Modelling a Fiat 500 using Polymodelling
This tutorial was created using 3D Studio Max 5 but most of the techniques should be possible in any 3D application. The images in this tutorial are pretty low quality and this was done intentionally due to limited server space.
This tutorial assumes basic knowledge of the 3D Studio Max interface and certain basic terminology used in 3D computer graphics. Beginners may still be able to use this tutorial but it may prove somewhat difficult.
I am by no means an expert at this stuff so I am sure that more experienced modelers may have better, more efficient techniques for doing some of the things that I do in this tutorial.
All I can do is share my current pool of knowledge with you and if you have better ways to do things then by all means, let me know.
This tutorial is broken down into four chapters:
Modelling the Exterior
Creating the Accessories
Building Wheels and Tires
Modelling the Interior
The first thing to consider when modeling a car is your references, you want to make sure that you have accurate reference images to ensure an accurate model. The Internet is a great source for reference images. Blueprints can be found all over the Internet but my favorite source is Thomas Suurland's website. He has an extensive library of blueprints that you can download for free.
After you have a blueprint selected, you have to cut it up into the different views of the car. For this tutorial I have selected the Fiat 500. I use Adobe Photoshop 7 for all my image manipulation but you could do the same thing with any graphics application. You must always try to cut the blueprints as close to the car as you can as this will make lining them up easier in your 3D modeling program. The image below shows how I cut the blueprint.
Save each section with the appropriate name (top, side, back, front) to make it easier to identify them later.
Setting up the blueprints in 3D Studio Max
The first thing you do once Max is opened is to import the images into the program. Click on the utilities tab and then click on the button labeled "Asset Browser."
When the asset browser window comes up, go back to Max and hit the "M" key on your keyboard to bring up the material editor. Drag the two windows so that they are next to each other as shown below. Make sure that you are in the directory containing your blueprints in the asset browser.
Drag each of your four blueprints (top, side, front, back) onto a different sphere in the material editor. Once you have them all, change each sphere to a cube using the button I've circled below. This just makes it easier to see the blueprints.
In the asset browser, right-click the side blue print and select properties. This brings up the image information dialog. Take note of the resolution of the image because you will create a plane with the same dimensions to map the blueprint onto.
Go back to the left viewport in Max and create a plane object with one width seg and one length seg. Change the width to 395 and the length to 177 to correspond with the dimensions of the side blueprint. Name this plane "side." The parameters of your plane should look like this (image on the left).
Now go back to the material editor and click on the cube with the side blueprint on it. Drag it onto the plane object you created. This will map the image onto the plane. If you can't see the image in the left viewport, then right-click the viewport name in the top left of the viewport and select "Smooth + Highlights." This is what you should have:
Repeat this whole process for the other three blueprints. Create a plane in the top viewport for the top blueprint, one in the front viewport for the front blueprint and one in the back viewport for the back blueprint. When you have done all of the blueprints, you should reposition the different planes until they look like this in the perspective viewport:
Now if you don't want to go through all of the stuff detailed above, I decided to be a nice guy and provide you with the .max file with all the blueprints set up as you see them in the picture above.
The blueprints are now positioned correctly to begin modeling the car. Now the fun begins!!
Next Page: Setting up the first polygon.
Setting up the first Polygon
Create a plane object in the left viewport with one length seg and one width seg. The actual size doesn't matter but make it small and position it in front of the front wheel arch as shown below.
Now you have to convert this plane to a mesh by clicking the "Modify" tab and selecting "Edit Mesh" from the modifier list dropdown menu. This adds the "Edit Mesh" modifier to the top of your stack.
Right-click the "Edit Mesh" modifier on top of the stack and select "Collapse To" from themenu. You will get a little warning but just click "Yes" to continue. Now "Editable Mesh" is left on top of the stack. We have now created the first polygon of the car.
Now that the polygon is lined up properly in the left viewport with the side blueprint, we have to make sure that it's lined up correctly with the top blueprint. Drag it across the top viewport as shown below:
Go back to the left viewport and draw lines from the center of the wheel as shown. These lines will make it easier to get a rounder shape for the wheel area. Make sure that "Edged Faces" is selected for the viewport (right-click the name of the viewport and select "Edged Faces" from the menu). This will make it easier to see the polygon edges.
Hit "M" for the material editor and create a new material for the car. In this case I used a blue material with the opacity set to 50% so that I could see the blueprint through the polygon. I also made the material shiny to better see any imperfections in the mesh. The material settings are shown below. Select the polygon and click the "Assign Material Selection" button I've circled below:
OK, we are off to a good start now, the modeling can now commence!
Beginning to model the car
With the polygon still selected, in the stack, expand the "Editable Mesh" modifier and select "edge" from the sub-object list. The will take you into sub-object edge mode and you can then you can manipulate the polygon's edges.
Below the stack, further down the panel, there is a button labeled "Cut." With that button activated, go to the polygon in the left viewport and click on the top edge and then again straight down on the bottom edge to cut the polygon in half along the guide line we created earlier.
Now back on the stack, select "Vertex" from the sub-object choices to make the vertices of the polygon visible drag the vertices to the positions shown below. Align them with the guide lines:
We need to position the vertices in the top viewport as well. Select and drag the vertices until you have them set up as shown on the left:
Shift-drag to create two new polys as shown below. Make sure you line everything up with the blueprints in all the viewports.
It's coming along nicely but there's still a lot of work to do.
Next Page: Detailing the wheel arch.
Detailing the wheel arch
Well, the front wheel arch is coming along but it's not detailed enough. More edge cuts are needed to add more detail to the arch. More guide lines are needed. Create the new lines in the positions shown by the red lines and then make cuts on the mesh corresponding to the guide lines.
Go into vertex mode and move the new vertices created by the new cuts until you have something like this:
Now we want to see what this will look like smoothed so we need to add a "Meshsmooth" modifier to this mesh. With the wheel arch mesh selected, go to the stack, click the "Modifier List" drop-down and select "Meshsmooth" from the list. The "Meshsmooth" modifier will be placed on top of the "Editable Mesh" modifier. Change the number of iterations to 2. The mesh will become smoother but more dense.
It looks good but it's not perfect so we must add more detail to the unsmoothed mesh. Go back to edge mode under "Editable Mesh" and cut the new edges shown in red.
Go into vertex mode and adjust the new vertices to round off the front wheel arch. The wheel arch is now finished for now. This is what you should have at this point:
Now we can move on to the the area around the front wheel arch.
Moving on to the front of the car
Ok, things are going to start moving faster now. go into edge mode and hold down ctrl and select the two top edges of the mesh and then hold down shift and drag them upwards in the direction of the arrows. Go into vertex mode and position the vertices as shown below in all the viewports.
Select the indicated two edges and shift-drag them out in the direction of the arrows. Go into vertex mode and position the vertices as shown. You will eventually have two vertices where the green circle is. Select both vertices. Under the stack, a little further down the panel, under "Weld", put 2.0 in the box next to the "Selected" button and then click the "Selected" button to merge the two vertices into one.
Once again, shift-drag the edge indicated and then position the vertices. Weld the two vertices in the green circle.
It needs to be more curved in this area so go back to edge mode under "Editable Mesh" and cut the new edges shown in red.
Now we can move on to the the area around the front wheel arch.
Next Page: More on the front of the car.
More on the front of the car
Ok, make the cut shown in red and adjust the new vertices until you have something like what is shown left. This will round off the edge of the mesh more and provide a better shape.
Select the indicated three edges and shift-drag them out in the direction of the arrows. Go into vertex mode and tweak the vertices as shown. Only drag the vertices as far as the middle of the car because you are going to mirror the whole mesh to get the other half. You should now have the mesh shown below.
Make two cuts in the front of the mesh as shown so you can add more detail to it:
In the top viewport, adjust the new vertices so they accurately represent the line around the hood of the car.
The next thing you want to do is mirror the mesh you have so far so you can get a better idea of what the front of the car will look like. Click on the "Meshsmooth" modifier on top of the stack to go back to the smoothed mesh. Make sure the viewport with the front view of the car is the active one and make sure the mesh is selected. Click the "Mirror Selected Objects" button and a dialog box will appear. Mirror axis is "X", the offset position depends on your viewport so adjust it accordingly and make sure you select "Reference" so that any change you make to one half of the mesh is reflected in the other half.
With your mesh mirrored, you should have something like this in the perspective viewport:
Continuing towards the door area
Shift+drag the two edges shown and position vertices as shown in the picture. Move the vertex in the green circle to the one in the blue circle and weld them. Also weld the two vertices in the orange circle.
Now you need to define the door area. Select these two edges and shift+drag them to the edge of the door on the blueprint.
If you look in the top viewport, you will notice that the door has a little curve to it and the door panel you just created doesn't. This is easily fixed. Create a cut in the door at the indicated place. Drag the new edges outward to add the curve to the door.
Now, it would be wise to clone and mirror the polys that make up the front wheel arch so you can use them for the back wheel arch. You do this so you don't have to build it from scratch. In the stack, click on "polygon" under "Editable Mesh" and select all the polygons that comprise the front wheel arch. You should have something like this:
Shift+drag the selected polys in the X direction a little distance. When you release the mouse button, you will get a dialog with the title, "Clone Part of Mesh." Make sure you select "Clone To Object:" and leave the name at its default. Click "OK." The cloned polys become a different object from the rest of the mesh. Exit polygon mode and select the newly detached wheel arch. With the left viewport active, click the "Mirror Selected Objects" button and make sure that Mirror Axis is "X" and Clone Selection is set to "No Clone." Adjust the offset value until the new polys are positioned over the back wheel arch. You should have this now:
The back arch you just created needs to be tweaked to fit properly with the blueprint. If you look in the top viewport, you will realize that you will have to move around some of the vertices to make the back wheel arch more accurate. I will not go into the details of tweaking the vertices because by now, it should be no problem for you to do this since we've done this a number of times already in this tutorial. When you are done, you should have something like this:
Next Page: re-attaching the back wheel arch
Re-attaching the back wheel arch
In order to mirror the back wheel arch, it had to be detached from the original mesh. The next task is therefore to re-attach it to the original mesh so that you can continue building the shell of the car. Before you can do this, you have to remove the "Meshsmooth" modifier from the top of the stack of the original mesh. Select the first mesh and right-click the "Meshsmooth" on top of the stack. Select "Delete" from the resulting list. The mesh is no longer smoothed. Now, to attach the back wheel arch, look further down the panel under the stack of the original mesh and click the button labeled "Attach" and then click on the back wheel arch mesh. The two meshes are now one again. Deactivate the button by clicking it again.
There is a thin line of polys that runs at the top of the mesh that we need to continue. Select the edge shown (1) and shift+drag it to the first position at the beginning of the door (2), weld the vertices that overlap and shift+drag again to the center of the door in line with the edge you cut (3). Weld the overlapping vertices here too and then shift+drag again to the end of the door and once again weld the overlapping vertices. The picture below shows what I mean.
Select the three edges at the end of the door and shift+drag them to the position shown in the picture. Weld the vertices in the green circles.
Shift+drag the edges shown in red to the position shown and then move the vertex in the green circle to the other vertex and weld them.
Repeat the previous step twice until you have something like the picture below. Weld the vertices in the green circles.
Once again, repeat the previous steps until you have this:
Now just do some vertex tweaking until you have this. Make sure you also use the top viewport to line up the vertices with the blueprints.
Onto the rear end
The two edges shown in yellow used to be one single edge but it got divided into two when you made some cuts in the front wheel arch. As it turns out, this works out great here too. Select the two yellow edges and shift+drag them as shown and position the vertices as shown.
Shift+drag the indicated edge and position the vertices as shown.
The back area needs to be rounded more if you look at the top viewport so make the cuts shown below and move vertices around until the shape has more curvature.
Here are the before and after pictures from the tope viewport. Some more tweaking might be necessary later but for now this is good enough.
Select all the edges shown and shift+drag them downwards. Weld the two vertices in green circles.
Make the cut shown in red and tweak the vertex placement for a rounder shape.
Select all the edges shown and shift+drag them. Now just do some vertex tweaking until you have this. Make sure you also use the top viewport to line up the vertices with the blueprints.
Next Page: More of the rear end.
More of the rear end
Select all the edges shown and shift+drag them a little distance to create a thin line of polys.
OK, this next step might seem like a lot but it's not. Just select all of the edges shown and shift+drag them to the center to close off the car rear. Tweak vertices to get the shape shown.
The back area needs to be rounded more if you look at the top viewport so make the cuts shown below in the back view of the car and move vertices around until the shape has more curvature. Make sure you also arrange vertices properly in the top viewport to add curvature to the back.
Well, now would be a good time to add a "Meshsmooth" modifier to see how the shape looks so far. Click the "Modifier List" drop-down menu and select "Meshsmooth" from the list. Set iterations to 2. Hit "M" to bring up the material editor. Click on the material you used on your mesh if it's not already selected. Click on the "2-Sided" checkbox under "Shader Basic Parameters" to make the material double-sided. Your mesh should look like this at this point.
We are movin' on up
We are beginning the hood at this point so select all the edges shown and shift+drag them a upwards to create the start of the hood. Weld the two vertices in green. Make sure you tweak vertices in all viewports.
OK, now we have another big jump. This is just a repeat of techniques you are already familiar with. Just select all of the edges shown and do a few shift+drags to finish of the hood of the car. Tweak vertices to get the shape shown. Weld all the overlapping vertices in the green circles. You should have this after all that:
As I said earlier, things have definitely picked up the pace. By now you are familiar with the techniques employed here so there is no longer any need for me to take you through every single cut and weld and extrusion. As you can see in the image below, I have made a series of shift+drags and welds. Do the same but always remember to also check the other viewports to make sure that things are lining up right with the blueprints.
Select and then shift+drag all the edges shown and weld any vertices that are overlapping.
That line of polys that we just created that represents the middle section of the car is too flat, it needs to have some curvature to it so that it looks like it's bulging a little. To fix it, you need to make the cuts shown and shift all the new vertices outwards to give the surface its bulge. As you can see in the orange circle, there is now a bend in the middle section to give the bulge. Do that all the way around using vertices. The hood also has the bulge but not as much as the rest of the midsection so don't pull those vertices out as much.
Next Page: Putting the top on.
Putting the top on
Right! Now you are going to put a top on this car. You will detach the windows later so for now you'll just build the basic shell. Begin by going into "Polygon" mode and select these two polys from the hood of the car.
Hold down shift and drag the polys to the roof area. When a dialog box appears, select "Clone to Element" and then click OK. Make sure that you also drag the polys upwards in the left viewport so they are properly positioned at the height of the roof.
Now start building polys towards the back as shown in the pictures below. Position vertices as shown. You will notice that not all of the blueprints will line up properly at this stage. This is fine as long as the differences are not too severe. You will also notice that there is an edge missing in the roof section to join with the back of the car. This is easily fixed by making the cut shown with a yellow line. Weld vertices in green circles.
Create the three rows of polys shown below.
Shift+drag the edges in red and then move the vertices to the positions shown by the green arrows and then weld them there.
At this point you should have what can be seen below.
Well, now would be a good time to add a "Meshsmooth" modifier to see how the shape looks so far. Click the "Modifier List" drop-down menu and select "Meshsmooth" from the list. Set iterations to 2. Hit "M" to bring up the material editor. Click on the material you used on your mesh if it's not already selected. Click on the "2-Sided" checkbox under "Shader Basic Parameters" to make the material double-sided. Your mesh should look like this at this point (see left).
Closing off the top of the shell
Now, you need to create a poly for the front side window. Go into "Polygon" mode and click on the button labeled "Create" under the stack. Now start with the vertex shown in red and click the four vertices shown in an anti-clockwise direction until a new poly is created.
Extrude the edges shown in the picture.
Now extrude the edge as as shown by the red line. Weld the vertex shown in the green circle to the corresponding one on the rest of the car mesh. Don't worry about the two vertices shown by the green arrows. There will be a gap in the mesh but that's ok because we are going to detach the mesh later.
Create the two cuts shown below:
Shift+drag the edge in red and then move the vertices to the positions shown by the green arrows and then weld them there.
Shift+drag the edge in red and then position vertices as shown. Make the cut shown by the yellow line and then weld vertices in green circles.
Continue shift-dragging the red-marked edges:
There is a small area of the front fender that we forgot to create earlier on so we can quickly do that now. Simply select all the edges in red and shift+drag them downwards. Position the vertices as shown.
This is what the mesh should look like with smoothing on at this point.
Note the little gap that I mentioned earlier.
Now at this point you have the basic shell of the car. It's now time to start adding the little details that will turn it into a Fiat 500.
Next Page: Beginning the detailing.
Beginning the detailing
Ok, at the front of the car, position the vertices indicated by red dots as shown below. Make the cut shown in yellow.
Extrude the polygons shown in the picture by a value of 1. The actual value doesn't really matter because we might move the polygons later.
The extrusion created extra polys that you don't want but to be able to see them, you have to hide the mirrored half of the mesh. To do this, select the mirrored half of the car, click on the "Display" tab and further down the display panel, click on the "Hide Selected" button.
Now at the front of the remaining half, there is a thin strip of 3 polys that was created by the extrusion you just made select all of them and delete them.
To make things easier, it might be wiser to detach the hood from the car first. So unhide the other half of the mesh, select all the polys that make up half the hood and detach them from the rest of the mesh. Name the hood polys "Hood" and click OK. Now hid the remainder of the mesh, leaving just the hood polys visible.
You will notice that there is now only one half of the hood so mirror it and make sure that you select "Reference" from the Mirror dialog box. Select the front row of vertices and move them backwards a little.
Select the edges at the bottom of the hood as shown below.
Change to the bottom viewport and shift+drag the selected edges diagonally between the X and Y directions as shown below. Adjust the red vertices as shown in the zoomed in areas.
Continuing the hood
Select the two edges shown and extrude them inwards. Weld the two vertices in the green circle.
Now select the remaining edges at the top of the hood and do the same to them. Now your hood should have some depth to it. Now you need to create the ridge that runs down the middle of the hood. Create the cuts shown below.
Select the new polys shown and extrude them by a value of 0.7. There will be a thin line of polys between the two halves that you must delete or you will get two ridges on the hood instead of one.
Now at the front of the remaining half, there is a thin strip of 3 polys that was created by the extrusion you just made select all of them and delete them. Now zoom into the left viewport and get very close to the front of the hood. You will see two vertices that were created by your extrusion. Move these two vertices in the direction of the green arrows below until they are on top of the ones below them. DO NOT WELD THEM! Just leave them on top of each other.
As it is now, the edge around the hood is too round. You have to sharpen the corners of to hood to make it look better. Select all the edges shown in red and chamfer them by a value of 0.1. Add a "Meshsmooth" modifier and set the iterations to 2 and look at what the hood now looks like.
You need to clean up some of the vertices created by the chamfer. Zoom in on the left viewport again and you will notice a triangle of vertices as shown below. Weld the two vertices in the red circle.
Select the edges shown and chamfer them by 0.2. Once again, zoom in on the mesh in the left viewport and perform any vertex cleanup that may be necessary.
The hood is now done so hide the hood and show the rest of the car.
Next Page: More detailing.
The first thing you need to do is create a lip of polys for the front of the car. Do this the same way you did it for the hood.
Select the edges shown below and chamfer them by 0.1. You may model the inside of the trunk if you want but for the sake of time, we will not be doing that in this tutorial, especially since the trunk will be closed at all times.
Create the cut shown in red all the way to the back. Now select the polys the thin row of polys you just created and extrude them by 2.5.
Now chamfer the edges shown in red.
Now we want to detach the doors but there are some things we need to do first. Create the cuts shown below in the side of the car.
Now rearrange vertices to form the shape of the door. Select the red polys below and detach them, name them "Door". Hide the rest of the car, leaving just the detached door visible.
Create the cuts shown in red so you can form the shape of the window. Detach the polys that make up the window glass and name them "Window Galss" then hide them for now, you'll use them later.
With all the door polys selected, hold down shift and drag it a little distance in the x direction. Flip the normals of the cloned polys so they are facing the other direction. Now you have to create polys that join the two sides of he door so go around the whole edge of the door and window creating polys that represent the thickness of the door. At the end you should have a solid door shape. Select all the edges shown in red below all around the door and window on the outside and inside and chamfer them by a small amount (say 0.1 or 0.2). Whatever value you decide to go with, make sure you remember it because that is the same value you will use later. This setting will determine what the door seams look like. I used 0.2 but it's a matter of preference.
Ok the door is now finished for now. You will add the trim and door glass later. Now hide the door and unhide the body of the car. Select the edges that outline the door and extrude them inwards a small distance. Chamfer the resulting edges by the same amount that you chamfered the door and that will create a nice seam. Perform any vertex cleanup that's necessary. Unhide the door and it should look something like this:
Now you need to create the rear side window. Hide the door again. Create the cuts shown and then reposition vertices to form the shape of the rear side window. Detach the polys that make the inside of the window and extrude the edges inwards and chamfer like you did for the door window. Do any vertex tweaking and cleanup necessary.
At this point this is what you should have. You will notice that the two side windows do not line up perfectly but this is ok because you will fix that when you put the trim around the windows.
This is as good a time as any to do the insides of the wheel arches so you can get them out of the way. You should also go around the whole car and give the panels some thickness. Just do some extrudes inwards along with some chamfers as well as some vertex tweaking until you have something like this. You can put as much or as little detail as you want.
Now back to the front of the car. You need to use the techniques you have learned this far to create the the bulge on the front of the car. You can see the smoothed and unsmoothed versions below.
Now rearrange vertices to form the shape of the headlight. You might also have to do some cuts and welds until you have a nice shape of polys defining your headlight. Remember, you need to get it as close to a perfect circle as you can. I arranged the polys into a pentagon shape so I could get a nice round shape when smoothed. I also had to perform a number of cuts to get the right shape for the light and surrounding a area. Make sure that you do any vertex cleanup that may be required. This is what mine looks like:
Now do the same thing you did for the main headlight for the smaller headlight. You also need to make an indentation for the Fiat badge that will go on the front of the car. To do this you will need to cut a few edges to define the shape and then extrude some polys inwards a small distance. I also chamfered by about 0.3 to give it a nice, clean edge. You should easily be able to do this using techniques we've already used many times in this tutorial. This is what it should look like after all this:
Alright, we are going to leave the front now and go to the back of the car. Now there are many ways to do the back of the car depending on what exact model of Fiat 500 you are modeling. Select all the polys shown and detach them. Hide all the other parts of the car and leave the polys you just detached visible.
Do the same thing that you did for the door on these polys. Shift-drag them forward a little distance and then flip the normals of the cloned polys. Use the create tool under the polygon sub-object level to join the two sets of polys and then chamfer the edges to give a nice seam to the rear engine door. When you have done this, it is time to create the indentations for the handle and the license plate. Just as you did the indentation for the front badge, make some cuts in the shape of the indentation and then extrude inwards a little and then chamfer to give you something like what is shown below. Don't forget to do some vertex cleanup. I'm not going to take you step by step through this because by now you should know how to do it since we've done this many times in this tutorial. This should be easy for you by now!
The vents on the back will be done later when we do the trim and accessories of the car. What you should do next is to extrude inwards and chamfer the edges of the back of the car where you just detached the polys for the back engine door so you can get a nice seam. Then do the back window just the same way that you did the side windows. Arrange/cut edges or vertices to form the shape of the window and then detach the window glass and then extrude inwards and chamfer. Don't forget the vertex cleanup. After all that you should have something like this:
Do the windshield the same way you did the other windows. The last thing you need to do is to detach the top polys that make up the sun-roof. This is easy. Do it like you did the door.
Well, the main exterior body of the car is now finished. It took a while to get to this point but you made it this far. There is still a lot of work to do before the Fiat is complete but this section has turned out very nicely.
What you need to do now is to tweak things the way you want them. There is a lot of tweaking that you can do to make this model better. Vertices can be moved around or welded, edges can be cut in, chamfers can be done to define lines better and make things more visible. How you tweak is up to you.
In the next section you will tackle adding the trim and accessories for the car such as lights, fenders, window glass, and more. That section will be easier than the one you have just finished. The section after that is the making of the tires and this will be easier still. The tires on the fiat 500 are very straight forward and easy to make.
Up to this point, your model should look something like this:
Building the Accessories begins on the next page.
The first thing you will make is the front fender. For the first part of this tutorial, we have been using the polymodeling method, which is my preferred method but sometimes it's easier to use other methods depending on what you are modeling at the time. For the front fender, it would be easier to use the box modeling technique instead of polymodeling it.
Create a box and line it up with the front of the car where the front fender will be. Add an "Edit Mesh" modifier to the box. In polygon mode, delete the leftmost face shown by the yellow arrow. Deleting this polygon will remove the cap at the halfway point of the fender. The box is shown below.
Now do a few extrudes to form the rest of the shape of the fender. Arrange vertices so that you give it a nice curve. Create a new material for the fender that is a different color from the rest of the car. If you haven't already done it, hide the rest of the car leaving just the fender visible. Add a "Meshsmooth" modifier to the fender with 2 iterations.
Select all the edges shown and chamfer them by 0.4.
Select the polys shown and bevel them by -0.8. Now extrude them a little distance in the negative direction to create a sunk-in area:
Some vertices need tweaking along the center line because they were moved when you beveled the polys. You also need to delete a poly that was created in the negative extrusion at the center line. By now this should be no problem for you. Select the edges shown below and chamfer them by 1.0. Now mirror the fender along the center line. Make sure you select reference. Now you need to create one of the bolts that connects the fender to the car. The easy way to do this is to create a curve like the one shown below in the top viewport. Next you should add a lathe modifier to the curve. Make sure your settings are the same as the ones shown below. Make sure you also click the "Max" button.
Now position the bolt in the fender. You might have to scale it down if it's too big. Now you can delete the reference copy of the fender and mirror it again, this time choose copy because you are going to weld the two halves together. Delete the "Meshsmooth" modifiers from both halves and then select one of the halves and click the "Attach" button and then select the other half. Weld all the vertices at the halfway point. Also mirror a copy of the bolt that holds the fender to the other side of the car. While you are doing all this mirroring, also mirror a copy of the whole fender to the back of the car. Adjust and tweak it as necessary to make it fit properly at the back. Also mirror copies of the bolts from the front to the back and adjust as necessary.
Ok, let's start with the badge that goes in the indentation on the front of the car. Create a box in the front viewport with 5 length segs, 3 width segs, and 2 height segs. Now move around vertices to approximate the shape of the badge as defined by the indentation in the car. Some vertices will need to be welded but at the end of it all you should have something like this. Don't forget to delete the polys at the center line of the car.
Now extrude out the wings of the badge and line them up with the indentation of the car. Play with vertices to get a good shape.
Arrange vertices as shown and then make the cuts shown in red.
Make the cuts shown in red and then extrude the polys shown by the yellow area inwards. When you are extruding inwards, make 2 extrusions. First extrude inwards about halfway and then extrude the rest of the way. The reason you do this is so that you create edges at the halfway point which you will use later. Don't make the inner extrusions too deep. Delete the polygons that are created at the center line. Delete the polys shown in red.
With the red polys selected, extrude outwards up the halfway line that you created with the inward extrusion. Weld the vertices in the green circles. Any time you extrude there will the polys at the center line that you do not want so make sure you always delete them.
Now select the middle poly and extrude it outwards the rest of the way. The badge is shaping up nicely now, what is needed next is some tweaking and detailing. You can tweak it until you get it to the point where you are satisfied with it. It will need a few chamfers here and there and some vertex tweaking. You can put as much or as little detail as you want into it. This is what mine looked like after a whole lot of tweaking.
Proceed to the next page for more on the Headlights!
The headlights of the car are pretty straight forward and easy. Ok, create a tube object in the front viewport that fits nicely in the hole you made for the headlight in the body of the car. Make sure that radius 2 is very close to radius 1 so that the tube is very thin. Chamfer the top edges so that they will remain crisp when smoothed.
The next part to make will be the reflector that goes inside the tube. Create a cone object in the front viewport that fits perfectly within the tube. Set radius 2 to zero. Set it to 2 height segments and 1 cap segment. Select the middle line of edges and scale them outwards so that the cone will have a rounded shape when smoothed.
Now delete the top cap polygon and select all the polygons of the cone and flip the normals of the cone object. For the light bulb, you can use a simple sphere unless you want to create a more detailed bulb. To create the glass of the headlight, all you need is another sphere with the hemisphere setting set to 0.75 and segments set to 11. Then all you do is delete the back polys and select the vertex at the top of the sphere and pull it inwards a little to make the curve of the class less steep. All of the different parts of the headlight should look like the picture below. It is important to model the different parts of the headlight and not just use a texture map if you want it to look real. Now just position the different parts of the headlight inside the tube in the order they are in the picture as they would be in the real car. Then mirror the whole headlight to the other side of the car.
For the smaller set of front lights, the procedure is similar to how you did the headlights but this time you don't need to make a tube In the front viewport, create a sphere that fits in the smaller light slot and then convert it to a mesh and then detach one half of it. You will use the front half for the glass of the light and the back half for the reflector. Make sure you select all the polys of the back half and flip their normals. Then create a bulb and position it inside the light. This is what you should have now. Now mirror a copy to the other side of the car.
The next thing to create is the turn signal light that goes on the side of the car. This is also pretty simple. Create a cylinder object in your side viewport and then squash it a little to make it more of an oval than a circle. Now clone it and put the clone behind the original. Make sure that the heights of the cylinder objects are not too large, a good value would be 5. Now select the one in front and select the top face. Extrude it outward by a small value like 0.1 and then bevel it inwards a little. Now extrude it inwards a little distance and then bevel it inward again and then finally extrude it outwards to it's original level. Also delete the back polygon of the front cyliner. This is what it should look like now. Chamfer the top edges until you have something like this:
Delete the top and bottom polys of the clone cylinder. Now move the two cylinders so that they are on the side of the car where the turn signal light should be. You will have to adjust vertices on the cylinders so that they can sit properly on the curved surface of the car. Mirror a copy to the other side of the car. When you have done that your car should look like this with all the trim that you have done so far:
The two polys shown left in red should approximate the shape of the back lights if you followed the tutorial precisely when building the body of the car. If they don't, then move vertices around until they do.
In the side viewport, hold down shift and drag the two polys a small distance in the positive x-direction. Make sure you are only moving in the x-direction and not y or z. You will get a dialog box asking if you want to clone to an object or and element. Select object and give the new polys a name like "Rear Light Base". Now hide all parts of the car except the two polys that you just cloned. These are going to be the base for the tail lights. The good thing about doing it this way is that the polys already follow the curve of the car so the lights will fit perfectly onto the back of the car.
Now flip the normals of these new polys so they are facing towards the front of the car. Select all the outer edges of the polys and shift+drag them once again in the positive x-direction in the side viewport. This will create what looks like an open box as shown below.
Then you need to cap the polygons to make a box. Select the original 2 polys that started this box and shift+drag them in the positive x-direction up to the point where you stopped the extrusions of the side of the box. When the dialog box xomes up, this time select "Clone to Element". There is a problem with these two new polys, they are facing the wrong way. You need to flip their normals. Once you have done that you will have what is shown below. Now all you have to do is weld the vertices in the green circles to close off the box.
Ok, this box is the base where the rear lights sit. The next step is to select the polys shown in red in the picture above and extrude them outwards by 0.1 and then bevel then inwards until you have something like this:
Chamfer the outer edges of the box so it maintains a nice shape when you smooth it. Now you are once again going to shift+drag the polys you beveled in the positive x-direction and this time clone them to a new object with whatever name you see fit. You are going to build the actual lights from these polys. The first problem you will run into with these polys is that there are only two of them but the rear lights are split into three parts. This is easily remedied. Move the edge at the halfway point upwards and then cut another edge into the polys to make the third poly so that your polys look like this:
Detach all three polys so that they are all different objects and then select their surrounding edges and extrude them backwards towards the base so that you have 3 boxes on the base. Tweak the shape and then chamfer the boxes by a very small amount.
Now unhide the body of the car and position the rear light in the proper position. You might have to do some vertex tweaking to make it fit perfectly. Mirror a copy to the other side of the car. This is what the rear looks like thus far.
Proceed to the next page for more on the Door handles!
Hide everything except the car doors and the rear engine door. Now just like you did with the rear lights you need to detach the polys shown below and shift+drag them out in the positive x-direction in the side viewport. Make them a new object and name them something like "Rear Door Handle".
This is a chance for you to practice the polymodeling skills you have learned so far. See if you can go from those two polys to the door handle shown below. All it takes is some cuts, welds and extrudes. It's not very hard and by this stage it should be no problem for you. After about 10 minutes or so, you should have something resembling this:
Now onto the handles for the passenger doors. Create a small box in the side viewport in line with where the door handle should be. Give it 1 length seg, 1 width seg and 2 height segs. Select the poly shown below and extrude it out a few times also beveling it to create the curve of the door handle. After some extrusions and bevels and tweaks you should have this:
Now add details by chamfering or cutting edges etc. How much detail you put into it depends on how close you are going to get the camera to the car when you render it. If you are going to be doing extreme closeups, then it's better to put as much detail into it as possible but that will cost you polys and make your model very heavy on your computer.
Next you need to add the indentation in the door under the door handle. This should be easy if you use a boolean. Create a sphere and squash it into a oval shape. Now position it in the door with half of it intersecting with the door. Select the door and then click on the "Compounds" tab on the tool bar. Now click the "Boolean Compound Object" button.
In the boolean settings, make sure "Move" and "Subtraction (A-B)" are selected and then click the "Pick Operand B" button. Now select the sphere you just created. This should subtract the sphere from the door leaving an indentation in the door.
Start with the windshield. Hide all unnecessary parts of the car. Set the iterations on the meshsmooth of the body of the car to zero so you have it at low poly. In the front viewport, create a box with 2 length segs, 1 width seg and 2 height segs. Delete the polys at either end of the box so that you have something like what you can see on the left.
Now you have to align the box with the edge of the windshield where it will be. Once you have it aligned, you can start shift+dragging the edges out to form the shape of the windshield. Just shift+drag them around the windshield area as shown below. It will take a lot of tweaking to make it look lright. Mirror it to the other side of the car. Right is what it looks like mirrored and smoothed.
You might as well also put in some glass. A while back you detached the polys that were where the windshield glass should be and hid them. Unhide them and make them double sided like you did with the door. The windshield glass should already be in the correct position but you may need to do some tweaking. Mirror it to the other side. Now you can repeat the process for all the remaining windows. The door windows are a little different but the method is still the same so you should have no problem. Just take your time and don't rush yourself. After all that you should have something like this:
By now your model should be getting pretty big and it must be getting heavier on your computer. To avoid too much slowdown you should hide parts of the car that you are not working on. This will be easier on your computer and will not slow down your work. You can also turn down the number of iterations on your Meshsmooth modifiers and turn them up only when you want to see what the surface will look like smoothed. Meshsmooths will quickly bog down your machine, especially if they are at 2 iterations or more.
Ok, onwards! I just realized that we forgot to do the second rear door handle. This is no problem, we can just do it now. It's pretty straight forward and you can do it the same way you did the driver door handle. Just start with a box and do some extrudes and bevels until you have the desired shape and then smooth. Depending on your references, the handle is likely to be different from the one I found so just model the one you have in your references. The one I decided to model is shown below but there are many different types of handles that you could use. Position the handle in the correct position. I made mine very simple but you can make it very detailed if you plan on having close-ups of it when you do your final renders.
This is the reference pic that I used:
Proceed to the next page for some on the Vents!
OK, we've avoided this long enough. Vents are pretty tricky to do and not to mention difficult. It has been a nightmare for me trying to figure out the best way to do them. This is only my method of doing them, there are other ways of doing them but this is the best I could come up with. Before you do anything, you might want to clone the rear door and hide the clone in case you mess up and want to try the vents again. This will save you the trouble of having to rebuild the whole door if you mess it up.
The first thing you should do is to add an "Edit Mesh" modifier on top of the "Meshsmooth" modifier that is on top of the stack. The Meshsmooth that is there should have 2 iterations on it. By doing this, everything that is below the new Edit Mesh modifier is now not going to be used so collapse the stack up to the new modifier you just added. This also means that the mesh is now permanently at a higher poly count and this is what we want to be able to do the vents. Don't worry about messing this up because you have a copy hidden as a backup. Now select the polys shown and detach them from the mesh as a new object called "Vent" or something to that effect.
Now hide the rest of the door and leave just the polys you just detached visible. Then put a "Meshsmooth" on this new object with 2 iterations. Once again, add an "Edit Mesh" modifier on top of the Meshsmooth you just added and then collapse the stack again. Now go into polygon mode and select the polys shown in red below. You should have nine rows of polys selected since there are going to be nine vents.
Now extrude these polys inwards a small distance and then with them still selected drag them straight up. Dragging them up makes the vents go upwards at an angle instead of straight in along the x-axis. Ok, now comes the really fun part! Unhide the rest of the door with the hole where the vent polys used to be. The vents still fit perfectly in the hole they left but because you smoothed the vent polys, there are now too many edges and they don't match up with the edges on the rest of the door. To fix this, you have to do some welding.........a lot of welding! Make sure edged faces are turned on in the viewports and then go into vertex mode and start moving vertices and welding them so that you have just enough vertices to match up with the vertices on the rest of the door. Then attach the vent polys to the rest of the door and weld the corresponding polys. Confused?!?! Understandable! The picture below should show what I mean. The green circles show where vertices were moved to and welded.
At this point you could leave this as it is or you could add another Meshsmooth to the door with one iteration. But if you do this, your mesh will become incredibly dense and slow your computer down. It's up to you what you do.
You can hide the rear door now and unhide the body of the car because you are now going to do the vents on the body. Make the cut shown below. Detach the polys shown and then hide the rest of the car.
There is a thin line of polys that was created by a previous chamfer that you don't need at the moment so weld the vertices in the green circle to remove the thin line of polys. You will redo the chamfer later.
Continuing the Vents
Extrude the edges shown to complete the box shape. Weld the 2 vertices in the green circle.
Now chamfer some edges to get sharper edges when smoothed. Mirror a copy of these polys and then attach the two halves and weld the vertices in the middle. You are going to work on this part as a whole shape and not just as a half because of the way the vents are arranged. Add a "Meshsmooth" modifier to the polys and set iterations to 4. This is a very high amount of smoothing and your computer might have trouble with it. You might try to do the same thing with 3 iterations but then you will have smaller number of vents which are bigger. Now add an "Edit Mesh" modifier on top of the "Meshsmooth" and go into polygon mode. Select the polys shown below. There should be 39 vents in total. Notice that the outermost vents on either side are a little shorter than the rest.
Now extrude these polys inwards a small distance and then bevel slightly inwards to create the vents. Now you can go in and chamfer around each vent or you can just leave them the way they are, that's up to you but just don't put anymore Meshsmooths on it or your computer will hate you forever! The next thing you need to do is to unhide the body of the car and fix the area where you detached the polys by doing some extrudes and chamfers so that the vents fit properly. You should have this:
Ok, the vents are now complete. Thank God for that! Since there is still some space on this page, I guess it wouldn't be a bad idea to do the license plates. These are very simple. Start with the back plate. Create a box primitive that fits in the plate indentation on the rear door. Chamfer edges as necessary to get this. Now you have to make it curved so that it fits perfectly on the back of the car. Just arrange vertices to get the desired curve.
The front plate is made pretty much the same way so I will leave you to do that. When you are done you should have something like this (The positioning of the front plate is up to you. It can be put above or below the front fender or even on the fender itself, it's a matter of preference.):
To create the wipers, it might be easier to do it in a new file so start a new file called "wiper.max". In the front viewport, create a cone primitive with the parameters shown below.
Now let's do some box modeling. Just select polys, extrude them and tweak vertices until you have something like this:
Now you have to do the wiper blade and it's holder, this is also not very hard. In the top viewport, create a small box and extrude and bevel it and give it some curvature. Also do some chamfering.
Now you can put whatever detail you want into the wiper. For this tutorial I ended up with what's shown below.
Next you need to do the water squirters for the wipers. These are just simple cylinders with nozzles like this:
Now you have to open your Fiat file and merge it with the wiper.max. Your Wiper and squirter will have to be resized to fit on the car and some vertex tweaking might be necessary. Duplicate the wiper and the squirter for the other side of the car.
The last accessory that I forgot all about is the driver side mirror. This is an optional accessory as some of the references I found did not have mirrors. They also come in different shapes so the shape you use is up to you. It's very easy to make so I'm not going to bore you with step by step instructions on how to make it. Below is a picture of my completed mirror.
This is what the car looks like now (Minus the mirror which I only remembered after these renders were done, hehehehe!!):
Well this is the end of the Trim and Accessories section of this tutorial. Next we will tackle the making of the tires.
Rim and Hubcap
The easiest way to make the rim is to create a cross-section curve and then lathe it around an axis. Create a new file called "tire.max." In the top viewport, create the curve shown below.
Now create this second curve for the hub cap:
For each curve, add a lathe modifier and then add a Meshsmooth on top to create the rim and hubcap. Under the lathe modifier, change the number of segments to 24 or more so that you only need to use 1 iteration in the Meshsmooth to conserve polys. Also make sure that you are lathing along the x-axis by clicking the button labeled, "X" under "Direction" and also make sure you click the "Max" button under "Align". You will also have to position the lathe axis for the rim, simply do this by expanding the lathe modifier and clicking on the "Axis" part of the modifier and then dragging the axis in the viewport. Both the rim and the hubcap should have their axes in the same position. After all that, you should have this:
Tire Rubber and Treads
The first part of the tire, the rim and hub cap, were relatively easy. This part is a tiny bit more complicated depending on how you do it. The way I chose to do it is similar to the way that Thomas Suurland did his treads on his website. The actual pattern of the treads is up to you because all my references have different tread patterns so it's not really a big issue what they look like. Put your polymodeling skills to work and create something like the image below. You should set it up so that it can interlock with a copy of itself at the back and at the front.
Now you have to make an array of these objects and then attach them all together and weld vertices between them. To make an array, select the object and then under the "Tools" menu select "Array." The settings I used are shown below but yours will probably be a little different. I duplicated it 50 times. The number of copies will determine the radius of the tire. You have to use settings that will make them sit nicely next to each other with no spaces. The next step is to attach all the pieces into one piece and weld vertices between them. This is the most boring part of this tutorial because there are a crapload of vertices to weld! If you are feeling brave, you can use a "Vertex Weld" modifier to automatically do the welding for you but you have to make sure you have the right setting or you will get the wrong results. This process uses a hell of a lot of polys but if you want the tires to look realistic, it's better this way. You could also use a bump map or a displacement map if you are not planning to have close-ups of the wheels.
Now you need to add a bend modifier to the tire strip to make it circular. Set the angle to 360 degrees and it should make a perfect circle.
Now merge the file with the rim and hub cap into this file and scale them as needed to so that they are the right size. Now hide the tread and then create a curve as shown below. It's rather untidy but doesn't need to be perfect. Now lathe it making sure that the axis is in the same place as the axis of the rim so that it fits perfectly on the rim as in the second pic below. Add a Meshsmooth to it.
Now unhide the tread and position it on the tire. You might have to scale it and make it a little narrower but after that you should have something like this:
The last part of the tire is the air valve tube which is easy to make with a cylinder primitive and a bend modifier. Just create a simple one with a cap that looks a little something like the image below and the position it in the tire:
Well now the tire is done, all you have to do is merge it with the file containing the car and then make instances of the tire and place them in the correct positions.
Well the exterior of the car is complete now. All that's left is the interior. With the skills you have picked up from this tutorial, that should be easy for you.
Proceed to the next chapter: Making the Interior.
Preparing for the Interior
The inclusion of an interior for your car model can make the difference between a very realistic looking model and one that is good but not good enough. Seeing the seats and steering wheel and such through the windows of your car adds the kind of realism to a model that simple black tinted windows can't provide. Not matter how good the car model is, it will be lacking without the interior. That said, it is also prudent to realize that the creation of the interior will only make your model that much heavier on polys and your computer might complain a bit. This is why when I make an interior, I don't make it very high-poly unless I plan on doing some renders from inside the car. However, for this tutorial, we will create the interior in such a way that you can easily make it high poly if you decide you want to render the interior through use of the number of iterations on your Meshsmooth.
This part of the tutorial assumes that you have been through the earlier parts of the tutorial and that you are familiar with the techniques used because I am not going to explain things in the kind of detail that I used earlier in the tutorial.
The first step is to prepare the inside of shell of the car for the seat, steering wheel etc. The shell of your car at this point does not have a floor and you will add one. Start off by hiding all the parts of the car except one of the halves of the body. You only need on half of the body so you can easily work on the inside of the car without the other half getting in the way.
You will start with the edge of the door and construct in in such a way that you will give it a lip like a real door would have. Try and get references where the door is open so you can see what the lip looks like. With a little bit of tweaking and some edge extrudes, you should get a lip like this on the door:
Now through a series of extrusions, create the area under the front seat up to halfway point of the car as shown below.
Extrude backwards in the direction of the red arrows and then make the cut shown in green. The top polys of the car are hidden to better show the interior. Continue building backwards as indicated by the arrows and then weld the two vertices in the green circle.
Now continue building the back part of the inside and eventually you will have something like the image below. You can put as much or as little detail as you want. Make the cuts shown in red so you can add more definition to the rear seat area.
Create the red cuts and then build the polys shown in green to cover the wheel arch.
Continue building the inside of the roof of the car from the back and continue building towards the front of the car.
Continuing towards the Front
The front is done pretty much the same way you did the back. Just keep creating polys to give the car an inner shell. The dashboard of the Fiat 500 is very simple to create since it's very basic and uncluttered. Make the extrudes shown with red arrows to start the dashboard.
Do some extrusions to connect the dashboard to the floor of the car.
Now cover the front wheel arch like you did the back one. The basic interior shell of the car is now ready to be detailed and defined more. Detach all the polys of the interior shell that you just created and name them "Inner Shell" and add a Meshsmooth to them. The number of iterations depends on you and how much detail you want for the interior. Hide the rest of the car leaving just the inner shell. Now chamfer the edges around the wheel arches to define them better and then do any necessary vertex cleanup. Go through the inner shell doing chamfers to give definition to places that you think should be more defined. You can mirror an instance of the inner shell so you can get a better idea of what it looks like. At the end of it all, you should have something like this:
The interior is now ready for chairs and all the other stuff. But first you should adjust the door so that it fits better. Right now, the door looks something like the image below. This was fine if you didn't plan on doing in an interior but now that the interior must be done, it has to be tweaked to more resemble a real door on the inside. Remember that you adjusted the vertices of the door opening of the body so you must now adjust the vertices on the door to match. Unhide the body of the car and tweak the door vertices until you have a door that fits better in the opening on the body.
Continuing with the door, you should create the cushioning in the door. This is simple and all it takes is creating a box and then adjusting and Meshsmoothing it till you get this:
Now Just position it in the door. Clone it and put in the back seat area. You will need to tweak vertices to make it go around the wheel arch but you should get something like this:
Proceed to the next page for more on the interior!
Putting Seats in
Alright, you can now start on the seats. The seats in the Fiat are pretty simple and not hard to model. You will start with the front seats and then go on to the back passenger seats.
Hide everything except one of the inner shell halves. In the top viewport, create a box and tweak it until you have something like the shape shown below. Delete the polys at the bottom of the box so that the seat is open underneath.
Add a Meshsmooth to the box with 1 iteration. To create the ridges on top of the seat cushion, all you have to do is add an "Edit Mesh" on top of the Meshsmooth and then in poly mode, select each row of polys on top of the seat and extrude them by a small amount (say about 0.1 or 0.2) then add another Meshsmooth with 1 iteration. Note: you have to extrude the rows of polys one by one or you will have one big lump instead of a number of ridges. The finished seat cushion should look like this (The seatback is pretty much done the same way.):
The next thing to do is create the supports for the chair which are simply cylinders that have been extruded a number of times until they are the right shape. This is the finished seat, on the left.
Now onto the back seat. The back seat can be done in half and then mirrored. This is done the same way as the front seat so I will not repeat the method. You should be able to create something like this (you can weld the two halves of the back seat together and also clone the front seat and position the two on either side.):
Hide everything but the inner shell halves. The first accessory to create is the gear lever which is very simple in the Fiat 500. Just create the spline shown left and lathe it to create a simple gear lever. Position it in the right place.
Next thing to tackle is the steering wheel. In a new file, create a cylinder in the left viewport with 4 height segments, 1 cap segment and 18 sides. Name the cylinder "Steering Wheel." On one end, start doing some bevels and extrudes until you have something like the image below. Chamfer the edges in red by 0.2.
Now create a torus with 54 segments a 4 sides. Leave everything else as it is. This is going to be the actual wheel. Now position in in front of the cylinder you created earlier like seen on the left. Select the cylinder and then click the "Attach" button and then click on the torus to make them one object. Now on the underside of the torus, the side closer to the cylinder, select 27 alternating vertices, i.e. select a vertex and then skip one then select the next and then skip one and select the next and so on all around the torus. With all those selected, move them backwards a little so the the underside of the torus becomes jagged as shown below.
Delete half of the torus and cylinder and mirror a reference to the other side. Then delete the polys shown. Delete the poly on the wheel itself that is directly opposite the middle poly you just deleted on the cylinder.
Select the middle top edge in the hole you just created on the cylinder and shift+drag it out to the wheel and weld the vertices to the wheel.
Now repeat that until you have made a solid arm going from the cylinder to the wheel as shown right.
Select the middle top edge in the hole you just created on the cylinder and shift+drag it out to the wheel and weld the vertices to the wheel.
Select the edges shown below in red and chamfer them by 0.3. Weld the two halves together. Add a Meshsmooth if you haven't already done so. 1 iteration should be sufficient but that's up to you.
Next Page: More Interior Accessories.
More Interior Accessories
Now to finish off the steering wheel. Do a bunch of extrudes and bevels until you have something like the picture below. Make sure you do some chamfers to make edges crisp.
Create a new cylinder and call this one "Wipers & Signal." Give it 4 height segments, 1 cap segment and 18 sides. Position it in the position shown:
Now do some extrudes and bevel so that you create the two handles, one for wipers and the other for the signal lights as shown below. You don't need to use a Meshsmooth with this unless you really want to since it's not going to be seen up close.
Well now the modeling for the steering wheel is pretty much done, you can now position it inside the car. Merge the steering wheel file into the car file. One thing you might consider is to turn the wheel so that the arms are not perfectly horizontal. This just adds more realism to it but it's a minor detail.
The next thing to build is the speedometer. Save your work and then go back the the file you created the steering wheel in. Create a cylinder above the steering wheel and do some beveling and extruding until you have something like the image below. Name the cylinder "Speedometer." Create a sphere with the hemisphere setting set to 0.6, call it "Speedometer Glass." Non-Uniform scale it and make it very flat but not perfectly flat, just so that there is a little curvature left. Position it in the cylinder you created.
The speedometer of the Fiat 500 has a case around it. This case is easily created with polymodeling. Create a poly and then do some shift+drags and vertex tweaks. The start of making it is shown below.
Now merge the file into the your original file and put the speedometer in its proper place on top of the steering wheel.
Pedals, Window Levers and Buttons, etc.
Pedals are simple enough, all you have to do is create a box then do some extruding and beveling until you have what looks like a pedal. I created very low-poly pedals because they will most likely not be seen very often in the car. You can put more detail in them if you wish.
Window levers are just as simple. They are made in much the same way as you made the wipers earlier in the tutorial. Start with a cylinder, select polys on the side of it and extrude them outwards to create the handle.
If you look at your references, you will see that there are a number of buttons, switches and lights on the dashboard of the car. These are simply made with small cylinders and a few extrudes and bevels. Using your references, create the buttons and switches found on the dash. The ignition is also on the dash and you can also make a key to put in it.
Next thing to tackle is the rear-view mirror. Once again, this is a very simple object to make. Start with a box and then extrude and bevel and vertex tweak to get the right shape, this should be easy for you by now. You can smooth it if you want but then you will have to do some chamfering to keep it square.
Next thing to tackle is the rear-view mirror. Once again, this is a very simple object to make. Start with a box and then extrude and bevel and vertex tweak to get the right shape, this should be easy for you by now. You can smooth it if you want but then you will have to do some chamfering to keep it square. The last interior accessory to create is the sun visors that go on the ceiling of the car on either side of the rear-view mirror. Once again, just make a box and mess with it to get what you want.
Well all the modeling for your Fiat 500 is done (unless you want to add more stuff!) Now all that's left is for you to mirror all the halves and weld the vertices between them to remove any seams Put everything together and then create materials for everything and render your car.
I hope you enjoyed following this tutorial as much as I enjoyed making it. Send me an email and tell me what you thought of it at my email address. Don't forget to tell all your friends about this tutorial!!
Since I'm no good at texturing, if you would like to texture my model for me, I would be happy to send you the file. I will then give you credit on this website for your work. You can texture it any way you like.