Designing a Detailed Steampunk Android

I recently designed a steampunked Android figure in Blender. I first created a black version and then I also made a brown version.

The printed sandstone model came out very nice; I was especially impressed with the details. It seems that the sandstone printer could easily handle more details.

I decided to ramp up the design by adding more steampunk-styled elements. The first thing I wanted to do was to add more panels to the body and have those riveted around the edges. I extruded areas of the mesh body in Blender for the panels and then duplicated vertically and horizontally aligned rivets for each new edge.

I added a backpack on the back with cylinders and some pipes going into the head of the figure. These could be oxygen or fuel supplies.

I wanted to show more details of how the figure works. So I added some piping with gauges on the outside of the body. The arms were looking too clean, so I added some rings and big gears for “fingers”. Initially I wanted to add some victorian curved shapes to the head but I had trouble getting that to look good. So I opted instead for a hat which is bolted on top of the head.

The backpack needed more details to make it look functional. I added some clasps to hold the cylinders in place and a small stand for support. More piping parts were added at the back. The pipes started as cylinders which were edited to have bulged middle parts and extruded ends that were rotated into the body.

The legs needed something to make it looked balanced with the rest of the body. I added a big gear, but on its own it wasn’t good enough. I tried to make the design look functional; there is a reason for each part. In fact the elements are also anatomical: the oxygen cylinders for “lungs”, a rear vent, a front access panel and a gear mechanism for a “heart”. So I added a vertical strut to the leg gears and a bolt to make it look like it could be part of the mechanism that makes the figure move forward.

After some minor adjustments, the design is ready to be printed. In 2 weeks time I will see how well the new design works.

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