Steampunk Train | WIP |


During my second to last month of 3D modeling school I stumbled across this image of a really cool double-decker steampunk train. That was three months ago and I finally got around to trying to model the behemoth. I’m about half way done with the boiler/engine part and I was hoping I could get some feedback on what I have so far.

This is the image I’m going off of.


Ambiante Occlusion is a easy render, but it doesnt give you the ability to judge to reflection flow on the surface. You should build a quick shader with some specular and render to know.

Also at school the wireframes is important (at work also) can you show it?

The train look good so far doesnt match 100% the concept but its ok. You plan to do the camera view?


Unfortunately we did not cover creating shaders. Our classes were only five weeks long so we couldn’t really go over everything. Also, I’m wanting to know people’s thoughts on the model, not the render or shader. I know the render isn’t that great but it’s not the focus of this post.

Here are my wireframes.


A simple Phong shader would do the job.

The idea is to see the light flow of the surface. As a model you should connect more pieces together instead of the interpenetration method. Dont know if you follow me on that


Oh I see, trying to see how light interacts with it. Maya switched up its renderer in 2017 so it would take me a bit of screwing around with it to make the effect you’re talking about but I should be able to do it. As for connecting more pieces together I think that would just eat up much more time and create a bunch of unnecessary geometry. If I were modeling a character then yes I would try to connect as much of it as possible, but when making hard-surfaced models like vehicles I think it’s alright. The instructors at my school were always saying it’s perfectly fine to use the interpenetration method. And I trust them since they’ve been in this industry for decades.


Its fine to use interpenetration but the result is way better when the pieces are together. Like a hood of a car is a separate piece but its not interprenatating anything. Like your cheminee should be wedge on the main structure


Just put on simple material with higher reflectivity for metals and lower reflectivity to plastics, so we could actually see some wireframes. Currently it’s borderline invisible.
Or at worst case just put a simple grey material on (no ao).

Regarding those penetrations. I’d say it depends on how you are going to use it. If its a prop to be seen from afar, all’s good. But if this is a close up then doing the objects separately would add to the realism you are actually going for. Unless of course they do build chimneys as one object (don’t know my trains, sorry).


All chimneys are separated obkjects since they are revit on the main structure after assembly


Regarding the chimney, I just looked at some pictures and it looks like the chimney/smokestack is made as a separate object and then either
riveted or welded on the boiler.

And as for the material are you talking about something like this, Kazkas?


Great Image!


seems like most of the effort would be put on texturing and compositing, looking forward to it!


I’m not planning on texturing it, this is modeling practice. I do have another model I’ve textured but I haven’t gotten around to rendering it yet.


If that a modeling practice then you should accentuate on the details and the realism.


Some of your proportions seem way off compared to your reference. i don’t know the exact terminology for every piece so please bare with me… the thingy hanging off the side with the pipes coming from it seem huge in comparison. it also feels like you’ve pushed it back a little further than the reference. (i’m looking at the front of the thing above it that looks like a bomb or a tank as a measurement) are you using other reference photos as well? looking forward to your progress!


At first it was small like in the image but I felt like There was too much open space on the sides of the boilers so I made it a bit bigger. As for the overall proportions I admit I screwed up when I started it. I was just so excited to start modeling this behemoth that I rushed into it without properly making sure it was the proportions were right.