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Making the Solid Spoked Wheel

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I'm making a project that involves a solid-spoked wheel, much like many car wheels are today without hub caps.


To cut down on the modeling I used some lathing and duplicate techniques. 

I based my lathe outline on a rotoscope diagram. I used two CPs at every corner to make a sharpish but still-beveled edge...



This wheel has 8 spokes (with 8 holes in between) and a bump on each spoke. The easiest way to model a round bump or hole is to stitch it in on splines between two other splines. That means a minimum of four splines across for each instance of a hole and a spoke with a bump...


To support 8 holes/spokes,  i need to do a  32 cross section lathe. (You set that at Tools>Options>Modeling)...


However, the five-pointers around holes and bumps prefer not to be stretched very far or around large turns. I'll need extra splineage where I've drawn it in...



To create those spline I put some extra CPs in the lathe outline where i wouldn't normally need them for a straight spline.


I broke up one spline crossing and spread the edge splines apart to start the pie-shaped hole...


Connect the front and back edge splines...


The corners are 6-points and need to be split into two 5-pointers.

I add a CP to the middle of each front-back spline with the Y key and stitch in a middle spline...

Wheel12 middlespline.JPG

The five pointer patches are still visibly wrinkled from having to turn a large angle. I stitch in a new spline around the hole between the middle spline and the old square edges and hook in a new radial spline at each corner at the wide end of the hole...

Wheel13 newsplines.JPG

Now the 5-pointers don't have to do much curve work.
I stitch in the oval spline for the bump on the spoke and that gets me one finished hole and spoke...


I could do this seven more time around the wheel, but there is an easier way...
I cut out the 5 lathe sections that contain this new modeling and deleted one lathe section on the edge to leave hanging splines...

I grouped that, set its Pivot  to 0,0,0, the copied, pasted and rotated the pasted part 45°...


I connected each hanging spline to its immediate neighbor in the old section.

This new quarter section gets copied, pasted, rotated 90° and connected to make a half section.

The new half section gets copied, pasted, rotated 180° and connected to make a complete wheel.



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Nice modeling, Robert.

It looks to me like your making a one of those old, railroad hand (pump) cars. It probably comes too late but if you can use any more detailing, I can offer all parts from this one.


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Thanks, Roger! I better do my own modeling for my contest entry, though! 😀

However, I do hope to see an entry or two from you in Planes, Trains Automobiles. Three weeks to go!

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