question on smoothing a surface 3ds max or solidworks

I have a 3d scan of a human bust form that I need to smooth some surfaces on. I have the part in .stl .igs and a solidworks part format. I am running solidworks 2012 and 3ds max 2012.

Anybody have any suggestions on the best way to go about smoothing out some surfaces? I basically need to flatten out a section that looks like some bone protruding from under skin.

I tried editing mesh points with soft selection in 3ds max but there are so many points that it crashes the software. (I am running a quad core HP with 8GB ram)


This is how I might do that in Solidworks:

  1. Import as a Solidworks Part File. (NOTE: I am going to make the assumption here that your part will import as a solid body vs. a bunch of surfaces…if it is all surfaces and you are ok with that, just ignore the notes about solid body below)
  2. Project a split line around the surface you want to smooth out.
  3. Use the delete face command to remove the surface that you want to smooth out.
    4a. If you are lucky, you may be able to use one of the standard patch/fill features in the delete face command. When complete, make sure that this became a solid body again (it should be). If not, run a knit or thicken command to save the surfaces as a solid body.
    4b. If that did not work, simply remove the face with the delete command - this transforms your solid body to a surface. Next, build a new surface to fill the missing area. Depending on the geometry you may be able to start with something simple like a fill surface. Otherwise, you may need to tool around with other types of surfaces to make your patch. After it is patched and all your surfaces behave the way you like (you may want to use the zebra lines feature to make sure your surfaces don’t have any weird curvatures to them, especially @ the edges), go to the surface bodies folder, select both surfaces (your new patch + the surface with the section cut out) and use the knit command to save as a solid.

Hope that helps.

cool thanks. I’ll try it out.


Has the scan data been rebuilt into a water tight solid/surface model? Or is it all a polygon mesh?

The two are totally different, so the method of how you clean it up will depend.