In the automotive industry or in similar industries, body panels need to be perfectly smooth for visual and aerodynamic reasons. In some cases, the component is a hand-made body part that will require a suitable CAD model for further development and manufacturing. Such a smooth CAD model can only be produced through reverse-engineering and CAD procedures that will make use of accurate surface reconstruction. This paper describes a reverse-engineering procedure for the production of a suitable CAD mesh from which surface reconstruction can take place. It then analyzes and compares three approaches assessing the continuity and the quality of each set of NURBS patches: automatic, semiautomatic, and completely manual surfacing. Recommendations are made for each method when creating CAD surfaces. Finally, a procedure is suggested to optimize the time and the quality of the final CAD model.

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