Jump to content
Ultimaker Community of 3D Printing Experts
Sign in to follow this  

Anyone knows how to produce a lithophane? Can we produce one with Cura?

Recommended Posts

My basic question is how can I make a 3D print in my Ultimaker 2 that reproduces one picture? This is a lithophane isn't it?

Can we do it with Cura? What is the easiest and best method to produce lithophanes? How can we also go further and make a true 3D print like 10mm high reproducing a picture?



Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Also I've used this wonderful utility do produce lithopanes:


It produces STL file which is nice because I can then edit the STL with other editors. Unfortunately I felt I had to reduce the polygons a bit using meshlab but it's a nice utility.

How to reduce polygons:




Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

I guess I don't understand your question. How is this different from your first question? You can convert an image to a "height map". I think you can use the cura scale feature to make it a taller height map. The utility I mentioned definitely lets you control several variables: the "base" thickness (minimum thickness) and the remaining maximum thickness. I don't remember if you can control the same variables with Cura but I expect you can by using the "cut off object bottom" feature and the "Z scale" feature.


Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

I have tried this a couple of times this week since reading the post. My first thought was wow this is smart! I was actually surprised how well it came out - i.e. it exceeded my expectations. The pic was of my convertible, shot from the side, and showed the windscreen, wing mirror and headrests very well; and indeed the overall shape of the body. But once I settled down and thought about, it is very limited for a lot of pictures. I.e working on contrast means shade can be real problem e.g. as a flat surface becomes two surfaces.

So I am going to put the pic into Photoshop next week and try and "tidy" it up from a 3D printing perspective.

Conversely if you wanted to print a logo then, with the right logo e.g. just a couple of primary colours, a simple clip from a web page would I suspect work really well as long as you do not pick up a lot of "noise"


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
Sign in to follow this  


  • Our picks

    • Architect Design Contest | Vehicles.
      We're open for entries! - Design and submit your 3D designs of architectural entourage - vehicles - for a chance to win a large filament pack. Presenting an idea, an architectural design or something as big as an urban project isn't easy. A scaled model can really help to get your idea across.
        • Like
      • 19 replies
    • What The DfAM?
      I'm Steve Cox, an experienced engineer familiar with 3D printing. I wanted to share some DfAM guidelines with this community to help and make stronger parts.
      I'm also an Autodesk Certified Instructor for Fusion 360, so many of the images in ...
        • Thanks
        • Like
      • 18 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!