Thread: Aircraft Modelling Reference?

  1. #1
    Registered /usr
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    Aug 2001
    Newport, South Wales, UK

    Question Aircraft Modelling Reference?


    As you may or may not know my main skills are as a programmer, so I'm pretty good at knocking up aesthetically pleasing, er, window layouts. I also like to try my hand at making small games from time to time too, however... I am seriously poor at making graphics. The last time I created a game engine I first started out using different colour rectangles to represent things ("See, the blue rectangle can be moved about and, if you press space, grey rectangles appear and travel in the direction the blue rectangle is facing and hopefully hits the nasty red rectangles..."), then plugged in some badly-chosen sprites from a 10 year-old magazine cover disc.

    Two years ago I gained some vocational qualifications in the use of AutoCAD to create technical drawings. This was focused on 2D third-angle projection, but I also did a good chunk of isometric modelling as well (if you think you're pretty swish with a 3D modeller, try drawing the same in 2D at a fixed angle and see how many times you're squinting at the screen and saying to yourself "Nope, that's at least 3 degrees out..." ).

    After drawing fun things such as house plans, industrial components, etc. I feel that I know wanna try and draw something useful in a gaming context, like an aircraft or a car. I know that if I can get the drawing right in AutoCAD I can use it as a template for a 3D model, shove some textures on it and then use it for things.

    The problem is, I'm not very good at estimating the shape of something based on one or two photographs. I can get lots of pics of a fighter aircraft, for example, but I always manage to somehow get the proportions wrong, or it's too angular to believe it can fly.

    What I want is to have a reference that I can look at for a few aircraft, then I can create drawings based on it and vary the features to make them more interesting.

    Is there a particular book or site I can look at to obtain standard views and measurements of aircraft (military, preferably, but civilian stuff looks pretty cool with missiles retrofitted to them too )?

  2. #2
    Super Moderator VirtualAce's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Janes usually has the best reference on all types of military equipment. Barnes and Nobles used to be my source for Janes books but I think Amazon may also have them as well.

  3. #3
    Registered User
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    May 2006
    Suurland and Onno van Braam in particular.

  4. #4
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    One of the techniques employed to create digital replica of real things is to use photographs of the (three) different sides of the item to be modeled as a background in your modeling program and basically draw the 3D model on top of the background.

    See e.g. the following reference:

    I should not fail to mention that I am not much of a graphics artist myself however...

  5. #5
    Hail to the king, baby. Akkernight's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Faroe Islands
    Yeah, drawing polygons on pre-made drawings ain't a hard task I've done it abit in 3Ds Max, but making it real good, that requires skill :P
    Hmm... Since I get much off time at work, I think Imma make an aircraft xD Thanks for the idea!
    Currently research OpenGL

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