Components and Instances

I would love to have some kind of component management system inside my files, it would make everything so much more efficient and would allow for many cool things.

Please Shapr3D team consider making something to address that potential. I use Figma daily and the way they handle this is just perfect, here’s how it could work inside shapr.

After you create a master component the main object becomes green when selected, when you edit this component it applies to its duplicates.

Component duplicates or instances are yellow when selected, you can’t edit this object while it’s connected to the main component. You can detach the instance from the main component and then edit as a new object, but you can’t connect it back after detaching.


Thanks for the suggestion and the in-depth explanation and the UI tips! A solution for this use case is definitely on our roadmap and you’ll be able to see parts of it appear in releases before the end of the year.


Glad to hear that! Thanks

@elhrc side note, is that a cush drive damper?
It looks familiar.

@NathanD yes it is, it’s not being produced for my motorcycle anymore so I made a model and want ro try and print it in TPU

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That would be awesome to have. I work with Shapr3D on a daily basis to illustrate and show my clients new designs. The often want some elements slightly bigger or smaller. Till today I need to change a pattern of identical objects piece by piece. To work with a master instance would make my work so much easier. Especially if it’s a free arrangement of objects and not some pattern which could be replicated with the pattern tool.

Keep up the good work. :+1:

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I absolutely need this feature. It is a feature I use in SketchUp to create cabinets, shelves, furniture, pergolas, windows…there are so many uses for this. Here’s a quick example. I also have a YouTube video on creating a table using components that I’ve linked to below.

I should add that Shapr3D is becoming my CAD program of choice, especially for 3D printing. But if I’m designing furniture or any of the things mentioned above, I switch back to SketchUp. However, I am NOT a fan of their iPad version of the software. I think Shapr3D is a much more elegant implementation.

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Do check out the beta version with parametric capabilities! Copies and patterns created in that act as instances of the original and adjusting steps or adding new changes before the copy/patterning happens allows you to make changes that propagate through all copies.

Great! Can you please provide a link to a specific tutorial showing how to achieve this in the Shapr3D HBPM beta? I looked at videos on YouTube about the Copy and Pattern features but none of them show how to create and modify duplicated components.

I tried the HBPM beta of Shapr3D and I finally found with the help of an advanced user (thanks, Alex ;-)) how to propagate changes made to an object to several copies of this object, collectively and all at once. But I must say that it only mimics by a long shot what the OP showed in his concept pictures with the ideal “Create Component” button.

In the beta, if we want to change the shape of several duplicated instances of an object (duplicated through the Copy or Pattern tools), we have to:

  1. Make modifications to the “master” of that object, i.e. the first object that was created before the duplicated batch. It doesn’t work if the modifications are made on any of the copies – a real difference with true “components” (in the sense of the late Macromedia/Adobe Flash Professional app) which are all the same.

  2. If the modifications were not applied before the duplication stage, you can move a subsequent modification higher up in the History to propagate it to the copies; it’s not intuitive at first, but it’s good that the possibility exists.

  3. Above all, these modifications absolutely need to be done from the new “History” pane located on the right. Not at all in the main interface.

Point #3 is the culprit. It really makes things unnecessarily cumbersome and limited in scope, and very unShapr3D-like. You may say that’s the necessary other side of the HBPM coin, but…

The real strength, and the groundbreaking nature of Shapr3D with respect to anything else available on the market is that it was (still is!) an elegant and simple application that gave us a true satisfactory “analog” feeling of modeling and manipulating objects directly at the tip of a pencil VS other “white elephant” softwares which gave the off-putting feeling of manipulating levers, gauges, buttons and arithmetic values on control panels to achieve the same thing. That killer feature is the only reason why I accept to pay a quite high annual fee to use your app instead of say, Blender for free. And I don’t think I am the only one, I even believe it is reason #1 for most of your customers.

Now, I understand that adding HBPM is a lot of work to be translated in a clear and intuitive interface. But if we’re gonna have to apply arithmetic values in a History control panel just to mimic components that actually don’t exist as is, instead of direct modeling any occurence of true components with the Pencil, then it’s not worth it, in terms of this particular feature at least. It becomes like anything else that is non user-friendly.

Clearly, what the user base wants and is asking is what the OP showed: a “Make Component” button that transforms any independent selected object in a TRUE Component, that is to say, when this component is duplicated X times through Copy or Pattern, any later change to it (or to any of its multiple linked copies! Here I go even further than the OP, there would be no more “master”) through direct modeling with the Pencil will affect all other occurrences accordingly at the same time. THIS is the real “Instances & Components” feature we’re looking for.

This has been asked for many years out of this thread, see for example here, or here, or there too, among others). I note however that this was not possible before because, quoting @Istvan by April 2023 from the 3rd link above:

Hence it seems alright then, because now comes the HBPM surprise officially!

So the question is: do you plan at some point in your roadmap to implement such “true Component” feature in Shapr3D, the way the OP explained before me, in a direct modeling way in the UI using the power of the HBPM engine under the hood?

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(Sorry for the late response, I was on holiday.)

The short answer: yes, absolutely. To make it great though, we need many building blocks, from which HBPM is the first. We’ll keep on improving its UX (indeed too many things require the history sidebar at the moment and many history editing steps could be done via canvas controls, too) and supporting assembling designs from explicitly defined components is also on the roadmap, though a bit further away.


Glad to hear this :grinning:

I’ve tested the new beta features and I completely agree with @flux_capacitor post. Although even this new feature is awesome to have versus not having HBPM at all, I’d prefer a much simpler approach to it so it’s consistent with the simplicity of everything else in the app.

Btw. I just extended my subscription today for the second year so far. I come from product design / UX background and never touched 3d software before shapr, and now I use it as much if not more than Figma. Helped me learn a lot, and I’m even planning on building a product because shapr enabled me to make my ideas come to life!