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In Rhino 4.0 Essential Training, author Dave Schultze shows how the 3D NURBS-based modeling tools in Rhino 4.0 are used to engineer products from toy robots to full-sized aircraft. This course concentrates on using Rhino 4.0 for industrial design and rapid prototyping, with a review of common 3D terminology using specific examples. Along with a comprehensive exploration of the Rhino interface, the course includes an introduction to building 3D objects with Rhino's three primary entities: the curve, the surface, and the solid. Exercise files are included with the course.
In this video, we'll take an exciting tour of the built-in solid commands, which allow you to build primitives directly or via a single command. Examples of primitives include spheres, cones, boxes, and many others. Using these commands, the result is geometry that has the primary characteristic of the solid, closure. In other words, it is entirely closed and we'll have no openings or gaps. To get started, I am going to zoom in on couple of the solids we are going to build. I'll now open up the toolbar for solids, which is right here on the main toolbar.
So, I am going to click and then drag it out. I'll start off by building a box. And I've got the snapping points here, so make sure if you are following around that your Point snap is on. That would critical, so we can snap to these points. Otherwise, you'd be snapping to other geometry or typing in dimensions. So, I am going to start off with the basic box. I am going to snap from one corner to next and to the last. So, that's the basic box. One variation I might recommend is to start off the box and notice that there's a Center option in there.
A lot of times, you want to have this in a specific location based on its center, not the corners that I just did. So, remember, even though this has multiple boxes inside of it, there we have four, a lot of times you will have further options inside the command line. So, always be sure to check that command line during any command. Okay, let's take a shot at creating a sphere and notice there, it looks there are 6 or 7 ways to do that. I just pick the Default, snap to the center, and we'll just eyeball it this time.
It doesn't matter how big. I'll try an ellipsoid. Basically, it's a sphere that's been elongated in one, two, or three directions. It's always best to start off with the center. I prefer personally to make the first axis the longest one. Here we are snapping, but if you are wanting this to be specific size, you would then make a mental note here of exactly how far you are going over. For example, this is 5. If I want to have the final axis up vertically to being a matching number, that would very helpful.
Oherwise, you'd just be guessing. So, I am going to just type in five, even though there is a snap point there. Okay. That's enough building. Let's just take a look at some other ten primitives. You have got your basic cone. I'd think the pyramid probably has the most variations because we can start off with a three sided. There's a four sided or five sided. It's really unlimited. But after about 30 or 40 sides, it starts to look pretty much like a cone, so not as useful. Then we have the truncated or tapered cone, the cylinder, which we're familiar with. The tube allows us to have wall thicknesses and so this is another one of those commands where you have to check the command line.
There's a lot of prompts as you build this part by part. So multiple options, always helpful to slow down and read that command line and finally, that torus also as the doughnut. So, let's get these out the way. And we'll start off by building a couple of parts for the backpack. Just take quick look that the final will look like. So, there's our completed, flying jet pack for him, and I am going to turn it back off, and let's quickly just make one cylinder for his tank.
Just use the Solid menu this time. Solid > cylinder, and I am going to use my snapping points, just so I don't have to worry about where everything is going. Pretty straightforward. Let's make the other tank, and this is extremely helpful to be in the perspective viewport. Notice it's trying to snap to other points as it sees them. So, I prefer working perspective whenever possible just so I can the hit points that I want. Now I just build those two tanks one at a time.
Of course, we've going to over mirroring, and that would include just building one section or half and then mirroring it to other side of the axis. Let's finish this tank top off with a sphere. Back to Solid menu > Sphere command, I am just going to pick the very first one, Center and radius. Let me turn off this Point snap just to show another little alternative. I am going to go with center. That's kind of interesting here. If I am clicking around, it's not finding that point. I turned it off. It's not finding anywhere really.
Until I go to the edge. Then it says, "That's an arc, or a circle," it's got a center, and it snaps directly to it. So, this command is very similar to the way it works with the lines. So, let me go ahead and click to start there, and I am just going eyeball this. Another tip about snapping is if it trying to grab other points and you don't want it to do that, you can hit the Alt key to temporarily to turn those off. Okay. Let's make the other one. I am going to show you another little tip. I'll right-click to repeat, snap to the center, and now I am now back where I was here with not knowing how big.
But notice in command in line, it says Radius. That was the last number that I picked, building the first sphere. So, I can just stop right here and either hit Enter or right-click. It will match with prior dimension, pretty handy. So, the solid primitive commands make it very easy to build quick and clean geometry, but you probably want to avoid stopping there. I recommend continuing and adding more detail like fillets, chamfers or part lines, in order to make your model more interesting and realistic.
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