Building a Steampunk Inspired Light Saber in 3ds Max, Part 1
In this tutorial we are going to create a stylized high poly model of a steampunk light saber. We are going to use a ton of different modeling techniques to create the different shapes of the model, as well as some techniques that will allow us to group and connect the different elements together into single pieces of geometry.
Additional Files/ Plugins:
To start Create a Cylinder with 30 sides and Convert it into Editable Poly. After that apply a Bevel to the top polygon, Inset it and then Bevel again one more time, but this time use a negative Height value. And then Inset and Bevel the polygon again until the result looks like so.
Continue by Extruding again with a negative Height and then apply an Inset.
On the side, select 8 polygons and Apply an Extrude 2 times and then Scale the selected polygons on the X-axis, as shown.
We need to add a loop around the top and again above the middle edge, but this time only on the round side as shown.
Add 3 more loops like the previous one and then on the selected polygons apply an Inset.
On the polygons we just applied the Inset to, we need to apply an Inset one more time and then on the selected loops we go to Loops in the Graphite Modeling Tools and select Loop Tools.
From the loop tools we choose Circle and then we apply Relax two times. After that on the middle polygons we apply an Extrude with a negative Height and Delete the polygons. After that we apply Cap to the holes and then apply an Inset.
On the outside and inside loops we apply a Chamfer as shown.
On the top edges we also need to apply a Chamfer as well, as shown.
Now on the side of the element we need to add 3 more loops as shown.
And then add 3 additional loops.
Now Delete the polygons as shown.
Now apply a Symmetry Modifier two times. Once on the X-axis and once on the Z-axis.
Select the element and Convert it into Editable Poly and after that add loops as shown below.
Select the vertices as shown and apply an FFD 4x4x4 modifier and then select Control Points, and move the middle ones and then Scale the top and bottom ones until you get this result.
Apply Symmetry on the Y-axis and then Convert the object into Editable Poly.
Select the loop which we made in order to be able to apply Symmetry, and using Ctrl + Remove, remove it and then Cap the two holes.
On all sides using the Cut tool we create a new edge as shown.
On the back side we select the three columns of polygons and apply an Extrude 8 times. The first and the second extrude should be with the same Height value. The third and fourth extrudes should be with a very low Height in order to get three loops close to each other. The fifth and the seventh extrudes should be with the same Height and the sixth one should be with a bit of a bigger Height. The last one needs to again be with a very low height in order to get a loop close to the end of the shape to support the geometry.
Delete the middle polygons and on the two sides apply an Extrude to the selected polygons, as shown. After that shift the vertices until you get a similar shape.
On the eight selected polygons (highlighted Below) we need to apply an Extrude 2 times. The second extrude needs to be with a very low Height.
On the middle four polygons we need to apply an Extrude 5 times. The first one needs to be with a very low Height, the second with a higher Height and the third one with the highest Height. The fourth needs to be like the second one, and the fifth needs to be again with a very low Height to get a loop close to the edge. Finally shift the vertices in order to get a similar shape.
On the inside we need to Delete all the selected polygons .
In the places where we applied the Extrude on the two sides, we have 2 vertices in the middle very close to each other. We need to select them and apply a Weld. After that we need to connect the edges together with Bridge.
Close to each edge we need to add one edge as shown.
Now add one loop on each side as shown.
Select the end polygons and shift+drag them forward and then Delete the polygons. The shape should now look like this.
Copy the element and Rotate it 180 degrees. After that Scale it a bit on the Z-axis.
Go to the back side of the element and apply an Extrude 3 times on the selected polygons. The first extrude needs to be with a low Height, the second extrude needs to be with bigger Height, after that select the Make Planar - Y option. The third extrusion needs to be again with low Height value.
At the end of the element where it overlaps the other element we need to Cap and then Extrude once, the Inset two times with the same amount. Again Extrude but this time with a negative Height and once again with higher negative Height. Finally Delete the polygon and apply a Turbosmooth Modifier with 2 Iterations.
Create a new Cylinder with 18 sides. On one of the end polygons apply an Inset, an Extrude, another Inset and then Extrude 4 times. Bevel and Extrude again until you get something similar to this shape.
On the two polygon loops we apply a Bevel as shown. And then on the end polygon apply a Bevel again, but this time with zero Height.
We continue by adding Bevel two more times and then an Extrude once, until we get something like this.
Inset again and Extrude the polygon with a negative Height. Then Bevel, Inset and Bevel again.
Continue shaping the end by performing an Inset, Extrude, Inset, Extrude, and a Bevel two times in order to created a rounded shape. Finally apply an Inset again with a high amount.
On the other end of the element apply an Extrude 2 times, Inset again and then Extrude and Bevel with zero Height.
Continue with Extrude and then Bevel again with zero Height. Then Extrude again and Bevel 3 times, as shown.
On the selected polygons apply an Extrude with a negative Height.
Apply chamfer on almost all of the loops as shown.
Add 3 loops around the main body of the element and then select the 10 side polygons highlighted below.
Apply an Extrude 3 times to the selected polygons, and then shift the vertices a bit until you get this as result.
Apply an Extrude one more time and Delete the polygons on the front.
Add 3 loops as shown.
Now Remove the 5 middle edges and connect the vertices.
Apply Symmetry to the object and add one loop close to the edge, as shown.
Apply Turbosmooth with 2 Iterations.
Use the same techniques that we used to create the previous cylindrical element to create this element. Use, extrude, inset and bevel to get this shape and don't forget to add supporting edges close to the main edges.
Now make a copy of the element and position it as shown, and then apply Turbosmooth - Iterations: 2.
Create a new Tube object with 12 sides and convert it into Editable Poly. After that make a copy of it and combine them using Attach, and finally select the polygons that are facing each other on both elements.
Using Bridge connect the two objects together. Then apply an Extrude to the 5 polygons as shown and finally Scale the side edges.
Create a new Cylinder with 12 sides and Convert it into Editable Poly. Delete the polygons on both ends, then Scale it on the Z-axis and connect it to the other object using Attach.
Fill the holes using Bridge and then add loops as shown and apply Turbosmooth - Iterations: 2.
Create a new Cylinder with 18 sides and convert it into Editable Poly. After that Inset the front polygon and apply an Extrude 3 times, as shown.
Continue by applying Bevel and Extruding 5 times. The first two extrudes need to be with a low Height as well as the last two.
Apply a Bevel, an Extrude, another Bevel and an Extrude again with the same Height. Finally apply an Inset once with a low amount and once with a higher amount.
Scale the polygon and move it to the top of the element as shown, apply an Inset and then Extrude twice. The first extrude needs to be with a low Height in order to get an edge close to the base of the extruded part. Finally Delete the polygon.
On the back side Extrude the polygon 4 times and then Inset 3 times.
Extrude the middle polygon 5 times and Bevel once with zero Height, try to match the radius of it with the radius of the selected loop.
Now apply Bevel twice. The second bevel needs to be with a very low amount. Finally apply an Extrude.
Apply an Inset, Extrude, Bevel and the Inset again.
Apply an Extrude, Bevel with zero Height and a low amount, and again Extrude.
Now follow the same steps we used on the other side of the element. Move the polygon and apply an Extrude two times.
Select the 3 loops of polygons and Extrude them inwards. After that select the polygons shown below on the both sides of the geometry.
Select two polygons next to each other and connect them with Bridge. Do this by skipping two polygons between the connected parts (only on the bottom do we skip 3 polygons.) Finally add a loop as shown.
Add a Chamfer to all of the edges up until the place we used Bridge.
On the polygon loop on the left side we apply a Bevel with a negative Height, and on the polygons on the right side we apply an Extrude.
Now on the front side of the element, add a Chamfer to all of the edges.
Again on the front side select every second polygon and apply a Bevel 3 times. Finally add two more loops as shown.
Add more loops as shown and finally apply a Turbosmooth Modifier with 2 Iterations.
Using the exact same techniques that we used to create the previous element, create this element. The number of sides on the Cylinder need to be 32.
For the back side of the element create a Sphere with 32 segments and Delete the front half of it as well as some of the polygons on the back side in order to create a hole there. Use Attach to connect the two elements together and where the two elements touch each other, we need to select the vertices (they are 64) and using the Weld function we need to reduce them to 32.
Select the hole on the Sphere and using Shift+Move, move it on the X-axis and then drag backwards after that using Shift+Scale (we need to scale it on the Z and Y axes) and finally again using Shift+Move, move it forward to get something like this.
On the front side of the element using the same technique, we need to create something like this.
Finally apply Turbosmooth and place the elements.
Next create a Line with this shape. From the Rendering menu make sure Radial is checked and change the sides to 6, and the thickness to something suitable for this case (because this will go into the front hole of the previous element we just created.)
Click the Enable In Viewport option and then convert the line into Editable Poly. Also Delete the polygons on the two ends.
Finally apply Turbosmooth and position it.
That concludes part one. Stay tuned for part 2!
We’ve published a few related tutorials you might also be interested in: