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I created the following simple mesh with a cyclinder and a boolean cut-out (applied):

cylindrical mesh with curved cut-out

I'd like to apply a bevel, but the topology makes it a mess on the edges created by the cut-out:

cylinder with curved cutout and a bevel

My assumption is that using a boolean to create the cutout is the wrong approach. Is there a better way to go about this?

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2 Answers 2

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it's because you have n-gons in the shape. where you've made the boolean cutout you have faces with more than 4 vertices.

right here is a good example n-gons

if you spend a little bit of time cleaning up the geometry so that all your faces are quads or tris it should bevel a lot cleaner!

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  • $\begingroup$ But is there a different way to create this basic shape (i.e. not using a boolean) that doesn't result in a bunch of n-gons in the first place? $\endgroup$ Aug 17, 2021 at 17:14
  • $\begingroup$ you could use the Knife Project tool but the result would be about the same and you'll need to correct afterward in order to avoid ngons. Also, you could do your shape with less faces, it all depends on if you can use a Subdivision Surface or not. $\endgroup$
    – moonboots
    Aug 17, 2021 at 17:20
  • $\begingroup$ retopology ends up being a necessary step in most modeling processes. I guess the only real alternative would be to make a series of loop cuts along the cylinder and then manually shape the created vertices to the curve you want and delete the faces. it would probably take way more time. $\endgroup$
    – ArtIsScary
    Aug 18, 2021 at 17:10
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You can create a cylinder, cut a circle shape with the Knife Project tool:

enter image description here

Delete the faces:

enter image description here

Dissolve useless vertices, fill the inner faces:

enter image description here

Rework the topology a bit so that you can give your object a Subdivision Surface modifier:

enter image description here

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