This is another post in my series about using PowerPoint’s limited tools to construct “3D” objects. Here are some of the earlier posts that may be helpful:
In this post. I’ll try a few more complicated vehicles. The first is a tanker truck featuring more 3D detail than the earlier vehicle examples and using the 3D Depth option to create the tank component. Here is the “3-view” layout:
As usual, standard PowerPoint shapes are combined to create the views. Drawing Guides are used to align the parts in the views. I created the side and end views first; then I rotated a temporary copy of the end view 90 degrees to help complete the top view (see the basic house post).
As I suggested in the first post in the vehicle series, you can find 3-views for vehicles on the web for inspiration; this tank truck was inspired by commercial isometric clip art.
The method involves selecting parts of the views, applying the appropriate Format Shape/3D Rotation/Preset and assembling the results to complete the drawing. Here’s how this goes for the cab of the tank truck:
I used the Isometric preset rotations for the tank truck. The windshield (outlined in yellow) is a Freeform drawn over the isometric view; I have found this to be the simplest way to create surfaces that are not parallel to one of the three axes.
Here’s what the cab looks like with color fills and details. The details, like the grille and lights, are simple shapes grouped with the surfaces before rotating:
I added a color outline to the windshield Freeform; this requires adjusting the Freeform (Edit Points) to refit the shape since the dimensions include the outline. The colors are adjusted (top surfaces are lighter) to emphasize the dimensionality. I also added Depth to the “tires.”
To build the rear part of the truck, I started with a top view and added wheels and the visible surfaces of the undercarriage parts:
Next, I added the edges of the platform and the tank end and rectangles to help align the tank:
I added the platform top and color and added Depth to the oval to form the tank. The black rectangle helps determine the extent of the tank. I also added Depth to the tires as before:
To join the two parts of the tank truck, I temporarily added parts of the front view (red) to the back of the cab. Then the two parts are aligned and the object used for alignment deleted:
The next example is a school bus; I used Depth to make the rounded part of the roof and the wheel wells. Here are the views:
The outer circles around the wheels will define the wheel openings. The front view shows the rounded parts of the roof (a Pie).
I combined the two rectangles at the bottom of the side view using Merge Shapes/Union. I then Subtracted the larger circles to create the wheel openings.
Here’s a trial assembly (Off Axis 2 presets) showing how the Depth is applied to the roof and the wheel openings.
I added color and details for this result:
I experimented with color, Material and Lighting Angle to get the color of the rounded part of the top; as you can see, it is not perfect. That’s one of the tradeoffs in using Depth.
The close-ups below show the appearance of the wheel area without and with the Depth. The front-to-back order of the elements is important in hiding the Depth in areas other than the wheel wells.
Here are two views of a pickup truck derived from an image I found on the web:
The truck features large wheel openings; I created these in my model using Trapezoids and Subtract as before. Notice that I ignored the the slanting sides of the cab; this is a helpful simplification that I will also use in my upcoming post on 3D cars.
Here’s a view of the rotated parts:
The Trapezoids aligned with the top view are used as the back wall of the wheel well. The green line on the side view is used to align the mirrors.
Here’s the assembled model showing how the Depth is used to complete the wheel wells:
Here’s the finished model; the truck bed is a Rectangle, rotated with a Top Bevel (Slope) applied (see this post for details on Bevels). I fiddled with the Bevel Width and Depth to get the appearance I wanted:
If you want a free PowerPoint file containing these examples, use the form below. See this page for details about free files.