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I am trying to make sphere shaped designs with moving parts like spaceship doors & windows for 3d printing. However, the doors/windows don't always follow the edges on the UV sphere.

Is there a way to "draw" edges on the surface of the sphere that I can use to cut certain shapes out of it? The best example I can think of are the classic flying saucer spaceships with the lowering door in older movies.

Below are my two objects: the sphere (orange) & the shape I want to trace about the surface of the sphere to eventually cut them into two separate meshes that can fit into each other.

NOTE : I have tried using the knife projection approach and the shape does not follow the curve of the sphere. (2nd image). The third animation is the closest example I can think of for my goal. enter image description here

enter image description here

example objective

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  • $\begingroup$ you can cut edges with the knife tool or with the knife project tool, maybe check these tools and tell if this is what you're looking for? $\endgroup$ – moonboots Feb 1 at 5:16
  • $\begingroup$ I've used the knife tool, but I was looking for a way to draw a shape and then overlay it on the surface of the sphere. The knife tool doesn't give the clean curves I'm looking for. $\endgroup$ – 1QuickQuestion Feb 1 at 6:54
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    $\begingroup$ the knife project tool is probably more convenient as you can prepare the shape before, see here youtube.com/watch?v=bR-hWPirFZQ , but maybe show some pictures of your project? $\endgroup$ – moonboots Feb 1 at 7:00
  • $\begingroup$ also it all depends on the topology of your object, you can delete some faces and scale down the edge to create your doors, having a clean topology will make the modeling easy $\endgroup$ – moonboots Feb 1 at 7:10
  • $\begingroup$ wow that link helped a lot! I'm going to test it out, as I need it to wrap around the different sides of the sphere. $\endgroup$ – 1QuickQuestion Feb 1 at 7:19
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You work with too many polygons and you should think another way. If we try something like your last picture:

  • Create a UV sphere, stretch it on the Z axis, keep only 1/32 that you mirror on the X and Z axis:

enter image description here

  • Cut the hole with a knife:

enter image description here

  • Extrude inwards:

enter image description here

  • Use an Array in Object Offset mode to make the mesh rotate around an empty, work on the mesh as long as necessary before applying the Mirror and Array modifiers:

enter image description here

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  • $\begingroup$ this helped, but I am really looking to put organic shapes and circles on the surface. That's why the original image had the curves. Drawing the circles on the surface isn't coming out even. $\endgroup$ – 1QuickQuestion Feb 7 at 17:51

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