Preparing .PDB Files for 3D Printing

I would like to print some files from the swiss protein databank into nice 3D surface models. This can be done on linux with standard open software packages.
  • assume platform is Ubutntu
  • assume that you have Replicatorg set up with Skeinforge and some sort of RepRap style 3D printer.
  • install meshlab
  • install blender
  • download .pdb
  • open .pdb in meshlab. Use the metaballs setting with resolution = 0.5 and blobbiness = 0.5
  • optionally clean up mesh
  • center and scale in blender
  • orient model in a way that looks mostly printable
  • export model as .STL
  • open model in replicatorg-skeinforge

Follow-up : Although this will create manifold meshes that skeinforge can process, it doesn't create support structures and other niceties requires for Makerbot / RepRap printing. Ideas ?
  • try out the skeinforge support settings
  • manually add support columns in Blender
  • write a script to automatically create supports (hard, don't know what algorithm to use)

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