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MODO image by Pascal Beeckmans

Power SubD-NURBS

  • Compatible With
  • MODO 801
  • MODO 701
  • MODO 601

Power SubD-NURBS

Use MODO at the front end of your design pipeline to prototype virtually any organic surface

Power SubD-NURBS lets you export Subdivision Surface meshes from MODO into NURBS-based CAD formats that load into a wide range of CAD systems. This tool facilitates use of MODO as a concept modeler at the initial stage of the design process -- where MODO’s ability to quickly create organic shapes is especially useful. With this tool, you can freeform model a variety of design alternatives in MODO and then transfer them to your CAD system for further refinement and engineering.

How does Power SubD-NURBS for MODO fit in the CAD workflow pipeline?

The chart below shows how Power SubD-NURBS for MODO allows you to export models created in MODO and save them out as NURBS surfaces in any of these industry-standard file formats: IGES, Rhino, SAT and STEP.

MODO CAD Workflow Tools enable import and export of CAD files to/from MODO

Power SubD-NURBS Overview

The combination of MODO and the Power SubD-NURBS Plug-in offers new conceptual modeling opportunities for designers in the automotive, aerospace, architectural, and consumer product goods industries.

Power SubD-NURBS was developed for The Foundry by IntegrityWare, located in San Diego, CA. It bridges the gap between Subdivision Surface modeling and NURBS modeling, unifying free-form conceptual design with NURBS-based operations like filleting and blending. The Plug-in is available for MODO 601 (32 and 64-bit) and MODO 701 (64-bit) for use on Windows and for Mac OS X.

Product Platforms Price

Power SubD-NURBS for MODO

MODO 801, 701 or 601 Required.

$495.00
 
  • Contents:
    • Plug-in converts Subdivision Surfaces to NURBS inside MODO and exports to these common CAD formats
    • IGES – .igs extension (Initial Graphics Exchange Specification)
    • Rhino – .3dm extension (McNeel’s openNURBS format)
    • SAT – .sat extension (ACIS SAT file format)
    • STEP – .stp extension (ISO 10303, AP 203 format)
  • Who can purchase?
    • Power SubD-NURBS is a MODO 801,701 and 601 Plug-in. If you own an earlier version of MODO, you will need to upgrade to MODO 701 to purchase the Power SubD-NURBS. Please contact Sales if you require further assistance.
  • Experience Level:
    • All levels.
  • Software Compatibility:
    • MODO 801, 701, and 601
  • Product Format:
    • All files delivered via electronic download.
 

Upon purchase your product(s) will be available for download through your Registered Products page. The Power SubD-NURBS Plug-in is licensed to each individual and is not a studio-wide license. If you have a coupon code, please enter your code in the next step.

Bonus Offer Included in your purchase is a free MODO/CAD workflow tutorial by Paul McCrorey of McCrorey Digital. Covering over 2 1/2 hours, this video series ($60 value) explains how to use MODO to perform organic, subdivision surface modeling of a motorcycle gas tank, import the resulting surface into SolidWorks for complex CAD operations and, finally, bring the completed tank back into MODO for advanced visualization. For a brief overview of this video series, please click here.

Power SubD-NURBS Settings

Power SubD-NURBS provides the ability to convert your Sub-D meshes into high quality NURBS surfaces with the following controls and workflow:

Polygonal vs. SubD Faces — The Plug-in can perform two types of exports: either “one-to-one” where each face of the mesh becomes a single planar face in the CAD format, or “smooth” where subdivided faces of the mesh will be combined to define curved NURBS surfaces. Typically the one-to-one export will have many small, sharp edges while the smooth export will generate large, primarily G2 continuous surfaces.

The export accomplishes this by treating each face of the mesh as either polygonal or as a Subdivision Surface based on how the mesh is currently displayed in MODO. It uses the displayed state as a tag for how each face should be processed.

“Power SubD-NURBS for MODO brings my workflow to the next level. I can now combine the freedom of surface subdivision modeling with the superior accuracy of NURBS technology – the best of the two worlds!”

– Pascal Beeckmans

MODO image by The Foundry
 

This example shows how different parts of a mesh in MODO were exported as planar and smooth surfaces.

Export a Mesh – The workflow is simple. First select the desired mesh in the scene. Then when you Export As or Save As in MODO, several new CAD formats are presented in a drop-down menu.

Export File Formats

IGES – .igs extension (Initial Graphics Exchange Specification)
Rhino – .3dm extension (McNeel’s openNURBS format)
SAT – .sat extension (ACIS SAT file format)
STEP – .stp extension (ISO 10303, AP 203 format)

Please note that RHINO export is for Windows only.

Subdivision Quality – You have control over the density of the resulting NURBS surfaces when using the Plug-in. The “Medium” setting uses the level that the Plug-in determines to be optimal, but if the resulting quality is too low then using “Fine” or “Very Fine” can improve the results. Alternatively, if only a rough result is needed then “Coarse” can be selected for a faster export.

Edge Detection Angle – The Plug-in uses this angle when determining the surface breakdown of the CAD data. The default value, 145.0 degrees, is usually optimal for organic meshes. In cases where there are weighted edges or fairly sharp angles, the value can be lowered.

Enable Crease Edges – Checking this setting will prevent the Plug-in from trying to smoothly blend the continuity of surfaces that meet at sharp angles. The images below are the export results without and with this setting enabled.

MODO image by The Foundry
 

Left cylinder is without Crease Edges enabled. Right cylinder has Crease Edges enabled.

Triangulate Invalid Quads – This setting can improve the results when the mesh contains quads with very extreme angles between edges.

MODO materials – The Plug-in uses MODO materials as part of the criteria for determining the final surface breakdown in order to guarantee that there will be an edge along the boundary between different materials. This feature can be used to force specific edges to be generated for your desired CAD format where the Plug-in would have otherwise determined edges to be unnecessary.

MODO image by The Foundry
 

Materials assigned in MODO (left). Resulting boundary in NURBS output (right).

MODO and MoI Example

Sample Project using Power SubD-NURBS

The first example involves the design of a computer mouse. After concept shape modeling in MODO using Subdivision Surfaces, the model was converted to NURBS. Then it was taken into MoI, a 3D Modeling/CAD application, where detailing occurred. Next, the modified model was brought back into MODO for final rendering. Images and workflow by Pascal Beeckmans.

MODO image by Pascal Beeckmans
 

Initial rapid prototype of computer mouse is created in MODO using Subdivision Surfaces.

MoI screen capture by Pascal Beeckmans

The rapid prototype of computer mouse created in MODO is exported as a NURBS file using the Power SubD-NURBS for MODO Plug-in. The file is imported into MoI to add details (curve projection, trim and booleans).

MODO image by Pascal Beeckmans

This computer mouse was concept modeled in MODO using Subdivision Surfaces, then transferred to a CAD system for detailing as NURBS via the Power SubD-NURBS Plug-in. As a final step, the model was imported back to MODO using the CAD Loaders for MODO Plug-in and rendered.

MODO and DS SolidWorks Example 1

Sample Project using Power SubD-NURBS

In this project, a gas tank for a motorcycle is prototyped in MODO using Subdivision Surfaces and then exported as NURBS into SolidWorks. The final result is brought back into MODO for final rendering. Please note that the CAD Loader and PAD products were used in the latter phase. Images and workflow by Paul McCrorey.

MODO image by Paul McCrorey

Motorcycle concept images, rendered in MODO using edge rendering feature.

MODO image by Paul McCrorey
 

Arcs added to note overall flow of design.

MODO image by Paul McCrorey
 

The fuel tank concept shape was modeled using Subdivision Surfaces in MODO and placed in context to assess the preliminary design.

SolidWorks screen capture by Paul McCrorey
 

The fuel tank concept shape was converted to NURBS and imported to SolidWorks as a feature-based solid using the .SAT format.

MODO image by Paul McCrorey

Final left side rendering back in MODO (imported via CAD Loader as .x_b format).

MODO and DS SolidWorks Example 2

Sample Project using Power SubD-NURBS

This example was provided by Branden Coker and Paul McCrorey. Here the goal was to produce an ergonomic handgrip for a trekking pole. Various concept designs were modeled quickly using Subdivision Surfaces in MODO, and then the geometry of the preferred design was converted to NURBS. The model was given more details in Solidworks and then rendered as a final result back in MODO. The CAD Loader was used in the final phase.

MODO screen capture by Branden Coker and Paul McCrorey

Original trekking pole handle quickly modeled using Subdivision Surfaces in MODO 601.

SolidWorks screen capture by Branden Coker and Paul McCrorey

After export as NURBS, the handgrip was refined in SolidWorks using solid modeling functionality.

MODO image by Branden Coker and Paul McCrorey
 

Final renderings of left and right sides of the handgrip was done using the modified geometry in MODO (imported via CAD Loader as .x_b format).

“Organic NURBS surfacing is no longer strictly the domain of T-Splines! Modeling in MODO and exporting to your CAD package of choice is a powerful workflow. MODO+NURBS; two great tastes that taste great together!”

– Branden Coker

Comparison images from Power SubD-NURBS

The following sets of images show three conversions from Subdivision Surfaces to NURBS as a comparison of surface fidelity on various organic and mechanical models as they were converted from Subdivision Surfaces to NURBS.

Revolver Example

Sample Project using Power SubD-NURBS

MODO image by Branden Coker
 

Original “revolver” model in MODO, which was then exported out as NURBS using the Power SubD-NURBS Plug-in.

MODO image by Branden Coker
 

Original “revolver” model in MODO, rendered at Subdivision level 6. This is used as a baseline to compare to the NURBS version of the model.

MODO image by Branden Coker
 

Original “revolver” model in MODO was exported as NURBS with Medium Subdivision Quality setting using the Power SubD-NURBS Plug-in. The NURBS model was re-imported back into MODO using the CAD Loader for the rendering comparison. This rendering indicates high fidelity to the original baseline Subdivision Surface model.

MODO image by Branden Coker
 

Original “revolver” model in MODO, rendered at Subdivision level 6 using a custom MatCap™ “zebra” material. This is used as a baseline to compare to the NURBS version of the model.

MODO image by Branden Coker
 

Original “revolver” model in MODO was exported as NURBS with Medium Subdivision Quality setting using the Power SubD-NURBS Plug-in. The NURBS model was re-imported back into MODO using the CAD Loader for the rendering comparison, using a custom MatCap “zebra” material. This rendering indicates high fidelity to the original baseline Subdivision Surface model.

Bug Head Sculpture Example

Sample Project using Power SubD-NURBS

MODO image by Branden Coker
 

Original “bug head” model in MODO, which was then exported out as NURBS using the Power SubD-NURBS Plug-in.

MODO image by Branden Coker
 

Original “bug head” model in MODO, rendered at Subdivision level 6. This is used as a baseline to compare to the NURBS version of the model.

MODO image by Branden Coker
 

Original “bug head” model in MODO was exported as NURBS with Medium Subdivision Quality setting using the Power SubD-NURBS Plug-in. The NURBS model was re-imported back into MODO using the CAD Loader for the rendering comparison. This rendering indicates high fidelity to the original baseline Subdivision surface model.

MODO image by Branden Coker
 

Original “bug head” model in MODO, rendered at Subdivision level 6 using a custom MatCap “zebra” material. This is used as a baseline to compare to the NURBS version of the model.

MODO image by Branden Coker
 

Original “bug head” model in MODO was exported as NURBS with Medium Subdivision Quality setting using the Power SubD-NURBS Plug-in. The NURBS model was re-imported back into MODO using the CAD Loader for the rendered comparison, using a custom MatCap “zebra” material. This rendering indicates high fidelity to the original baseline Subdivision surface model.

Sheep Sculpture Example

Sample Project using Power SubD-NURBS

MODO image by Branden Coker
 

Original “sheep” model in MODO, which was then exported out as NURBS using the Power SubD-NURBS Plug-in.

MODO image by Branden Coker
 

Original “sheep” model in MODO, rendered at Subdivision level 6. This is used as a baseline to compare to the NURBS version of the model.

MODO image by Branden Coker
 

Original “sheep” model in MODO was exported as NURBS with Fine Subdivision Quality setting using the Power SubD-NURBS Plug-in. The NURBS model was re-imported back into MODO using the CAD Loader for the rendering comparison. This rendering indicates high fidelity to the original baseline Subdivision Surface model.

MODO image by Branden Coker
 

Original “sheep sculpture” model in MODO, rendered at Subdivision level 6 using a custom MatCap “zebra” material. This is used as a baseline to compare to the NURBS version of the model.

MODO image by Branden Coker
 

Original “sheep” model in MODO was exported as NURBS with Fine Subdivision Quality setting using the Power SubD-NURBS Plug-in. The NURBS model was re-imported back into MODO using the CAD Loader for the rendered comparison, using a custom MatCap “zebra” material. This rendering indicates high fidelity to the original baseline Subdivision Surface model.

SolidSmack

Power SubD-NURBS for MODO 601 review by Josh Mings

May 2012 - If you know MODO, you know it’s a powerful full-featured polygonal modeling to animation program. The surfacing and sculpting capabilities are phenomenal. Additionally, MODO is able to create Subdivision (SubD) surfaces to refine the polygon mesh and, may I say, do so quite beautifully. The problem? CAD software is NURBS-based and doesn’t like those crazy meshes too much. Hence, Power SubD-NURBS, a new plugin for MODO that converts SubD surfaces to a clean NURBS-based format.

This allows MODO to be used as a flexible conceptual modeling tool at the initial stage of the design process, where MODO’s ability to quickly create organic shapes is especially useful. With this Plug-in you can freeform model a variety of design alternatives in MODO and then transfer them to your CAD system for further refinement and engineering.

Read the full Review (opens in new window) »

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