*Noob* Rocket Modeling

Hi There,

I’m fairly new To Blender… Just working my way through Tutorials and slowly getting to grips with it…

I’d like to build a 3d version of this Rocket - what would be the best way to approach a shape like this? a Mesh Model ? Any suggestions greatly appreciated :slight_smile:


A mesh would definitely be the way to go.

For anything mechanical, made out of parts like that, I would model all your parts separately and then stick them together by parenting them to something or by physically joining all the parts together (CTRL+J). That’s the way they did it in Elephant’s Dream, so it’s a sure thing.

Btw, I don’t know if it’s your server or something else, but your picture timed out a couple times before I finally got it to load. (And I think that was only because I opened it in a new link, which entered it into my cache. I think there might be some hotlinking problems.) If it’s giving you too much trouble, you could try attaching it to your post instead.

For the main body of the rocket, I’d start with a cylinder with several sections and taper it at the ends to gain the needed shape. The fins can then easily be created by tracing their shape (you can, for example, create a circle and move its vertices in Edit mode so that it resembles the fin shape), filling the shape by Shift+F and finally extruding to gain the needed thickness.

actually you could try the wine bottle (or the wine glass) trick… you trace the outline of the object with a line, then spin it… for the main body anyway… that’s how i would do it

I’d say tapering a cylinder is the way to go, making the fins seperate.
I’d stay away from Shift-F tho, it’s just a quick fill with triangles.
Or You could make loop cuts in a cube and just rearrange verts.
If you don’t plan on using subsurf then it doesn’t really matter.

I think that you have choosen really good reference picture for the beginning of your journey into the 3d world. Thats not so hard to model. You can create that nearly from every single “start object” you can add by pressing space.

Open that thing with the photoshop or gimp and then rotate it flying straight to the up.
Then put it to the backround in 3d view.

Of course you must be in the ortographic view mode.

Then just start modeling, maybe the circle would be best star object for extruding it to the ship. And the wings you can create from the plane and using mirror modifier. Good luck! :slight_smile:

Many, Many thanks for all the responses here… I will have a go as suggested and post how I get on !


Depending on how many segments your main body cylinder is you could just extrude the fins straight out of the body it looks like. Select the faces where they’d go and scale em out as one. Use set smooth to get the rounded look.

Maybe play with the subsurf modifier, it lets you work a lot of complex stuff with a few simple shapes. Like maybe add a cube, add the subsurf thing and you’ll see it turn into a sphere. Then extrude it into the main body shape, then select the lower parts where a fin would be and pull em out from the body. Hit E to extrude the faces off the body, then scale them till they’re thin enough for fins, then keep sweeping them out till you get the shape. Yo can crease edges in subsurf mode with shift+e to get sharp mechanical lines where you need em.

agreed if you’re going for smooth, try subsurf modelling

Start with a circle, about 12 segments will do.
You can bring the pic in and set it as your background image.
A to highlight all, extrude, pull out a bit, scale, extrude, pull out scale, repeat till you get to the other end of the hull!

Go to object mode, Then make another circle (so its a separate object), scale it in one direction so that its a very squished oval. Swap to edit mode and then do the same as you did for the hull of the rocket, but your going to make one fin. Extrude, pull out, scale, repeat till you get the shape of one fin.

Go to top view, swap to object mode. Highlight your fin. Line it up with one side of the rocket at at a 90 degree angle. click in the center of the body of the rocket so the cursor is left there. swap to the cursor mover selection tool. Now click on the fin and hit ‘Shift-D’, then R and 90 till you get your 4 fins.

Go to the modifier’s window and select each of your objects and set it up with a ‘Subsurf’ modifier.

Next go to the materials tab, whack a Blinn on there, up the speccy and start messing around with toon shaders.

For this kind of shapes I prefer this method over all of those. Especially over the spin method. This is more flexible and you can make corrections to the final shape on the fly and very easily.

Blender Cup Tutorial Using Bezier Curves:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5bBd7z5tFaA (part 1)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PByRNbp05pI (part 2)

Part 2 shows some potential problems you may find while using this method. Be sure to watch it.

And for the fins, you can try making them separate, starting from the cube, making some cuts and manually modeling them, or you can try extruding them from the main shape.
Watch how the same guy makes a teapot. May become helpful.

Blender Teapot Modeling Tutorial:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jGtBQRayRoM (part 1)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bPPbeB1EStM (part 2)

And rotate the image in an images editor first. :smiley: