Importing 3-view engineering sketches as basis for 3D model rendering

I have crude pencil sketches of “engineering” views of a motorcycle engine. I want to import (all 6) them into SU to then draw over, to create a 3D model. I will build a 1:9 model of the engine, but will first fit it into a specific motorcycle frame, which I will then also have to build.

The frame is simple! But getting six views to mate up neatly so I can then manipulate them enough to get the information I need to reproduce that lump is . . . daunting.

All help would be graciously received.:slight_smile:

If they’re “crude,” why do you think they would fit together to form an integral 3D object?

Why not simply construct the thing, using the sketches for reference?


Gully, this is about all I’ve got anymore. I was given the loan of all the cases for a Vincent v-twin, which I then proceeded to measure and photograph. Luckily, I printed a few of those and had carried some dimensions to drawings I made. But the originals — and the engine bits — are long gone. I’m flying partially blind here.

But I think the sketches, sparse (that might have been a better term than “crude”) though they are, should give me enough to figure out where what attached to what, and how. I know I’ll be going back and forth to photos I’ve taken and others from the Internet, to be sure. And there will be a good hunk of Let’s Say thrown in (probably okay in 1/9 scale, since this won’t be asked to run, just look good).

But if I can get this to a really decent stage, I can probably go back to a Vincent owner or two to improve it, and really bring it up to snuff. I might even be able to flog this on to people who make kits of such things, eventually.

— Charles

Work full-size or larger. If any edge gets below 1/16", there could be issues with some operations. Often detailed small models need to be make 10-1000x larger that the finished piece. The motor can be scaled down later.

Import your images. You should be able to just drag the file into an open SU workspace. Otherwise use File > Import and have the images set to be used as images.

Scale each image based on the geometry in each image to best match a full-sized motor. Position the images for best reference. Two tutorials for inspiration. More such tutorials may be in the 3D Warehouse and across the internet.

Exactly the kind of help I need. Thanks so much. Will delve into this early in the week.

You still have a long way to go to learn the software.

Break the model into parts and make each part a Component. That way, if you have to change something on the part later, you can just edit the component without adversely affecting other geometry around it. Also if there are multiple copies of the same shape, any change done to one copy will change all copies of the same component.

I sure do have much to learn. Thanks for the guidance.

The lump I’m going to try to make is a crazy collection of flat panels, half domes and other shapes. I’m hoping I can “draw” them all at the same time and link the left side with front, back, top and bottom; and the other side.

Have you spent any time watching the YouTube videos on using SU? Click on the YouTube link at the top of the forum page. They cover tool use and some workflow.