Make:Shift:Do project – Photogrammetry

For the Craft Council Make:Shift:Do project at the end of the October 2017, we want to build a system which can scan a component or item and produce a 3D file which can be fed into the 3D printer to manufacture an identical component or item.

here is an example of a scanner:

Here is a wikipedia article with lots of photogrammetry software, 24 of which are free. the 24, 3 are web based.
Web based systems do not require us to have software or a high powered computer. We just supply the photographs.
The trade off is the time and bandwidth required to upload the required number of high resolution pictures, and the complete lack of control over the workflow.

here is one example:     Free web powered converter.

Here is the 3DF Zephyr.  A standalone, non web based system.
The generally suggested hardware specification to run such software is:

i7, 8G min, 16G preferred memory and a CUDA capable graphics card. Depending on the software, CUDA is not always required, but slows things down if not available.

I am sure several of us have have capable hardware to test the various software, and Tony has kindly offered to loan a suitable machine to the club.
I would be interested in knowing how long such a machine would take to do the job.
Quote from ARC3D cloud based system mention above:

“Depending on the size, number and quality of the images that have been uploaded, a typical job may take from 15 minutes to 2 or 3 hours. “On the picture taking side, a lot of writeups are using the pi camera on it’s own or in multiples, but equally,  some are suggesting better results are obtained with higher quality pictures.

I have seen everything from a smartphone to a high end SLR suggested and it seems like one camera is good enough to get the job done. Multiple cameras do not seem to be required. Several members probably have high quality cameras.

In summary,  we have everything we need to start testing the various options.

Some articles describe pipeline style workflows, where defects/holes in the mesh can be identified, and extra pictures of the area can be taken and added to correct the problem.

But maybe we will be looking for “pictures in, 3D printer file out” with no intervention from the user.

Here is a good article describing the different workflows.

Written by Dr. P.L. Falkingham who wrote this white paper in 2012;

Acquisition of high resolution three-dimensional models using free, open-source, photogrammetric software: Falkingham says this about Agisoft Photoscan, one of the two suggestions Olly picked out in his first email.
“This program has become something of a standard among colleagues who use photogrammetry, and for good reason.  At $59 for the educational standard version, it’s a bargain, and it’s easy to use interface means anyone can use it. “

Next is an open source pi laser scanning kit.  Similar in concept to what we want to attempt.
FreeLSS is a free as in open source, open hardware, and open electronic design 3D printable turn table laser scanning platform based on the Raspberry Pi.

Available in kit form here:
It is written in C++ and licensed under the GPL.
The scanning software runs self-contained on the Raspberry Pi without the need for a connected computer via USB.
The user interface is completely web based and is exposed via libmicrohttpd on the Pi. Laser sensing is performed via the official 5 MP Raspberry Pi camera.
The camera can be operated in either video or still mode.
Video mode camera access is provided by the Raspicam library.
Reference designs for the electronics to control the lasers and turn table are available as Fritzing files.
Access to the GPIO pins are provided by wiringPi.
FeaturesFully 3D Printable
Point cloud export
Triangle mesh export
Assisted calibration
Support for dual laser lines (right and left)
Up to 6400 samples per table revolution (with reference electronics)
5 megapixel camera sensor
Support for camera Still mode and Video code
Configurable Image Processing Settings
Ability to generate images at different stages of the image processing pipeline for debugging
Persistant storage of previous scans
Manual control of lasers and turn table
Flexible architecture

FreeLSS can generate results in the following formats.

PLY – Colored Point Cloud
XYZ – Comma Delimited 3D Point Cloud
STL – 3D Triangle Mesh



3D Scanner Buying Guide 2016

Price: Kinect (varies) ReconstructME (Free)
Technology: RGB camera, depth sensor

This is about as DIY as it gets when it comes to building a low-cost 3D scanner. Thankfully Microsoft has released a peripheral that is really an extremely high-powered depth sensor and RGB camera, and left it open enough to be used for other applications. In this case, pairing an Xbox Kinect (You can easily find them on eBay) with free software like ReconstructMe is all you’ll need to 3D scan people or objects.

Resolution: Varies
Pros: Inexpensive, versatile, free software
Cons: Windows only, limited resolution, uneven quality



4. BQ Ciclop 3D scanner kit – $199 USD 

This open source hardware project has been released under an open source license, so all information on the mechanical design, electronics and software is available to the community to allow for continued development. The full package is roughly $199 USD. You can even download the design and 3D print it for yourself!



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