Introduction: Positioning the Craters

The following information is a single lesson in a larger Tinkercad project. Check out this and more projects on Tinkercad.

Return to Previous Lesson: Make Some Craters

Lesson Overview:

Now we're going to position our craters!

Step 1: The Workplane Tool

The Workplaneis the blue grid that acts like the floor of the 3D space. The Workplane acts like the ground. New objects chosen from the menu on the right will always rest on the Workplane when placed.

The Workplane Tool aligns the Workplane so that it is parallel with a plane of an existing object. When the Workplane is not parallel to the ground it's color will change to orange. The "W" key will switch to the Workplane Tool.


  1. New objects placed from the menu will rest on the workplane
  2. Objects copied with CTRL+C will keep their relationship to the workplane.

Step 2: Paste Craters on the Moon Surface


  1. Select all of the objects that make up the crater and group them together. With the group selected, use CTRL+C to store a copy of it.
  2. Press the "W" Key to switch to the Workplane Tool. Notice how the cursor changes to a white cone within a rectangle.
  3. Move the curser over different planes of the larger, grey, Sphere. Notice how the white cone points away from the plane it is on. The direction the white cone points will be the new Z axis, or the new "up". Left-Click on a plane to paste the first crater. You will see that the Workplane turns orange and aligns to the plane you chose.
  4. Make sure no objects are selected by clicking the white space. Use CTRL+V to paste a copy of the crater.
  5. With the grid still aligned, Make changes to the size and position of the crater. To scale the set of objects all axes, hold SHIFT. Hold ALT to scale to and from the center. To Move the crater up and down, hold CTRL+ up and down arrows. Move the crater toward the surface until you cannot see the bottom edge. If you can see the surface of the moon poking through the bottom of the crater, that's OK!
  6. To reset the Workplane, Press W and Left-Click inside the blue box where the grid originally was.
  7. Repeat Instructions 1-6, choosing different positions on the sphere with the Workplane Tool.
  8. Continue until the moon has craters all around it's surface. When you have enough craters, select all of them by click+dragging to create a selection box. Letting go of the mouse button will select all of the objects inside the box and touching the box. Zooming out and positioning the camera so the moon is smaller can be helpful. Choose Ungroup. You will see something like the image below.

In the next lesson you will learn to finish your moon!

Next Lesson:Final Touches