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Easy way to import objects and lay flat on bed


Johnmgg
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Posted · Easy way to import objects and lay flat on bed

Hi all, I am running CURA 5.0. Is there an easy way to import a file of Multiple Objects and have them Auto arrange on the bed. Right now this is really frustrating. I can't stand it. And I am waisting so much Time trying to get just some simple rod parts to aline and lay flat on the bed. This should NOT be this HARD. ARRRRR.There is the lay flat option but that DOES NOT work. Thank You!

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    Posted · Easy way to import objects and lay flat on bed

    It depends on the model file.  If the models don't line up in the Z in the file, then they won't line up when you open the file in Cura.

    There is a plugin in the MarketPlace called Mesh Tools.  One of the tools is "Split Model into Parts".

    If I "union" multiple parts in the CAD software and then export the model as an STL I can use the Split Model tool in Cura to convert them back into separate pieces.  Then if they were misaligned in the Z (I've done that) or I simply don't like the way they are arranged - I can move the individual parts so they are each on the build surface and rotated into position the way I want.  3MF and other model file types?...I don't know.  After re-aligning the parts, they can be grouped together again and moved as an assemblage.

    When you select a model in Cura, sometimes the "ungroup" and "unmerge" tools will be available in the right click menu.  If they are then they might be able to split the agglomeration of pieces into single models.

    If a model is part of a group then in Windows "CTRL+LeftClick" will pick a single model from within the group.

     

    So all of that sort of depends on the file format you are bringing in to Cura and how the export utility created that file in the first place.

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    Posted · Easy way to import objects and lay flat on bed

    I will try it but seems complicated and the designers of CURA 5.0 need to come up with a simpler procedure. This just takes to much time for what should be a simple and easy process.

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    Posted · Easy way to import objects and lay flat on bed

    What I tried to say is that in many model file formats (like STL) the models are glued together and effectively there is only a single model in the file even though there may be space between the pieces.  They don't come in as separate models because they aren't separate models.  That isn't a Cura thing, but a "translator / exporter" thing.

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    Posted · Easy way to import objects and lay flat on bed
    8 hours ago, GregValiant said:

    That isn't a Cura thing, but a "translator / exporter" thing.

    Or, in the case of an STL file, a file format thing. STLs don't support more than a single body, so even when separated, all parts are defined as a single body.

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    Posted · Easy way to import objects and lay flat on bed

    So, I use Shapr3D on the iPad to design my parts. I tried to export in the .3Mf file format; It is supposed to add more dimensional data when it exports the model, with 8 rods I needed to print out. Each one did come in to CURA 5.0 as separate objects. In Shapr3D there is the option to export one file with multiple objects. I am assuming this is the same if I exported it as an .stl file. I still think CURA should be able to do a better job at placing said objects on the build surface. Now to the real issue I have.... So, to continue with my example: The 8 objects import into CURA Off the build surface. It is not the initial import of objects I have an issue with. I can just manually move them to the build surface and arrange them in any order I want. What I find than the "Lay Flat" feature does not do well at all is that I place an object on the build surface in the orientation I want but I want CURA to sit the object flat on the build surface. I can not tell if the bottom of my object is actually laying on the build surface. Not above the build surface and not below the build surface. Trying to do this manually is frustrating. I used to use Simplfy3D. It has an option to place the object on build surface. Work well it does not try to rotate object  only p0lace the object on the build surface. The computer (CURA) should be able to do this for me as well. Also, when I am rotating an object to try to straighten the object. I want CURA to straighten the object for me to the closest 90 degrees. Or at least a manual snap to function. These, what should be simple, take me a ton of time getting right and waisting a ton of time I could be doing something else. Not to mention the frustration I feel with the process. I know CURA has the "Center Object" option which might help somewhat.

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    Posted · Easy way to import objects and lay flat on bed

    OK.  I understand.  I don't know what criteria Cura uses when you choose the "Lay Flat" option.  It will rotate the model about the Z axis when I use Lay Flat.  As far as I've been able to tell it is not possible to align a model in the X or Y so once Cura has decided to rotate the model during the Lay Flat command I don't know of a way to get the model back exactly square to the world.

    Cura is not an assembly modeler and has only basic tools when it comes to "transforming" models whether it is scaling, moving them around on the build plate or rotating the model.  I have always found the rotation tool to be clumsy and the coordinate system that is attached to the part is mirrored about the X in relationship to the main coordinate.  That is clumsy as well 

    I always make sure my models are oriented in CAD the way I want them in Cura, or at least at a precise 15° increment from the exact angle I want them at.  That sort of manipulation is much easier in CAD than in Cura.

     

    Maybe one of the developers can comment on this.  The manipulation of the models in Cura seems to be an ongoing project.

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    Posted (edited) · Easy way to import objects and lay flat on bed

    Not sure of that but when I read your messages I don't see where is the issue in Cura, As it was already mentionned  with the mesh tool of @fieldOfView plugin plus the Auto orientation one from @nallath I don't see any situation which cannot be solved without spending "tons of times" to place some models on the builtplate. So I certainly missing something. A short video of your procedure should be welcome to understand your issue. 

    Edited by Cuq
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    Posted (edited) · Easy way to import objects and lay flat on bed

    Note: Cura has a unique function compared to other slicers. If the model is placed (totally or partially) under the build plate . The part is not automatically placed flat on the plate. This is intended either to allow printing a part that the bottom is not completely flat or to cut only a part of the part. Could be the origine of your issue ???

    Edited by Cuq
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