3D Scanning Key Considerations


Object Size

All 3D scanning systems come with an optical configuration specifically optimised for a particular size of object capture. The metrology 3D scanning system we use is optically configured to capture objects from 30cm up to 4 meters, or larger if we scan in sections and then merge scans together in a digital post-production process.


Material Type

Certain materials do not 3D scan well. Here are some typical examples of material types, which we may not be able to 3D scan.

  • Shiny or reflective surfaces.
  • High detail surfaces with crisp sharp edge detail.
  • Objects that are black or dark in colour.
  • Hair, fur or feathers.
  • Objects that are not reasonably static.


It is sometimes possible to coat shiny or black surfaces with specialist anti-glare coatings, which are purpose designed to enable an object to be acquired. However, it is always best to check with us first.


Line Of Sight

All 3D scanning systems (excluding MRI) require a good clear line of sight in order to fully acquire an object. A good example of a restrictive area on an object is the under-arm area of a human sculpture. It is sometimes possible to get around such restrictions in post-scan processing. However, it is always best to send us some photographs of the object beforehand, so that we can advise accordingly.


Access Around The Object

The 3D scanning systems we use are hand-held fully calibrated high-precision devices. Such devices are slowly moved around a static object in order to acquire the 3D data, but also need to be kept in optical focal range (an approximate distance of between 12” to 24”). Hence this needs to be taken into consideration when planning each 3D scan.


Accuracy Of 3D Scans

The particular 3D scanning system we use captures up to 550,000 points per second, and is calibrated on site to an accuracy of + or – 0.5mm.