View Full Version : Spline modeling...

rob davis
04-30-2003, 02:54 PM
I'm sure that this is a request that has already been made, but as I don't have the time to read all the threads, I'll chance repeating the request.

I'd like to see a good spline modeling system added. Current patching works well, but if any tweaks need to be made, the patches must be deleted, the splines tweaked, and re-patched. I'd like to see the patches update as the knots on the splines are moved.

Is it likely that we see spline modeling better implimented in the future?

Just my two bits. :D

04-30-2003, 03:31 PM
I agree that would be nice.

05-03-2003, 07:43 PM
Personally I have always liked the idea of LWs splines, but never found Modelers tools to be enough for ME to be able to work with them comfortably. I'd really love to see major additions to Modelers set of tools for splines. With better and smarter tools for splines perhaps the combination of LWs splines+subpatches could be brought up a notch for creating more precise hardbodies. Exactness always being NURBS's major advantage. NURBS will still be ahead in that department but the gap will be smaller when working with splines is made less troublesome and no compromises have to be done because of a lacking toolset.

I have some suggestions. I'd like to read more from others and don't mind any comments or critisism on my own, rather the opposite. In my opinion, as "the #1 polymodeler" and with no NURBS NT should make sure to give LW the best damn splinemodeling toolset available.

A Knife for splines is I guess the most asked for. I'd obviously like to see that. But I'd also like to see specific functions for adding points were splines intersect, based on either acctual intersection in 3d space or axis, where the splines don't acctually meet but cross eachother in a 2d view, with additional options for splitting splines at the newly added points. This is quite resemblant to how the Drill command works for polygons. Furthermore, this should work preferably on selected splines, and work no matter if splines are in different layers. The shape of the splines should also remain intact, so you won't have to bother with any controlpoints yourself.

An example of what an intersection tool would do (notice the two added points):

I'd also like to see an addition to the patching options, a "border tension"-value which would adjust the resulting wireframe to place more or less detail along the edges, effectivly making corners sharper or smoother right away without the need for bandsawing or edgebeveling when working with subpatches. There could be one value for all edges, or one for each edge, so you could control the sharpness of each edge individually.

A bad :) mock-up of how what border tension could do:

Another option I'd like to see has to do with the way patches created from 3 splines are bulit. Right now the results are imho not the optimal (Observe especially the lower right corner in the image below). What I'd like to see instead is a tesselated (triangulated) variant or something simular to what a subdivided triangle looks like. I feel that this is the better solution when working with both polygons and subpatches (triangulated tesselated spheres look pretty much fine with subpatches whilst regular ones don't; and the border tension value won't work as expected with the regular way either).

An example how a tesselated 3 spline patch should look like:

However, for all these options (number of segments, border tension) to be alterable at a later stage in a "live" splines enviroment, as Rob Davis is requesting (and I too would like), perhaps we need to add a new geometry type, splinepatches, so you can select them just by clicking on them (Just imagine an added Selection Mode button at the bottom, right beside Points and Polygon Selection Mode.). Then clicking on an Edit SplinePatch command would fill the Numerics Panel with about the same options we had when we first created the patch (number of segments etc).

Edit: fixed the links to the images.

Capt Lightwave
05-05-2003, 10:38 AM
Gorgeous !