Simply can't create a clean mesh for vehicle Fender, any help please?

Hey, I’m currently trying to make my first good Blender model, and so far everything’s been about alright. (I’m sure you’ve all noticed me posting a lot around here)

The problem I have right now has to do with my model of the wheel housing for a motorcycle wheel.

The piece shouldn’t be hard to make, but it’s constantly becoming too complicated, and I keep scraping and restarting only to find myself in the same mess a half hour later.

Here’s what I’m trying to model:

And here’s what I’ve got:

Unfortunately, the poly count is really high already, because I used a cylinder to make the body on top. (Kept failing using other means)

But I’m having a lot of trouble trying to get this to work. There are holes in the panels perpendicular to the cover which I can’t get to stay clean when subsurfed, and the front of the piece is also a big mess too.

I don’t know how to go about making a clean mesh for the front wheel housing, I only have reference images of the side to work with, and trying to make the semi circle body of the housing without using a cylinder has just been failure after failure for me. I’m not sure how to model this part…

Reduce the number of vertices in the base mesh. The higher the starting mesh resolution the more difficult it will be to maintain a smooth surface.
Ensure the mirror modifier is above the subsurf modifier in the modifier stack.
In the mirror modifier ensure you have merge and clipping enabled and a suitable merge distance

Eh, I just scrapped and restarted again. We’ll see where it goes this time… :confused:
Thanks for replying. Will keep your tips in mind.

also is your origin point in the center of the mesh? (along the x axis, the y axis doesn’t matter in this case) it looks a little off, but that may just be the angle of the screenshot.

also try using a torus to get the arc shape instead of a cylinder, and just hack off the bits you dont need and model from that.
and seriously you don’t need that many polys, especially with subsurf

I redid it, and this time it seems to look okay:

And with the subsurf (Not applied though)

And positioned on bike wheel:

It doesn’t look great, but TBH the one on the bike doesn’t seem that fancy either.

Hi there,
it looks like you’re trying to add too much detail off the bat. Start with the simple blockout and work the detail in, don’t be afraid to get in and do some handy work…
I quickly tried modelling the fender, I haven’t bothered too much with accuracy but the general form is there - Have a look and re-do it with more detail.
Remember that when creating the form, you want to try and add the edge loops in such a way that they don’t become destructive to the shape. That usually means having them bend round corners, you’ll need to do this manually by merging verts together ‘Alt + M’.
Here’s the .Blend file and reference pictures that I used:
Use it as a guide, don’t model it exactly as I have - experiment and try some different methods.
Good luck!

What’s so frustrating to me is that I use merge, knife, join, and yet I still cannot get this type of mesh. Even my hole cutouts were incorrect, messy, and on top of that wrong. You found some reference pictures I didn’t, so it possibly could have been a little better if I had used those, but after spending so much time on this one piece, I still can’t even get it right while having 5x the poly yours does.

Your problem is edge flow as well as having too many vertices on your circles (i use 12 vertices on a circle on average)

Don’t get discouraged too quickly! Your second attempt was much better, but you are still not letting go enough to trust subsurf to do its thing.

  1. Try really really hard not to have any non quad geometry. Make it a priority. I see lots of triangles and Ngons in your mesh…

  2. Look at each edge loop and ask yourself, “How essential is this edge loop to my form? Is it just filling in the space between two other edge loops?” If the answer is yes to the second question just delete it.

  3. Don’t let your vertices bunch up in areas. Look at Neutroxen’s mesh (a really clean piece of modeling) and see how spaced apart the verts are? Now look how some areas of your mesh have very few and some are really dense?

  4. Try not to think in terms of parallel rows of verts or rectilinear grids when doing subsurfed organic type modeling. This results in too many unnecessary edge loops and faces. I find it helpful to try to see a mosaic of quads, all different shapes, only occasionally parallel, overlaid on my target sketch.
    Again, Neutroxen’s mesh is a perfect example of this.

Having more polys means more work. Use less polys and build up only when necessary. Otherwise you end up having to manually place each one which in the case of a high poly model can be impossible. Subsurf does all the heavy lifting if you let it. Helps to turn on subsurf visibility in edit mode too. At least it helps me. I also try to avoid the knife tool when I can and just delete faces and create edge loops when necessary. I’m not skilled enough to use the knife too and maintain a good edge flow. Oh and switch often back to object view to see the effect more clearly that your modeling is having on the mesh.