Printing a cube


If I create a cube and send the file for printing. Will the printed cube be hollow inside?

Robert, Sweden

It is likely to be a ‘solid’ block if it has just the one ‘skin’…
SketchUp only models ‘surfaces’ - so what’s inside when you export to STL etc, is taken to be a ‘solid’ - filled with stuff.
However, many modern 3d printing applications allow you to process before printing - to do things like specify wall thicknesses, honeycomb etc…
You can also do this yourself in SketchUp - in a case of a cube simply add a smaller cube inside it, with its faces reverse, cut a section to see what happens - the distance between the two cubes is then your ‘shell’ thickness that will be 3d printed…

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There may or may not be a cat inside that might be alive or could be dead.
If you find the cat send it back to schrodinger.
On a more practical note, it depends on the type of printer, it’s software and how you have modelled the cube.


Thanks a lot for answers :slight_smile:

As usual TIG nailed it but I will add a little more…

Unless you have big money you are using a Fused Filament printer. Without some extraordinary effort you can not print a hollow cube. The bottom and sides will print fine but spanning the large open area of the top side will not be something most extruded hot plastic printers can do.

You can send it to the printer though and admire the modern art the saggy strings spanning the top will become!

So you set up some percentage of fill (honeycombing) and make a lot to of little openings that can be spanned!

Here are some shots from my slicer software (Cura) Note at 0% fill the cube is hollow.

At a 20% fill you can probably bridge those gaps.

LOL! I forgot I had this picture handy. When you try to print in mid air you get a modern art sculpture like this.

I call this piece, “Top Ramen Loses Spirit” Lovely no? :slight_smile: