Plugin Request: Export as .amf

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Plugin Request: Export as .amf

Postby BallBearing » Mon Dec 15, 2014 2:14 pm

3D printing is going ahead. It would be nice to export things as: Additive Manufacturing File Format (.amf) to store colors etc. Smaller file size?
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Re: Plugin Request: Export as .amf

Postby Jim » Mon Dec 15, 2014 11:19 pm

Been meaning to start one. A basic exporter should not be too difficult.

Last time I looked there was not a viewer for .amf files. I would need to view exported files to test exports. Any ideas?
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Re: Plugin Request: Export as .amf

Postby Jim » Tue Dec 16, 2014 12:26 am

Actually, this discussion[1] indicates the format is not widely used. What printers support it?

[1] http://groups.google.com/forum/#!topic/stl2/PvhY0X9EHOc
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Re: Plugin Request: Export as .amf

Postby BallBearing » Tue Dec 16, 2014 7:19 am

The format is supported at least Slic3r 3D slice / printing program so widely sold Ultimaker printers, " hundreds" of Reprap clones etc. can use it I suppose. It is new format I think, but coming...
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Re: Plugin Request: Export as .amf

Postby Jim » Fri Dec 19, 2014 1:30 am

Do you have an example model? How do you think the .skp to .amf translation should work wrt Groups, Components, Colors, Materials?

2014-12_174.png
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Re: Plugin Request: Export as .amf

Postby BallBearing » Fri Dec 19, 2014 11:04 am

I think that for 3D printing translating colors from .skp to .amf would be the most important. But http://3daddfab.com/blog/index.php?/arc ... e-STL.html says: AMF Can Describe Materials, Compositions, Colors, Textures and More

I don't have yet a multiple head extruder on my printer so I cannot test these files in practice, I can just load them to Cura or Slic3r to make G-code for printing. There are files at http://amf.wikispaces.com/AMF+test+files.

Colors:
http://amf.wikispaces.com/file/view/Fac ... Colors.amf
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Re: Plugin Request: Export as .amf

Postby Jim » Fri Dec 19, 2014 3:12 pm

My plan is a to focus on geometry with colors. There is currently little demand for more. I hope to have some time over the next 2 weeks.
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Re: Plugin Request: Export as .amf

Postby Jim » Sun Dec 21, 2014 2:09 am

Here are some preliminary files if anyone would like to verify correctness between skp and amf.

2014-12_176.png
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Re: Plugin Request: Export as .amf

Postby BallBearing » Sun Dec 21, 2014 8:54 pm

It seems to load, but I can't see colors in Cura (scaled one), not even on the "official" colored cube. One made in Cura "merged" amf seems to have two colors :
three-amf-files-on-the-plate.png


In this video the file is made of two pieces (merged) and saved as amf, and loaded again, but it is a Cura thing then...or...: http://youtu.be/FKgHEO1g-S0?t=1m4s

I think that there is some color at the end of this:
Cake dual.amf.txt
It looks like that the colors are under material id. Looks like that the Cura wants materials then? I haven't tested this on other software yet.

<material id="1">
<metadata type="Name">Material 1</metadata>
<color><r>1.00</r><g>0.88</g><b>0.15</b></color>
</material>
<material id="2">
<metadata type="Name">Material 2</metadata>
<color><r>0.20</r><g>1.00</g><b>0.10</b></color>
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Re: Plugin Request: Export as .amf

Postby Jim » Sun Dec 21, 2014 11:09 pm

Thanks - the video is very helpful. It helped clarify some of the element of the .amf files and I will be able to improve the export.

Unfortunately, Cura appears to ignore the unit information in the .amf file. That is disappointing because units was a problem with the .stl format that .amf was designed to fix.
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Re: Plugin Request: Export as .amf

Postby BallBearing » Sun Dec 21, 2014 11:26 pm

Slic3r or Cura do not have support for inches. 0.1mm is 0.00393701". So many digits.. I don't know about other software.
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Re: Plugin Request: Export as .amf

Postby TIG » Mon Dec 22, 2014 12:18 am

Surely the whole idea of .amf is that you can pass lots of variables - like the unit size...
e.g.
<amf unit="inch" version="1.1">
or "m", "mm", "millimeters" etc - although there has been a lot of pressure to default to "mm" !

If you're looking to use a new standard that supports many laudable things - like different units - then it's a crime to ignore it in the 'so-far-few' apps that do read it !!
:roll:
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Re: Plugin Request: Export as .amf

Postby BallBearing » Mon Dec 22, 2014 10:39 am

Well, if the units are ignored, then you just have to know, that you have to convert your work to mm for 3D printing software, for now. This problem does not stop using possible amf exporter? This is a s frontline thing now. Slic3r & Cura at least ahead now, perhaps others come soon to support amf. I'm trying to find information...
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Re: Plugin Request: Export as .amf

Postby TIG » Mon Dec 22, 2014 11:14 am

If Jim's exporter always converts the dimensions to 'mm' and puts that in the header 'unit=', then it should work just fine anyway - importers of the data will either assume it's 'mm' anyway, or use the header data and use 'mm' from that ?
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Re: Plugin Request: Export as .amf

Postby Jim » Mon Dec 22, 2014 10:58 pm

It is astonishing that the units are being ignored in Cura. STL's lack of units was a primary motivation behind inventing the AMF format.

An AMF exporter is still possible, but Cura's ignorance of AMF units makes it difficult to take Cura seriously.

Moving on..

Let's talk about expectations for the SketchUp model as they relate to AMF. AMF primarily expects solid volumes. These volumes map nicely to SketchUp solid Groups and solid ComponentInstances.

Does it make sense to have the exporter only work on solid objects in SketchUp?

Can you share a SketchUp model that you would expect to be exportable to AMF?
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Re: Plugin Request: Export as .amf

Postby BallBearing » Tue Dec 23, 2014 6:38 pm

A solid two colors SketchUp file:
SmallAndBigHeart-Solid.skp


I check my stl files on Netfabb Or before that SU Solid Inspector. Sometimes NF says that my file is printable even when SketchUp Solid Inspector shows problems. NetFabb can export amf,but not import. And it's only a repairing models software.

For 3D printing the model has to be solid. Usually I prefer to do:SU -> Netfabb -> SU or print.

Slic3r also do not recognize inches. A bunch of other slicers do not accept amf, yet.
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Re: Plugin Request: Export as .amf

Postby Jim » Wed Dec 24, 2014 3:59 am

I think it makes more sense to organize the model using Groups or Components. So in the image the Heart is the amf <object> and the 2 sub-components are <volume> elements. AMF Volumes are solids, have a material, and can not over-lap.

Material would be applied to each sub-component (volumes), but not the top-level Heart (object.)

Using Groups/Components also has the advantage of instantly knowing if they are solid or not.
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Re: Plugin Request: Export as .amf

Postby Jim » Wed Dec 24, 2014 4:19 am

As a side note, Microsoft has included some support for printing to 3d printers[1]. There is a 3D Builder app[2] in the Microsoft store which loads .stl, .obj, and .3mf - Microsoft's version of .amf.

I think I read Microsoft has licensed NetFabb technology for checking files.

Maybe soon we will be 3d printing directly from SketchUp.


[1] http://blogs.windows.com/bloggingwindow ... explained/

[2] http://apps.microsoft.com/windows/en-us ... 590d5781f2


3D Printing in Windows:
http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/windows ... e/bg183398
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Re: Plugin Request: Export as .amf

Postby Jim » Wed Dec 24, 2014 5:57 pm

Test files round 2.

The amf appears to load in the AMF Utilities, Cura, and Slic3r.
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Re: Plugin Request: Export as .amf

Postby BallBearing » Sun Dec 28, 2014 3:17 pm

Hi! Everyone do not like Microsoft's closed format:

http://fabribles.com/forum/vox-pop/70-m ... -no-thanks

Slic3r & Cura can run on Windows, Mac OS X and Linux. They seems to have continuing updates & fast development which I cannot always say from MS products.

Slic3r & Cura also have model fixing. I just think that a good model do not need holes filled with small triangles. Probably slowing the printing process? Or at least I try to do so clean model as possible usually.

One part of the 1:3 skull: GrabCAD -> Meshlab -> SketchUp -> NetFabb -> Cura -> 3D Printer.
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Re: Plugin Request: Export as .amf

Postby Jim » Sun Dec 28, 2014 3:28 pm

Microsoft's 3MF format is not a "secret" format. It is a .zip archive. In the archive is an XML file that is nearly identical to the .amf XML format. The archive also contains meta-data which can be used by applications. 3MF is practically .amf with support files. Not sure why people don't like it besides ignorance or having a prejudice against Microsoft.

Microsoft's 3d Builder also uses NetFabb technology for model repair.

For better or worse, 3MF has a better chance at becoming a standard then the current "standard" which doesn't seem to be going anywhere because it is Design by Committee.
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Re: Plugin Request: Export as .amf

Postby d12dozr » Thu Jan 08, 2015 12:00 am

Relevant, if you haven't seen it yet: http://online.liebertpub.com/doi/full/1 ... .2014.1508

Professor Hod Lipson's, AMF tutorial, Part 2
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Re: Plugin Request: Export as .amf

Postby Jim » Sat Jan 10, 2015 10:39 am

I didn't see that, thanks Marcus.

Colors and textures seem fairly straight forward. There is a color hierarchy similar to SketchUp where Face (amf triangle) color over-rides Group/Component (amf Volume or object) color.

In amf, vertices may also have a color although I am not sure how that might be represented in SketchUp.
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