Introduction: Sculpt Vs Model in Fusion 360

Picture of Sculpt Vs Model in Fusion 360

I finally started playing with the Sculpting mode within Fusion 360. And I must say that I am very impressed with its power and ease-of-use. I've done mesh based modeling before, and I could not see how that would work well with the modeling mode in Fusion.

But Fusion uses T-spline technology that allows you to easily sculpt free-flowing organic shapes, then flip right back into traditional solid modeling mode and work with the same objects.

So I thought I would do a quick comparison of the two modes by duplicating three similar projects in each mode. The videos show:

  • Simple Mechanical Knob: Just a thin extrusion arrayed in a circular pattern. Very mechanical looking
  • Drawer Pull: Slightly more rounded, a traditional door or cabinet pull using revolves and fillets
  • Vase: Uses lofting along path to create a sculpted exterior
  • Sculpt-vs-Model:Recreate the same items, but using sculpt mode.

Step 1: Simple Mechanical Knob

This is the kind of project people learn the basics with - a sturdy, mechanical looking knob. Heavy knurling and grips make it look like a gas cap for an off-road truck, or maybe an expensive orange juice container.

The steps are simple, but with one extra technique thrown in:

  • Extrude a rectangle
  • Fillet the outside corner
  • Make a circular pattern of the extrusion
  • Revolve a smaller rectangle as the body of the cap
  • Join or combine the parts

EXTRA:
We also use the move command to "tilt" two walls of the rectangle. It's a simple technique, but it took me a while to discover it

Step 2: Sculptured Door Pull in Blue Glass

Almost as simple, but with a couple of interesting techniques

We form a wedge shaped crescent by using a revolve with a 10 degree angle. We create a circular array and join the resulting ridges to a revolved ball shape. With a few well placed fillets, we achieve a very rounded, bulbous look for the pull.

A blue glass appearance is applied before rendering.

Step 3: Fluted Vase Using Loft-Along-Path

This is the most advances of the basic modeling videos. It uses the loft-along-path technique, uses plane-along-path and three separate profiles to create a sinuous profile that then gets wrapped around the basic vase shape.

If your projects feature these kinds of forms, then exploring the Sculpt environment might make you designs easier to create.

Step 4: Sculpt Vs Model

Finally, we recreate the previous three projects using sculpt tools. then move on to other techniques only available in sculpting mode.

We use a t-spline sphere and some basic push-pull techniques to create a rough knob shape, then use crease and other techniques to refine it into a more traditional knob.

Next we recreate the door pull and explore the advantages of sculpting from a sphere primitive versus using the revolve command. We explore some typical errors found when using very sharp angles in the sculpt environment and some techniques for overcoming them. The revolve left us with an open shape, so techniques for closing holes are discussed.

Then, we use the loft-along-path technique in sculpt mode and discover both it's power and some of the issues the technique creates.

Once all three projects have been recreated in sculpt mode, we go on to explore other techniques that are only available in sculpting mode. We also explore ways to set and use midline and circular symmetry in the sculpt environment. We also explore how the t-spline sculpt objects interact with the

By the end of these videos, you should have a better understanding of how sculpt mode can benefit your designs and how to use them seamlessly in the model space.

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