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Ant colony algorithms applied to difficult combinatorial optimization problems such as the traveling salesman problem (TSP) and the quadratic assignment problem. In this paper we propose a grid-based ant colony algorithm for automatic 3D hose routing. Algorithm uses the tessellated format of the obstacles and the generated hoses in order to detect collisions. The representation of obstacles and hoses in the tessellated format greatly helps the algorithm towards handling free-form objects and speed up the computations. The performance of the algorithm has been tested on a number of 3D models.