What "size" do you use when sculpting? Is there a way to indicate an "initial size" for your models, or to work with real-world units?

I’d like to use Nomad Sculpt to create my models for 3D printing. Right now, I’m still learning so I haven’t created anything really complex, but I know that Nomad doesn’t have a “units” system where you can work with real world units.

Because of this, I tend to just go with the default size as a reference (create a sphere primitive, and just begin sculpting from there).

However, I know there are some effects that get affected by size. For example, subsurface scattering will behave differently depending on the object size, and Ambient Occlusion in post-process panel will also have different looks depending on the parameters (which are affected by the model’s size).

I know that the default size is pretty small when exported to another modelling software, so I’d like to make it bigger by default. So I’d like to ask you:

  1. Is there a way to do that, so that the default “x1” multiplier is actually bigger (and keep it as the default for any newly created primitive and any new project)?
  2. Is there a way to specify real world units so I can design my models for 3D printing and rendering them applying the visual effects for their real size?
  3. How do you deal with size differences across Nomad and other 3D software when importing your models there?
  4. If size is bigger but the number of polygons stay the same, does Nomad consume more memory and makes it harder to work with the model?

Thank you!

Because Nomad uses Units and not an actual size, sizing is determined by the software you import your models into.

For me and the software I use, 1 unit = 1mm. So it’s very easy to know how big my sculpt is. I resize the first primitive according to what I need and then resize everything outside of nomad if needed.

1 Like

I don’t think I’ve ever come across a sculpting program (Sculptris, ZBrush, Nomad) where measurements felt like it took priority compared to CAD (Rhino3D) or even Illustration (Illustrator, Affinity Design)

That said, I’ve 3D printed from files of all three, and for the most part, there have never been any significant friction to get to where I want in terms of printed size.

But now that you brought it up, I looked into a direct, practical way to see the real-world results of how Nomad units translate….

This simply starts with creating a Nomad cube with X, Y, and Z measurement units of “1”.

So at this point, we don’t have any confirmation of what “1” represents in the real world… Inch? Centimeter? Fathom? Mile? Millimeter? I can fire up the popular slicing app that comes with many budget printers; ChiTuBox. Mine is configured with the build platform of my Elegoo Mars. From here, the “1” unit cube STL is dropped into ChiTuBox and it shows up centered on my virtual build platform.

Squint closer. It’s there. At THIS stage, I have suspicions, but haven’t verified exactly how that cube has landed, size-wise that is.

Back in Nomad, the unvalidated cube can be adjusted to 120 x 68 x 5 “units”. The first two numbers happen to be the millimeter measurement of the original Mars build platform.

Again, we export as STL and bring it over to ChiTuBox. This time, when it lands, it aligns edge-to-edge with the build platform.

This exercise affirms for me that I can sculpt and export in Nomad with a reasonable certainty that their internal “1 model unit” will almost always translate to 1 millimeter.

When I design wedding bands & engagement rings in Rhino3D, I chose to set the CAD’s construction environment up in millimeters, but when it came time to export in STL, the dialog box doesn’t ask about scaling. The respective slicing apps for the envisionTEC and FormLabs machines bring in those STL files and lands them properly in millimeter size without further prompting.

2 Likes

Chitubox will tell you how big it is- just go to the scale tab and it gives you the measurements. No need to bring in multiple models to confirm :wink:

Yes, I just wanted to approach the exploration as a first-timer would.

nomad is essentially unitless, ‘1’ means ‘1 unit’. what happens when you load it into other apps depends on what they treat a unit to be.

chitubox, 1 = 1 mm
maya , 1 = 1cm
blender, 1 = 1m

1 Like

Wow, have you tested it?