Is this the right software for me?

Hi, I am wondering if any of you can advise me.

I design scale model kits, mainly period ships (like Victory). I have the laser cutting and photo etch side sorted out, but am wondering about the decorative aspect. These models have decoration/carvings, usually a figurehead and elaborate stern decoration, which are usually carved (for the master) by an expert, and are then used to make the production parts.

I am toying with the idea about using a 3-D printer, as it will save money in the long run. However, I have only ever used 2-D software. Would this program allow me to draw the elaborate carvings for printing?

Also, the sculptures have be a specific size and scale in order for them to fit perfectly on the host model, and I need to use drawings for the parts, as they are from real ships. Can I import the pictures/2-D CAD drawings into the program as templates to copy the parts?

Here are a couple of photos to illustrate what I would need to use the program for, and have the parts 3-D printed for the masters.

This is completely new territory for me, so any help is greatly appreciated, I just want to ensure I invest in the right programs,

Thank you,

ChrisMUS-FAPC1114_850.jpgRoyal George 3.jpg

I’d say that the short answer should be yes based on what I think I got from your post.

Now, that “yes” is likely going to be qualified numerous different ways. Granted, I’m certainly no authority on any of what I’m talking about, but I’ve seen a few things here and there that might apply.

To start with, is the “carving expert” used to using Sculptris or another 3d sculpting program, or are you going to be the one creating these pieces? Do you have a lot of 3d sculpting experience if you are going to be the one creating what an expert usually finished in traditional media?

While I’m fairly certain that Sculptris is quite capable of recreating the pieces that you’ve shown, it’s also going to depend on the 3d printer that you buy. I’ve been considering buying a 3d printer for a while now so I can make some interesting little toys for my son. With that in mind I’ve been looking at some of the different printers out there, what their capabilities are, prices, and what it will take to have that final piece in hand. Some are still going to require a lot of finishing work after the print is done (sanding, dremel, alcohol, etc.).

Since you didn’t show too much from the cad perspective, I can’t assume too much. Are you just doing 2d drawings from an image for the decorative pieces? Is it a full 3d cad reproduction? If the latter is the case, that will certainly help considerably. You could use an exported .obj of the model, boolean out that piece in Blender (or suitable 3d program), sculpt the piece over the template that you just created, export back to Blender, boolean out the original template from the sculpt, import into MeshMixer (or the program that comes with the 3d printer to get the size), and print.

Never tried it myself, but it might technically work…lol.