modelling icon3How to Make an Airplane – Part 1/2

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Tags - vehicles
Software:
  • Blender 2.69
Discover How To:
  • How to model a Boeing 747-400
  • Time saving modelling tricks
  • How to use blueprints accurately

Chapter Marks (Full Length )

modelling icon32.58modelling icon313.35modelling icon320.25modelling icon329.05modelling icon333.25modelling icon337.50modelling icon344.40
Software:
  • Blender 2.69
Discover How To:
  • How to model a Boeing 747-400
  • Time saving modelling tricks
  • How to use blueprints accurately

Chapter Marks (Full Length )

modelling icon32.58modelling icon313.35modelling icon320.25modelling icon329.05modelling icon333.25modelling icon337.50modelling icon344.40

Finished Result of Part 1

 

Final Result of Blender Airplane

 

Download the Boeing 747-400 Blueprint – Registration required (free)

Download the Finished .blend

Share your results in the comments below!

Summary

1. Delete the default cube and lamp and add a cylinder.

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2. Add a background image and load the Blueprint image.

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3. Rotate the Cylinder 90 degrees in side view, then apply the rotation (Ctrl+A>Rotation)

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4. In the properties (N) set the Y length to 225 ft 2 inches to match the blueprint.

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5. Scale the background image to 73, and adjust the X and Y till it lines up with the Cylinder. Set the background image axis to Right.

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6. Thicken the Cylinder to match the blueprint. Do this by press S > Shift+Y, to constrain to X and Z axis only.

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7. Add another background image and position it for the front view.

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8. Open the blueprint in Gimp or Photoshop and rotate it by 90 degrees counter-clockwise so it works top down. Add this image for the top view.

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Basic Modelling

1. In front view, flatten it along the X-axis to fit the blueprint (S>X).

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2. In side view, add 6 loopcuts as shown (Ctrl+R)

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3. Scale each loopcut to fit the blueprint

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3. Do the same in top view. Add another loopcut near the tail (before the fin).

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4. Delete the left side of the plane and add a mirror modifier.

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Model the wings

1. In side view, select the vertices as shown and delete them.

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2. Shape the surrounding hole around the curved shape in the blueprint.

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3. Extrude the loop inwards and shape around the second curve of the blueprint.

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4. In front view, move that loopcut out slightly, and smooth out any irregularities.

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5. In top view, extrude the loop out to the end of the wing.

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6. In front view, move the end to fit the blueprint, then extrude it upwards to create a lip.

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7. In top view create 5 loop cuts at the areas of the wing where a flap starts or ends. Move the vertices till it fits the blueprint as shown.

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Creating the tail

1. Create a loopcut at the end of the fin as shown. Smooth out the end of the tail to fit the blueprint using proportional falloff (O).

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2. Select the top face between the two loopcuts and extrude it upwards to fit the height of the fin. Check top view to make sure the top of the fin is thin.

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3. Create another loopcut where the side fin starts.

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4. Select the faces that will be extruded to make the side fins:

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5. In top view, extrude the faces out, and line the vertices up to match the blueprints. Go to front view and do the same.

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More detail

1. Add a subsurf modifier (level 3) and turn on smooth shading.

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2. Add creases (Shift+E, 1) to the loopcuts shown:

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3. Find the loopcut down the middle of the wing, and select the vertex between the hull and the wing. Using sharp proportional falloff (O) drag it along the Y axis to create a downward slope along the hull.

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4. Select the loop on the hull and create a crease (Shift+E, 1).

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5. Add a loopcut near the front of the plane, before the start of the pilot cabin.

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6. To model the pilot cabin windscreen, use the knife tool (K) and click on the nearest vertex to the bottom corner of the window and drag out straight towards the front (press C to make it a straight line). Click to confirm it.

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7. Do the same with the vertex above it to create a cut for the whole windscreen.

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8. Select the edge as shown and delete it (Delete>Edge)

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9. Select the edge loop as shown and delete it.

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10. Delete the face of the remaining triangle.

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11. Create a short loopcut that ends where the triangle was. Fill the whole with a face (F).

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12. Select the windscreen and extrude it inwards slightly to give it more detail.

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13. Create a crease on the outer and inner edges of the window.

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14. To eliminate the weird shading, add an Edge Split Modifier and deselect Edge Angle. Then with the same edges selected Mark it as Sharp (Ctrl + E).

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Creating the flaps

1. Create 3 loopcuts around the flaps on the fin in the blueprint.

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2. Select the vertices around the flap and make it a separate object (P)

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Due to the smoothing that the subsurf applies to both objects, we’ll need to add creases and Sharp Edges to both the flap and the plane.

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3. Select all the vertices on the flap and make a crease and mark it as sharp.

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4. Do the same on the body for the areas around the flap.

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Now you’ll have a sharp flap that blends with the rest of the body.

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5. Repeat that for the other flaps on the tail:

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6. Then the same for the flaps on the wings:

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Creating the engines

1. Add a Cylinder with 16 vertices and no cap fills.

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2. In side view, rotate it 90 degrees and extrude the ends so it fits the blueprint.

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3. Select one of the edge loops and duplicate it (Shift+D), scale and position for the inner turbine.

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4. Repeat for the turbine exhaust, and for the end edgeloop merge it to create a tip (Alt+M)

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5. Select the engine again (hover + L) and extrude it inwards to give it some thickness:

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6. Now to create the piece that holds the engine to the wing. In front view, create a cube, and delete the top and bottom face.

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7. In side view, position and extrude it. Use this and this as reference.

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You should now have this:

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The insides of the turbine won’t be visible from the camera angle, so we won’t model it.

 

8. Duplicate it and position it for the second engine. Make sure if lines up in side view mode too.

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9. Finally, add another cube. This will be used to create the smoothed spikes under the wings (as visible here).

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10. Extrude and shape it as shown:

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11. Duplicate it 3 times, and place them according to the blueprints.

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12. Finally, if you haven’t already, close up the nose of the aircraft.

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Join all the objects together and you’re finished! Now ready for Part 2 :)

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