Correct workflow for curved surface


I have been trying to recreate a handheld massager, mainly because I am rubbish at smooth curved surfaces and this seemed like a good object to practice. I can get the main body of a leg correct but I cannot get the end rounded/bulbous part right (mainly used Revolve, RailRevolve or Loft) so end up with a flat surface or something with an edge. Basically, it is driving me nuts, so here I am asking for help.

I have attached the curves I have been using (Model A - RailRevolve, Model B - Loft), and the pictures of the original massager. I worked in planar to build the basic model and then use Bend to put the leg into position.

Handheld Massager_McNeel.3dm (331.0 KB)

I know there will be an easy solution, so thanks in advance. :wink:


oi Laura, i believe you did not embed the pictures?

The pictures are on one of the layers in the file… Or they should be. :blush:

PIctures layer has planes with message that Images are not found.

One way to get a domed or bulbous end is with a loose loft. In the enclosed file the main body was made by lofting the 2 profiles in your file. The domed end was made loft command with the “loose” option. The curves for the loose loft are the magenta and cyan curves. The cyan curves were made by extending the main boy and extracting a couple of isocurves (then copy to clipboard +undo+paste). The magenta curves are scaled and translated copies of the magenta curve that is the end of the main body. The last 2 magenta curves need to be in the same plane for the dome to be smooth on the end.
domed_end.3dm (91.5 KB)

The last 3 curves in the end could be moved in or out or scaled to alter the dome shape to taste.

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That is odd that the photos are not appearing, but here is a copy of the original images. Ignore the talc, Was trying to scan the model but couldn’t get it to work either. :wink:

Thank you so much. I was so close, yet so far away… :smiley: I had realised that I could create the shape, but my final curve was never on the right plane, which resulted in an odd little point. I should be able to work on the actual shape, and then apply this to a lot more models.

hey laura,

why dont you just take a simple curve as shown here marked yellow and do the pipe command with rounded caps and a different diameter on one side. the other one does not matter much and can be cut with a booelan difference or union in that case after you place them in a circular array.

that should to the trick fast without loft.

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Hadn’t thought of that at all, nice. Thank you. :grinning:

you are welcome :slight_smile: there is also another trick for more individual revolved shapes
wich you can Flow along any shaped curve if you need that once either.

but for this here, pipe might suffice plentiful.

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Will definitely give Flow a try, as only briefly read about it before. Have just watched , to help me understand the function. Now sense lots of random models being created in the near future while I practice. :slight_smile: Cheers Laura

hmm, cant recommend the video at all which you linked, moreover its really bad for understanding what flow does and its being used there in a wrong order, function not understood maybe. first loft or revolve or build an object in any matter and then flow along a curve just like bend would do but along any shape. sure you can also flow curves along curves but not like that :smiley: at least IMHO thats a real bad tutorial.

LOL, that’s what I get for selecting & watching just the first YouTube video. :joy: Thanks for feedback. Will look for others.