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Card Board Exhibit



Paolo Donnicola created some large 3D models in cardboard based on Blender models.

Paolo writes:

For an exhibition I made the 3D models for some card board exhibit. The 3D data and the visualisation were done in Blender. Later then they created the data for the card board cutting machine.

I exported the 3D data as obj and one could cut the models in slices (this was done with Rhino). For each exhibit they had to slice the models in over 100 slices. The slices have been cutted from a cnc card board cutter. The maschine also made a glue line. You can find some pictures here

See this video:


  1. Very interesting, I had a notion to try this once, but I didn't have access to a CNC machine... doing it by hand was not an option. 

  2. It says Rhino was used to slice the object up. Now I'm wondering if that could be done using dynamic paint, by using a sequence of frames and painting the outline of the object. I am trying this!

        •  Correct me if I'm wrong, but you'd still need to have outlines in some sort of vector format(I guess dxf is preferable but I THINK svg can be fed to some laser cutters). Exporting to rhino and slicing the model still seems to be a much simpler solution, and it could also allow for correcting the curves if needed.

          I myself am in the middle of producing a series of models for 3dPrinting, for school, and I've found that making watertight models can be more straightforward in Blender than in Rhino(depending on the model of course).

          • You are probably correct about the vector format output. I'm not experienced at all with 3d printing and cnc machines, though I have heard about it before. My approach is for the home user, who doesn't have access to a large scale cnc machine. I want to be able to print out these "slices", trace them onto cardboard, cut out the shapes, glue it together, and have a cheap 3d model in my hand :D

            I'm pretty sure you can convert a selection into a path using Photoshop and export this path as a vector.

          • That's right, we needed the vector data
            for the cnc cutter. The timeline was tide and I knew, that with this
            process we could do it in time. So no fancy “we try it and we'll
            see if it works” ;-)

          • The method Blazraidr uses would work for CNC if you used a program such as Inkscape with the dxfR12 plugin to convert the images to vector (dxf) files and then import the dxf files into your CAM program.  I have used this method many times.

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