Jump to content
Ultimaker Community of 3D Printing Experts

? How to create a top mesh or screen effect?

Recommended Posts

I have some LEDs on a circuit board and have created (in FreeCad) a 5mm thick overlay with holes for the LEDs. The LED currently shines through an outline. To diffuse the emitted light, I'd like to cover the existing 3d printed overlay with a mesh or screen effect. The LED would shine through when illuminated and be less harsh. 


My current plan is to place a 0.1mm layer on top (in FreeCad), then have Cura make a 1 layer top surface. I've thought to edit the Gcode and change the Flow Rate to 50% or ? for the top layer.


Is there a way to tell Cura to space the lines ONLY in the top layer?  I'm trying to avoid a laborious effort in FreeCad to create a mesh manually.

Possibly another approach?


Suggestions much appreciated.



Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites


Maybe something like this ?




That is a rectangular model (aka mesh) that is printed normally and another circular model that is given a mesh type of "modify settings for overlap with other models" and then it is given no walls or top/bottom layers and an infill style and density that could be what you want to shine your light through. So I am thinking that you could position a number of these modifier meshes, one for each LED. It would be a bit fiddly to set up but maybe would provide what you want.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the reply. I didn't immediately understand the suggestion. The idea of a mesh as a separate piece seems kinda painful due to fragility. Removing it from the build plate could be a problem as well as alignment to the larger part.


Since working more with Cura, I've decided to add a raft and have carefully set the raft params to have only 3-4 layers and to be rather porous by setting the line width (0.3) and spacing (0.6). My preference would be for this on the top not the bottom, but will try it. Not that many params for the top layer to do what I want.


Now I'm pondering a gcode file edit to put the raft on top!


Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Moving the Raft to the top is a bit painful as it screws up all of the lower Z values. As there are only a few Raft layers, I can copy those lines and add them to the end of the gcode file. I will only need to modify a few Z values for the added layers.

btw I want to write you directly re smartavionics and sensors.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

I've created a nice porous raft, but I don't want it on the bottom, I want it on top. Using an edtor, I've gone into the gcode file and copied the Raft section and pasted it near the end of the file. The Z settings have all been modified to continue the print.


Is there anything else I need to do?


Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Our picks

    • Introducing Ultimaker Cura 3.6 | Beta
      Ultimaker Cura 3.6 | Beta is available. It comes with new features, bug fixes, and UX improvements. We would really like to have your feedback on it to make our stable release as good as it can be. As always, you can download the beta for free from our website, for Windows, MacOS, and Linux.
        • Like
      • 95 replies
    • Print Core CC | Red for Ruby
      Q: For some users, abrasive materials may be a new subject matter. Can you explain what it is that makes a material abrasive when you are not sure which print core to use?
      A: Materials which are hard in a solid piece (like metals, ceramics and carbon fibers) will generally also wear down the nozzle. In general one should assume...
        • Like
      • 30 replies
    • "Back To The Future" using Generative Design & Investment Casting
      Designing for light-weight parts is becoming more important, and I’m a firm believer in the need to produce lighter weight, less over-engineered parts for the future. This is for sustainability reasons because we need to be using less raw materials and, in things like transportation, it impacts the energy usage of the product during it’s service life.
        • Like
      • 12 replies

Important Information

Welcome to the Ultimaker Community of 3D printing experts. Visit the following links to read more about our Terms of Use or our Privacy Policy. Thank you!