I want to share one of my main works. It is the m151 protector developed by Kongsberg Gruppen. It took about a year to model. Because at the time I started, I knew nothing about nurbs or poly modeling and was relatively new to hard surface modeling in general. It also took long to model because of the complexity of the design and the number of individual parts. About 600-700 parts not including the gun. before this the only program I new was zbrush!!
I took it upon myself to try and model something that would push me to my limits physically and mentally. The model is extremely detailed. All of the edges have been beveled and it has all of the bolt holes. Really the only thing its missing is the computer board, the wiring harness and the motors.
If I had the blueprints for the circut boards I probably would have modeled those parts as well!!!
I know some of you guys are wondering how I was able to pull it off. But honestly tho. You guys could model stuff like this in any program. for the 600 parts I only used simple modeling techniques. My general workflow consisted of sketching a profile, extruding the profile and using boolean operations to cut out the details. Using boolean and bevel operation when ever possible. Never adjusting verts or adding smooth modifers. Again, these techniques can be applied to any program. It doesnt matter if you are using google sketchup or Pro Engineer. Look at some cnc machining videos. You will notice that most parts start off as a solid block of steel. The machine then goes in and cuts out the details to get the final shape. Thats the way I work. Start off with a block and use booleans to cut out the details. Here is an example of my general work flow
started off with a flat plane. extrude the plane.
made a copy of the extruded plane to use as my boolean operation
followed thru with the boolean operation
once the boolean operation is complete. I follow thru with some bevels. I never add any edge loops or move any verts.
After the bevel you may have to clean up some poly faces, at least in maya anyway. In cad programs you dont have to do this kind of stuff.
after the clean up. Some more bevels
more clean up
after the bevel is complete, I then select an edge and bevel again
Once my modeling operations are complete. I triangulate the mesh to get rid of any ngons
with cad based programs its pretty much the same thing. except you dont have to worry about mesh clean up. So in essence, cad modeling is much easier than traditional poly modeling. Thats why I love autodesk fusion. Its like google sketchup on crack, pcp and steroids.
The key is to use utilize as much as program features as possible. Using radial symmetry, using the grid system, using boolean operations, etc..
Try to make the program work for you instead of you working for the program.
I really hope you guys enjoy and wish to hear what you guys think about this project. Any feedback would be much appreciated.