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Marooned Marin

[DIGITAL] TUTORIAL: How to make custom digital sails for Studio.io

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I could not stand idea of using plates or tiles to simulate sails inside digital design of my ships, so I went on and figured out how to make your custom digital sails in 3D and import them into Studio.io which I use for digital design of my MOCs.

I will demonstrate step by step process of main sail of my little MOC – Warty Crab.

Let’s go!

 

6%20-%20red%20kosmec.png

 

1. DESIGNING 3D SAILS IN CAD

1.1 We start by opening our CAD software (for this demonstration I used SolidWorks) and in ‘Front-plane’ we draw arch with dimensions as shown on picture

 

1.1%20-%20luk.png

1.2 Next, we use ‘Extrude’ feature to create third dimension. Length 105 millimeters. Be sure to use mid-plane option. Important: check ‘thin-feature’ value 1mm. This makes part solid instead of being only surface.

 

1.2%20-%20extrude%20mid%20plane.png

1.3 Next, we choose ‘Right-plane’ where we draw two circles with dimensions as picture shows.

 

1.3%20-%20cutextrude%20A.png

1.4 We use feature ‘Extrude-Cut’ to cut-out the top and bottom of the sail

 

1.4%20-%20extrude%20cut%20B.png

1.5 We repeat the process for left and right side – in new sketch we draw two new circles as picture shows.

 

1.5%20-%20extrude%20cut%20A.png

1.6 Click on ‘Extrude-Cut’ and off they go, both sides

 

1.6%20-%20extrude%20cut%20B.png

1.7 We need to smooth out sharp edges with feature ‘Fillet’ radius 6mm. We choose sharp edge one by one all around

 

1.7%20-%20Fillet%201.png

1.8 We repeat the same for other sharp edges using ‘Fillet’ 3mm.

 

1.8%20-%20Fillet%202.png

1.9 Last thing we need to make holes for hanging our sails. In ‘Right-plane’ we draw four holes as picture shows

 

1.9%20-%20Extrude%20cut%20rupe.png

1.10 Click on ‘Extrude-Cut’

 

1.10%20-%20Extrude%20cut%20rupe.png

 

2. EXPORT TO STL FORMAT

2.1 Click on ‘File’ -> ‘Save-As’ -> and under type we choose ‘STL’ but before saving we must click OPTIONS. This is most important part of the process.

 

2.1%20-%20Save%20as%20STL.png

2.2 Inside the options we check ‘ASCII’ ‘millimeters’. If we stay in ‘Binary’ the process won’t work! Ye be warned.  Also, we check ‘Coarse’ resolution on purpose. Fine resolution will make file too big for conversion and very hard for Partdesigner to open later on.

 

2.2%20-%20STL%20-%20options.png

2.3 Click on ‘Save to Desktop’ in this demonstration example

 

2.3%20-%20STL%20save.png

 

3. CONVERSION OF STL TO DAT

Partdesigner (the accompanying software of Studio.io) is not able to open STL format, but is able to open DAT format, so next order of business is to convert STL to DAT using one small but crucial script.

3.1 We visit website https://github.com/HazenBabcock/stl-to-dat

3.1%20-%20GitHub%201.png

3.2 Click on ‘CODE’ on the right side of screen and we choose ‘Download as ZIP’

 

3.2%20-%20GitHub%202.png

3.3 We extract the content of ZIP file on Desktop (it says THIS IS MY DESKTOP) and we copy our STL file inside the same folder

 

3.3%20-%20Jedro%20u%20folder.png

3.4 Inside the folder we drag and drop STL file over icon stlToDat.py as picture shows

 

3.4%20-%20dovu%C4%8Demo%20u%20stltodat.p

3.5 The script will come alive and in one or two second, using the black screen, it will convert the file to DAT. How do we know we succeeded? Inside the same folder a DAT file will appear with some amount of size in kb. Be warned: if created DAT file has zero 0 kb something went wrong (this can happen). If you try to convert too big file the process can take several minutes, but I don’t recommend this since it will be impossible for Partdesigner to manage large files.

 

3.5%20-%20stvoren%20DAT%20file.png

4. PARTDESIGNER

4.1 We launch Partdesigner and we click ‘IMPORT’ on the right side

4.1%20-%20Import%201.png

4.2 In new window we chose ‘3D-objects’ and we click ‘Choose a file’

 

4.2%20-%20choose%20a%20file.png

4.3 We go on Desktop (in this example), inside the folder of little conversion program, and choose our DAT file. Click ‘Open’.

 

4.3%20-%20Jedro-dat.png

4.4 In preview window we can sometimes see the 3D part. This time no. Never mind, click ‘INSERT’

 

4.4%20-%20INSERT.png

4.5 We have our sail successfully opened, but before exporting it to Studio, we can make in red/white colors. We choose ‘Insert’ -> ‘Image’

 

4.5%20-%20Jedro%20u%20partu.png

4.6 From Desktop we choose RedWhite.PNG pattern picture (image must be in PNG format), and we click ‘Open’

 

4.6%20-%20Crveno%20bijelo%20PNG.png

4.7 Inside Partdesigner we place and position the image the best way we can, and when we are happy we click on check mark. Be patient for few seconds until image appears glued to the surface of new custom part.

 

4.7%20-%20Sretni%20OK.png

4.8 Finally, we can click ‘Export to Studio’ and we rename the part as we please.

 

4.8%20-%20Export%20u%20studio.png

 

5. STUDIO.IO

5.1 We launch the Studio.io and inside we choose ‘Custom Parts’ in left menu

 

5.1%20-%20Custom%20parts.png

5.2 We find our new sail and we drag and drop it on working surface which the whole process ends.

 

5.2%20-%20Kraj.png

 

The same process I used when I made custom ropes for ‘rigging’. So now you know how it’s done. I hope it helps. Now go and create! :)

THE END

Edited by Brickander Brickumnus

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Thanks for the tutorial. It was very interesting to see how it is done. I have never worked with CAD software before. How much time did you need to make the sail?

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5 hours ago, NOD said:

Thanks for the tutorial. It was very interesting to see how it is done. I have never worked with CAD software before. How much time did you need to make the sail?

 

Between 5 - 10 minutes in CAD.

I first made several sails from paper using scissors and measured them on the real ship. This took way more time than actual CAD modeling. Once I got the size and the look right, I made the 3D CAD model in a snap. :)

 

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This is a great little tutorial!

As a SolidWorks professional I always appreciate seeing the interaction of what I do in my dayjob and my hobbies.

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