Doctor Who and the boolean subtract (Dalek)

This is a render of one of my first ever Blender projects: from the BBC Science Fiction series “Doctor Who” - a dalek. The only alien I have ever found (a) completely believable and (b) terrifying.

My problem is the jaggy pattern at the back of the armour around the “shoulder?” section - I made the section by scaling the top and bottom faces of a cylinder, then using the boolean subtract operation to separate the upper and lower bands.

The whole project needs a major reorganization, but I want to avoid repeating the same mistake. Question is, how?



Ahem… sorry bout that, got a little carried away with myself (crazy/rabid Dr. Who fan here…) I trust youv’e watched the new series? Ep6 was great wasn’t it :smiley:

As to your problem: dont use something like boolean subtract for that. Instead use edge subdivide to add more cross sections to your cylinder, then use edge slide to position the cross sections accordingly. Finally delete the faces you dont want.

Hope to see more of this project!


Go to for how to make a full size Dalek. It will have some refference picures so you can make it to scale.

I also have a scale model of the Tardis, which I used for my avatar.

OK, at long last I decided it was time to get the old sonic screwdriver out.

This didn’t show up with the first version, but when I started a new file, incorporating the lessons I have learned since I noticed that some of the panels on the front of the “skirt” section have a diagonal crease. It seems to be due to the fact that the top and bottom edges of the panel are oriented at different angles but I don’t know how to eliminate the crease.

Have tried [set smooth] but then all distinction between the panels is lost.

Any advice? :confused:


The crease is a problem I encountered when I did a Dalek myself… It’s for the smae reason as the crease you get if you move one vert down on a flat plane… When you try to make a reall model of a Dalek, you have the same problem, and your wood/fibre glass is all weird… You get rid of it in Blender by applying set-smooth on only that face (select it in edit mode and click set smooth while in edit mode), using set smooth with the whole thing and then use auto smooth (Auto smooth will only show up when you render it), or you can do what I did, and that is apply sub-surf with simple subdivision instead of catmull-clark. That, however, doubles or quadruples the amount of verts, and I only used it because at the time I didn’t know of the other options.

Thanks for trying Tynach, times like this I find out just how thick I really am. :frowning:
I tried selecting individual faces and [set smooth] in edit mode but when it rendered it was as if I had smoothed the entire section of the mesh.

I have settled for a compromise and kept the lines parallel which is cheating a little bit I suppose, but at least it works.

This is mine. I fixed it with the subsurf option. It didn’t turn out too bad as far as verts, but that’s because it was a seperate mesh. It was with 2.37a, when I first started with Blender, so I didn’t know how to make a proper dome or shoulder section… I’m thinking about re-modelling.

To do:
rivets on shoulders
flanges on eyestalk
fins or ribs around exterminator arm
struts around neck section
rig this baby

Have I missed anything?


1: Slats on the shoulder section.
2: wire mesh on shoulder section under slats and silver bands
3: wire mesh under circles on neck section
4: have the Dalek hovering above the ground

OK. I’m going to let this sit on the back burner for a bit.

For now, at any rate, I am happy to go with the earlier (i.e. simpler) 1965 (Doctor Who and the Daleks, Peter Cushing et al) model. Still missing some minor stuff:rolleyes: like mesh on the “neck” and rivets. Partly :o due to me not saving the file before quitting one session.

But this model is now rigged and posable! Yay!


What, you aren’t doing a modern Dalek from the new 2005 season? Those were the coolest looking Daleks!

Granted they were probably the best to date, but when I lived in the UK they also ran stories that included the Emperor Dalek (a nice tie-in with the old comic books) and a “special weapons Dalek”; no manipulator arm, just one honking great exterminator.

Ex-ter-min-ate ex-ter-min-ate ex-ter-min-ate.

looks like you guys are off to a pretty good start on this. funny thing is I thought to myself this morning that I should build myself a dalek and what do i see at the top of the forums list when I log on but a forum about a dalek.

Good luck with this model, i cant wait to see how it turns out.

This is what I got done in about a hour and 15 minutes, It’s just the head so far but since you guys are compareing your daleks I thought i would show you mine too.

As for your diagonal crease, If you are refering to how rectagular faces end up looking like they are made up of 2 triangles. Iv’e had this problem before too, I got rid of it by smoothing the whole mesh and using autosmooth to make the flat areas flat again. An anto smooth of as little as 1 degree is ussually enough to fix it.

Knightfang, your Dalek head is too round at the top and needs to be flattened. Other than that, it’s much better than mine!

3Distracted, I just noticed you’re still using 2.37! Why don’t you get 2.41?

the reference pic I was using has a round dome head that seems to match my dalek nearly perfectly. here is the pic i was using as reference. maybe It’s a little bit to round but not by much. I also have not yet added the part around the base of the “Eye Stalk”

I am looking forward to finally getting it, but the family only has dialup and because of communications clashes (which lead to other kinds of clash) I am very strictly regulated. I can use the connection for no more than 1 hour, in the early A.M. to download mail to my PC (where I do most of my modelling), otherwise, I have to use the family PC which is monitored for incoming calls.


I’m curious to know where you found that particular model. It doesn’t look like one I’ve seen before (other than being a typical psychotic pepperpot).

I used the Dalek Builders Guild blueprint for mine, but any errors are entirely my own work. :o

I believe that it’s the new dalek from the new series episode “Dalek”

Here is what Iv’e got done since earlier. And After careful examination I noticed that my daleks head was indead slightly to round so I adjusted it.

I still need to add the details around the “Torso” and add detail to the “neck” area.
I think that it is turning out to be the best 3d model I’ve built yet. Iv’e blown my other stuff away here.

Iv’e also been catching myself saying Ex-ter-min-ate over and over agian today. LOL