I have a set of blind clips that I want to be able to print out. They no longer produce them and I cannot find a possible place to buy them. I have minimal experience in CAD and am wondering, I have an iPhone with a LiDAR sensor. Is it feasible to be able to make a scan, turn it into a model and print it? What would be the best course of action? I will take any recommendations or advice!

I have a Flashforge Adventurer 3 with PLA and ABS available!

Blind clip image

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ That is a complex shape. Are the two examples from the same system, but serving different purposes? Does the clear one have to be clear? Do you have calipers, either Vernier or digital? A micrometer might be enough for getting the external measurements, but internal ones are a challenge. $\endgroup$
    – Criggie
    Dec 4, 2021 at 1:31
  • $\begingroup$ Have you tried searching for it on thingiverse.com they have great examples to print out. $\endgroup$
    – Varun W.
    Dec 4, 2021 at 1:43
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    $\begingroup$ This one looks like the clear one: Valance Clip $\endgroup$
    – agarza
    Dec 4, 2021 at 3:16
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    $\begingroup$ @agarza: The thing description from your link explains how it was made and would be a great answer. $\endgroup$ Dec 4, 2021 at 16:46
  • 4
    $\begingroup$ This is something that any competent hard body model maker or person with engineering or prototyping CAD experience could probably make for you if you had the measurements. 3D scanning isn't quite there yet for this kind of thing. It's best for things like sculptures that don't require precise measurements. At least when you're using most oft he software available to home users. I would suggest that you ask someone to make a model for you on a modelling forum. It's a pretty simply item though so it might be a good chance for you to get into hard body modelling in CAD. $\endgroup$ Dec 4, 2021 at 20:53

1 Answer 1


There is a way to make a 3D model from the original. A lot depends on the original item. The clear clip seems to have been reproduced on Thingiverse (Valance Clip) with the procedure with which the user created his model.

Here are the steps to reproduce the clear clip according to the original user, mattfriedman:

  1. Use a black marker or paint to color the profile of the item
  2. Place the item on a scanner or take a top-down photo (with a white background) of the item
  3. Import the image or photo into Adobe Photoshop, GIMP, or image manipulation software of your choice
  4. Remove any stray marks and clean up the edges of the item's profile as best as possible
  5. Import the image into Adobe Illustrator or Inkscape
  6. Use the "Image Trace" or "Trace Bitmap" menu item from your particular software to vectorize the image into an SVG (you may need to do additional path and point cleanup)
  7. Import the 2D SVG into Tinkercad, Fusion 360, or other modeling software.
  8. Extrude to the desired width/depth.

You now have a 3D model of a real-world object without scanning.


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