More clever supports idea


Excellent !!! :grin:


@Olivier_Suire what would you think of a tetrahedral truss support pattern?

About a year ago I was talking with the guy at OnShape who developed their honeycomb hex infill generator about evolving his featurescript code into a tetrahedral truss generator. At the time I was only intending to use it for internal structural support in one of my models (to save resin and reduce sensitivity to print orientation) but it occurs to me it could (if implemented) do what you’re asking for. If you’re interested in creating your own lattices and not afraid of code I could point you in his direction.


Hi Rkagerer,

I was looking into Intralattice which is a Grasshopper plugin.
A tetrahedra truss support seems good, specially if the density and thickness of trusses decreases from the build platform towards the printed object.
To be honnest, I’m not affraid of code as long as it is graphical/node-based like in Grasshopper.
I’m not nerdy enough to read line code.



normally I would share your skepticism, but I’ve been using mesh mixer for years. I can tell you it is free. It is not a design platform. Strictly pre-processing. import/ export stls. [edit: they have gotten into digital sculpting abilities and they offer great mesh repair functions as well] Hell, now that i think of it it might be possible to vertically stack small parts in the build volume with this.


Damned ! You managed to make me overcome my revulsion to install an Autodesk product…


I PM’d you some info.



MUAHAHAHAHA :smiling_imp:


Just for the fun of it, I copy/pasted the License and services agreement in a Word document :
it’s 15 pages of size 9 corporate crap !!!


Really good engineering catch! Never thought about this!

Fusion 360 is still free to startups and people making less than 100k, no?


did something changed about this ?


you’re thinking upside down.

The supports are not columns- they are cables in tension.

the model hangs upside down in the printer, and Preform adds diagonal members to try and keep the cables stable in x and y dimensions- but the primary concern is keeping the layer position in the Z axis accurate.

Diagonal members, in being built, would have a free end cantilevered such that it would be able to deflect as the the platform lifts.


You are right.


One big issue I often come across when generating support is that it generates a random singular, long support piece. This makes that support piece very flexible, which causes problems when it meets up with the model - usually doesn’t attach properly and breaks away a bit of the model surface.
I now make sure to edit the support if I notice a long, singular support and try to triangulate it so it creates a strong truss.

I feel like it should be implemented so that a piece of support cannot be singular over a certain length (maybe 30-40mm).


To alleviate that, I often place points in a Z pattern around the incriminated support, this tends to generate a scaffolding-like structure.


Yeah, I do a triangle pattern. Still think it’s something Formlabs should look to address - ideally shouldn’t rely on the user to catch problems and implement work-arounds.


Was hoping the recent 2.17 update would fix the singular support issue, but I still get supports generate like this. It’s easy to workaround, but still would be nice to have fixed.


I still don’t get why the Tank can’t offset each layer thus preventing spots due to support.


That’s why
But I suspect that sligthy inclined supports would work fine if they are braced in a smart way.


Thats not why at all. Thats just explaining the way the support works.

I am talking about the the XY pos of the tank. Currently its lined up for the build platform, BUT if your model does not cover the entire build platform its not necessary at all to do this. And you can offset the tank in XY for each layer. Thus preventing the clouding in the tank. And increase the lifetime of your tank.


That would make the struts work like springs, which would be very bad for part accuracy.

If you are printing a lot of parts with long struts, I suggest you give the LT tank a try as it is not subject to clouding.