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Converting a Mesh to a Solid

Converting a Mesh to a Solid
Learn how to convert a mesh to a solid in AutoCAD 2018. Get quick and easy video tutorials on modifying 3D mesh objects by AutoCAD experts.

Converting a Mesh to a Solid

Although meshes provide lots of capabilities for creating smooth, organic shapes, they have no mass properties and cannot be used for many other types of operations. But you can convert 3D meshes into solids so that you can take advantage of the solid modeling capabilities available for 3D solids.

When you convert a mesh to a solid, you can also specify whether the converted objects are smoothed or faceted, and whether the faces are merged.

To convert a mesh into a solid, on the Mesh ribbon, in the Convert Mesh panel, click the Convert To Solid tool. In the command window, you can see the type of conversion that will be applied. In this case, the solid will be smoothed and optimized. The program prompts you to select objects, and you can use any convenient object selection method. For example, click to select the mesh. When you are finished selecting objects, either press ENTER or right-click. The mesh is immediately converted into a solid.

Before performing the conversion, you can choose the type of conversion that will be applied. In the Convert Mesh panel, expand the SMOOTHMESHCONVERT split-button. There are four types of conversion. Whichever one you choose becomes the active conversion type:

Smooth, Optimized: creates a smooth model. Coplanar faces are merged.

Smooth, Not Optimized: creates a smooth model, but the original mesh faces are retained in the converted object.

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Faceted, Optimized: creates a model with flattened faces. Coplanar faces are merged.

Faceted, Not Optimized: creates a model with flattened faces, and the original mesh faces are retained in the converted object.

The object on the left was converted to a smooth optimized solid. Expand the split button, choose Smooth, Not Optimized, and then click the Convert to Solid tool. Click to select the next mesh and then right-click to complete the selection. The mesh is converted into a solid but this time you can see the faces in the resulting solid.

Expand the split-button again and choose Faceted, Optimized. Then, start the Convert to Solid command again, click to select the next mesh, and then right-click to complete the selection. The mesh is converted into a solid but the results look much different.

Click the Convert to Solid tool again, and then expand the split-button and choose Faceted, Not Optimized. Then, click to select the last remaining mesh and then press ENTER to complete the selection. The mesh is again converted into a solid but this time you can see each of the faces from the original mesh.

And as you have seen, you can choose the desired conversion before you start the Convert to Solid tool, or after you have started it but before you select the mesh you want to convert.

Source: Autodesk

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