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I'm very new to Blender, but not to 3D modelling in general as I've used other programs before. I'm trying to make a cylinder that has multiple vertical divisions so that I can apply a simple transform blend modifier and get it to bend into a shape. I need to model and join it to other shapes first so I can't just use a partial torus or anything like that.

I've Googled around and found several methods and I actually have something that works but seems very inefficient and like there has to be a better way. What I did is as follows:

  • Create a 1 inch tall cylinder
  • Array modifier to stack 30 of these on top of each other, essentially making a 30 inch tall cylinder with 30 divisions.
  • Apply the Array modifier

At this point you have it visually. However, I am trying to 3D print this eventually and I discovered it does weird things when you print it and leaves gaps, etc when slicing. It also doesn't 'play nice' when you boolean join it to another shape. I think the reason is because you have all these inner faces facing both directions where the 'coins' meet. In order to fix this I applied a solidify modifier to give it a bit of thickness. This seems to work and it will print and join correctly, however you essentially have hollow coins stacked up so there are a lot of interior faces that are just unnecessary and the object is much heavier than it should be geometry wise.

So this seems like a super simple task. How can I do this efficiently?

I have also tried slicing a standard cylinder with the knife, but that only slices one side at a time and I don't see a way to be very precise with it so it would be near impossible to get the slices in the same place on the other side, plus I would have to slice 60 times to get a cylinder with 30 sections which seems absurd.

Any help would be super appreciated.

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    $\begingroup$ Instance a cylinder in geometry nodes, it has more parameters $\endgroup$ Mar 6 at 18:58
  • $\begingroup$ Can you explain more how to do that? Remember I'm new with Blender; I've never used that before. I see the geometry nodes in the workspace tabs but clicking on it I'm not sure what I'm looking at and don't see any obvious ways to add a geometry there. $\endgroup$
    – sfaust
    Mar 6 at 20:38
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    $\begingroup$ You could simply take a basic cylinder, give it the height you need, then Tab in Edit Mode, Ctrl+R to activate the Loop Cut tool, place your cursor on a vertical edge, roll the mouse wheel until it shows as many subdivisions as you need, then left-click to add them and directly right-click to not shift them along the height and that's it. $\endgroup$ Mar 6 at 22:45
  • $\begingroup$ Sweet yes that's super easy! Also didn't know you could do divisions in the loop tool like that, that's awesome. This is the quickest way yet for a basic cylinder, though Allen's is the most robust probably. If you make this an answer I'll accept it as it best fits the initial question I think (fast efficient way to do a simply cylinder with divisions). $\endgroup$
    – sfaust
    Mar 6 at 23:04

2 Answers 2

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Take any base object (the default cube or a new cylinder is fine) and switch to the Geometry Nodes workspace.

enter image description here

Start a new geometry node group

enter image description here

Delete the Group Input node with X, and Shift + A Add a Cylinder node, connect this node to Group Output.

enter image description here

You're essentially done, the Cylinder node has a lot of parameters you can use to make your desired mesh.

enter image description here

The biggest advantage I see is that you can fill the top and bottom faces with clean, evenly distributed geometry, but it's also faster to subdivide the side and make it taller.

When you have what you want, just apply the GeoNodes modifier and you'll be left with a fully usable mesh.

enter image description here

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  • $\begingroup$ Oh got it! So geometry nodes is essentially a visual programming system. No idea Blender had that. I still think just dividing the edges is quicker for what I'm using it for currently, but I can definitely see how this would be super useful for other things and more detail than what I have currently. Thank you! $\endgroup$
    – sfaust
    Mar 6 at 22:04
  • $\begingroup$ @sfaust sure, no problem $\endgroup$ Mar 6 at 22:37
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Ok so after still working on this I discovered this thread: Divide a face into multiple vertical edges.

Based on that I figured out an answer that I think works much better. Posting it here for others that may have the same issue.

  1. Create the cylinder
  2. Select the cylinder and go into edit mode
  3. Make sure you are on edges mode in the selector right next to the object mode/edit mode dropdown
  4. Select all the vertical edges. This is not hard, just box select to get the ones you can see, then rotate the view around part way and shift box select to get the others. I was able to get it in 3 box selections each time. You can also get it in a single one if you turn on wireframe which should be near the top right of the view.
  5. Right click and select 'Subdivide'. Change the 'Number of Cuts' field to the number of sections you want it divided into.

Done!

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  • $\begingroup$ By far the simplest way is to read up on the standard Ctrl-R Loop Cut tool in Blender. $\endgroup$
    – John Eason
    Mar 6 at 22:45
  • $\begingroup$ You should make yourself familiar with the Loop Cut tool... no need for selecting the vertical edges, no need to be in Edge Select mode,, simply cutting the cylinder vertical. $\endgroup$ Mar 6 at 22:46
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    $\begingroup$ @GordonBrinkmann Great minds think alike... :^) $\endgroup$
    – John Eason
    Mar 6 at 22:50
  • $\begingroup$ @JohnEason Or you just saw my earlier comment under the question ;) The English "great minds think alike" always sounds very complimenting, in German we say "two thickies, one thought" :D $\endgroup$ Mar 6 at 23:00
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    $\begingroup$ Actually I didn't notice your original comment among all the complicated answers. I must use your German expression next time... :^) $\endgroup$
    – John Eason
    Mar 7 at 0:19

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