Option to keep edges free of supports

For technical parts with a lot of 90° edges, auto-generated supports right now just LOVE to be placed right upon those edges. When trying to remove those from the edge, the result is usually either a jagged edge or a rounded off edge. Even in your own webinar on this topic ( https://youtu.be/5VlprrdGYKM ) the presenter, Mr. Jordan Pelovitz, recommends to remove the supports from the edges and move them into a flat area nearby (https://youtu.be/5VlprrdGYKM?t=34m15s).

Why not automate exactly the latter? From a programming viewpoint the steps are straight-forward:

  • Detect whether supports are on an edge
  • If yes: Move by “point size” left-side and next time right side, normal to the edge and along the surface
  • repeat for all supports from build platform level to the top of the part

Maybe include this as an option?


Here here ! I’m also spending quite a lot of time removing supports from edges and placing them alternatively on both sides. This also helps create a beefier support structure.

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Hey Peter and John,

Good news, this feature is something the software team was hard at work on the past several months to test and validate changes to improve supports. In Preform 2.17 you should see a variety of support changes that should help keep your parts defined at edges (including reducing the number of supports located at edges of parts) and improved support for large flat sections. (release notes linked here).


Great news, thanks for the info! :slight_smile:

Sorry to say, but I just tried PerForm 2.17 and cannot see any form of slightest improvement regarding this topic, see attached picture. If I would try to print the part like this, all the edges would be jagged or rounded off after filing down all the supports. :frowning:


Sorry, the only improvement in this preform is directly related to downwards facing surface edges due to changes in the support algorithm. Although it doesn’t completely eliminate the problem even on downwards surfaces, you should see a more distributed pattern away from edges on large flats (I just tested and confirmed this on a few different models between 2.16 and 2.17. Rest assured we are actively working on features like this to make preform a more effective tool. Although because of the variability in models, features like this often take a long time to validate and confirm all edge cases are handled.

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I fully understand, we are developing software für customers ourselves. From that viewpoint I can confirm that timewise: Idea << programming << testing / validating.


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+1 I would love to see that feature added. I have to manually move every point on the edges. Orientation in 2.17 doesn’t seem to help much with this problem.

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Yep, I tried some sharp edged models, and no appreciable change in support placement. Whatever improvements to the algorithm didn’t make my life easier or worse.

Now I would like to see some improvements to Preform that I and others have asked for quite a while. I won’t hi-jack this thread by listing them here.