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  • Writer's pictureMichael

3D Studio Max – Class notes (Making a lego mans arm)

Making a lego mans arm:

1: Make a box, 5x5x5mm, convert to editable poly and apply mesh smooth modifier (2 iterations) to make it into a sphere like shape

TOOLTIP: The little test tube icon under the object/modify list lets you preview or test what your modifications will look like.

2: Choose the end face, Extrude the box 5mm longer, then extrude the end face by a further 0.1 to flatten it into a cuff shape.  To make this end face the right thickness, bevel again to a 0.1 height and -1 outline amount.

3: To Make the arm hollow, extrude the end face by -0.1. Extrude again by -2mm to hollow the arm, and extrude the face once more by -0.1 to sharpen the edge (eg it will be a flatter end)

4: Go to the other end of the arm. Choose the end face and rotate it by approximately 30′. Extrude by 5mm , then 5mm again. This will extend the arm further, and where you originally rotated the face, becomes the elbow joint.

5: To make the shoulder/hinge, cho0se the end side face, and extrude by 0.1mm twice.


1: For a simpler method, sticking with low poly modelling for longer,  create a box 5x5x5mm ,convert to editable polygon and extrude the end face by 5mm. Bevel this end face by 0.1 height and -1 outline.

2: Extrude the inner square of the end face by -2mm. Now select the 4 outer end edges of the cuboid and chamfer by 0.1mm. Do the same to the 4 edges of the hollow part of the cuboid.

TOOLTIP: Press f3 to view a wireframe of your object, making it easier to select particular lines or edges.

3: Apply meshsmooth modifier with 2 iterations. This version can be continued as before without using the meshsmooth modifier until later when you have the elbow and hinge modelled.

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