Date: November 16, 2021
We have recently added a new mode to the image to STL tool to allow extrusion of simple shapes. The new mode is titled "Extrude" and can be selected from the new Tool dropdown menu. In the default Standard mode the tool takes into account the luminosity of a pixel to create a varying height map of the provided image, however the new Extrude mode ignores the pixel luminosity and simply traces around any shape(s) it may find in the provided image to create a much smother 3D model of the shape.
The images below demonstrate the two modes on the same png file:
The mode you may choose to use depends heavily on the image you are working with. The Extrude mode is not suitable for images where you need varying height within the generated model however it is great for simple 3D shapes and the model that is generated can be sent straight to a 3D printer and doesn't need any further processing.