Feature requests STL 3D printer file format and other workflow ideas

Hi all, First time posting here. Umake is a great app. I love the concept. I will start with my general ideas and work top down... I would love, love, love to be able to from start to finish, including printing my design out on my 3D XYZprinting printer, as a finished prototype. I have made one or two prototypes using the Autodesk 123D design app. This is an Ok app not great. Also the problem is that there is no app to allow my to print my design from my iPad to my 3D printer. So I have to export my design to the Cloud and then import my design to my Win10 PC and then Print my design. With IOS 9.3 update Also Apple released a new USB camera connection kit, this time Self powered. I think it is worth exploring whether we can now print to an USB printer? Below is my altimeter workflow.... 1) sketch out my design as in the current version of Umake. 2) Then I would like to be able select different parts of my design and add the exact dimensions to each part. Then have a section where I can print my design or export my design file as a STL file using the IOS command called "Open-in". The developers could create another App that would correct the mesh stuff and do the slicing, etc. then sent the file to my 3D printer for printing. It would be way cool if this could be done. I think everything could be done except maybe the printer interface. In conclusion: using the new USB camera connection kit has opened up a whole new world of possibilities for the iPad. Users already have been able to use External USB MICs and other USB music recording equipment that would not work in the past.
Hi all, First time posting here. Umake is a great app. I love the concept. I will start with my general ideas and work top down... I would love, love, love to be able to from start to finish, including printing my design out on my 3D XYZprinting printer, as a finished prototype. I have made one or two prototypes using the Autodesk 123D design app. This is an Ok app not great. Also the problem is that there is no app to allow my to print my design from my iPad to my 3D printer. So I have to export my design to the Cloud and then import my design to my Win10 PC and then Print my design. With IOS 9.3 update Also Apple released a new USB camera connection kit, this time Self powered. I think it is worth exploring whether we can now print to an USB printer? Below is my altimeter workflow.... 1) sketch out my design as in the current version of Umake. 2) Then I would like to be able select different parts of my design and add the exact dimensions to each part. Then have a section where I can print my design or export my design file as a STL file using the IOS command called "Open-in". The developers could create another App that would correct the mesh stuff and do the slicing, etc. then sent the file to my 3D printer for printing. It would be way cool if this could be done. I think everything could be done except maybe the printer interface. In conclusion: using the new USB camera connection kit has opened up a whole new world of possibilities for the iPad. Users already have been able to use External USB MICs and other USB music recording equipment that would not work in the past.
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9 comments

Hi John, 


Thanks for reaching out to us! We are glad you re enjoying uMake and thank you for taking the time to to post this! 


So with regards to your request, rest assured that we want to get to this point. We have had many users request this and we completely understand the value of being able to rapidly sketch something and then be able to rapidly prototype it. The ability to print what you have created in uMake is on our road map. That said, there is a lot to do on our end before we get there. 


We want to make the user experience exceptional and as you probably know, the current user experience with 3D printing is not so straight forward. You have to often use a plug-in or other piece of software to prep a file for printing, and many times these software suites don't catch errors with the file, thus creating wild rats nests when you start printing. 


As uMake uses NURBS surfaces, we have a bit more work to do in terms of converting the files to be 3D printable STL's. In addition to this, we really want to make printing easy, so we would need to figure out how we could detect gaps and holes, how we could integrate good support material algorithms, and how to fix watertight issues. This in and of itself is a big task, but something we eventually want to get to as we do understand the power and potential to use uMake to rapidly ideate-- and then naturally, rapidly prototype. 


Everything you are mentioning is doable, and is on our road map, with the exception of the USB camera kit feature. We will look into this and see what we can achieve with it. 


I hope that answers you question/ post. We are excited to be able to do this, but there are several steps we need to take in order to get there. 


Thanks in advance for your patience! We will keep you updated when we do bring these features to the app. 



I love the feed back and your explanation on what is going on. This level of feedback is really a nice feature. To keep up with Umake and having a road map for feature request. It took me a long time to even start to understand how to use the product. Now, after many hours of testing, I finally have a handle on most parts of Umake. Is there a link you can provide that would just show me what all the basic icons at the top of the screen represent. Just the pic of the icon and the name for the icon?

HI John, we do our best to be transparent and provide great feedback to our users. Glad you are getting a handle for uMake. 


We don't have a readily available graphic with a list of the icons but I will make one for you. That said we are currently working on a revised interface in which the title of each action will be next to the button to make the app easier to use overall. 


I'll post the graphic with the names of the icons soon. 


Sincerely, 


Nyko de Peyer

uMake Community Manager


Hello, I have a suggestion. Could you please do something to help the nodes get out of the way. When I am doing fine adjustments they obscure the are I am attempting to work on. It would help if they were semi transparent so that I could see the line through them. Mostly this is when I am trying to make two lines tangent and want to see that they flow nicely. The node covers that hotspot for me.
Making them transparent would enable visually referring to the geometry behind them easier also. Another idea is the ability to create an outline from a lofted surface. Then we could use an unclosed lofted surface to generate the lines needed to finish defining the object. Once these lines are generated we can adjust them and further define our sketch. I really think this idea is a winner because it will help automate and speed up creation.
Also I have noticed that the transform Icons are very cumbersome. Posing large white rectangle in front of my model is a nuisance. They even do a good job of trumping each other. I could see smaller round brightly color coded transparent icons being less intrusive on the work at hand.
Not being able to change snaps and ortho during node editing is cumbersome. It would be helpful if these relevant tool options and settings did not dissappear forcing the user to close his editing change settings and then woodpecker his way back to where they started. Lol, I could remember to use the lasso tool instead of being a woodpecker. I thought moving the orbit and lasso tool was going to be an option with this last update. Making it right or left handed does not change that it is still relegated to the bottom. Workflow for some users would be decisively better if they could be positioned to the upper bezel areas.
BTW, I'm sorry, I did not mean to high jack your thread. The title caused me to chime in thinking it was a genreal feature request thread.

@brock Jones: Thanks for your feedback and enthusiasm! We love to receive this kind of feedback and are really excited to have this! I'll reply to the questions in the order you posted, however next time I'd recommend creating new threads for each question as none of these have much to do with STL file creation, and we could respond/ update better on individual threads. 


  • See Through Control Points: Good suggestion, I'll see what we can do on this. I like the idea and understand how it could help. We do have snap tools though that help with tangency. One thing is that when you are moving control points, the pencil/ finger will be covering it so a transparent dot would be covered-- however after the move it could be helpful to see where the point is in space. We'll look into this. 
  • We are working on bringing the ability to create outlines from lofted and revolved surfaces to uMake. This is a highly requested feature and should be making its way to uMake soon. 
  • We are very aware of the "cumbersomeness" of the current workflow with snap and ortho  tools, and we are working to improve this. 
  • While I don't believe we gave a timeline of when we would give the ability to move the orbit button to the top, it is currently in the works. 
We are really excited to be able to fix all of these issues in an upcoming interface update. We just wrapped up bringing the import feature to uMake letting you import IGES and STEP files into the app, which we think is pretty cool. Now that that is in a pretty good state, we're looking to definitely improve the issues you've listed-- they seem to be popular issues to address and we know they will make the overall experience even better. Trust me, the snap issue gets me every day, but i'm really excited about how we are changing it. 

Thanks again for the feedback-- I'll be in touch as we roll out all of the improvements soon. 

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