Any suggestions on work flow?

Discuss all Rapidform related issues here.
Post Reply
User avatar
JohnNPS8
I have made 20-30 posts
I have made 20-30 posts
Posts: 25
Joined: Thu Jun 24, 2010 1:26 pm
Full Name: John Wachtel
Company Details: National Park Service AKRO
Company Position Title: Historical Architect
Country: USA

Any suggestions on work flow?

Post by JohnNPS8 » Fri Jul 02, 2010 1:05 pm

Hi, I am beginning a two year project which is documenting several rocket test stands. We are in the early stages of trying to develop a work flow which will get us from our point cloud data in Rapidform XOR3, to a combination of 2d plan/section/elevation line drawings in AutoCad. The final set will be submitted to the library of congress for archival storage, which unfortunately limits us (to a degree) as to what we can do with the scan data.

We have gotten familiar with the basic workspace of Rapidform and how it plays with AutoCad, but are running into a few speedbumps. Due to the nature of the structure (basically a 6-7 story steel tower of pure structure with lots of pipes and grating), our scans resulted in many scan "shadows". This prevents us from meshing our data and taking sections for export, and leaves us with essentially doing "3d sketches" from sections of the point cloud.

The only problem with this is that it is not really helping us become independent of Cloudworks, which may be our ulterior motive in using Rapidform in the first place. And sketching plans in Rapidform is less than efficient.

Any suggestions or ideas on this matter, or any experiences you have with Rapidform in general would be helpful.
"Argument and discussion should make the agony of decision making so intense, you can only escape by thinking." -Fred Friendly

User avatar
stevenramsey
Global Moderator
Global Moderator
Posts: 1697
Joined: Sun Aug 12, 2007 9:22 pm
Full Name: Steven Ramsey
Company Details: 4DMax
Company Position Title: Technical Specialist Scanning
Country: UK
Skype Name: steven.ramsey
Linkedin Profile: Yes
Location: London
Has thanked: 2 times
Been thanked: 1 time
Contact:

Re: Any suggestions on work flow?

Post by stevenramsey » Fri Jul 02, 2010 2:11 pm

Sounds like you are really looking for a modelling package that you can make the 2D drawing's from, You mention cloudworx so I assume you are using or the data was collected by a Leica scanner, I would suggest having a look at Cyclone Model as it can take the data and convert it to solids from which the drawings can be extracted. By converting the data to objetcs it is less crucial that there are holes in the data. There are other plugins for Autocad that could construct the steel work using the pointcloud as a refferance.
Steven Ramsey

Home [email protected]
Work [email protected]
Mobile +44 7766 310 915

User avatar
JohnNPS8
I have made 20-30 posts
I have made 20-30 posts
Posts: 25
Joined: Thu Jun 24, 2010 1:26 pm
Full Name: John Wachtel
Company Details: National Park Service AKRO
Company Position Title: Historical Architect
Country: USA

Re: Any suggestions on work flow?

Post by JohnNPS8 » Fri Jul 02, 2010 3:27 pm

Thanks for the reply, that was sort of the response I was expecting, but not hoping for! It is unfortunate, but like all historic preservation projects the scale is large, complex, and the time is short. Of course, it is silly to expect there to be a quick solution to this problem, but damn, most of the 3d point cloud modelling programs just chug no matter nice my graphics card is! Oh well, maybe in a couple of years Sketchup will support point clouds :D The day that happens, I can run my own company with 4 people, ha! The sketchup team just seems to be more aware of how human beings interface and manipulate things in a 3d environment. But until then, I will just have to deal with whats out there, like everyone else :roll:

Anyone else care to share their workflow/projects using rapidform and AutoCad? Bonus points to those who somehow manage to shoehorn sketchup in.

Can't wait till this field gets over puberty!
"Argument and discussion should make the agony of decision making so intense, you can only escape by thinking." -Fred Friendly

mjankor
V.I.P Member
V.I.P Member
Posts: 224
Joined: Thu Oct 15, 2009 12:51 pm
Full Name: Martin Ankor
Company Details: Custom Spatial Solutions
Company Position Title: Principle
Country: Australia

Re: Any suggestions on work flow?

Post by mjankor » Sat Jul 03, 2010 4:09 am

It might well be worth looking at Rhino+Pointools. Then using that to build models, in particular of any areas with shadows and then taking the modelled objects to Autocad (or just generating the 2D plots from Rhino. I'm pretty sure that's possible - eg: http://forums.autodesk.com/t5/AutoCAD-2 ... -p/2658462).

We invested in this in preference to Cyclone for modelling as Rhino is a dedicated modelling package and is extremely versatile. I've also found it rather enjoyable to use, which is a very large tick in Rhino's favour. :D

The fact that a full Rhino + Pointools license is under $5000au is very, very nice as well.

User avatar
stevenramsey
Global Moderator
Global Moderator
Posts: 1697
Joined: Sun Aug 12, 2007 9:22 pm
Full Name: Steven Ramsey
Company Details: 4DMax
Company Position Title: Technical Specialist Scanning
Country: UK
Skype Name: steven.ramsey
Linkedin Profile: Yes
Location: London
Has thanked: 2 times
Been thanked: 1 time
Contact:

Re: Any suggestions on work flow?

Post by stevenramsey » Sat Jul 03, 2010 9:57 pm

check out laserscanning europe they have a sketchup plugin. Search the forum I think there is some info on here somewhere.
Steven Ramsey

Home [email protected]
Work [email protected]
Mobile +44 7766 310 915

olivercho
I have made <0 posts
I have made <0 posts
Posts: 2
Joined: Wed Feb 10, 2010 9:07 am
Full Name: Oliver Cho
Company Details: 3D Systems Corporation
Company Position Title: Product Manager-Reverse Design-Rapidform
Country: South Korea
Skype Name: olivercho
Linkedin Profile: Yes
Contact:

Re: Any suggestions on work flow?

Post by olivercho » Tue Jul 20, 2010 9:34 am

Hello John,

My name is Oliver Cho and I'm working at Rapidform as a product manager for the reverse design part.
I assume that you know the basics of Rapidform XOR already from your writings.
As you mentioned because of the scan shadows you may have difficulties to make a mesh data for whole tower.
But actually I don't think that you need to convert the whole point cloud data into a mesh data. Even with the point cloud you can make a good sketch (I mean 2D Mesh Sketch) by referencing the actual shape. Though there are some shadows you probably have almost full shapes and using those data I believe you can create a full sketch.
If you can show me some screenshot of current point cloud data status then it would be good to give you some more practical advice.

Best regards,

User avatar
Matt Young
Global Moderator
Global Moderator
Posts: 3839
Joined: Fri Nov 30, 2007 3:03 pm
Full Name: Matt Young
Company Details: Baker Hicks
Company Position Title: CAD-BIM Lead
Country: UK
Linkedin Profile: No
Has thanked: 13 times
Been thanked: 6 times

Re: Any suggestions on work flow?

Post by Matt Young » Tue Jul 20, 2010 1:51 pm

Is this the sort of structure you mean?
http://www.redstone.army.mil/history/ar ... _56_01.jpg

Meshing complex steel structures is time consuming and not really much use. It is ideal if you are modelling one or two detailed beams or columns, but not a whole structure.

I would use Cloudworx for 3D Studio, AutoCAD, MicroStation, PDS or whatever program you prefer to use it in, for modelling complex 3D structures. Or Pointools for AutoCAD, Rhino is also very good but I dont have much experience with it. We used CloudWorx, Cyclone and AutoCAD recently to model a huge structure that included 45,000+ objects, it took four of us a month or more to do.

Sketchup is a nice toy but is not really the tool for the job I think. I also think that Rapid form is a bit over the top for this type of project.

Just my thoughts, I know that most of this software is not cheap.
If you want to make something simple, then take one thing away that still allows you to do the job. Don't add two more things, and say they both make it easier.

Post Reply

Return to “Rapidform”