July 22, 2015 | By Simon

Although we’ve seen a surge of new 3D printing technologies as well as the materials themselves that aim to make our 3D prints better and more capable than ever before, it’s easy to forget just how much significance our digital tools play in the fabrication process, too.

Although we may have to model many of our physical objects by hand or source them from a file sharing site, the ability to manipulate a number of variables ranging from infill to final printed size using a variety of software tools is an often overlooked ‘automation luxury’ of the 3D printing process that has helped shave hours off of tasks that would otherwise be cumbersome to do manually in a model’s native state.  

Now, 3D Print Model Generator, a new 3D printing platform from Japan’s 3DWave, a 3D modeling company, wants to not only help users prepare a model for 3D printing, but also help users generate the 3D model itself.

Using data that’s sourced from a video, users can choose their own ‘model pose’ using an in-built camera feature that then freezes the video frame and converts the animated character into an STL file.  The final 3D printable data can then be further customized to be printed at the desired scale and resolution.


In an email to 3Ders, 3DWave’s Yoshinobu Kakumura explained that the site “is simple” and consists of an easy four-step process for creating 3D printable models using the company’s existing library:

  1. choose a 3d model
  2. capture when you like to print
  3. download a STL file
  4. 3D print a model

While the company’s existing model library only features a limited amount of content - which includes a character, dogs, animals and a dinosaur - it’s easy to see how much potential the technology has for viewers to create their own figurines directly from animated videos.  Kakumura told us that they planned to add more new models in the future.

While there’s no word yet on what the company plans to do with the 3D Model Generator down the road, it’s safe to say that the ability to create 3D printable models from directly within a video is definitely a welcome addition to our 3D printing digital toolkits.   

You can try it out for yourself by heading over to 3D Print Model Generator.  



Posted in 3D Design



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