Pirate’s Gold: Modelling! …and lots of problems.

When I mentioned I was new to 3DS Max, I wasn’t exaggerating. It took me a solid week of editing, going back to the drawing board, restarting and contacting my lecturer for advice before I managed to construct a chest I was content with.

My first attempts during the early stages of the assignment were mainly to get a feel for the program and were below satisfactory and didn’t progress further than just preliminary shapes and details. Although it may seem like wasted time at base level, it was extremely useful for familiarizing myself with the program, particularly short-cuts, etc. which will make future construction much easier.

During one of my later attempts at modelling, although the main construction of the chest went smoothly, I ran into trouble assembling the chest lid. Under advice from a lecturer, I chose not to wrap an edge connection around the entirety of the chest, and so, when it came to extruding the underneath of the chest to form the interior, I was unable to use the connections to extrude upwards.


No guidelines for the extrusion.

When I tried to remedy this by insetting the pre-existing lines, the chamfer I had done previously to create the lock managed to distort the inset into a different shape than required for the interior.


In addition to pre-existing problems, at some point I had managed to change the former connections on the top portion of the lid. Although I’m not entirely sure how it happened, I assume it was because I selected some edges in the area whilst attempting to revise my previous mistakes regarding the chest interior. It was at this point I decided that constructing a separate lid would be an easier option than trying to fiddle with settings (when I most likely would not have achieved a desired result in any case), and to obviously follow the tutorial more closely.


Whilst going through the stages of constructing a new lid, I ran into another problem! This time it was something I had relative ease with during the first attempt: scaling the chest inwards along the X axis, as shown in the tutorial videos. The problem wasn’t that it was distorting the model or anything along those lines, but rather that I couldn’t do it in the first place.


Attempting to drag the X axis inwards using the scale tool and failing miserably.

After contacting a lecturer, we concluded that the problem was I had neglected to use the selection centre tool. I switched to scaling the vertices instead and achieved a similar result as the one in the video, without having to use the aforementioned tool.5

The selection centre option (credit to Steve).


Finally achieving the desired scale.

After the first few debacles, the remaining experience was devoid of any complications and I managed to construct a relatively average looking treasure chest!



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