Jagged edges while modelling a car

I’m modelling a car but I’ve got jagged edges all over the place. Is it because I’m using triangles or because the mesh doesn’t have enough divisions? Is there any way to make it smoother? I’ve tried Set Smooth with Auto Smooth, Smooth modifier and subsurf modifier. Nothing works. Any help would be appreciated.




You have awful topology here. There are triangles and they cause a problem.

Thanks for the reply. I assumed subsurf or something would take care of smoothing it out. :frowning:

I’ve got lots and lots of triangles and extremely slanted quads. Does this mean I’ll need to rework the mesh completely?

First of all, check your normals and press ctrl-n in edit mode while everything is selected to fix them. (but they seem fine to me). Next, check if you have any doubles (W > Remove doubles, in edit mode). To smooth stuff up, select the part you want smoothed and hit W > smooth, increase the iterations to your liking. Also, try to up the numer of subdivisions in view (modifier).
I hope some of these steps will fix your problem. :slight_smile:

tip: search ‘guerrilla CG’ on vimeo.

Thanks Claus.

But the W>smooth is completely distorting my model. I’ve done the Ctrl+N and remove doubles while modelling itself, so there’s no further improvement with that.

I would like to know how to increase the number of subdivisions. I’m using a plane mesh which I modified to model the car. Can I increase the number of subdivisions? Subsurf isn’t helping any.

Appreciate your help. I’m a complete noob to 3D modelling. Thanks for the tip on guerrilla CG, I think I’ll be spending quite some time over there :).

Edit: Just came across this link on quads and triangles. Looks like I’ll have to try to get rid of all the triangles I’ve got in my model.

Depends on what you need, do you need actual mesh data (for detail), or do you just want everything smoothed out?
To subdivide mesh data, press W > subdivide with the intended part selected. To up the number of subdivisions for the viewport, go to your subsurf modifier settings and press the right arrow where it says ‘view’ (depending on the density of your mesh, 3-4 should be enough for rendering). (turn on optimal display as well for a clean wireframe view)

Keep it up.
another tip: when modeling, keep everything to the minimum. Edge loops are good but can add a lot of unwanted geometry, so be thoughtful.

just to clarify, the problem is not the triangles, they are a symptom.
the real problem is the poles.
look to have a clean mesh with mostly quads, and as few poles as possible, especially if you’re going to subsurf it.
BTW, a pole is a vertex with any number of edges connected to it, unless it’s 4 edges. So, 3 edges, or 5 or more.

when using subsurf, you should only need a few 3 and 5 poles, no 6+, except for maybe a few rare exceptions.


Here’re a couple of images, before and after the subsurf modifier (Render level 4). It’s not what I would say satisfactory, looks smooth and choppy at the same time:

It looks like I’ll need to remove all the triangles I’ve got in the model and change them to quads, hence the mesh subdivisions. Thanks for your comments.


Looks like you’re right. Searched around a bit last night and came across this post explaining topology and poles and what is better and what should be used for organic (read characters and sports cars) models. Don’t fully understand it, but I’ll need to learn a bit more. Thanks!

If you’re interested in car modelling you can learn some tips from these series of 9 video tutorials making a Porsche 911

You might want to do the whole bottom part over. This may help.
for the top part: if you join the green vertices and split the red vertex, that might solve some of the problem. if you then delete all the blue and extrude the blue edge your topology will be cleaner. Additionally, you can add a horizontal edge loop perpendicular to the blue edge (after you split and joined the vertices) for some extra detail.

Hope I got it right, hope it helps. :wink:


Thanks for the link. I was following the tutorial at Dark Scarab, but the author himself has suggested that the porsche tut is better. I’ll probably go through that and see if I can do anything to salvage my current model. Otherwise it’s back to the drawing board.


I saw the video at the link you posted. I’m sorry, but I don’t understand how it helps and I can’t see any blue red and green vertices over there. Could you please elaborate?

For what it’s worth, I’m attaching my .blend file, if anyone would like to take a look at it.


car70.blend (267 KB)

I’m sorry but your topology is simply horrible. Lots of triangles and no clearly defined loops. You have used triangles in places where there should be no reason to do so.

The basic shape of the car is ok, so in my opinion you have two ways you can proceed from here.

  1. Use retopo to build a new model with better topology on top of the old one
  2. Start over.


Thanks, I figured my topology is completely off after reading a bit on this links here:


As a matter of fact, I realised that topology and loops are major concerns for cars after reaching so far.

Like I said on another forum, I probably would have stuck to modelling kitchen appliances if I knew there was so much theory behind modelling a car! :slight_smile:

Could you please explain how to use the retopo tool? I’m pretty much sold on this model being unsalvageable, but I’d like to learn how to use that as well in case a similar situation arises sometime.