Subd Challenge 2 - helmet

I started with several identical strips, then rotated and positioned them to make the rough shape- then bridged to connect them in places and then started shaping the vents-

here is my model with the wires turned on so you can see the patch layout- and the model if you want to dissect it or make improvements-

helmet model.3dm (342.5 KB)


Hi @theoutside

Bridge is great, moveUVN also, insertedge for ridges works great. Things I’m currently missing: OffsetSubD - I’m missing the ability to add more than one edge in order to avoid a lot of InsertEdge work afterwards (to get harder transitions).
Softtransform: Needs to be a “mode” with some sort of visual - and easily scaleable - marker on the size of the affected area. Maybe the gumball “sphere” could be scaled to show the affected area? Maybe turning SoftTransform on/off could even be part of the right click menu on the gumball instead of a stand-alone command?
Split subD along edge: Maybe this is already possible (in an easy way, not extracting faces or by extracting the control polygon), but I want to be able to split a sphere into two semispheres by doubleclicking the equator edge and calling SplitSubdAlongEdge (or something).
I think that’s it for now :slight_smile:


This took some time, mostly fixing surface errors from trying to push things into places they don’t want to go.

Biggest frustration was fixing vertex points that didn’t match up, skewed quads that required fixing, a few inconsistent normals, figuring out whether to use a crease or not, offsetting the sub-d surface to a solid and finding holes where the original surface wasn’t correct.

Cool stuff…being able to take sub-d and convert to mesh and fix the mesh and then convert back to sub-d – this was essential for my workflow to be able to get a clean surface in sub-d.

It would be great to see the “bridge” command have an option for adding segments in different directions, no matter the edges picked.



I agree with the ability add edges in the offset…I’ll write that up!

I agree soft transform needs some help and IMO needs falloffs and UI to show influence.

Split, it’s written up already as “unstitch”

Thanks for the notes!!


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nice work!! Bridge has to go in 1 direction right now in order to have the edges line up… but I’ll discuss with the devs-

If I can afford to add:
OffsetSubD is a little lacking, what Tsplines (TsTicken) did was more complete, for example, it allowed to make a ticken normal, for vertex normal, very useful.
“Insertedge” works, but in soft mode it has a strange behavior, it seems to be inaccurate in the insertion; seems to work better in the polygonal mode, more precise…

Hi Kyle…thanks for making the helmet file available! Will you be touching on your technique for creating the helmet?



Insert Edge command, fillet and angles.


yes- video coming soon!


awesome! gorgeous topology layout!!

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At the moment I can drag around only one grip/point at the time, while keeping it snapped to a certain mesh.
I miss the option to move more than one point in one go, while keeping all those points snapped to a mesh. So I can drag all the grips of one ore more faces/ surfaces together, while that object keeps in contact with the mesh. Like retoposnap in Tsplines.
Thinking about this, it would be great if you could drag multiple points with different distances to a mesh along that mesh, without changing their initial distances (fall-off).
Now I use flow along surface as a workaround to be able to drag objects over a non-planar surface while keeping that object on the surface.



(I’m so sorry for this! :sweat_smile: It’s nothing against your model, but this is why I’m having a difficult time taking SubD seriously yet. I know it’s meant to primarily be a sketching tool, but there’s still too many rules you have to follow in order to achieve complete creative freedom… I think I’d still rather just sculpt in Zbrush/Blender and bring over a mesh to surface over, since that has to be done anyway…)

HAHA :smiley: I love it!
It needs a lot of healing!
That hole is a square hole on a round part, so it would need to be split up, but class-A was not the goal here.

And I am sure if you spend as many hours training a sub-d modeller as an automotive nurbs modeller you can expect similar results in less time. Keep in mind that this IS a sketch only for visual use and for getting expertise in patch layout, so if it looked good enough rendered at that low res, then it was good enough for my purpose.

Like in Nurbs modelling you would model, remodel, then start over and THEN do it one more time before sending it off to production. That said for developing complex shapes for evaluation it is great. And this is only the beginning, so I recommend jumping in and testing it out. And keep it coming, I love comments like this :smiley: it challenges us all and makes us discover strength and weaknesses in how we approach modelling.

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A helmet done in less that 5 minutes just to explore some paths on Sub D modelling. Sub D will be (is) to me the best new set of tools in Rhino for many years. It will be a game changer for sure on the way we approach modelling


A few thoughts-

  1. yay you for diving in!
  2. resist the urge to subdivide so early, keep you model as light as possible for as long as possible.
  3. Remember that curves and subd loft can be an amazing tool for this type of modeling and you don’t always have to start with a primitive. (not saying there is anything wrong with that, just want to keep your options open.
  4. keep having fun and thanks for sharing your progress!

Thank you for the tips Kyle, Yes, absolutely, no need to start with primitives, this was just a
" brute force " way to get a kind of helmet of orifices as it might be interesting to people beginning with SubD in Rhino. I will try to post more experiments in the near future
As a former TSplines user let me tell you that I am absolutely delighted to see these tools implemented in Rhino. “A giant leap for all Rhinokind” !

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Hei Jørgen -

On the list as RH-59305.

RH-59700 is fixed in the latest WIP

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