The ARCHLine.XP Summertime Blues

The Icon

The world's first commercially successful solid-body electric guitar's design is simple, but effective. With a revolutionary "twangy" sound, it has been a trendsetter in tone and in guitar manufacturing) ever since of its introduction in the 1950s. It can be found in the hands of excellent musicians from all kinds of genres - it's an instrument for the ages.

The Software

ARCHLine.XP is a design software targeted for AEC projects, however, it does have a wide range of features targeted for designing 3D shapes. We did a few riffs on it, to see if we can replicate the guitar as a 3D model, and we used its integrated rendering engine to get some nice visuals. Let's get to it, and-one-and-two...


Forming the body

The guitar's body is one solid slab of wood with a few cutouts to fit the electronics. We used ARCHLine.XP's Cabinet Door feature. This function not only allows to create a customized shape, but it also allowed to have the desired holes and cutouts to be placed in one single object.

fig 1 - alternative usage of the Cabinet Door tool

The neck

The neck was formed with the Loft tool. We need to add section profiles (in blue), through which a solid is formed along a path (in red). If the section profiles change along the route, so does the resulting solid. That's how we ended up a curved, gradually narrowing shape.

fig 2 Varying section profiles will distort the 3D shape accordingly.

The saddle

This piece of metal houses the bridge pickup, responsible for the distinct Telecaster sound. This cover also holds the strings in place. We formed it using the 3D shape tool: this feature starts with a 3D solid, and allows us to modify its 3 projection profiles (shown in red and blue). By modifying these profiles, and adding holes, we ended up with the piece pictured below.

fig 3 Covers, metal pieces with drillholes are easy to form using the 3D Shape tool

It comes together

By combining the above features, we soon ended up with a pretty library of magnets, pickups, selectors, potentiometers. It's worth grouping these to appropriate folders, so that you can always find what you are looking for.

fig 4 Careful organization of your content means efficient design

After finding the appropriate "Butterscotch Blonde" texture, and setting up the right materials, ARCHLine.XP's integrated render took care of the rest.

Rock on!


Find out more about the ARCHLine.XP modeling toolset here

Download trial here

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