Rhino is based on surface modeling while Shapr3D is based on solid modeling. Because of this fundamental difference, you’ll notice these differences:
- Less complicated modeling
Designing with solid modeling requires a slightly different mindset compared to surface modeling. For example, you manually execute several operations in surface modeling in general, but you no longer have to do that in Shapr3D because those operations are handled automatically in solid modeling. So, if you want to change the radius of a blend, you simply select it and change its value; Shapr3D automatically rebuilds your object.
In Shapr3D, you can use transformation tools to move, rotate, offset, etc., a face of a solid body, and the surrounding faces will be automatically rebuilt. This guarantees that your body remains a solid, watertight object. Even if you remove any arbitrary feature of your body, those solid bodies remain as solid entities.
Most importantly, with Shapr3D, all of these operations work on imported models as well. This means that if you build a correct solid model in Rhino, you can edit it in Shapr3D. All you have to do is to export your files in STEP or X_T output and import them into Shapr3D. This technology is called direct modeling.
You have to use the Apple Pencil to draw sketches on the grid and planar faces in Shapr3D. Then, using constraints, you can set up measurements and relationships. Constraints are a powerful way of creating exact sketches without any labor-intensive manual calculations. You can use your sketches and closed sketches to create all kinds of bodies via revolutions, sweeps, lofts, etc.
The powerful sketch engine of Shapr3D makes a lot of the tools you use in Rhino unnecessary.
- Basic interaction and tools
The Apple Pencil is your main tool for modeling in Shapr3D—you don’t have to use complicated menus or buttons. The app still provides many tools that are similar to Rhino commands, including boolean operations, lofts, sweeps, transformations, etc.
Shapr3D supports file formats, including the industry standard STL, that help you seamlessly integrate the app into your existing workflow:
- STEP, IGES, X_T (export and import)
- STL (export)
When you transfer data between Rhino and Shapr3D, the STEP file format is your best choice. You want to set the precision settings of Rhino to the most accurate values that your modeling process allows, since Shapr3D works better with accurate solid models.
When you export a solid model from Rhino, make sure that all the faces are joined. Otherwise, some modeling operations may fail in Shapr3D. However, you can also transfer non-solid bodies’ polysurfaces, surfaces, or 3D curves from Rhino to Shapr3D, and use them in all kinds of modeling operations such as lofts and sweeps.
Keep in mind that you can find Rhino features in Shapr3D. They’re just named differently:
To learn more about using Shapr3D, check out our video tutorials.