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Lightcycle Construction Detail
Matthew Hagerty, Jun 2006 (http://digitalstratum.com)
For commercial use, anything TRON is probably copyright Walt Disney Pictures.

Main TRON Page

These images show the details for the construction of each assembly of the lightcycle. The assemblies are then put together to form the complete lightcycle (see the assembly page.) These images will eventually be accompanied by an animated construction video.

Canopy, Canopy Shoulders, and Sides

The canopy is a segment of a large cylinder, the radius of which is critical for a proper canopy and other parts. Shown here is a cylinder with a cone on either side. The cones are used to make the tapered sides of the canopy, and the taper can be adjusted by making the cones wider.

The canopy segment is made with a boolean AND operation between the previous three objects and a cube, as shown here.

Basic canopy shape.

Polygon used to cut a hole in the canopy for the windshield. A boolean AND NOT operation is used between the basic canopy and this polygon.

Completed canopy.

The canopy shoulders consist of two tori (tori is the plural of torus.) The MAGI software had a primitive torus, my software does not, so this is the only part of my model where I had to use a nurb mesh, as can be seen by the dense mesh outline. The center point of the tori is the same as that of the cylinder used for the canopy. The radius is slightly smaller by the distance that the shoulders sit below the canopy, minus the radius of the cross-section circle of the torus.

Polygon used to cut the shoulder tori, again with a boolean AND operation between the tori and the polygon.

Completed shoulders.

Canopy segment placement in relationship to the shoulder segment. This placement is completely controlled by the polygons and cubes used in the boolean operations.

Cylinder used for the sides. The radius is the same as the tori, the width is from the outside edges of both tori.

Polygon used to cut the side cylinder with a boolean AND operation. Note that the polygon is slightly wider than the cylinder. This is to ensure that the shape of the polygon controls the final object and not the cylinder.

Completed sides. Note how the final width is that of the cylinder and not the polygon.

Shoulder placement over the sides.

Completed canopy, shoulders, and sides.

Chassis

Cylinder for the chassis. The radius is slightly larger than the tori, just large enough to intersect the canopy in the taper, just before the canopy taper is cut flat. Width is arbitrary since it will be controlled by the intersecting polygon.

Chassis polygon intersecting the chassis cylinder.

Completed basic chassis. Note the slope portion created by the boolean AND operation with the cylinder.

Placement of the fender (sheered cylinder), lightjet (sheered and squashed cut-cone), transmission (sheered and squashed cut-cone), and the engine (cone).

Completed chassis.

Windshield

These objects are identical to the cylinder and cones used to make the canopy.

The windshield polygon is identical to the one used to cut the windshield hole out of the canopy, except it is joined with a boolean AND operation to the three objects above.

Completed windshield.

Front and Rear Wheels

Sphere for front wheel.

Spheres used to cut the front wheel sphere with a boolean AND NOT operation. Note the black section on the cutting spheres. Those black parts are created with a material mapping to change the color of the cutting sphere to black at a given point along its axis. The mapping of the cutting spheres can then be transferred to the object being cut, which is how I achieved the internal black part of the front wheel. Depending on your 3D software, your method may vary, but the inside part of the front wheel is black with the edge, or rim, of the wheel being the same color as the rest of the wheel. The thickness of the rim is set by trial and error until it looks correct.

The front axles are just spheres. The size is 1/5th the size of the front wheel sphere. Also visible is the black left by the cutting spheres after the boolean AND NOT operation.

Wheel spoke polygon passing through to both sides of the wheel.

Completed front wheel.

The rear wheel is a squished sphere (technically an ellipse) with the same diameter as the front wheel.

Spheres used to cut the rear wheel ellipse with a boolean AND NOT operation.

Rear wheel.

Rear wheel hub, a cylinder.

Rear axle, a sphere, the same size as the front axles. Also shown is the rear spoke polygon passing through both sides of the hub cylinder.

Completed rear wheel.

Placement Details

Windshield, shoulders, trim, foot rest, engine, fender, and lightjet.

Added the chassis and wing.

Added the canopy and transmission.

Added the sides. This is the completed body.

Wheel placement. Note the rear wheel fits unobstructed within the wheel-well.