3D printed architectural home fine scale model. Source: WhiteClouds
3D printed architectural home fine scale model. Source: WhiteClouds

Although scale models have been around for quite a while, a relatively new technology, 3D printing, is being used to accurately create architectural scale models. Scale models can be useful to see how your design will look once it’s finished. The models can also be used as a presentation tool for investors, clients, or communities.

The scale models that we print are either in full-color or monochrome white from a sandstone-like material. We have options such as a removable roof, interior walls and stairs, landscaping and terrain, and a customizable base with text of your choice.

The technology we use to create the models, 3D printing, also called additive manufacturing, is a process that deposits material, layer by layer, much like a bricklayer laying bricks. First, a CAD file or 3D model is created. The file is then sent to the 3D printer’s interfacing software, which slices the model into layers and determines exactly how the model will print. The printer then deposits the material layer by layer until the part is complete.

We use the ProJet 660Pro by 3D Systems. This printer uses a technology called Color Jet Binding. The printer deposits a layer of powder material. Binder or glue is jetted from an inkjet-style print head to bind the successive layers together. A fresh layer of powder is deposited and the process is repeated until the object is fully printed. Unbound powder is built up around the part as support material so that the model stays intact.

Once the part is complete, the part is taken out of the bed of powder and the unused powder is vacuumed up to be reused. The scale model is air-brushed to remove excess powder. Then the model is infiltrated with liquid super-glue to strengthen the part and to bring out the vibrant colors.

Along with architectural scale model homes or buildings, we can 3D print and 3D model other designs as well. Popular items are wedding cake toppers, customized action figures featuring your likeness (using photos), dragons, and anything else that you can imagine. We also have a variety of printers for rapid prototyping, prosthetics, and customized designs.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact us at support@whiteclouds.com or call us at 1-385-206-8700.

3D print your architectural model