So, what does a 3D slicer software do? A 3D slicer is a piece of software, running on a computer. It acts like an interpreter for your 3D printer. You feed it a 3D file, usually, that’s an STL, M3F or OBJ file (which describe coordinates in a three-dimensional grid). The 3D slicer software then cuts the object in many horizontal layers and produces a path a printhead can follow – line by line, layer by layer.
So, any decent 3D slicer software will create:
- a toolpath (more or less intelligently) based on the geometry of your STL-file.
- a percentage of infill to save 3D printing time and material.
- constructions of support material, if the geometry is difficult to print. These supports are meant to be removed after the print is finished.
After analyzing the file and offering you choices and settings, the software generates a „G-code“ file that‘s tailored for the machine you’re using. It describes coordinates, nozzle and bed temperatures, fan control, printhead speed and other variables.
List of 3D Slicing Software
- MakerBot Print
- Matter Control
- Netfabb Standard