PolyFrame 3D Graphic Statics Plug-in

It seems that your email address at upenn isn’t effective.I tried to communicate with you via this empty email but I failed…
And I have some questions:

  1. In the manual, An explanation says, “The primal/dual denominations are irrespective of the form/force designation of the diagrams. i.e. they can be interchanged depending on which diagram is considered as the primal.” Does that mean I can start with a form diagram rather than a force brep?

  2. It seems that the workflow doesn’t support an efficient progress of design iteration well when I try to create a structure like the projects on your wedsite. Does your team have some idea about improving the process of creating the original geometries, such as Brep subdividing or creating polyhedron?

  3. I’d like to ask you the method of creating such a sophisticated starting geometries shown on your website. You create them with basic commands in Rhino and spend a lot time???

  4. It seems that the pipes established by this plug-in are overlapped. It isn’t friendly for 3D printing. So how does your team create the models for 3D printing with correct pipe radii?

These are my questions I want to ask you via email. Regretfully, your email refused me…XD
Whatever, at last, this is a exciting plug-in with a wonderful idea. It’s worth improving for a more friendly and efficient workflow.
BTW reCAPTCHA is really nasty.

Thank you in advance!

Hi BenzMcLaren,
I am sorry about your email problems.
I have no idea on how to help you there. Maybe get another email address. I don’t know what works where you reside.


First, you should know that PolyFrame is very much a work in progress. So please do not expect it to behave as a full featured software suite.
I will try to respond to your questions point by point

  1. Yes you can. PolyFrame will recognize your raw geometry input as either form or force. But you cannot use line geometry as you get it from a Force -> Form operation. You should create a surface based Form. Try transforming a Form PolyFrame created from a Force in brep faces or cells and try to start from there. Build something similar (mind the open cells). For now PolyFrame cannot handle mixed compression tension Form so as a result you will have to have open cells on all sides of the diagram.
  2. For now we haven’t published any tools for geometry subdivision. They will be part of subsequent versions and are in the works. They will be geared towards PolyFrame subdivision rather than raw geometry subdivision. You should use the Rhino tools until then.
  3. Yes and also No. We create in Rhino sometimes GH but use a fair amount of scripting to automate the work.
  4. Yes, this is mainly meant as a visualization tool. We have a skin generation tool that will be part of the next version of PolyFrame. It is based on a custom MarchingCubes algorithm.

Hope this helps you a bit, and since it is on the forum it might help others too :slight_smile:

Best wishes,

Andrei Nejur

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Wow, this forum didn’t inform me of your answer…I even thought this post was closed…XD…

Great and fast reply…I’m so happy to hear that there’re constant wonderful improvements of your workflow in the future. Once your whole workflow is PERFECTED, it will certainly show us the power of digital manufacturing. But before that, it’s really limited. Hope your plug-in become the best! XD

BTW, I’d like to ask you whether this plug-in is an open source software?


This looks like a great plugin that is capable of creating interesting forms. I was wondering if you have created a tutorial for it explaining the steps that one needs to take to get a poly frame?


Hi Niloufar,

Have you had a look at the manual that is uploaded on food4rhino together with the plug-in?
You have there, at the end a few simple workflows. They should get you started in using PolyFrame.

Best wishes.


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I can’t find the new command ‘PFMagnitude’ in the ribbon (PolyFrame Beta
Can anyone help me?

thanks for the support and congratulations for PolyFrame

There is no ribbon icon for this atm. Please type the command in the Rhino Command Line.

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hi, is there an rhino example for polyframe. because definitions are not enough for starting. for example I have 2 d pattern and i translate it 3d pattern with changing points and according their reciprocal diagram. how can I do that. because the movies only start at beginning with some breps with out any attention to form of structure.

Hi - I moved your post to the appropriate thread.
Did you read the manual - including the part that describes the workflow in detail?
I’m sure @nejur can help you beyond that but perhaps you could post the file that you would like help with?

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For example, I want to insert this 2d Pattern in rhino (Polyframe) and search about changing to some 3d shape to be structural form with minimum tensions. How can we do this? because what I saw in videos, has done only by inserting brep cubes that are Force diagram. so I want to start with this 2d form diagram that will be changed to 3d, and then inside poly frame find reciprocal force diagram.

I am trying to install this with the downloaded file polyframe_0.rhi, but there is no change in Rhino 7/ grasshopper, except from the image shown in the attached file, immediately after the installation. After I close rhino, not even that shows, unless I reinstall it.

Hi @ucbqeor.
The plug-in is installed. The splash screen just confirms that.
You just need to make the toolbar visible.
You can type in the command line: Toolbar
Name of toolbar to show: polyframe

Alternatively you can just type the commands in the command line.
Have a look in the manual for the names. But they all start with “pf”

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Thank you!

Dear Community,
Today (12/31/2021) I started my day on a polyframe project (Rhino7), but I got this message: * This version of PolyFrame has expired. Please download a new version from https://psl.design.upenn.edu/polyframe/*
Yesterday everything was working perfectly. I tried to reinstall the plug-in but got the same message.
Some advice?
Thanking you in advance for your help.

Hi. @longlonghin
Polyframe has been updated on Food4Rhino.

Please use the latest version.
It will expire at the end of 2022.

Thanks a lot. Also a big news with polyframeGH. I’m super excited about it !!

Do you have any tips for using a polyframe? I want to use this program, so I keep looking for information, but I don’t have a lot of information. Please help me.

I have another problem with PolyFrame0193. I draw a 3D force diagram and get the PFDual result. But I can not select the result or find the layer to make the PFPrep.

Hi @nejur ,
Would you please help me in this case>?

Hi Hanie, I am not sure what’s happening exactly, but it looks like your force diagram is not valid and hence it fails to generate a dual. Could you provide a bit more information about what kind of form you are trying to create?