Marking Parts in PreForm


#1

Lately I’ve been including a version number, and arrow (indicating which orientation they were printed) in my designs so at a later date, I can reproduce a certain print. However, sometimes, when I get a part into Preform, I’m not sure the best print settings or orientation to print it. While I can edit the text/arrow in Fusion, there are times I end up sending 4 different versions of the part to the printer, only having changes to the text and arrow.

It would be helpful if PreForm had a way to add some text and an arrow (indicating which way is down) to a surface of a part once it was already in PreForm. Text/arrow can be positive or negative, with adjustable depth.


#2

The name of the object can already be printed on the base/raft for the object. Turn that on. Then mark the printed parts by hand before you rip 'em off the base…

Preform doesn’t include any geometry modification capabilities besides simple scaling and rotation. What you’re asking for, a feature that will modify geometry, is actually a very involved thing to implement. I doubt there’d be much enthusiasm for this with the Preform software team, it’d be a pretty significant overhaul I bet.


#3

Perhaps they could just add the angles the part is rotated relative to X,Y,Z axis to the text around the base?


#4

But when you print a part, don’t you save the .FORM file? Name the file appropriately and that’s what you’ll get printed on the lip of the base… Like “Widget X115Y37Z245”.


#5

Sure,

but what if I print the widget 6 times in slightly different orientation in the same .form? Definitely not a high priority request for me, but would be interesting if I want to do one print to test orientation and then many prints in the same orientation thereafter.


#6

Yeah, you’ll need to save an individual file for each one. But I am pretty sure you can then combine the individual FORM files in to a single job and save that as a single FORM file if you wanted.

So orient the part and save the file with the file name encoding the orientation. Repeat for each separate orientation. Then start a new job and load the separate .FORM files, position on the build platform (without rotating them) and you should be good to go.


#7

Randy,

Thanks for your input-

The complexity of being able to modify part geometry in PreForm isn’t lost on me. I fully expect the software team to pass it over and instead focus on building core features that can’t be done any other way. However, if I don’t ask, I can’t complain. I posted it in hopes that maybe other people were having similar thoughts.

Also, my workflow may be a little weird. I regularly work from my desktop in my office, laptop from home, and desktop in the lab where the printer resides. Using Fusion, I can access my designs anywhere, but the .form files tend to end up isolated on whatever machine I ended up printing from. I realized that’s just a file sharing task I could solve with Google Drive, but that’s not the real issue.

Any kind of ink I apply to the parts won’t survive the downstream processes, and could even end up damaging the part or items around it. Putting the print info/version/print orientation into the geometry is really the only option for me.

Alex


#8

By “mark” I was thinking something physical, like a pinprick on a non-critical facet of the print.

Other than that, I got nothin’. But I’d be surprised if FL would add the capability to modify geometry in Preform, I’m pretty sure similar discussions have been had in the forum before. You’re gonna need your own workaround…


#9

@dar5000 you can edit the label that is printed on the raft directly in PreForm. So if you bring in a part, then duplicate it in PreForm 4 times and rotate each copy to different orientation to see which one comes out best, you can just right click on the part -> Model Properties -> and edit the Name field. This will print on the raft label. So you could add the XYZ rotations into the part name.


#10

Thanks, this worked really well!


#11

And I did not know that! Handy! :slight_smile: