The Makerspace @ Williams

Fuel 3D Scanner


The Fuel 3D Scanner is one of the Makerspace’s two 3D scanners. It scans masonry, people, flowers, and plants especially well. Other good subjects have the following qualities:

  • Matte, non-shiny surface
  • Varying color
  • Opaque
  • Gently contoured surface with soft curves
  • Within 8.5″ x 12″

Subjects that do not scan well have the following qualities:

  • Very dark
  • One color
  • No texture
  • Lack of surface detail
  • Reflective
  • Transparent
  • Cavities or protrusions


  1. Connect the Fuel 3D Viewfinder to the computer using a USB cable.
  2. Plug in Fuel 3D Viewfinder power cord.
  3. Open the Fuel 3D Studio program on the Makerspace computer.
  4. Place the target–a white circular sticker with a black center–on a surface near the object or person you wish to scan. There is a Target Holder that you can use to hold the target in the air for more difficult scans like human faces. The background should be dark and non-reflective.


  1. Click on the ‘+’ in the Active Projects panel on the left of the program window to create a new project folder.
  2. Next, click on the Viewfinder button at the top right of the program. It will open a window that displays the scene being captured by the Viewfinder.
  3. You can toggle the Viewfinder’s guiding lights on/off  in the Viewfinder window. Guiding lights should be used if the Viewfinder cannot detect the target because the surroundings are too dim.
  4. Aim the Viewfinder at the object you wish to scan. Ensure that the target is in clear view and captured on screen. The window will say “Ready to Scan” if the Viewfinder
    • Can see the target clearly.
    • Is neither too close nor too far from the target.
  5. To scan the object, press the two buttons on the top sides of the Viewfinder (or the button in the Viewfinder window). Press save.
  6. Sometimes the scan is not constructed properly because the target is not detected. If this is the case, adjust the lighting and repeat the scan.
  7. Continue scanning the object from multiple angles and sides to build up a collection of up to six scans. The more scans you do, the more accurate your 3D model is likely to be.
  8. Close the viewfinder when you’re done.


  1. On the bottom panel, there will be a list of scans of your object. You’ll need to stitch these scans together to make a 3D model.
  2. To start stitching, click on one of the scans and open it. The scan will pop up as a large image on the screen.
  3. Drag the scans on the bottom panel to the large image. This will form a scan pool.
  4. On the right, you will see the scans you’re currently handling right now. To start stitching, drag one of the scans to another scan on the right panel. This will form a stitch group of the two scans, displayed in a box on the right panel.
  5. The program will start doing an automatic alignment. However, manual mode is generally more reliable. To toggle manual realignment, click Manual on the top right of the window.
  6. When you repeat step 5 in manual mode, the screen will only show the two scans you’d like to stitch together side-by-side. Highlight 3 points of contact that the scans share to help the program identify how to stitch them together. Do this by clicking on a point on the left scan, and then the same point shared by the right scan. There should be two highlighted green circles on the scans at this time. Repeat this at least two more times.
  7. Once you have at least three pairs of highlighted circles, click the green check button on the top right of the window. The program will start aligning the two scans based on the approximated highlights.
  8. Once you’ve aligned all of your scans, click the ‘Stitch’ button on the top right of the stitch group box to fuse them into a single model.


  1. Click on the fuse button on the left panel of the program to start fusing the stitched scans.

Additional Documentation

See the Fuel3D SCANIFY User Manual.

Fuel 3D’s video guides on Youtube, linked below, may also be helpful.