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Makerspace : 3D Scanning

3D Scanning at the Library Makerspace

3D scanning is a technique used to scan an object from the real world, to capture its shape to build a 3D digital copy of the object.  It works by scanning the object and collecting the data to recreate its shape, size, and appearance, digitally.  3D scanning can also be useful to reconstruct, analyse, or simulate ideas. You can improve a part by modifying its 3D model, scale it up or down or remove unnecessary material, and possibly 3D printing the object. 

3D scanning is especially useful for heritage preservation - scanning artefacts and fragile items allows people to handle a 3D printed copy of a rare, delicate item with the same details and at its exact scale.

There are multiple methods of 3D scanning but most work by scanning many points of the item, mapping them into a “points cloud” and digitally building the object between these points.

High definition 3D scanning has many uses including:

  • Medical to make medical prosthetics, custom fit dental braces & dentures and certain body parts
  • Forensic science to collect microscopic evidence
  • VR & Animation to create props and characters

The Revopoint Pop2 3D Scanner is available to use in the Makerspace on a first come, first served basis. 

The Revopoint Scanner is a great scanner for beginners, and how you use the Revopoint scanner depends on what you are trying to scan.

  • Smaller items should be placed on the turntable, allowing the item to rotate.  Set the scanner up on its tripod, standing next to the turntable in a fixed position.
  • Items too large to fit on the turntable should be placed on a table in a fixed position, slowly move around the item with the scanner and scan the item from all angles.
  • Large items like statues and people again should remain in a fixed position but can be scanned with the smartphone mounted to the scanner for better mobility.
  • The Caruba LED Photocube available in the Makerspace can also be used in conjunction with the Revopoint scanner


Make sure the RevoScan software is installed on your laptop

  • Plug the scanner in via its included usb cable, drivers should install automatically.
  • Setup your scanner on its tripod, the item to be scanned on the turntable and turn it on.
  • Open the RevoScan software - you should be on the preview mode, seeing a display of the scan.
  • Position the item to be scanned in the centre of the screen grid, adjust the distance to be Excellent or Good at the least.
  • Some items may need to have brightness adjusted but we recommend leaving on auto in most cases.
  • Click new scan and a window will come up where you can change the name and location of the scan.
  • The scanning mode you choose depends on what you’re scanning, we recommend using “features” when scanning people.
  • If colour matters for your digital file, enable it, if you’re just copying an item to print it you don’t need colour.
  • When you press start scan, the software will start saving points that are already scanned in green, what you’re scanning is in blue
  • As the item rotates it will save all sides, once you have captured a full rotation, move the scanner down a few inches.
  • Repeat and scan all the way down the item, you may need to flip it over and scan the base too.
  • Press stop scan and you will be left with your scan to manipulate it.
  • Press the fuse button to make it a solid shape instead of a cloud of points.
  • Press the mesh button to smooth over the mesh and have a solid, clearly detailed scan.
  • You can then export the file to PLY, OBJ and STL, we recommend in the .stl format.


image of revopoint 3D scanner pointing to smalll bust on a turntable

Opening Hours & Contact Us

The Makerspace is open for users to drop-in during the following hours: Monday to Thursday: 2:00pm to 5:00pm.  

The Makerspace is open by appointment only - Monday to Thursday 9:30am to 1:00pm, and Friday 09:30 to 4:30pm whereby we'll offer workshops, equipment induction, tours etc. please contact us in advance, to arrange an appointment.  

Weekends: Closed.