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  1. #1

    Converting a 3D model into a topographical map

    Is there a simple way to make a detailed topographical map from a 3D model?
    I use Autodesk Inventor.

  2. #2
    Engineer-in-Training
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Posts
    384
    do you have a physical 3D model, or the STL file of the model, or similar? The ideal configuration would be the STL file.

    From there you can download PrusaSlicer 2 and configure for an MSLA printer. The output file is then changed to *.zip and unzipped into individual files, one for each layer. For best results, set the layer thickness in the slicer to best represent the resolution of your model. You don't want a 0.050 mm printed layer if your map is going to be 3 mm layer resolution.

    The file format will be an ordinary graphic image which can be converted to a vector file and stacked as aligned. Each layer will effectively nest in the previous one.

    I use Inkscape and it works in the manner I just described, although it's quite labor intensive. Someone with scripting skills in any number of languages may be able to simplify and/or facilitate the process.

    Alternatively, post the STL file and I'll take a shot at it, just for the fun.

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