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Modeling A Futuristic Bolt Gun In 3D Studio Max

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In this tutorial we are going to model a futuristic bolt gun using different poly modeling techniques and tools inside 3D Studio Max. You'll learn how to avoid mesh errors when smoothing high poly objects by adding supporting edges and more.


Step 1

Create a box and convert it to Editable Poly (Right Click > Convert To: > Convert to Editable Poly) then add a series of edge loops using Connect, as shown in the image below.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 2

Select the Faces shown below and Extrude them.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 3

Extrude the top front polygons again like so.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 4

Scale down the back group of polygons as well as the next one and delete the top polygon. After that move the vertices in the front part of the weapon where is the targeting system so it looks like in the picture. Finally add two more edges as shown and move the one of the old edges to the top so it is close to the middle edge.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 5

Now select and Extrude the bottom polygons until the result looks like so.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 6

In the spot where the weapon clip will be located, we need to do an inset and then extrude the faces inward. After that add two new edge loops in the middle as you can see in the picture below.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 7

Move the bottom polygons until you get a nice curve like this.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 8

Now add some new edge loops in the places shown below.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 9

Select the polygons highlighted below, and using Extrude - Local Normal. Extrude the polygons with a negative value until it looks like so.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 10

Now add loops in the places shown in the following image.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 11

Add two more edge loops in the places revealed after extruding the polygons inwards.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 12

Add some horizontal edge loops as shown in the picture, in order to avoid mesh problems after adding the Turbosmooth.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 13

Add more loops in the places shown, again to avoid problems with the mesh after we smooth it.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 14

Select the highlighted polygons and Bevel them inward using a negative Height and Outline amount. After that Extrude them inward using a low negative Height value.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 15

Select the polygons marked below and extrude them two times. For the first extrude, use a very low Height in order to get a nice edge when we smooth the shape. And after that extrude it until you get something similar to the result shown in the picture.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 16

Add two more loops on the bottom of the element as shown, in order to even out the number of the polygons.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 17

Now select the polygons on both ends, and use the Bridge tool from the Edit Polygons menu with a setting of 2 segments to connect them together (as shown.) If there is a twisting issue, you can fix it using the Twist option.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 18

Move the segment we just created into this position and use the Scale tool to scale down the vertices on both sides.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 19

Add more loops in the places shown and add a Turbosmooth modifier - Iterations 2.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 20

The final result of the weapon body should look like this.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 21

Create a new Box object with 7 length segments and add a Bend modifier using the following settings: Angle 35 and choose the right axis for you from the Bend Axis options, in my case this is the Y axis.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 22

Convert it to Editable Poly and Extrude the bottom four polygons outward, then add 5 new edge loops vertically as shown.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 23

Delete the top polygons and Bevel the selected polygons until you get a similar result.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 24

Chamfer the middle loop and then Bevel the bottom four selected polygons.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 25

Add several new edge loops as shown below, in order to get a good shape when we smooth the element.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 26

Add a Turbosmooth modifier - Iterations 2, and place the element where it should be located.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 27

Create a new Box with 3 length segments and convert it into Editable Poly, then Delete the back side polygons like in the picture.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 28

Switch to the Front view and tweak the vertices until you get this shape.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 29

Select the two middle loops and Chamfer them with Segments set to 6 with a higher amount. The result should look like this.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 30

Repeat the same procedure, but this time on the side edges with a lower Chamfer amount.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 31

Add smoothing and place the trigger in its place.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 32

Create a new Cylinder object with 2 Height segments and convert it into Editable Poly. Then select the center edge loop, and from the Edit Geometry menu choose > constrains - edge. After that Rotate the loop to create an angle and move it closer to the end, as shown.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 33

Delete the selected polygons.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 34

After we have deleted the front polygons, select the front and back Border edges and from the Constraints options in the Edit Geometry rollout, set it back to None. Using Shift+Drag and the Scale tool, decrease the radius of the holes on each end and then choose Bridge to connect them together.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 35

Add two new loops to the front and back side as shown.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 36

Select the polygons in between the loops and extrude them inwards until it looks like so.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 37

Add a Chamfer to all the loops except the two inner loops. Use a low Chamfer amount and set the number of edges to 2. After that Chamfer the inside two loops, but use a higher Chamfer amount and again set the Edge Segments to 2.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 38

Add Turbosmooth - Iterations 2 and place the element as shown.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 39

Create a new Cylinder like the previous one, and use the same techniques to give it such a shape.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 40

Use Shift+Scale/Move on the front part to get something like this.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 41

Create two new edge loops inside the front part of the element, and do the same on the outside surface as shown. Then select the polygons between the new loops and Extrude them inwards.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 42

As we did previously, Chamfer the edges loops with a low amount and set the "Connect Edge Segments" to two. Then add a Turbosmooth with 2 Iterations.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 43

Create new cylinders for the glass and rotate them to the same angle as our shape. Place them on the inside where we Extruded the inside loops of polygons.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 44

Create a new Cylinder with the following settings - Height Segments: 1, Cap Segments: 2, Sides 32. Then convert it to Editable Poly and delete the back polygons. Move the polygons in the center forward, and then Inset them as shown.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 45

Select the polygons between the front two loops (that were created by the Inset,) and Extrude them inwards. Once again, Chamfer the edges with a low amount and a few edge segments. Then add a Smooth modifier.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 46

Place the element as shown. Next create a few copies using Edit> Clone, and Scale them down using the Scale tool. And place them in the locations shown below.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

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Step 47

Now we need to go back to the main body and fix some problems with the mesh. Select the marked edge loops, and move them closer to the corners in order to get a better shape when we smooth it.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 48

Add two more loops as shown below, and we have now fixed the problems with the mesh.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 49

Create a new Cylinder with 32 Sides and no Height or Cap Segments. Convert it to Editable Poly and Delete the back polygon. Then select the front polygon, and Inset and Extrude it as shown.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 50

Now Bevel the front polygon, and also Chamfer the Edges as shown.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 51

Once again, add a Smooth Modifier and place the object here.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 52

Create a New Box with 6 Length Segments, and Convert it to Editable Poly.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 53

Next add 3 Edge Loops and adjust the Verticies to get something like this.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 54

Delete the Top and Bottom polygons, Select the Three loops and Scale them outwards.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 55

Next using the Border option, select the bottom edges and Shift+Scale them outwards to get this result.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 56

Holding Shift, use the Move tool to Extrude the bottom border downwards. With the border still selected, click the Cap option in the Edit Poly rollout to fill the hole. Then go into vertex mode and select the verticies on each side of the bottom. Use Connect to connect each pair of verts with a new edge.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 57

Add some additional Edge Loops in the places shown below, using the Ring and Connect commands.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 58

Next add a Turbosmooth Modifier with 2 Iterations, and position the hand grip in the location shown.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 59

Create three new Tubes and convert them to Editable Poly. After that unite them into a single object using the Attach option from the "Edit Geometry" menu of the Edit Poly rollout. Delete the back polygons on each, and then using the Border option, Shift+Drag the inside edges back as shown.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 60

Chamfer the inside and outside edge loops of each of the three elements. Use a low amount, and set the Edge Segments to 2.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 61

Now let's come back to the main body and add additional Edge Loops as shown. This will make it easier for us to create holes for the gun barrels.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 62

Delete the polygons shown.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 63

Move the vertices around to get the shapes shown for each hole. They need to be big enough so we can put the gun barrels in there.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 64

Now let's go back to the gun barrels. We need to first Cap the back sides using the Cap option. After, Chamfer the edges with a medium amount and around 4 Edge Segments, so the result looks like so.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 65

Add a Turbosmooth with 2 Iterations and place the barrels as shown below.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 66

Create new Cylinder with 18 Sides and Convert it to Editable Poly, after that add two Edge Loops as shown.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 67

Select a couple of groups of two polygons, leave a distance of four polygons between the selections.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 68

Add a Bevel and delete the polygons. After that add more loops as shown.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 69

Extrude the polygons between the loops we just created. Add a Bevel two times on the front polygon until it looks like so.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 70

Add a Bevel 3 more times on the tip of the bullet. Once inwards and twice outwards, so the tip of it looks like below.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 71

Again Bevel the tip three more times, so the result looks similar to this.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 72

On the back polygon we first Extrude, then Inset and Extrude it.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 73

We need to Extrude the polygons we created with the previous extrude once again, using the same value we used on the first two extrudes at the beginning of the bullet modelling. After that Inset the back polygon, Bevel it inwards and once again Bevel it outwards using the same value. Finally Inset it once again to achieve the result shown below.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 74

Again Bevel the polygon two more times, then Inset it once and Extrude again inwards until you get this shape.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 75

On the front part, add new loops as shown in order to have nice, smooth edges when we smooth the bullet.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 76

Add more loops as shown to support the geometry and get a good shape after we add the Turbosmooth.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 77

We now add more edge loops on the back polygon. And once again Inset the middle polygon to avoid mesh errors after smoothing.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 78

Create new Cylinder with 80 sides, convert it into Editable Poly and Delete the front and back polygons. After that Select all the polygons and use - Bevel - by polygons to get this result.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 79

Use the Connect option and choose - Segments: 2, Pinch: 90.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

Step 80

Add a Turbosmooth - Iterations: 2 on both objects, and place the object we just created inside the bullet as shown.

3D Studio Max Modeling Tutorial Futuristic Bolt GunClick To Enlarge

And that completes the tutorial!

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