3ds Max: Model as separate objects or add details to a rough shape?

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  04 April 2013
3ds Max: Model as separate objects or add details to a rough shape?

1. I'm trying to model an airplane cockpit which is kind of a hybrid between organic and geometric shapes. I just need to know what would be a good way to model all the smooth curves and complex details along with the geometric portions, but not spend countless hours cutting and welding vertices, trying to combine all the mesh into one. Here are some snapshots of the cockpit I'm trying to model:

The main panel doesn't seem to be much of a trouble area since it's basically just a flat planar piece.

2. Here is where I get confused: The place where the black glare shield on the upper corner of the panel curves down and seems to form into the side wall is, to me, one of the most difficult parts of the cockpit to visualize. With perspective distorting all my reference images, I can't really use them for the modeling. So I essentially have to just eye-ball all the proportions.

3. My second question is: Should I use splines instead of polys for the curves? I've tried polys before and it looked okay, but I think that splines could be a lot better for that purpose.

Lots of questions in one post, but can someone offer some suggestions before I tackle this big project?
  04 April 2013
1.If you're only doing a high poly, definately model as separate objects, just like they are in real life.

the other questions i'm not sure what you're trying to model (maybe circle it on the picture)...but i don't think i would use splines in that situation.
  04 April 2013

Pretty much anywhere that the organic shapes overlap each other or blend together is what I'm having trouble with. Also I'm finding it very difficult to accurately model the cockpit with the right placement and proportions of things. I've already been to the flight sim design forums and found out that there really aren't any good photos to use as reference while modeling.
  04 April 2013
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