3D Scan Objects, People and places for free with your Phone – 123D Catch Tutorial

Hey Everybody,
Brandon here and in todays post I just wanted to show you all a cool app from AutoDesk that I’ve been playing with lately. It’s called 123D Catch and it’s a free app that will let you scan and create a 3d Capture of almost any object.

You can get the app for IOS, Android and Windows here: http://www.123dapp.com/catch as well as watch some tutorials on how to get the best pictures for your model.

Using the app is pretty straight forward though, you can sign in using your Autodesk account (or make a new free account) and then simply hit the + sign on the top right (see picture below) to get started with capturing an object.

Once you start your new capture you’ll be shown a camera app screen where you will take pictures of your object while circling it at different elevations as shown by the little 3d circles with the blue highlights (see picture below). Try to take at least a picture in each highlighted to get a full coverage of your object.

After you’ve completed your pictures, simply hit the check mark to complete the capture and let the app and cloud processing do its work. I’ve only just been playing with the app for a little while but processing time for your object will vary depending on the complexity and how many pictures you took. I check back about 30 minutes later and mine was complete.

Upon completion of the processing, you will be able to frame, save and share your newly created 3d scan. I’ve posted one I tried earlier of a water bottle, it turned out pretty good, but could use a bit of clean up in a modelling software like Fusion 360, you are able to download your scan from the website in a few useful file types ( .stl, .obj and .3dp) for further modelling, editing and customizing.

I could see 123D Catch being really useful for product designers, modellers and all around designers who are interested in modelling real work objects. 3d Capture is an area I’m very interested in lately and I plan to continue exploring the options and software available, including using my GoPro along with AutoDesks Recap to test out producing an as-built floor plan of my house, which I will be making a video for soon.

Check out my test water bottle model here:

I’ve had a bunch of fun playing with this app and hope you all find it as interesting as I do. If you do decide to try it out, let me know how it went and send me your link to check out on twitter!

Cheers and Happy Drafting!

PS. If you haven’t watched Abstract: The Art of Design on netflix yet, I highly recommend checking it out! Learn more about it and watch the trailer here: Abstract: The Art of Design

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Brandon is a Civil Designer, aspiring blogger and tech aficionado from a small town in Canada. He has been obsessed with design and technology since diapers (coincidentally, his amazing wife recently gave birth to their first son, Emmett, and diapers are now a majority of their free time) and working as a Civil Designer for nearly as long. Brandon’s blog and Youtube channel, CADIntentions.com has been his outlet and loving excuse for keeping up with new tech and trends in the CAD design world for the last five years growing to over 3 million views and being the source of many great friendships and opportunities.