Jumping into 3D Scanning

Jumping into 3D Scanning

When I jumped into 3D scanning I wanted to try a common method of using a kinect instead of purchasing a 3D scanner. Using a friends first generation kinect I held it up by placing it in between a drawer so it wouldn’t move. Since this was my first attempt at 3D scanning and I was doing this alone I used a swiveling desk chair and slowly spun around to capture all angles and points.

Scanning myself

To start off i ran into an issue with lighting and speed. To fix the lighting issue i angled my phone as a flashlight to point at me next to the kinect. That surprisingly worked well to capture smaller details.

The software I initially used was SkaKinect, I also tried ReconstructMe. The best user friendly software i found was SkaKinect but sadly a lot of the features are pay-walled. With that said if you are looking to use 3D scanning in any business, SkaKinect with a generation 2 kinect is the best option. If you happen to be using Windows 8 or Windows 10, I found that Microsoft 3D Scan is the best for convenience and easy for most to pick up.

Cleaning the model

Most of the time when you finish a scan you will have fragmentation and other forms you should remove on or around the model, using Meshmixer I turned the model into a solid object, since initially it was hollow. One of the more tedious things from cleaning the model was how the kinect captured hair. Where I had to smooth out the top of my 3D scan.

Printing the model

Once the cleanup process was done it was time to set it up to be printed. Using Hatchbox White ABS at 0.20mm it took about 2 hours to print. The model was a pretty simplistic model to print since there were no extreme overhangs.

If i were to do this again I would use the generation 2 kinect instead of the first generation. One the major issues with the older kinect was the lack of detail on the head, specifically the ears and nose. But for a scanner that can cost $20 – $50 Its unbeatable.


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