Touch probe for 3D scanning

touch probe

Graham calls this touch probe his first useful milling project. He had already built the CNC mill and once he built this probe on the mill he essentially had a 3D scanner. The central hub is supported by three shafts spaced evenly around its axis. These shafts each rest on a pair of ball bearings to make a complete circuit. If the probe bumps into anything, one of the shafts will lift, breaking the circuit. TurboCNC has a built in routine for scanning with a touch probe. The program generates a point file which Graham pulled into Rhino for modeling. His example application was cloning a model airplane prop that had gone out of production. The TurboCNC routine isn’t very quick since the probe always returns to the same height so he’s coding a faster algorithm. This type of touch based scanning was also employed in agiecco’s LEGO 3D scanner.

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