Align to grid/align to object

Alignment of object on build plate
  • I would use this option frequently
  • I could see myself using this from time to time
  • I have no preference about this feature
  • I can’t see a use-case for my 3D Printing needs
0 voters

If you’ve ever used PowerPoint or a drawing program, you’ve probably encountered the ability to select a group of objects and align them either to the left, right, middle, top, or bottom edges.

I don’t mean to imply that this software should replace CAD, but I think it could benefit from expanding the existing “center object” feature to enable alignments based on the positions of multiple objects relative to each other.

Here’s the scenario: Imagine I have two objects that I want to align together to create an assembly or Boolean object. Currently, I have to do this manually or attempt to center the objects, which restricts me to concentric alignment where all edges are equidistant.

Here’s how it might work.

  1. Plate is put into top-down mode(CTRL-1)
  2. two or more objects are selected using the shift-mousedrag or CTRL-Mousclick
  3. Right-click on any of the objects and provide a drop-down menu with alignment options.

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Also, I’d like to propose a “snap to grid” function. This could work by enabling it as a preference setting. When it’s active and you’re using a click-drag action, objects would automatically align with grid points on the plate layout. Alternatively, alignment guides could appear as objects approach alignment with each other, much like how PowerPoint handles it, as shown in the example below.

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3 Likes

Good idea. Also, an alignment tool for the modifiers is needed, especially for the text tool.

2 Likes

This feature seems pretty essential to me, when designing complex technical prints that must be precise. Use the alignment features in MatterHackers all the time.

No question, when it comes to combining positive or negative parts, an alignment function beyond center is needed. I thought about snap to grid, and that would be a simple way to do it.

I’m surprised it’s not there already. I was looking for a tutorial on using it when i found this. Kind of a no brainer. Also distribution. I print a lot of the same thing and when cloning it puts them too close together.

If you haven’t already tried Orca Slicer there is a “fill bed with copies” feature. This won’t address the clone spacing problem but if you’re cloning several parts you can control the spacing of the parts in the alignment menu.

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