If you took out the adjectives you used; "quickly", "accurate", "clean", and "minimum of fuss", you would be closer to the truth. That isn't to say it can't be done, it's just difficult, slow, frustrating, painstaking work to do it right.
    The first problem is any scanning process will lose detail. Sharp edges get rounded, clean detail is blended over, and smooth surfaces become noisy. Your specific needs will determine how much time you spend "cleaning up" the scanned data.
    The second is when point clouds or mesh data is skinned over with surfaces, additional "melting" or loss of detail occurs. The advantage is you get surfaces or a solid you can work with to make changes. If you don't need to do any editing, you can probably leave your data in as a dumb mesh.
    The third is cost. The least expensive way is to sit down with calipers and remodel the part in the application of your choice. This is the slowest but probably the most accurate way to handle mechanical parts. Next up the line would be something like our Rhino NURBS modeler and a 3D digitizing arm. Next would be a point scanner and expensive software for cleaning up the mesh and possibly fitting surfaces to it. Your costs would range from under $1,000 or over $100,000 depending on hardware and software.
    This is probably more than you wanted but this is the reality of it.

John Brock
Rhinoceros - NURBS Modeling for Windows
Seattle, WA

  ----- Original Message -----
  From: SiderWhite
  To: Rapid Prototyping List
  Sent: Wednesday, July 28, 2004 11:00 PM
  Subject: SPAM: [rp-ml] What is the best reverse engineering software available?

  I'm taking an informal poll of the rp-ml list here:

  In your opinion, hands down, what is the best reverse engineering software out there? My application would be to scan/digitize formed parts, bring the point cloud or scanned surfaces/curves into the software, quickly create accurate solid models, and be able to create good clean machinable solids/surfaces with a minimum of fuss.

  Glenn Whiteside
Received on Thu Jul 29 20:45:04 2004

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