Ready to print with Autodesk 3D Print Utility

"Ready to print" is the most characteristic message of the new free tool from the "maker" application family Autodesk 123D - Autodesk 3D Print Utility. This utility allows to read 3D models in the STL and OBJ formats and perform final pre-flight checks and adjustments before 3D printing.

Preparing a 3D model for printout may be not trivial, it is not an equivalent of pressing Ctrl+P. You need to check the proper file format, dimensions of your model, its optimal orientation in 3D space, its support structures (to allow bottom-up material layering), lower material consumption by hollowing the model.

The Autodesk 3D Print Utility does just this. Whatever design tool you use - a professional 3D CAD or one of the 123D maker apps - your first step is to create a "print" file in the STL or OBJ file format. Now instead of sending this file directly to your 3D printer, you can open the file in 3D Print Utility, view its details, check its dimensions against the limits of a specific 3D printer model, or adjust its scale. You can choose the color of the print material (ABS, PLA; for viewing), display support material, thicken thin walls or save print material by hollowing a solid. You can also choose the number of printed copies of your model which will fit in a single printout. Total print time is estimated. You can edit parameters of materials and printers using the Javascript file c:\Program Files\Autodesk\3D Print Utility\bin\resources\printers.json.

The resulting model can be sent directly to the MakerWare or Objet Studio driver, or you can save the model back to the STL format or to a THING or OBJZF file. The 3D Print Utility directly integrates itself into new versions of the programs 123D Catch (3D models from photos) and 123D Design (modeling), or you can run it as a standalone tool. It supports various models of 3D printers MakerBot and Stratasys Objet.

You can download the 3D Print Utility 1.0 from CAD Studio Download or from Autodesk 123D