Jet Engine

Jet Engine

by Zach Harvest

So this kinda just…happened…It was a cylinder and now it’s a jet engine… Last week I was playing with particle engines and that was super fun. I made like a sparks thing.. but I gave up after so many hiccups. I think I was trying to make a “thermite” burn because I thought the effect would look cool. So I went off to make a container to hold the stuff. In that process I ended up making a jet engine.

After I realized what was happening, I went to work on the engine. There were so many obstacles. First thing that bit me in the ass was the polygon count in the cylinder I used. I made it lower res because I thought I was going to be hiding most of it with bright ass particles. If I was going to be smooth shading any of this, I needed double the resolution of the circle. This is an issue. I tried everything I could find and I didn’t work the way I needed it to. I finally ended up loop cutting every polygon in half and then selecting all of them and “scaling” them outward manually to achieve double the vertices. This worked out well however, because the loopcuts wrapped around some of the edges like the front lip and such. It also scaled on the y axis causing a wavy look on the front edges (intake side). This was more easily corrected for than I had anticipated by zeroing out the scale on the y. After that I put a few hours into the cone, getting it lookin just right. Next came the bendy tubes that go around the midsection. This was another bitchy ass part. The array modifier does NOT work in ANY way you would expect. When you make an array. It just places them in a line next to your mesh. There is no control over where these objects go other than being in a different direction, next to the mesh…sigh.. So I found a few ways to get this done too but boy did it suck. You have to set the midpoint of the object to be in the center of where you want your arrayed objects to curve around. Then add an empty there, parent it to the original mesh and rotate the center empty until you get it to wrap around the object.

The fan (compressor, blades, whatever) was another fun one. I tried at least 4 versions before I settled on the one in the final product. I looked up a few tutorials, but honestly, I should have just used my brain and modeled it out. The first one I did an extrude of some faces out of a circle, selected the top edges of the extruded bits and rotated them. Looked okay, but I didn’t like it, so I extruded lines and made them thicker and did a subdivide with mean creases to keep it looking sharp.

I obviously wanted to see them spin so I did a quick key frame and I had it spinning. The next day I had to add motion blur to make it look like it wasn’t just moving back and forth a little. Last for the most part is the FIRE! I worked for hours and hours getting this smoke sim to bake let alone show up in the render. I mean, bump mapping is hard in blender, but I’ll be damned if rendering volumetrics isn’t either. I settled on a ring emitter behind the exhaust compressor and a “wind force” behind it to force it through the blades of the fan to give it some rotation and IT TOALLY FUCKING WORKED. I could not be more pleased with how good that part looks. I mean. I cheated a little with adding a blue ring light in there to give it the typical Jet like look but who cares if it looks good right?! I put at least 25 hours in to this thing, learning and having fun. I’m sure there is some stuff I missed but those are the big things. Anyway. I’ll render out some previews from my 11 stages of this thing and post them later. But for now. Here’s the current state of the model!

Last Edited on Thu Mar 31 2016 17:54:22 GMT-0400 (EDT)

bau5 commented

"It was a cylinder, and now it's a jet engine." Hahahaha #blenderblunder

Looks great though! Wanna see more pics when you get a chance 👍🏻

on Mon Mar 14 2016 15:17:00 GMT-0400 (EDT)