When you upload a design to your Personal Factory, it will automatically check your file to make sure it fits with the 3D design rules. The rules are simply about giving clear instructions to your Personal Factory so you get exactly what you want.
We suggest you check over your designs as thoroughly as possible before uploading them. This should help avoid the need for troubleshooting afterwards.
But, if you do miss something, don't worry. The good news is, your Personal Factory can usually detect the specific cause of the problem, automatically fix it for you or show you an error message that will point you in the right direction.
Here are the things you should check before uploading a design:
Rule: You cannot make products bigger than the maximum build size of any specific 3D material you wish to use.
Solution: First, you need to ensure the measurement units (mm, cm, m or in) of your 3D design file match the units you select when you upload your design:
For STL and VRML 97 design files check the units you've used in your design software, and ensure you select exactly the same units when you upload your design.
For DAE design files, they export with the measurement units included and our making system automatically detects this. So you do not need to do anything special here.
Second, if the measurement units in your design software match the units you select when you upload your design, you then need to make sure your product is not bigger than the maximum build size of your desired 3D material. Here's a summary of the maximum product sizes for each 3D material.
If your design is too big for your desired 3D material, you need to choose to either reduce the size of your product to fit it, select a 3D material that can be used to make your larger product, or you split the design into sub-parts that you can assemble later. Otherwise your design cannot be made.
Rule: VRML 97 design files must contain only solid triangle meshes.
Solution: VRML 97 design files can be used for animations, game graphics and other uses that make them problematic for 3D printing. Good VRML 97 designs will include only mesh and color data.
So when you create your VRML 97 design, ensure you do not use quads' or other non-triangular polygons. And when you export your VRML 97 design, ensure your design software is not secretly adding non-mesh elements to your file (eg, animations, lighting triggers, game graphics, etc.)
Rule: Your design file cannot contain more than one separate object.
Solution: Solution: When your 3D design is being made, several other products are made at the same time. It is best to upload a file of a single object and increase the order quantity. This allows the 3D printer to arrange the 3D designs in the best possible way.
Below are some common problems which will cause non-manifold mesh errors:
1. Holes in your mesh
Holes in your mesh occur when you haven’t created a face or filled in a particular part of your geometry. You need to create a ‘water-tight’ model.
2. Coincident edges
Coincident edges occur when there are two separate edges existing in the same place, without being joined. Adjacent faces should be joined by a single edge.
3. Internal faces
Internal faces are faces which sit inside your model. Your design may be ‘water-tight’, but the presence of faces inside the mesh will cause an error. You need to remove all internal faces.
4. Overlapping faces
Overlapping faces happen when you create an additional surface across an existing one. They can be hard to find because they might share the same vertices. Try moving edges around to check they only have two faces attached.
5. Shared edges
Shared edges are edges which have more than two faces attached. Each edge should only join two adjacent faces.
6. Zero thickness geometry
This occurs when you have geometry that has no depth. Make sure every face or surface has thickness.