All you beginners in Rhinoceros, now you can try this easy tutorial on modeling Lem stool. It has a little bit of everything.
Ok, the above image shows what would your final model look like rendered.
So, how will we approach modeling this stool? You must be asking yourselves where should you start? Well, it doesn’t matter where you start. If you prefer tackling “harder” parts first, then it is your way of starting. However if you like to start with easier, more “solids” objects (like spheres, boxes, cylinders etc.) then you might want to start with the base and leg first. But I like to throw myself in a project head on first. So, I would go with the seat frame first then move to the wooden seat part, then go to the leg base, and then the leg.
So. lets start with the seat frame. How are we going to do that? Well, using Sweep1 command. For that we need one rail curve, and one section curve. What Sweep1 command does, it basically “drives” the section curve along the rail curve, and by that it makes a surface.
From your Right viewport, we will start creating straight lines. For that we will be using PolyLine command, and for extra help on creating we will turn on Snap and Ortho options from the Status bar of our Rhino window.
We need one PolyLine which will be made out of two lines:
Ok, in the image above you can see our PolyLine. What I did is started from the Origin (the place where y-axis green line meets x-axis red line). So, we turned on the Snap option so we can easily snap to the origin. Starting our PolyLine from there, I then input in the command line the number which will be the length of the first part of our PolyLine. So, I typed in 2.7 and confirmed it with Enter key. After that you can see that your line in viewport is now exactly 2.7 units long, and you can set the direction in which it will go. Now, our Ortho option comes in handy because we want this line to be straight along x-axis. After you aimed it, just click so you confirm the other end of first part of PolyLine. Next, we need one line 3.5 units long, and going along y-axis. You need to do all this while still in PolyLine command.
Then, you will need a small line 0.8 units long and under certain angle of 60 degrees. We will start again our PolyLine (or in this case it is enough to use just Line) command and start our line from the origin, and inputting in commandline a number 0.8 and confirming it with enter key we will lock the line’s length, and after that you just input in the commandline <60 and confirm it with enter key. This way you will have locked both length and angle you need that line to be made.
Ok, when you’ve done that, we now need to “smooth” the transitions between the line parts. We want them to be rounded under certain radius, and we will do that with Fillet command. So, go ahead and start the Fillet command, and use 0.5 units as radius. You need to click on the two ends of two matching lines. You should have something like on the image below:
Now, we need the same set of curves on the other side, and the distance between those two will be 2.75 units. So, using Copy command we will copy that line exactly by 2.75 units to the right (working from Front viewport) by inputting the 2.75 and confirming it with enter key. That way we are locking the Copy distance on 2.75.
Ok, now we need to use some OSnap. If you aren’t familiar with it, you should check out OSnap introduction. Using End OSnap option, we will snap to both ends of two curves and create a Line between them:
Now we need to Fillet the corners between our newly created two lines and two curves. The radii are the same as before:
Now, again, using Join command join all the cruves and lines into one closed curve. And there you go, we made one very nice and accurate rail which we will be using to create a seat frame in just few moments.
Before that we need to create a section curve.
We’ll do that with Rectangle command from Right viewport. Make sure once you start Rectangle command you click on the Rounded option in the command line. That way after creating the rectangle the command will ask us to input the corner radius for all four corners. So, for the first corner we will input 0.25 units, and for the other 0.1 units. For the corner radius we need to input 0.02. Then you should get something like on the image below:
Ok, you noticed we created this Rectangle in god knows what position. No fear, we just need to move it a bit with Move command. In this moving process, we will use OSnap option Mid as it will come in handy because we need to move that rectangle from its midpoint to the midpoint on the closed rail curve.
Ok, now we have both our rail curve, and section curve. And now we can go ahead and create a surface out of the two. Using Sweep1 command we will do just that. For the Sweep1 option, leave it as it is:
Great, we got our seat frame surface. Moving on to the seat surface. For that we also need a set of curves, as you already figured that out for yourselves, for each surface creation we need curves. But, in this case, we won’t be creating new set of curves, but rather using the existing ones.
Now would be a great idea to move this frame surface into another layer and hide that layer. Lets go create a new layer and name it “Seat Frame”. Now, select the frame surface, and right click on the “Seat Frame” layer, and select Change Object Layer. Now our surface is in this layer. We can easily lock or hide the layer by clicking on the little yellow bulb so it becomes blue (turned off).