Part 1 … Part 2 … Poly Model a Flying Wing Jet in 3ds Max
In this 3ds Max tutorial we will Poly Model a flying wing jet airplane using the Edge -- Shift -- Drag technique in Editable Poly mode.
We start with a small mesh and select an outer edge and hold Shift, then drag to clone a new polygon.
Using the Move and Rotate tools to further define the shape and direction of each cloned polygon.
We will show you how to build a Flying Wing with Jet Engines using Poly Modeling techniques, and preparing the model using 4 point poly’s, Chamfering tight edge loops to create hard edges before using the TurboSmooth modifier to subdivide and smooth the low poly model into a high poly model.
3ds Max File Downloads:Documents
Put background pics on three plane objects
Download the three wing pictures. Open 3ds Max.
Create three Plane objects. Create a Material for each Plane. Load the bitmaps into the Diffuse color slots.
Resize each Plane object so the background picture has the right dimensions. If the pixels size for the SIDE bitmap is 344x340 then the Plane object will be 34.4x34.0
These are the three planes rotated and moved into place
Create a starting point for the wing
Create a colored Plane object with 1x1 segment, on the tip of the wing in the Top viewport. Right click and convert to Editable Poly. Name it Wing.
In Edge Mode, select the left edge and use Rotate and Move from the toolbar to start a sloping segment of the wing.
In Move mode, hold Shift and drag a cloned edge to each segment on the wing. Then Rotate and Move the last segment vertical, next to the left engine.
Stretch the vertexes to match the background.
Select any edge and click Ring.
Click Connect settings and add three edge loops.
In Vertex mode and start shaping the wing tip. Press ALT X to see through to the background if you need to.
Shift drag the wing to Clone a copy for the bottom wing. Then on the cloned copy, right click and Hide Selection.
Move the top wing into position.
Start with the middle edge loop and from the front viewport lift it up. This will be the highest horizontal segment of the top wing.
Lift the second front and rear edge loops up a bit.
Select the back wing poly’s and Hide Selected.
Now to refine the front half of the wing vertices. Turn on see-through(ALT X).
Go to Polygon mode and Unhide All. Select the front half poly’s and Hide Selected. Go to Vertex mode.
Now to refine the rear half of the wing vertices.
Go back to Polygon mode and Unhide All. We have an airfoil wing shape.
Right click and Unhide All to get the bottom wing back. Then select and Hide the top wing.
Follow the same steps as the top wing, except pushing the edge loops downward.
Follow the same steps as with the front and rear wing halves to refine the vertices.
In Polygon mode select all bottom wing poly’s. Click the Flip button to flip the Normals so we can see them from the bottom view.
Right click and Unhide All, To bring back the top half of the wing.
Click Attach, and join the two halves into one object.
Group select all 36 trailing vertices. Go to Weld. Make sure the Threshold is not to high, or the wing tip vertices will fuse.
Poly Model the Body of the Aircraft
Shift drag to clone new poly’s in a rough outline for the body.
From the Top view port, pull the Vertices to match the background.
Collapse joining points in the front.
Collapse joining points in the tail.
Fix the points in side view. Straighten the tail out.
Add new Edge Loops
Add new edge loops so that there is enough geometry to model the plane.
In the Top viewport, adjust the two edge loops in the front of the wing. In Vertex mode, pull the points tight on both sides of the wing. These extra edge loops will prevent the front of the wing from shrinking when the TurboSmooth modifier is used.
Make one more edge loop, at the rear, on both halves of the wing.
Start Shaping the Jet Engine
Start shaping the engine by shaping the points to match the background images.
The Back view has no image to reference from, so do your best with the Side view and in Perspective view.
We need a flat poly for the tail of the engine. In Vertex mode Make Cuts as shown below.
Then go to Top view and drag the new points down on the Y axis.
Then in Back view, pull down the vertices on the Y axis.
The Front Inlet of the Jet Engine
Add another two edge loops.
Select the 8 poly’s that will make the engine inlet, and go to Planar Y. This will flatten the poly’s.
In Polygon mode use Hide Selected to hide the wing and the rear of the plane. Shape the inlet nice and round. Then Cut another line to make the two 5 point poly’s into four 4 point poly’s.
Select the inlet poly’s. Go to Inset and create a smaller inner circle.
Use a Cylinder object behind the mesh to help shape the inner inlet circular.
Thenin Vertex mode, shape the inner inlet to the shape of the cylinder.
Delete the poly’s.
Go to Border and click the inner edge loop and Cap it.
In Vertex mode Cut a cross with one point in the middle. Move the point to the middle.
Then Chamfer the middle point.
Select the inner poly’s for the jet engine. Go to Extrude and push in the inlet ploy’s.
Chamfer the inside edge loop. Create a tight edge loop around the square.
Select the Edge loop below and Chamfer it at 0.1. This will give these loops a harder edge when you TurboSmooth it.
Fix all the the 3 point poly’s created by Chamfering,or the TurboSmooth will pinch these points too much.
Go to Vertex mode and Target Weld.
Start shaping the outer inlet to get a nice rounded curve.
Back to Polygon mode and select the inner poly and Extrude it out.
Lets add a TurboSmooth modifier with 3 iterations. The results of tight edge loops on the jet engine inlet.
Chamfer tight loops on the rest of the Jet Engine
Turn off TurboSmooth. Chamfer the outer edges on the top and back of the engine.
The Chamfering will produce three 5 point poly’s around each red circle below.
When applying the Turbosmooth modifier, this will interrupt the smooth flow of the mesh, causing odd stretching or pinching in the skin.
Target weld the four points into two points, We have only one 5 point poly now.
The Rear Outlet of the Jet Engine
Go to the Back of the engine. Select the four poly’s below. Go to Inset and draw a smaller circle.
Delete the poly’s and then go to Border. Then Cap the hollow space.
Use Vertex/Cut to cut a cross. Chamfer the middle point.
Select the Poly’s to Extrude inward.
Select the center poly. Then Extrude outward.
Go to the Scale button on the toolbar. Scale the end poly to a point. Make tight edge loops to the cone and the inside outlet.
Turn on TurboSmooth. The Engine is done.
Clone the other half
Select all the edges below.
Click the Side view and the then View Align. This will make the edge loop line up vertically, so we can prepare to mirror and weld two halves.
Go to Mirror on the toolbar. Make a Copy. Slide it to the left to line up the two halves of the Jet airplane.
On the X axis in the Front viewport move the two halves together. Then Click the Attach button and click the other half to make it one object.
In Vertex mode select all the middle points. Then go to Weld. The number of points should be cut in half.
One final thing to do before TurboSmoothing. Select the rear tail edge loop. Chamfer at 0.04.
This will prevent the tail of the wing from shrinking when you go to TurboSmooth.
More detailed modeling on the jet engine and canopy.
Then apply a Normal map, Diffuse map, and Specular map.
Go to Part 2
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