So, you made a cool project and you want to get it printed on a high-end 3D printer that captures all the details of your sculpt.

Because these printers print your models completely solid, your prints might require a lot of material which quickly increases the price to a point that you are having doubts of having it printed.

With this simple 4 step tutorial I’ll show you how you can very easily bring down the amount of material required to print your model by hollowing it out!

You’ll need a free copy of Meshmixer, if you don’t have it, you should get it here:

Believe me, you want it, it’s a great little tool that is capable of doing incredibly complex operations.

Now, the tutorial itself:

  1. Load the Model -> click “Edit” -> click “Hollow”

2. Then select how thick you want the walls to remain, in this case I was planning on printing on the Form 1+, so 2 mm was good enough for me.

3. Before accepting, make sure that you add some holes to your model by double clicking the surface of your model where you want the excess material to come out of. If you misplaced a hole, you can easily remove it by double clicking the little red globe in the middle of the green cylinder.

4. Now, simply click “Accept” and you’re done, it’s that easy!

Now the difference between material amounts before and after!

Original model

After hollowing

Finally, I do want to add that I added internal supports just to make sure the entire print would work out correctly so the final volume turned out a bit higher then 20.0 mL

I hope this tutorial was useful to you guys! Here is the final result:


Awesome tutorial! Simple and saves materials, epic pro tips.

1 Like

A guide that we’re all been waiting for!

btw. Whoever took the last picture deserves a cookie!

Useful stuff as always. Cheers, Robin!

Awesome! I am trying it soon, on a FFM printer for a Tie-Fighter. Hope it works. Does step 3 - letting material out still apply?

Hi Ivan, I’m glad you liked the post. Technically this post also works on FDM printers but seeing as they usually already print the objects with an internal structure that is set to a 20% infill there is less of an advantage for these printertypes.

Umm… so what version of meshmixer is this for? mine has no such selection as 'Hollow"

and what file type is being used? STL? or other

The latest version of it has it for sure. However, I cannot make hole on my model for some reason… When I double click it, nothing happens :confused:

You can upload do this and export in stl, obj and other standard formats

I updated mine and had to click generate hole then accept. you can also move holes and set size of hole to a point b4 accepting

Yeah, the generate holes button wasn’t clickable for me. It’s probably because of the model, I’ll try with something else :slight_smile:

I did notice also the progress meter sometimes freeses or dont even popup and if anything seems like nothings happening for a few minutes (but is) and you click again or another button program crashes and closes, requiring starting over. ARGH

how did u get the purple sss transperant type color on the model?