MeshMixer First Impressions

So, I’m probably waay late to the party, but I recently discovered MeshMixer.

It’s a neat little software that has tons of features. It’s not a full modeling suite like Blender, but instead focuses on a few 3D printing related tasks.

I tested Meshmixer out by loading up Rakdos (a high polygon mesh), and it loads super fast!

One features it has is the ability to digitally sculpt, much like ZBrush or Sculptris.

Sculpt

Another is mesh repair.

Repair

I tried repairing Rakdos, but the result didn’t fix the inverted vertices. I suspect it works fine for simpler meshes, since Rakdos is a known problematic mesh.

Meshmixer also supplies an array of neat analytics.

Strength

It can also generate supports.

Supports

Based on the settings, I suspect it uses an angle based approach to generate the supports (like, give a support if face is less than 25 degrees off of the X plane.

This may also have been MakerBot’s algorithm in the early days. However, there are more sophisticated support generation algorithms out there, so I’m not overly impressed (FormLabs does a physics simulation in their generation!)

Mixing

However, I am impressed by its mesh mixing ability. You can very easily combine two meshes together and it joins very smoothly.

It also supposedly has way better boolean combines than Blender.

Overall, I like Meshmixer. It does some things ok, and other things really well. I really wish it was open source though… then again, if it was, it might’ve not been bought by Autodesk.

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