26 - Creating the Medieval Crate

Creating the Medieval Crate

によって書かれた Bad Intern

A few weeks ago Randy asked me to model a medieval crate by following a set of tutorial videos. Since this was my first real 3D modeling experience, I was a little intimidated but at the same time eager to dive into the project. Little did I know just how hard the task would be.

Right off the bat, I opened up 3DS Max and got to work. Things were good for a little while as my “guns a blazing” technique was working well. You start by making a box, subdividing that box, apply symmetry modifiers, and finally duplicating that box to cut out a metal bracket. After about an hour of beating my head against a very broken metal bracket, I had to admit to myself that I had absolutely no clue what I was doing.

The Crate

From what I had seen in the tutorial videos, the task seemed very simple; just cut the box following the guidelines of my background. Well here I am cutting away with absolutely no regard for the perspective of the object. My "guns a blazing" technique didn't last long. I tried to simplify the vertices around the object to maybe somehow get a proper looking bracket. I did all this just to realize all I created was an even more broken object. Hurray!

Pissed off and wondering why beating my head against a stationary object wasn't working, I reluctantly called Randy. The call turned into an hour of him questioning every aspect of what I was doing, most notably, why the hell I thought it was a great idea to touch the hotkey layouts of 3DS Max. Eventually, we got down to the root of the issue, and shocker alert, it was my guns blazing technique that got me into a bind. After talking it out and problem-solving, I designed the metal bracket with Randy's guidance. It was because of that guidance, I created a pretty good looking metal bracket. The phone call really helped me start to understand the workflow of the program. It also helped me start to see just how much I can do with this powerful program.

With the bracket complete, the next step was modeling the actual box. Using the same perspective box I had used to create the metal bracket, I applied a symmetry modifier to build a full box with exact symmetry.

After building a properly proportioned box, I selected and divided specific areas to give the box more depth and detail. Next, I applied 3 different symmetry modifiers to get properly proportioned sections of the box. Once I finished subdividing the box, I simplified it even more. This task proved to be harder than I expected. The issue was that because I was applying a symmetry modifier, everything I did was reflected on the other sides of the box. Meaning, as I deleted different vertices, I was also breaking my object. Eventually, I got the object fixed, for the most part. I still had some vertices that I just couldn't get to line up. But since they weren't crucial to the model, I decided to move on.

Next came building the small metal bracket under the corner piece, as well as the wooden pieces along the top and bottom of the box. Luckily, these objects weren't much of an issue. I only had a small challenge with the symmetry modifiers on the wooden pieces. I fixed that by duplicating the objects and placing them around the object.

After making the brackets and wooden pieces it was time to make the box come to life by adding all of the small details. I started with the slats going around the middle of the box. To make this, I made a very tall skinny box, then using the connect tool in the edit poly tab, I divided the object into 7 pieces. After dividing the box up I applied the chamfer tool and deleted the middle of each chamfer. Which gave the edge of each slat proper detail when applying turbosmooth.

Having no issues with the slats and the symmetry modifiers I began to add rivets and the sculpted cylinders. The rivets are just small spheres cut in half and placed in specific areas around the box. I sculpted the cylinders by using the bevel modifier to give a sort of ripple effect on the object. Unfortunately, the symmetry modifiers I had used on other objects wouldn't work with these objects, considering the layout, so I duplicated each object and placed them by hand around the box and then attached each of the objects.

After adding all of the details I was finally finished!

Overall, I learned a lot through this process.
1. Most importantly, don't rush into something and expect it to go perfectly the first time.
2. Never be afraid to ask for help when running into an error.

I wholeheartedly believe that even with the help of a walkthrough video, I wouldn't have been able to complete this modeling exercise without asking for help. I’m pretty happy with the end result and was very pleased to hear those around me echo that.

I look forward to seeing all the things I get to create with this software.

My Finished Crate

The Crate I was modeling (for reference). Pretty good huh! :wink:


I’m impressed! Looking good man!

For about the first 3 years of learning 3DS Max you will say this line a lot :smiley: The irony of 3D modeling is that it looks easy when you watch an expert fly through making something in 30 min. Then when you try it, 30 min later you still only have a sphere. This is just some of the growing pains of 3D modeling. There is a good reason why lots of people start down the path of learning this software and give up after a while.

Fortunately for you, you have a weird nack for understanding this stuff fairly quickly. So I think you’ll do just fine.

There is a reason why memes like this exist :slight_smile:

You should post PotCock, just as an example to aspiring modelers.

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I’ll have to find him first…it has been a while since I have seen him around.