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Surface Relief pertains to elements, both recessed and extruded, that you wish to show on your model at your chosen scale.
Why is it relevant? Knowing your chosen printer's tolerances for surface relief is necessary because you may need to Accentuate or over-accentuate particular details in order to have them show up as clearly as you would like. Of course this is determined by knowing the scale you will be printing at and the machine you will be printing on. If you are unsure of either variable, you can at least draft with the concept in mind.
An Example. If I want to print a surface with a physical texture map, scales or tiles or rocks or hair or even lettering, and I want the effect to show a crisp relief on the surface, I would take the minimum suggested value from the calculator and apply this to my model. So, a model printed at 1/16th scale (also known as 1"=16' or 1:192) and I want to print on a FDM printer, the calculator will show that the Surface Relief detail...
These 3 considerations should be in your mind while drafting for 3D printing
To produce a set of printed 2D construction drawings, certain preparation must be made; layouts arranged, sheets put in order, print jobs configured, etc. Similarly, to 3D print a model, certain steps must be taken to ensure a successful outcome.
Tolerances If it is too small for the 3D print technology you choose, it will break.
The first order of consideration is referred to in the industry as print tolerance. Tolerance, as it applies to 3D printing, is how small a detail can successfully be 3D printed and survive the process. Every 3D printer has a different tolerance, so there is no definitive rule for how small a detail can be on a 3D printed part. There are several factors in determining the appropriate adjustments to make to a model to get the tolerances right such as level of detail desired, scale of printed model, the model's native CAD format, and printing technology, to name a few. Almost...